Smiley: What accent, y’all?

There are those who claim that Southerners speak with an accent.

Growing up in Natchez and Baton Rouge, I never noticed any unusual accents.

But the rumor persists.

For instance, Sarah Stravinska, originally from the Frozen Nawth but now living in Chesnut in Natchitoches Parish, sent in this story:

“My friend Janet complained that my corgi, Frodo, would not ‘sit’ on command for her.

“I asked for a demonstration.

“So Janet looks at Frodo and says, ‘See yut?’

“Frodo is looking all around: ‘No, I don’t see it! If I find it, will you throw it?’

“My dog only understands Yankee English.”

Which reminds me

Years ago, a lady who had just moved here from the Frozen Nawth told me this “Southern accents” story:

Driving in an unfamiliar part of Baton Rouge, she paused at a stop sign to get her bearings.

A guy in the car behind her leaned out his window and yelled, “Goathead!”

Incensed, she jumped out of her car and went back to berate the guy for his bad manners.

As she lit into him, the mystified guy tried to explain: “But ma’am, I was just telling you to go head awn. …”

Ever since I told Lady Katherine that story, every time I tell her to “Go ahead” she invariably responds, “Don’t call me a goathead!”

Hanging offense

In the Monday column, I reported that College Station, Texas, was named the Klutziest City in America by, a company that pays cash for used or broken smartphones and tablets.

The designation was based on the number of busted devices turned in to the company.

I mentioned that there was an Aggie joke in there somewhere, and both my readers responded.

I’m happy to report that Anne Cummings won our little contest with this one:

“Aggies break their smartphones because they keep trying to hang up.”

By winning, Anne becomes eligible for a free root beer the next time she sees me at the Pastime.

Silver medalist

Coming in second in my above-mentioned Aggie joke contest was T-Bob Taylor, my unpaid Panama City Beach, Fla., correspondent.

He surmised that so many smartphones were broken because a certain Aggie quarterback was fumbling them due to nervousness “while getting reminder tips regarding guidelines on signing stuff.”

T-Bob would have won silver in the Olympics, but here he gets only my best wishes.

The agony of defeat

Richard Sherlock says our mention of Baton Rouge bands in the Beatles era reminds him of this sad tale:

“I played baritone saxophone in my brother’s swamp pop horn band The Crowns during this time.

“We went up against a local band at a ‘battle of the bands’ at Redemptorist High.

“The band that beat us was The Inn Crowd, playing new, hot Beatles songs.

“They beat us like a rug.

“The Inn Crowd and The Basement Wall were nonhorn bands extremely popular in this area during that time.”

Grits giveaway

Linda Leger Belleu, of Gonzales, says that during the early days of Beatlemania, she was in high school, working weekends at a restaurant.

There she met an agent for a “British” band playing in the Lafayette area.

While the agent claimed the lads were from England, when they came in for breakfast, they ordered grits and sunny-side-up eggs, not kippered herring.

Linda says the way they stirred their grits and eggs together tipped her off that they weren’t from across the pond.

And while the young men “looked the part,” she says, they didn’t speak during their meal — possibly because they were still working on accents.

Worthy causes

The ALS Foundation benefits from the Clevy David and Christy Roy Memorial Bass Fishing Tournament on Saturday, March 1, from the Morrision Parkway Boat Dock in New Roads. Call (225) 505-6681 or (225) 638-8584.

Special People Dept.

Alvin and Lily Fairchild, of St. Gabriel, celebrate their 59th anniversary Tuesday, Feb. 25.

Will’s view

Roy Pitchford, of Monroe, says, “The U.S. ‘only’ finished second in total medals at the Winter Olympics (fourth in gold medals), but I am still reminded of what Will Rogers said.

“He said that if there was an international egg-laying convocation in Czechoslovakia, ‘America would send more delegates and lay more eggs than any other nation.’ ”

Feed a child

Veronica Poirrier, of Gonzales, says, “A few years ago when my grandchildren were visiting from Houston, we decided to order pizza.

“Trying to decide how many to get, I asked my grandson Sanders how much pizza could he eat.

“He said, ‘I don’t know, Mawmaw. My parents never let me eat as much as I could.’ ”

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