Tuesday was Ground Hog Day but since I’m writing this column early, I’m not sure of the results. In south Louisiana, the Cajuns go by the nutria “Pierre C. Shadeaux.” Somewhere in this paper there is a story about Pierre and the results of if he saw his shadow or not. *****Two things not to forget are the big Trash-Off this Saturday, 8 a.m. at Lion’s Park. Michael Hoke tells us at least 50 tour buses will visit Shangri La and a large gardeners’ convention is coming. Let’s make Orange clean for our guests. Also Saturday evening, don’t forget the annual Mardi Gras parade. The weather promises to be good. Plenty of beads. *****All Orange County High Schools are happy with no re-alignment changes made in 20-4A and 21-3A. Speaking of sports, starting this week we are proud to have the service of Joey Encalade, former Lamar baseball standout, writing a weekly high school baseball roundup. Joey will cover all the Orange County schools. His baseball knowledge will make for a good readable column. I look forward to it. *****Well it’s fast coming on Super Bowl Sunday between the Colts and the Saints. The Cajuns are at a fever pitch. Their Saints, they believe, will go marching in and bring the championship to New Orleans. What a great win that would be. The odd makers have the Colts 3.5 point favorites but the heavy betting on the Colts has moved the line to 5.5 points. It wouldn’t surprise me if it went to 6 or 6.5 by Sunday. If there ever is a time for an upset this is it. I still believe it could be a 10-12 point blowout one-way or the other. *****Well, I’d best get going, Hop on board and come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.

When the president took office the economy was on the brink of a depression. The president did what was right for our country’s future, signing the Recovery Act to jump start economic growth and taking steps to prevent the collapse of the entire financial system. The key to our long-term fiscal future is fiscal responsibility and health insurance reform. Steps to reign in the deficit will be for naught if we do not reduce the rate of health care costs that will continue to grow over time. So far insurance companies, with total Republican support, are on course to rob the American people of a great opportunity to make insurance coverage affordable. They may win the battle but the American people will be the real losers. President Obama’s budget spurs job creation and will put the United States on a fiscally sustainable path. Anyone who would have become president, after the failed years, would have had to make the hard choices to put our nation back on the path of fiscally sustainability in place when President Clinton left office. The deep, dark hole the country was left in will take time. The recession was deep and climbing out of that situation will not be easy, and every American should want our president to succeed and not sit on the sidelines and be an obstructionist.

30 Years Ago-1980

All candidates for the Democratic Primary have filed with chairman Bob Montagne. Candidates for sheriff are incumbent Ed Parker and Fred Hill. Commissioner Pct. 1 candidates are incumbent Arthur Simpson and Forest Hudson. Commissioner candidates for Pct. 3, are Preston “Red” Wood, Jarvis Buckley, Thomas “Tick” Granger and Clyde Mitchell Chesson. (Editor’s note: Granger won after a runoff with Wood.) Running for constable Pct. 1, Jack Thompson, Charles Griffin, Paul Risinger, Jack Jones and Lawrence Powell. Constable Pct. 2, Joe Don Hubbard and S.H. “Bill” Dickerson. For constable Pct. 3, John Ford, Hubert Marshall and Jack Granger. Constable Pct. 4, Clyde Jordan, H.J. Harrington, I.D. Whitmire, Lester Fulmer and F.O. “Frankie” Langston. No Republican candidates filed. Incumbents without opposition are State Rep. Wayne Peveto, Judge Pat Clark, 128th Court, Judge David Dunn, 163rd Court and Judge Michel Shuff, County Court. Unopposed are District Attorney Bill Wright and tax assessor Louvenia Hryhorchuk. *****Klieg Lights herald opening of the Lutcher Theater. One hundred tickets have been sold for the after theater dinner featuring Liberace at the Brown Center. Liberace and the “MacBeth” matinee are sold out. *****Carl Thibodeaux and Doug Harrington hold grand opening of their new West Orange pharmacy on Thursday, Feb. 7. Instead of a ribbon-cutting, they will again cut a chain of boudain like they did six years ago opening their first store at Danny’s Food Market. *****Feb. 1 one and a half inches of snow covered everything. Ninety-five-year old Uncle Jim McKay was the only one to predict it. All the television meteorologists were caught off guard. *****Janet and James Fontenot hosted their annual homemade hot tamale party. Some of the folks in attendance were R.J. and Marty Conway, Corky and Betty Harmon, Ace and Jo Amodeo, Bill and Martha Hughes, Roy and Phyllis Dunn, Bob and Susan Poskitt, Will and Catherine Frey, Louis and Beth Dugas and Frank and Nancy Finchum*****Gerald and Vera Dolly celebrate their 25th anniversary. They are known on to CBers as Dagwood and Blondie. *****Ronnie Theriot is the new manager of Courtesy Pontiac.. *****Gene Goza returned from New York after visiting daughter Traci, who is dancing on scholarship with the American Ballet Company. Gene, wife Carol and daughter Misti are proud of Traci who has appeared in several ballets, including the Nutcracker. *****


