Smiley: Little Mr. Sunshine

Dear Smiley: I’ve been left behind (my choice) by the Communication Generation.

I don’t own my own computer. I sit in front of four flat-screen displays for nine hours a day at the workplace. The last thing I want to do is login at home.

But I do have a number of friends and family members who cannot live without Facebook.

I understand it’s a great way to keep up with old school pals and friends who you would normally be out of touch with.

The only complaint I hear fans of the service voice is the desire by some folks to lambast other people or air out their dirty laundry. My friends just want to be uplifted.

Here’s where you become a rich man.

With your lifelong crusade to find the sunshine in the things around us, it’s time for you to launch a social network just for positive thinkers. You could call it SmileyFacebook.

Just remember who gave you this gem. And as always, I’ll be looking for my check.


Baton Rouge

Dear Robby: Thanks. The check’s in the mail. Trust me. …

For the birds

Dear Smiley: Several years ago, a friend and I were traveling around Minnesota seeing the sights.

At some point, we came to a beautiful park that had an entrance fee.

Not wanting to pay for just the usual, I asked my friend to go to the admission desk and ask what there was to see.

He returned to the vehicle and said there were “ruins” on the lake.

I said, “Ruins? What kind of ruins could there be here?”

I decided to go back and find out what kind of “ruins” we could see in the lake and the type of transportation needed to see them.

After discussing this with the employee for several minutes, I realized she was saying not ruins but “loo-ins” (loons)!



Spoils of war

Dear Smiley: In Natchez, Miss., years ago, my mother played cards with the Old Guard.

Later, they were joined by the New Guard, who came from “Up Nawth” with the Goodyear Tire Co.

One day, the Old Guard suggested that they open their beautiful and historic homes to visitors and call it a “Pilgrimage to the Old South.”

They said it was to be at no charge because it would be rude to ask someone to pay to come into one’s home.

The New Guard agreed but said they would charge money and make a bundle.

Now you know who won that war — as you pay to go into the homes at Pilgrimage time in Natchez.


New Orleans

Dear Gertrude: When I was growing up in Natchez, my grandmother always used to refer to “those Yankees” who owned one of the antebellum mansions. Later, I discovered that the “Yankees” had been in Natchez for three generations.

Grin and bear it

Dear Smiley: Reading in your column about “Gladly the Cross-Eyed Bear” reminded me that when we lived in northern Minnesota, one of the main state papers (I think it was the St. Paul Pioneer-Press) had a column called “Gladly the Cross-Eyed Bear.”

The column had the picture of a stuffed teddy bear with crossed eyes and featured church stories like you run in your column.

I came across The Joyful Noiseletter around that same time and started clipping the “Gladly” columns and sending them to Cal Samra, the editor, like I do with your church items today.



Love and pizza

Dear Smiley: Following graduation from Holy Cross High School in ’54, having made no celebration plans, I was sitting on my North Rampart Street porch pondering my future when two close friends, Owen and Sandy, came by and asked if I wanted to join them for “pizza pie” at Domino’s on St. Charles.

I had never eaten or even seen a pizza pie, but I never let this be known. The pizza looked weird to me but tasted good.

On that day, I found not one but two “sweetie pies” — pizza and Sandy.

Sandy and I got married two years later and are still together. So thanks loads to Domino’s.



The devil you say!

Dear Smiley: Friend Donny worked in the small post office in Lynchburg, Va.

All the little old ladies would engage him in long-winded conversations and seemed to feel they had the right to comment on his life.

Donny was patient until one lady came in, all alarmed that Donny’s new license tag had the numbers 666.

She went on about it being the sign of the devil and that Donny must get his tag changed immediately!

Donny said, “Oh no, I wouldn’t do that. You see (evil grin), it matches the birthmark on the back of my head.”

The old dear quickly bustled out of the post office.



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.