Smiley: 65 years of columns

Sometimes it seems I’ve been doing a column all my life, but it turns out that after 34 years, I’m just a neophyte.

Bernard Curet, who turned 90 on Friday, has been writing a column for the Pointe Coupee Banner in New Roads for 65 years.

Bernard started his weekly column in 1948, and he’s never missed a deadline.

His latest column was about Lindy Boggs, who was born Corinne Claiborne in New Roads.

In addition to his column, Bernard was news editor of the Banner for a time and, if I know weekly newspaper operations, no doubt had a lot of other duties over the years.

Family members say he loves spending time in his home on False River, and playing the piano. (He plays by ear, and credits his long-ago piano teacher, Mrs. Rougon, with instilling a love of music in him.)

Agony of de feet

OK men, it’s time to slip into those pumps or strap on those stilettos again.

The third annual “Walk a Mile In Her Shoes” is from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 22 at Baton Rouge’s North Boulevard Town Square.

It’s a light-hearted event, but with a serious purpose.

STAR, the Sexual Trauma Awareness and Response Center, hosts the event “to bring awareness of the prevalence of sexual violence in our community.”

Visit to sign up. There is no cost to register, but you’re asked to seek sponsorships for your walk.

The event is free and open to the public.

I saw it last year — and I can tell you, it’s not a pretty sight.

But what the heck, it’s for a good cause ...

Which reminds me

Years ago, my Spanish Town neighbors and I used to costume for the Spanish Town Mardi Gras Ball, and they always got me to go in drag.

Over the years, I was the skater Nancy Kerrigan, a well-known madam, a Catholic schoolgirl, a “flamingo dancer,” an Iraqi burqa-babe and Supremes singer Diana Ross (now THAT was a stretch ...).

One year, not long before the ball, I went on a fishing trip with some guys to a lake south of New Orleans.

On the way down, we stopped at a supermarket in LaPlace for supplies (aka beer).

I noticed there was a Goodwill next door, so while the other guys went into the store I checked out possible costumes in the used clothing section.

I was delighted to find a pair of red pumps in my size, for a very good price.

Goodwill didn’t have a bag, so I went outside holding my pumps just as my buddies emerged from the store.

Then the explaining started …

Taking over

I wonder if maybe I’m running too many stories from Joe Guilbeau, of Plaquemine.

Joe says he ran into former Lt. Gov. Bobby Freeman the other day, and Bobby told him, “I see where Smiley is in your column again.”

Happy returns

A couple in Pharr, Texas, thank some folks in Baton Rouge for an act of kindness.

They tell of receiving an envelope with the return address “BR LA 70817,” containing a $200 government savings bond they had given to their grandson, an LSU senior.

An enclosed note told them that “We found this during one of our walks in the morning in Baton Rouge.”

The finders (who signed the note with letters that looked like “JS”) then mailed it to the address in Texas that was on the bond.

The couple figure their grandson had been carrying this bond in his wallet when he lost it.

They thank their “Angels in Disguise” for their thoughtfulness.

Looking for people

Members of Boy Scout Troop 229, at St. Thomas More Catholic Church, are asked to contribute memories and pictures for an album to be presented to Claude R. Smith on his 90th birthday in October.

Claude was involved with the troop for a number of years, and was scoutmaster from 1965 to 1970.

He would like to know more about the lives of his scouts after their Boy Scout years.

Contact Lee Smith at or, or call (225) 802-3871.

Vocal support

On Wednesday, Whole Foods Market in Baton Rouge will donate five percent of net sales to the LSU Opera.

Special People Dept.

Joe and Candy Lackie celebrate their 63rd anniversary Monday.

The End

Emmett Irwin says our “strange names” seminar brings this to mind:

“I offer the name of a beer my daughter came across in Texas — Buffalo Butt.

“The strange part of all this is that was her nickname as a child. I won’t give her name, or I will have to go into hiding …”

Painful thoughts

Mike Patterson weighs in on the age-old debate about the most painful experience:

“Women say the most pain they have is during childbirth.

“Men say the most pain they have is getting kicked in the groin.”

However, he points out, “women often say they can’t wait to have more children …”

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.