Special birthdays will be celebrated on Super Bowl game day Feb. 7. A party will be held at Cow Bayou Marina celebrating the birthday of Karen Fuselier, along with Jivin’ Gene, whose birthdays are Feb. 9 and Agnes Harrington, whose birthday is on Super Bowl Day. Come join the celebration, watch the Super Bowl on television and enjoy the food and entertainment. *****Other great folks celebrating their date of birth are Harold Force, who will be 90 on Feb. 5. What a guy. He fell lately but is recovering and will be back soon doing what he does. ***Others celebrating this week are national and state pole vault champion, Eric Eshbach, Todd Landry, Sandy Sanford and the lovely Cynthia Hooks on Feb. 10. ***Clint Britt, a guy we haven’t heard from in years, will be 48 on Feb. 7. If you know his whereabouts have him contact his kin. ***Belated happy birthday to the Clark twins, Pat Jr. and Rachel Clark’s boys, Jack and Will, turned 4 on Jan. 30, the same day grandmother Rosalie Clark, a twin to Mary Ann, celebrated their day. What are the odds? ***Happy 51st anniversary to Edee and Charles Pratt on Feb. 7. The couple plans to celebrate on Valentine’s Day. I’m not sure after 51 years what celebrating consists of. Best wishes to everyone. ***Happy birthday to Melvin Hogan, who celebrated his 70th Feb. 1. *****Rebecca Stark Nugent’s book will be available in about two weeks online. It promises to be quite interesting, written from Rebecca’s viewpoint about the famous Orange Stark family, their lives, contributions and deaths. *****Up and rolling is our tough buddy, Commissioner Don Cole. He had a slight heart attack a few weeks ago, had a stint installed and is still keeping on. He rolls with the punches. He’s an okay guy with no quit. *****Speaking of tough folks, I really enjoyed Ms. Vergie Scales’ story last week. At age 98, she’s still very sharp. There is so much more to her story that could be told. *****I just saw a survey that surprised me. Black men marry outside their race nearly three times as often as black women. This is according to a 2009 census figure. I’m surprised the number isn’t greater. *****The 5.7 United States economy at the end of the year is further than expected. The fastest pace since 2003. The GOP growth started falling in 2007, went into a deep recession by late 2008 and really hit the skids in 2009. By 2010, the economy was on the brink of a depression but was prevented by a stimulus package that saved banks and auto makers and others, a third tax was tax cuts that otherwise would have caused a domino effect and crashed the nation. ***** Congrats to Judge Pat Clark, being honored by the Texas Exes. A new endowed academic scholarship will be created in the honor of Patrick A. Clark. The endowed scholarship will be given each year in perpetuity to an Orange County high school senior. What’s ironic is that the award will be presented on Feb. 11, exactly 30 years to the day, in 1980, that Judge Graham Bruce, who Clark replaced, swore him into office. Bruce was also a UT grad. He was appointed by the governor. *****You might not know that Saint’s quarterback Drew Brees is a Texan. A native of Austin, he attended and played for St. Andrew’s Episcopal High School in Austin before transferring to Austin West Lake. He played his college ball for Purdue.***** Speaking of the Austin area, coach Les Johnson and Wanda visited Bridge City last week. They dined at Peggy’s on the Bayou before Les kept his dental appointment with Dr. Mark Messer. The good dentist has been taking care of Coach’s teeth for 14 years, never had a cavity and has the teeth of a 30-year-old. *****It’s hard to believe it has been 30 years since the Lutcher Theater opened. This writer attended the first performance by Liberace and many more since. We are so fortunate to have such a wonderful theater right here at home. *****We were sorry to learn that Judge Don Peters lost a sister last week. Her death in Louisiana came only 23 days after being diagnosed with cancer. Our condolences. *****We understand our buddy Quincy Procell is scheduled to have knee replacement surgery on Feb. 16. We wish him the best. *****Steve Worster will be honored as Citizen of the Year at the Bridge City Chamber banquet, Feb. 20, a well-deserved honor. Out-of-town guests expected are some of Steve’s former UT players, possibly Darryl Royal, who coached All-American Worster and the National Champion team. Now organizers are trying to locate Steve’s Bridge City High teammates for the years of 1966-67 and ‘68. Please call 474-1067 and make plans to attend the banquet. *****Skipper Free will have hawk eyes when she finishes with eye surgery. She’s had one eye fixed and the other is due to be worked on soon. I thought Skip didn’t miss much before but with 20-20 vision she’ll really be in on the know. *****Joel Becom spent 27 days working in Russia, got sick and was flown home. He leaves this weekend for a 90-day stay. He said they recently had a 100-year storm with 20 feet of snow, 30-mile winds and everything totally shut down. *****Adam Darby and the burning of his grandmother’s home is a sad story. Mrs. Darby, until she died, took care of the family. We knew Adam as a youngster, an intelligent teenager with a lot of athletic ability. His dad Claude was killed in an auto accident and his mom was later murdered leaving he and his brother Claude Jr. Something flipped in Adam’s brain and things went straight down for him. The young man needs help, he can’t function alone.


