Smiley: A divine tale

This story, from Karen Poirrier, of Lutcher, should be appreciated by folks familiar with the celebration of Mass (or eucharist or communion) involving the serving of bread and wine, and ending with the celebrant putting away the goblet and plate used in the service.

Says Karen, “Our toddlers, Rae Lynne and David, at their first Mass with Buddy and me, had been told by Buddy, ‘Sit toward the back of the church.’

“But when they entered the church, with Rae Lynne trotting like a filly and David following like a colt, the two pranced down the center aisle and sat in the front pew. Buddy and I followed.

“Every Sunday morning for approximately two months this same routine occurred: Buddy chastising the two before leaving home and before exiting the car, only to be ignored.

“Finally, one morning after entering the car after Mass and buckling his two ‘disrespectful’ toddlers in the back seat, he asked, ‘Why do you two ignore me every Sunday morning after I’ve been totally clear about where I expect you to sit?’

“To which Rae Lynne replied, ‘We like to sit in the first pew because we can see Father, and we know when he washes the dishes Mass is almost over.’ ”

Life in the South

Bob Downing says during the recent freeze in Baton Rouge he found his car windshield iced over:

“I found a very old can of de-icer I kept finding when I didn’t need it and not finding when I did need it. I was very excited.

“The label was yellow with age, but it still sprayed.

“However, it did not melt the ice on my windshield.

“I intend to go get my money back, but I can’t seem to find any Western Auto locations.

“Have you seen any lately?”

Locking in love

Jill Jordan was the first of numerous readers to answer the question about padlocks found on a Baton Rouge bridge:

“The locks on the bridge are likely an homage to the ones on the ‘love lock bridge’ in Paris over the Seine.

“Couples go to the bridge with a lock, often with their names written on it, place the lock on the fence of the bridge and throw the key into the river, thus sealing their love forever.”

Pat Crotty, of Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., says the Paris bridge is the Pont des Arts, near the Louvre:

“My wife and I learned this from a guide while spending our children’s inheritance celebrating my 70th birthday.”

Harley Bennett says the custom was depicted in the movie “Now You See Me.”

Elaine Favre tells of a less romantic view of the practice:

“The fad has become so popular that the city gendarmes have begun cutting off the thousands of padlocks, concerned that the beautiful bridges, so famous a feature of the city, are being defaced, and that the keys tossed into the river may cause ecological damage.”

You speak Southdowns?

Joe Simmons, counsel to the Krewe of Southdowns, has a way with words.

Here’s a note he sent me about this year’s parade (at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, with a “Southdowns Fran├žais” theme):

“After 26 years of following the same route, construction at Lee High has forced our precocious pack of perambulators to permute the processional prescription of our parade’s progress.

“Or, if I might eschew the obscuration, we have to change our staging area and our route.

“We hope that mayhaps you will help us spread the word. Full details are at

“Great and grand gobs of gratitude to you, genial and jovial guru of germane generalities.”

Nice job, folks

Helen Rankin thanks some people she doesn’t know:

Little Misery Cemetery is an old African-American cemetery located on Old Hammond Highway between Fairway Drive and East Contour, across from the BREC park.

“The first record of a burial there is in 1933, with the latest in 2008.

“It was so overgrown that you would not know it was a cemetery unless you just happened to know about it being there.

“I was on my way to First Christian Church on Old Hammond Highway, down the road from the cemetery, a couple of weeks ago and noticed that it is all cleaned up.

“I would like to thank whoever is responsible for a major job very well done.”

Inquiring Minds Dept.

Linda Landry says, “In my travels, I’ve seen vending-type machines that buy old cellphones. Do you know if there are any in our area?”

Earthly reward

Algie Petrere came across another church story:

A young girl’s parents decided to take her to visit a new church one Sunday morning.

As a small bribe, they told her that if she was good during the service they would take her to her favorite restaurant afterward.

During the pastor’s rather fiery sermon on the destination of the good versus the destination of the evil he asked, in a rather loud voice, ‘And where do you think those who live a pure, just and good life before the Lord are going to go?’

“The girl stood in her seat and cried out, ‘To my favorite restaurant!’ ”

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.