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Paula King, of Gretna, says mention of telephone party lines, serving several homes on one line, reminded her of this small-town telephone experience while a youngster in St. Francisville:

"Papa was building an addition to our house and injured himself. Mom picked up the phone and asked to be connected to the local doctor's office.

"The operator replied she saw the doctor just outside and would send him to our house, and she did.

"Now, that's service!"

Dangerous gossip

"The comment about party line telephone service brought back a memory," says Glen Nash, of Jonesboro:

"When I was a kid in Jackson Parish, my grandmother's sister was so bad about listening in on her eight-party line that her family had to get her heart doctor to tell her to stop.

"The doctor told her all the bad news was upsetting her and causing her heart to beat out of rhythm.

"I will admit there was nothing going on in the community she didn’t have the inside gossip on."

Dreaming of Augusta

"My new hero is now Scott Rabalais," Earl Newman says. "I read his article in the Wednesday Advocate about actually playing a round of golf at the Masters' course, the Augusta National Golf Club.

"This brought back memories of my two visits to this venerable site with my family, for viewing practice rounds only, following David Toms and getting up close to Tiger Woods and Mark O’Meara.

"While reading his article, just the thought of playing the course sent chills up my spine. Here’s hoping Scott sees this and becomes my best friend and invites me with him if there is a next time — and then I woke up from my dream."

Beats last

Ronnie Stutes, of Baton Rouge, reports on a poll about states in which Louisiana doesn't come out last or almost last.

The YouGov website asked folks to select the "better" state out of two states shown to them.

This methodology put Louisiana at No. 30.

Hawaii came out on top as the best state in the country. Another "great outdoors" state, Colorado, placed second.

Least favorite states included Mississippi, 49th, and Alabama, 50th, "states that also have low scores for income and access to health care."

Washington, D.C., came in last, "perhaps due to its association with politics and, with it, political divisiveness."

Happy returns

Onita Topee, of Mandeville, says, "On our way to Bellingrath Gardens near Mobile, we visited the rest stop at the Alabama state line. When we arrived at our destination, I discovered I had left my purse in the restroom at the rest stop!"

She thanks the Alabama rest stop folks for finding and holding her purse until she could retrieve it:

"I made it there and back in time to enjoy the gardens with my family. There was a good Samaritan looking out for me that day!"

Special People Dept.

  • Norma Miller Martin, of Prairieville, celebrates her 100th birthday Friday, April 16. She is a native of Olden, Texas. During the Depression her father disassembled some small houses, put them on wagon trains and relocated to Prairieville to farm.
  • Lavenia Faulk, of Ollie Steele Burden Manor in Baton Rouge, celebrates her 97th birthday Sunday, April 18.
  • Marian Cupples, of Landmark South, Baton Rouge, celebrates her 96th birthday Saturday, April 17.
  • Victor B. Berthelot, of Livingston, celebrates his 92nd birthday Sunday, April 18, in his recliner, "Because there's no place I'd rather be!"

Fear 'The Look'

Charles W. Landry, telling of the 100th birthday of his mother-in-law, Norma Miller Martin, says, "One of her tactics was what all of her children refer to as 'The Look.' 

"It came with no oral explanation, but the 'lookee' knew exactly what was being communicated. And it's being passed down from generation to generation. Some of our niece's children are starting to intimidate me a little bit."

I know what you mean, Charles. Lady Katherine has given me "The Look" a few times, and it is indeed a chilling experience.

Job security

I present this haiku to my editor, the golfer Peter Kovacs, celebrating his recent hole-in-one:

Shiny white orb soars

Still, stoic, he follows arc

Moment of glory

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.