Smiley: Powder room search

“Bird Nerd,” of St. Gabriel, got my attention with this:

“Since your column is known for its high-brow elucidations, I think this is the place for the profound topic and much-needed discussion of the ‘best public powder rooms in the Baton Rouge metro area!’

“I think I speak for most members of the female persuasion when I say that a CLEAN, AIR-CONDITIONED, pleasant-smelling, well-appointed (flush handles on the toilets and functioning latches for stall doors) powder room in public places is very greatly appreciated.

“Admittedly, I have limited experience of men’s public facilities, but somehow don’t think guys have the same affection for a clean toilet seat as us girls.

“I propose this not as a venue to bash, but rather to compliment those places who have their female patrons’ backs when it comes to powder rooms.

“I’d like to go first and name Mansur’s in Baton Rouge. Their powder room meets and exceeds my gold standard for a great powder room. I urge all the ladies to check it out. By the way, the food is excellent, too.

“Thanks, Smiley, for bringing this important topic to the fore.”

Not a guy thing

I agree with Bird Nerd that the men I know seldom pay much attention to the facilities (I don’t think “powder room” applies) at restaurants, etc.

I have never heard a guy say, “Gee, isn’t this a lovely room?”

One nice rest room touch is at the Pastime, which has a TV tuned to ESPN so you don’t have to miss a minute of sports.

Which reminds me

Years ago, when Bali Ha’i at the Beach was THE cool place in New Orleans for Polynesian food, I went there for dinner with a date and another couple.

The restrooms had, instead of “Men” and “Women,” Polynesian names on the doors.

When I had to visit the restroom, I considered the two names and picked one.

Returning to my table, I found the ladies engaged in a conversation about a beautiful wicker chair in the ladies’ room.

When I joined in and told them we had a similar chair in the men’s room, they stopped talking and gave me strange looks.

“Were the walls in there pink?” one of them asked.

“Yeah, now that you mention it. …” I started before it dawned on me that I had indeed ventured into the “Wahine” room.

Luckily, it had been unoccupied, sparing me even more embarrassment. …

Motoring memories

Janice DeJean, contributing to our seminar on car songs, says, “Some memorable songs that come to mind are ‘Mercedes Benz’ by Janis Joplin, ‘Pink Cadillac’ by Bruce Springsteen, ‘Radar Love’ by Golden Earring and ‘Mustang Sally’ by Wilson Pickett.

“I can remember seeing Wilson Pickett perform at Independence Hall. Those were the good old days!”

Dale Ulkins mentions one I regard as possibly the world’s most irritating car song: “Beep Beep” by The Playmates, a silly ditty about a duel between a Nash Rambler and a Cadillac.

Says Dale, “After reading your column, the first car song that popped into my head was the novelty song of my youth, ‘Beep Beep.’

“My older brothers must have had the record as I remember playing it over and over and over and over, though I was 7 years old.

“After 55 years, I still remember the lyrics, which speaks volumes for my odd memory as I have a hard time remembering my wedding anniversary.”

Bee Cave version

Michael Leopold says, “You frequently share stories of people finding Louisiana/Cajun food wannabes in places outside our wonderful state. Well, this trend has gone too far.

“On a recent visit to Bee Cave, Texas, (yes, that is the name of the city — that’s another story) we visited a chain grocery store.”

(It’s an upscale store, and there’s one in Baton Rouge.)

“They served ‘Baton Rouge Jambalaya’ at the food bar. Now that’s getting personal.

“My wife Cindy dared not try it as it was bright orange and soupy-looking.

“I was wondering if we could challenge our local grocer to return the favor by offering ‘Bee Cave BBQ Brisket.’

“Maybe they could top it off with a purple and gold glaze.”

Special People Dept.

Peter Palermo, of Plaquemine, celebrated his 92nd birthday Aug. 8.

Ben and Anne Byland, of Port Hudson, celebrate their 59th anniversary Wednesday.

Home cooking?

Jim McCormack comments on Joe Ricapito’s story in the Thursday column about the place in Maine advertising “Warm Beer and Lousy Food:”

“The only thing that would have made the piece any better would have been if the name of the place had been MOM’S.”

Second opinion

A story from Dr. Bill Smith:

“A country doctor paid a house call to see a patient who had been sick for a long time.

“When he came out of the sick room after seeing the patient, he said to his wife, ‘I don’t like the way your husband looks.’ “She replied, ‘I don’t like the way he looks either, but he’s a good provider.’”

Write Smiley at Smiley@the He can also be reached by fax at (225) 388-0351 or mail at P.O. Box 588, Baton Rouge, LA 70821.