Smiley: Speed Trap Festival?

The bill passed out of the House Transportation Committee requiring Louisiana speed-trap towns to label themselves as speed-trap towns spawned this idea:

Louisiana has a festival for everything else, so how about a Speed Trap Festival?

It would have the usual rides (none over 25 mph, of course) and food (but not fast food), and instead of a 5-K race, maybe a walk, to avoid the appearance of going too fast.

Local police officers could compete in a ticket-writing contest to see how many tourists they could bag in a given amount of time.

Maybe there could even be a Speedo contest for the local cops (on second thought, maybe not. …).

The only problem would be picking a location for the festival.

I’m torn between Krotz Springs and Golden Meadow.

That’s my opinion — what’s yours?

Fair warning

Buck Bertrand has this thought about the legislative proposal to have signs erected warning motorists of a “Speed Trap Town.”

“With this type of thinking, would Baton Rouge be required to erect billboards stating ‘High Crime Area’ and ‘2014 Legislature in Session?’ ”

Initial reaction

Paul Major wonders about the designation of the proposal to make an interstate-style corridor from the U.S. 190 bridge to Interstate 12:

“It referenced a preliminary plan name of Baton Rouge Urban Renewal and Mobility Plan, or ‘BUMP.’ ”

Paul notes that this leaves out the R in the plan’s name and asks, “Wouldn’t ‘BURP’ be just as valid an acronym?”

A2, Brute?

Paul Vincent Sr. recalls this lunch menu posted in a Lawtell convenience store:

“Today’s lunch: Shrimp A2-Fay, potato salad with cherry cobbler and roll.”

Well, that’s one way to avoid misspelling it. …

The ‘It’ factor

T. Med Hogg says, “Many years ago, there was a movie actress named Theda Bara.

“She was one of the sexiest girls in the movies, and they promoted her as the ‘It’ girl.

“I was about 12 years old, and my Sunday School teacher, Mrs. Mounts, questioned us about what ‘It’ meant.

“We all went along with her version that it was her ‘personality,’ but even at my youthful age, I knew better.”

When pizza was new

Our seminar on early pizza in America led our column’s unpaid historian, Alvin Y. Bethard, of Lafayette, to unearth a 1949 issue of The Atlantic, in which pizza is discussed as a new, exotic dish from Naples.

The writer, Ora Dodd, describes how pizza is made in Italian restaurants and issues this warning:

“Regardless of what you may read, you cannot make pizza at home. Not unless you have a brick oven, two wooden shovels, and the knack of making a hard dough and twirling it out to twice its size.”

If you take your pizza home, she advises eating it “within 20 minutes or so” and says reheated pizza “isn’t very good.” (This was before the discovery of cold pizza as a breakfast food.)

One of her statements we can agree with is this one: “… pizza is a sociable dish, always intended to be shared.”

Worthy causes

Speaking of food, a cochon du lait at 11 a.m. Saturday, March 29, at the Red Monkey Bar & Grill in Fordoche benefits the Janell Legier LaCombe Scholarship program and local cancer patients.

Call J.C. LaCombe Jr., (225) 637-3166.

For the vets

The USS Kidd Veterans Memorial & Museum has Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 29, in the museum. It’s free and open to the public.

Thought for the Day

From George Lane: “You know your finances are in trouble when even your reality checks bounce.”

Cost cutting?

Joe Cooper say our series on aging reminds him of this:

“At the conclusion of a wake or funeral service, if the funeral director walks over to me and asks me to take a seat, I have to wonder if he wants me to stay there to save the family transportation expenses.”

Bad timing

Ernie Gremillion says, “Some time ago, my brother Carl and I, along with two others, spent a week at a relative’s game ranch in central Texas.

“On the way home, we stopped at a convenience store near the ranch.

“Carl and I were observing a group of great-tailed grackles (a south Texas blackbird with a large tail) in the parking lot when one of our group came out of the store and saw the birds.

“Apparently he had never seem them before, because he exclaimed in a loud voice, ‘Would you look at the size of the tail on that!’”

Ernie says the lady coming out of the store at that moment was not amused.

“Carl and I quickly ducked behind our vehicle, leaving the individual who made the comment to face her alone.”

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.