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"Our re-entry into polite society is proving to be a little bumpy."

That's a quote from an article on rudeness in the Oct. 15 Time magazine. Sister-in-law Valeri Leblanc sent it to me, and it's timely for Baton Rouge drivers who face months of traffic delays due to interstate construction.

The article, by Belinda Luscombe, says, "Lawyers are reporting ruder clients. Restaurants are reporting ruder clients. Flight attendants, for whom rude clients are no novelty, are reporting mayhem."

Psychologists say the long period of separation due to the pandemic has made return to normal difficult. Even the slightest problem can trigger overreaction, including violence.

Behavioral experts suggest you slow down, breathe out more slowly, and lower your voice when encountering difficult social situations or irate people.

In other words, just pause — "Unless, of course, the traffic light is green."  

Cheering religiously

Another memorable school cheer story, this one from Edwin Fleischmann, of Metairie:

"At the funeral service last week for the Rev. Peter S. Rogers, S.J., noted scholar of French literature, the eulogist recounted a story told to him by Father Rogers years ago.

"Father Rogers was at a ball game in Mobile, Alabama, in which 'Most Pure Heart of Mary' high school was competing. Their cheer went like this:

“'Pure Heart of Mary … Red hot, red hot!'"

Groaner of the Week

Andy Maverick, of Baton Rouge, says, "I enjoyed the story in your Monday column about 'Miz Coach.' It reminded me of one of those fine Baton Rouge evenings we have been having recently.

"For happy hour, my wife had just come across some of those 'sippy cups' our kids used to drink out of when they were very young.

"As we were enjoying our non-kid beverages in those historic vessels, I figured I could call myself 'Mr. Sippy.'

"If that stuck, my wife’s name would have to be…"

Yeah, yeah, we get it …

Feel the warmth

My mention of the Sunday rush from Baton Rouge's downtown churches to the Piccadilly Cafeteria for lunch stirred this memory for Linda H. Whitman, of Denham Springs:

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"So many good memories we have revolve around food. Living downtown, of course we went to the Piccadilly on Sundays. We would occasionally beat the Catholics there.

"Sunday mornings before church, Daddy would stop at Baum’s Bakery for big loaves of warm French bread. Talk about drive you crazy in the car!

"Then some Sunday nights after church, he would pull in to the Wolf's Sunbeam bakery on Florida Street and get us a hot loaf of bread.

"That and Steen's cane syrup were all anyone needed for supper (not dinner, supper!)."

Which reminds me

During the summer I always looked forward to my dad coming home for lunch, which he did occasionally.

This was because he'd stop by the above-mentioned Sunbeam bakery, near where he worked, and pick up a hot, uncut loaf of bread.

Mom would serve us fresh corn, tomatoes, and green beans with salt pork. But the bread, slathered with butter, was the star of the meal. We'd knock off that whole loaf in one sitting.  

Special People Dept.

— Marjorie Stone Cougle, of Windsor Senior Community in Mandeville, celebrated her 97th birthday Monday, Oct. 18. She is a native of New Orleans and former Metairie resident, and worked for the New Orleans Dock Board before her retirement.

— Gaston Gerald, of Central, celebrates his 90th birthday Wednesday, Oct. 20.

— Judy and Dominic Gagliano, of Bush, celebrate their 65th anniversary Wednesday, Oct. 20.

Return visit

John Davis, of Kentwood, says, "With regard to your recent series about coaches' sayings, I’m surprised nobody mentioned a quote (by Bear Bryant, I think) who told his defense that after they sacked the quarterback to be nice:

"Help him up and tell him, 'I’ll be right back.'"

No rush

Earl Newman, of Baton Rouge, says our Monday story about a slow football player reminded him of this personal experience:

"That player's agony was that the coach said he took too many steps in the same spot. Mine was the coach telling me they timed me with a calendar."

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.