On Monday I said I was winding down our locked-car stories.
James Lipstate says, "Good friends of ours in Lafayette invited us to their vacation home in Maine one fall.
"After a pleasant round of golf late one afternoon the ladies drove up to join us, exiting the car to enjoy the views.
"As we approached the car to drive home we noticed something was wrong. Their dog Millie had jumped up on the armrest of the rental car and hit the door lock button, locking the car with the keys inside.
"As the sun set in the Maine backwoods, my host trudged over to the clubhouse; but the chances of finding a locksmith anywhere nearby seemed remote.
"Then I came up with the revelation that if the dog could jump on the armrest to lock the car, she could very well do the same and unlock it.
"I fished a granola bar out of my golf bag and tried to entice the pup to undo the deed. Twice she jumped up, hitting the door lock button again but not unlocking the car door.
"On the third attempt she landed on the unlock button and saved the day. Millie earned my granola bar for her efforts, which was a small price to pay; as the backup plan was a 5-iron through a window."
Tom Boone, of Gonzales, says, "Many years ago, after partying all weekend during Carnival in New Orleans, I discovered I had locked my keys in my car the morning we were to leave.
"Finally I found a locksmith who would come out on Lundi Gras morning, but he said it wouldn’t be cheap.
"He arrived and quickly had my car opened. I paid him and thanked him.
"He said, 'No, thank you.'
"He then called his wife and two young kids over. Waving the four 20s I had given him, he said since he was downtown anyway, he could now afford to treat his family to lunch and a couple of parades.
"Suddenly I didn’t feel so bad about what he charged."
Yugo's last laugh
T.W. says, "The stories about the worst car ever made, the Yugo, reminded me about an article I read a couple of years ago.
"A pristine 1988 Yugo with 438 miles on it was found in a storage locker and put up on Craigslist for $9,000 (the MSRP was $3995).
"It just goes to show that if you keep trash around for long enough, anything can become a valuable antique.
"And as an added, or necessary, bonus, it came with a 'spare parts' car."
Darlene Messina has a question about the Chalmette produce stand mentioned in the March 17 column that had a sign offering "sapsumers."
She wonders, "Was this the same stand that advertised 'red patoes?'”
Special People Dept.
Joan Oppenheim, of Metairie, celebrates her 100th birthday Wednesday, March 24. She was an information booth volunteer at New Orleans' World War II Museum from its opening until it closed down for COVID.
Algie Petrere, of Central, came across this story from a Navy veteran:
"When I was in the Navy, ever so often you got umpteen shots, whether you needed them or not. The carrier pilot in front of me in line asked for a drink of water after receiving what seemed to be at least a dozen different needles.
"The corpsman asked if he was dizzy. 'No,' he replied, 'I just wanna see if I'm still water-tight.'"
Fun with names
"Recent discussions of appropriate names caused me to recall an inappropriate one," says Harry Clark, of Lafayette.
"The archbishop of Manila many years ago was Cardinal Jaime Sin. He was the hero of the poor and very anti-Marcos.
"He also had a great sense of humor. He called his residence in Manila 'The House of Sin.'"
And Andree Herrington, of Metarie, says, "My current dentist is appropriately named Dr. Kapit. I mentioned this to his staff. They laughed and said they had never thought of that.
"And then there is the local gynecologist named Dr. Peeper!"