John Currier says, "My daughter and son-in-law were in for a visit. He is from Cleveland, and it is such a different world that he is sometimes not sure whether we are making Louisiana stuff up or not.

"For example, for the longest time, he thought stinging caterpillars were totally his wife just messing with him. When he found out they were real, I guess he just decided to take whatever we say about our lovely state at face value.

"It should be no surprise, then, that on this visit, when I informed him I was on Louisiana’s Alligator Advisory Council, he asked, 'Exactly what kind of advice do you give the alligators, and do they take it?'”

Honest beggar

William Coenen sent over a photo showing one of those guys you see at the busiest street corners, holding cardboard signs saying they need work or travel money or telling some hard luck story.

William took a picture of this gent at a corner on Baton Rouge's heavily traveled Perkins Road.

His sign contained only one word: "Beer."    

Sorry, Priscilla

Ann Marley Purnell Collom, of Kenner, says our Tuesday story about the tiger mascot on the University of Memphis, her alma mater, brought back memories:

"It was Memphis State when I attended in the '60s. Priscilla Presley attended Immaculate Conception, my high school alma mater, where I graduated in 1962. She graduated the year after me.

"Wonder if she would be jealous to know Elvis kissed me on the cheek when I was 12?"

Clearing Batman

Michael Eldred says, "Remembering iceboxes reminded me of a conversation my brother and I had several years ago.

"We were discussing superheroes when he told me he did not like Batman. Why would anyone not like Batman?

"He told me that when our icebox was repossessed many years ago, the man who rolled it out said, 'I'm the Batman.' So for the past 75 years, he has not liked Batman.

"I set the record straight by telling him that what was actually said, in a strong Tennessee accent, was, 'I'm the bad man.'"

Close enough

Beryl Browning says when her great-granddaughter, 5, asked how old she was, Beryl told her she was 81.

The little lass ran to her mother and said, “Momma, Grandma is 100 years old!”

Special People Dept.

  • Robert "Sonny" Harris, of Bunkie, celebrated his 99th birthday Tuesday, Dec. 10. He is a World War II veteran.
  • Amelia S. Lanoix celebrates her 90th birthday Wednesday, Dec. 11.
  • Vera Wilson celebrated her 90th birthday Tuesday, Dec. 10.
  • Katherine Scales Pate, of Tunica, celebrated her 90th birthday Dec. 5.

Joe meets Annie

I mentioned earlier how the poems and songs celebrating LSU's magical season and its stellar quarterback have been rolling in (I'm refraining from judging the quality of the submissions, because it's the holiday season and I'm feeling charitable).

Calvin Balencie, of Baton Rouge, sent this just before the SEC championship game, but I wasn't able to get it in the column. But with a small change, it's still appropriate.

It's to the signature song in the Broadway play "Annie," which has been stuck in my head for several days now:

"The sun will come out tomorrow, Joe Burrow, bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow Joe will shine;

Just thinking about tomorrow, Coach O and Joe Burrow, our team will be fine.

Joe Burrow, Joe Burrow, can't wait 'til tomorrow, it's only two weeks away!"

This one's for Skip

Ronald Scioneaux, of St. James, says this time of year he always thinks about his buddy Skip Oubre, who died Dec. 12, 2012:

"He wrote the two genealogy books 'La Vacherie.' As a tribute to him as a close friend, I'd like to submit his favorite joke as a remembrance to all who knew him:

"A man walks into a bar with a duck under his arm. The bartender looks up and says, 'Where are you going with that pig?' The man replies, 'This ain't no pig, it's a duck.' The bartender says, 'I was talking to the duck.'"

Write Smiley at He can also be reached by mail at P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821. Follow Smiley Anders on Twitter, @SmileyAndersAdv.