Smiley: Recalling “Mae Day”

I’ve always rather enjoyed embarrassing my children — at Spanish Town Mardi Gras festivities, the Gridiron Show, etc.

But Virgie R. Kraus, of Madisonville, reminds us that kids have a way of making their parents squirm:

“Recent stories on ways to embarrass a parent reminded me of when I was in the third grade at Our Lady of Lourdes School in New Orleans.

“Every month our principal, Sister Mary Grace, would come to the class and ask the children what they would like to be when they grew up or whom they admired in famous people.

“On this particular occasion the subject was which movie star we most admired.

“Each girl stood and gave her favorite (at the time it was Shirley Temple).

“However, when it came to my turn, my response was Mae West!

“Needless to say, it caused the principal and my teacher to have quite a shock.

“As a result my mother had a meeting with the teacher; then I was asked to explain my unconventional choice.

“By the way, this was not the last time I did not follow the popular choice.”

More on accents

Jane Roby says, “My cousin Dale from Atlanta was 8 years old before I found out her name was not Dell.

“The funny thing is, I called her Dell and she would answer.”

You see one bug …

D.J. Daigle says, “My 4-year-old granddaughter, Audrey Grace Manda, came for a visit.

“Bursting through the door, she announced, ‘Tripp (her 3-year-old brother) and I have bad coughs, but Lauren and Brody (Brignac) had stomach FLEAS!’

“My daughter Lindsey had told her the Brignac children were sick with a stomach BUG. …”

Garden of memory

James Derrell Ehlers, a 1957 graduate of SLI (now ULL) in Lafayette, continues our nostalgia tales about the university:

“When I was a student at SLI, the favorite ‘watering hole’ after passing a test, or for any reason, was Voorhies Roof Garden.

“They even announced the winner for student body president there one year.”

Which reminds me

Years ago, when The Advocate was downtown, a popular after-work stop was the Italian Gardens bar on Convention Street.

It was a colorful joint, attracting an eclectic bunch of customers.

I bought a T-shirt promoting the joint, and was wearing it in New Orleans one day as I stood on Canal Street waiting for a streetcar.

A little old lady came up to me and, pointing to my “Italian Gardens” shirt, told me, “I’m very fond of your people, and I know your gardens are just lovely!”

So I thanked her. …

Tiny beauties

Al O’Brien says, “What a wonderful day — March 17.

“St. Pattie’s Day, and the first ruby-throated hummer of the season. Wow!”

Special People Dept.

Earl Flatt, of Broussard, celebrates his 90th birthday on Thursday, March 20. A World War II Marine Corps veteran, he took part in the Battle of Iwo Jima.

Gabe Jumonville Sr. celebrates his 90th birthday on Thursday, March 20.

Helen and James Marsh celebrate their 60th anniversary on Thursday, March 20.

Thought for the Day

From Harriet St.Amant: “You know you’re out of shape and need to go on a diet when you fall down, and while trying to get back up you rock yourself to sleep.”

Twist and shout

Another “kids in church” story, from Linda Hughes Whitman, of Denham Springs:

“I was sitting between Momma and Daddy one Sunday at the old Emmanuel Baptist Church on North Boulevard.

“I misbehaved at some point, and Momma not only pinched my arm, she took it one step further — she TWISTED that pinch.

“I hollered out ‘OW!’

“She never pinched me again — in church anyway.

“She just celebrated her 91st birthday and can still take care of business.”

Sign language

Loren Scott joins our seminar on signs with missing letters with this story:

“One night, a man was involved in a serious car accident at an intersection where on one corner there was a service station.

“He was thrown from the car and knocked out cold.

“When the EMT personnel finally got him to come around, he began to thrash around wildly and scream at the top of his lungs.

“The EMT team gave him a shot to settle him down, and put him in the ambulance for the ride to the hospital.

“When he finally calmed down, they asked him why he went so berserk when he came to:

“‘Well, I came to, I knew I was in an accident, it was dark, these guys are standing over me, and behind them was a Shell sign — but someone was standing in front of the ‘S.’ ”

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.