John Currier picks up nuisance alligators and relocates them, kind of an "only in Louisiana or Florida" job, I would imagine. He has a sense of humor about his occupation. For example:

"A couple of years ago I got a call to get a small alligator out of the pond at an apartment complex. Since it was after dark and had cooled off considerably, my wife asked if she could ride with me.

"We arrived at the complex, and quickly caught a 2-footer for relocation. I keep a small nylon mesh crawfish boiling sack in the truck for the small ones, so we bagged him up and headed back.

"As we walked back I gazed at the small reptile, clearly visible in the mesh sack, and had a brainstorm.

"Handing the bag to my wife, I reached for my phone and scrolled to the camera.

"'What are you doing?' she suspiciously inquired while holding the reptile sack out at arms length.

"'You've been saying for years you wanted an alligator bag, so I'm taking a picture to show everyone you finally got one. Smile!'"

(Tell me, John, how much does it hurt to get hit over the head with a small alligator?)

All about Ogden

Russ Wise says our mention of Ogden Nash and his short poems reminded him of one of his favorites, which made use of the Scottish word "ilk," used here to mean "sort" or "kind:" 

“The cow is of the bovine ilk;

One end is moo, the other, milk.”

Speaking of Ogden Nash, several readers mentioned a poem about fleas, which is very much in the style of Nash. But he didn't write it.

"Lines on the Antiquity of Microbes," also known as "Fleas," is often called the shortest poem ever written. It was composed by Strickland Gillilan, an American poet, in the early 20th Century. Here is his ode to fleas:


Had 'em."

Canned car

In the Thursday column, Michael Hess, of Slidell, told of his history of buying cars that were later discontinued by the manufacturer.

After I playfully suggested that one of these might have been a Yugo (built in the former Yugoslavia and marketed in the U.S. from 1985 to 1992), he responded with the best description of that ill-fated vehicle I've ever heard:

"That's like putting an engine in a Spam can."

War stories

"Storm" from "Old Baton Rouge" comments on a Wednesday Advocate story, about Cajun French speakers who were interpreters in World War II:

"Reading the very nice article by George Morris made me remember the TV series 'Combat!' (1962-1967).

"It starred Vic Morrow, but one of the main characters was Paul 'Caje' LeMay, who was a soldier who quite often interpreted French during World War II.

"The role was played by Pierre Jalbert, and he pulled it off quite well — but he was a Canadian from Quebec.

"They probably couldn’t find any true Cajuns who wanted to move to LaLa Land!"

Special People Dept.

  • Lydia Tierney, of Metairie, celebrated her 99th birthday Sunday, Nov. 17.
  • Russell E. Kauffman, of Baton Rouge, celebrates his 95th birthday Sunday, Nov. 24. He is a World War II Coast Guard veteran, and saw action in the Pacific.
  • Johnnie Safar, of Gretna, celebrates her 94th birthday Saturday, Nov. 23.
  • Earl “Pappy” and Evelyna “Teeta” Guidry celebrate their 73rd anniversary Saturday, Nov. 23.

Territorial war

When I did my Fearless Football Forecast for the LSU Tigers back in August, I figured I might hear from The Advocate's sports people about encroaching on their territory.

And, sure enough, Scott Rabalais, in his latest "Time Out" column, moves in on my bailiwick.

No doubt noticing that I ran a recent story about a young couple planning to name their first child after Joe Burrow, Scott asks his readers to tell how Joe "has burrowed his way into your lives." (He's even stealing my bad puns!)

Seriously, more or less, it's a good idea. He's seeking amusing signs, pets and restaurant dishes named for Joe, etc. He's at

See, I can be a good sport…    

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.