Nobey Benoit adds to our tales of Cajun boucheries:
"I remember the annual boucherie when I was a kid. Our uncles, aunts, and cousins would gather on the first cold day of the season to butcher our pig.
"Killing the pig was the hard part for me, after being on a first-name basis with him. I hoped he understood when I explained the killing was necessary for him to be a part of the festivities.
"All that was forgotten when we got to enjoy the bacon, boudin, hog head cheese, gratons and all else made at the boucherie.
"Once, when the time came for the kill, my uncle handed my dad his old .22 single-shot rifle and a handful of bullets.
"Dad said, 'Just give me one bullet. All we have is one pig and we ain't turnin' him loose.'
"It's said that when you have a boucherie, everything on the pig is used except the squeal. I think that's true. We had no idea what soccer was back then, but we played our version with the bladder."
Kirk Guidry, of Baton Rouge, says, "Before I was a principal I taught high school chemistry in Avoyelles Parish.
"I was teaching about how we use the pH scale to tell whether a substance is acid or base. I told them if a substance had a pH of 1-6 it was acid and 8-14 it was a base.
"I told them a pH of 7 was neutral. I then gave them an example, and said the pH of distilled water is 7.
"A young lady in back of classroom raised her hand and asked, 'Mais, Mr. Guidry, if the pH of distilled water is 7, what is the pH of moving water?’"
Algie Petrere, of Central, says, "Before Cajun food products were sold nationally, when my sisters would visit we would have to make a grocery store run to stock up on seasonings and mixes for them to take back home to Arkansas and New York.
"After one visit, I got a call from my sister, Margaret, in New York. She was so excited because she had made a Cajun dinner for her family.
"She said they loved all of it, but their favorite was the 'e-toof-ee.'"
Richard O'Neill, of Metairie, has a tale of military mispronunciation:
"Years ago, after joining the Louisiana Army National Guard, I was sent to Fort Jackson, South Carolina, for basic training.
"At our first formation for roll call, the master sergeant yelled out the name, 'O-Nel-e.'
"After the second shout-out I assumed he was calling me, so I answered, 'O'Neill, here, sir.'
"Immediately he responded, 'Yea right, O-Nel-e.'
"So from then on I was baptized with a new name for the next six weeks at basic training."
Special People Dept.
- Gloria Harrington Pierce, of Abbeville, celebrates her 94th birthday Friday, Sept. 25.
- Idola DiMarco, of Houma, celebrates her 90th birthday Sunday, Sept. 27.
- Lloyd St. Pé, of Covington, celebrates his 90th birthday Sunday, Sept. 27.
- Carlyn and Louis Rome, of Kenner, formerly of Jefferson, celebrate 70 years of marriage Saturday, Sept. 26.
Jo Ann Paulin, of Metairie, says, "I was in either Tennessee or Kentucky, at a diner. The waitress came up to take our order and said, 'What will y’uns have?'
"I knew I was really in hill country. I guess we all have our own expressions, but this took me aback, even though my mom was from Kentucky."
Which reminds me
This is a story I tell about once a year, because it amuses me.
Two ladies from south Louisiana were dining on rainbow trout at a Tennessee hill country restaurant when the lady serving them said, "Y'all sure talk funny. Where you from?"
When they told her Louisiana, she frowned and said, "Ewww! I heard you people down there will eat anything!"
After they finished their meal, the server came back and said, "Y'all want me to wrap up that leftover fish for you?"
One of the ladies smiled sweetly and told her, "Just the eyes, please…"