Smiley Anders for Jan. 24, 2013

Facebook can get tiresome — endless pictures of cute dogs, cats and kids, plus views about politics, religion and football you may not share.

But despite its shortcomings, Facebook can serve a useful purpose.

Take the case of Joanne Azorsky Bradford:

“I am a 1976 Broadmoor High School graduate, and in the spring of 1976 (before graduation) I was with all my friends at Forest Park playing softball.

“I took off my class ring, which I paid for by saving up baby-sitting money, and put it in my pocket. When the game was over I went to put it back on and it was gone.

“My friends and I looked all over and never found it.

“The other day I saw on Facebook, on the ‘BHS 1976’ page, Paula Calandro’s post about a gentleman in Lafayette who had found a BHS 1976 ring with the initials ‘JA’ inside.

“I couldn’t believe it! I contacted Paula, told her my story and described my lost ring.

“She said, ‘IT’S YOURS!’ and sent me contact information for Henry DeRise, a metal detector club member who had found my ring at Forest Park in 1985.

“Henry told me he’s found dozens of class rings and has worked really hard at trying to return them.

“Who would have guessed that after 37 years I would finally be getting my ring back?”

Business 101

Archie L. Dickson says our seminar on the stage plank (a flat gingerbread cookie) reminds him that it was the stage plank that taught him his first lesson about business:

“Back in the 1920s, when I was in grammar school, I opened my stage plank package at lunch time.

“The two-plank package had cost me the princely sum of five cents.

“I proceeded to devour one of the delicious slabs. Then, lo and behold, there appeared a kid offering me 10 cents for the remaining half of the package.

“This business transaction was quickly finalized, demonstrating to me that if someone wants what you have bad enough, that person will pay whatever is required.”

Good Samaritan

Mrs. Dugas, of Thibodaux, says she and her husband were driving home on U.S. 90 when they ran over an iron bar that had evidently fallen off a truck, blowing out a front tire:

“We have road service, but couldn’t get anyone to respond. I called 911, and an officer from the St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office came to help us.

“It was raining hard, and it was cold.”

She thanks Katie Breaux, their “guardian angel” from the Sheriff’s Office, who changed the tire for them.

Musical interlude

The Baton Rouge High School Festival Singers, under the direction of Robbie Giroir, are performing “preview concerts” in preparation for their February trip to Italy and Vatican City, where they will perform for the pope.

Concerts will be held at the Julian Poydras Museum in New Roads at 6 p.m. Thursday and the Unitarian Church of Baton Rouge at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

The concerts are free, but donations are welcome.

That you, Captain?

Mary Vernoy, of Metairie, says our notice about Louise Leake, a World War II veteran, celebrating her 94th birthday brought up this question:

“I am a 20-year veteran of the U.S. Naval Air Reserve.

“When I was first sworn in, in October of 1972 in New Orleans, it was by a Capt. Leake, one of the first female navigators in the WAVES, who had taught navigation to Navy pilots in World War II.

“I’m curious — is this the same Capt. Leake?”

Mary’s at vernoym@bellsouth.net.

Special People Dept.

  • Lewis Guidry, a World War II veteran and Exxon retiree, celebrates his 94th birthday Thursday.
  • Ray and Doris Murry, of Port Allen, celebrate 65 years of marriage Thursday.

The Spanish connection

Keith Horcasitas says his dad, a native of Mexico who moved to New Orleans, spoke fluent Spanish, but had a phrase he used to clarify something he heard in English: “What’s that? Break it up again.”

He was also known for this toast, which he delivered at business luncheons and Mexican consulate events: “Saludo a la moneda Mexicana y que el costo nada besos!” (“Salute to the Mexican money and that the kisses cost nothing!”)

Says Keith, “Nothing needed ‘breaking up’ about that!”

A grave matter

Sissy Crapanzano passes along this story:

While walking in front of his church, a minister heard the intoning of a prayer.

Apparently, his 5-year-old son and his playmates had found a dead robin.

Feeling that proper burial should be performed, they had secured a small box and cotton batting, then dug a hole and made ready for the disposal of the deceased.

The minister’s son was chosen to say the appropriate prayers, and with sonorous dignity intoned his version of what he thought his father always said: “Glory be unto the Faaather, and unto the Sonnn, and into the hole he goooes.”

Write Smiley at Smiley@theadvocate.com. He can also be reached by fax at (225) 388-0351 or mail at P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821.