Lydia Wilson, Darlene Brown, David Gryder, Michael Hilliard, Rosalie Jones, Stephanie Carpenter, Alssa Allensworth, Brad Freeman, Eric Eshbach, John LeBlanc, Lindsey Hollingsworth, Mary Bull, Mel Moreau, Rheese Rhodes, Sylvia Holloway, Jack Jones, Madi Johansson, Madison Johansson, David Cooper, Grant Jones, Haley Arnold, Harold M. Collins, Lindsey Day, Peggy Jones, Cindy Lessard, Jamie Beaulieu, Jeanna Campbell, Luke Lyons, Jeremy Sleeman, Kaitlyn Ezell, Kezavien Roberts, Todd Landry, Barbara Fix, Doyce Sherman, Jivin’ Gene, Karen Fusiler, Leonard Bock, Sandy Sanford and Cynthia Fisher.


On Feb. 4, Oscar De La Hoya turns 37; Lawrence Taylor, 51; Alice Cooper, 62; Dan Quayle, 63 and David Brenner, 74. ***Feb. 5, Michael Sheen, 41; Roger Staubach, 68; Henry “Hank” Aaron, 76 and Andrew Greeley, 82. ***Feb. 6, Natalie Cole, 60; Michael Tucker, 66; Fabian, 67; Mike Farrell, 71; Mamie Van Doren, 79 and Zsa Zsa Gabor, 91. ***Feb. 7, Chris Rock, 45; Garth Brooks, 48; James Spader, 50 and Keefe Brasselle, 87. ***Feb. 8, David Ferrell, 33; Gary Coleman, 42; Robert Klein, 68; Nick Nolte, 69 and Ted Koppel, 70. Had they lived James Dean would be 79, Jack Lemmon, 85 and Audrey Meadows, 86. ***Feb. 9, David Gallagher, 25; Travis Tritt, 47; Mia Farrow, 65; Carole King, 68 and Roger Mudd, 82. ***Feb. 10, Lance Berkman, 34; Laura Dern, 43; Glen Beck, 46; George Stephanopoulos, 49; Robert Wagner, 80 and Mark Spitz, 60.


Kee-Kee Dupruis wanted a good store-bought shave him, so he went to see his buddy, barber Ray Leleux. Kee-Kee sits in dat barber’s chair and while LuLu is foaming him up he mentions da problems he has getting a close shave around his cheeks.
LuLu tells him “Kee-Kee, I’ve got jus da ting me.” He takes out a small wooden ball from a nearby drawer and say, “Kee-Kee, jus place dis ball between your cheek and gums.”
Kee-Kee him, he place dat ball in his mouth and LuLu precede wit da closest shave Kee-Kee has ever experienced him.
After a few strokes, Kee-Kee axe, “LuLu, wat if I swallow dat ball, hanh?”
“Dat’s no problem,” Lulu answer, “Jus do like everyone else do, bring it back tomorrow.”

I’m sure you have been following the destruction and death in Haiti. A short attention span won’t save Haiti, a country that may never get another chance to remake itself. People around the world are now aware of Haiti’s suffering and desperation. Wealthy nations will have to make a long commitment to this country that was on life support even before the earthquake. It’s a failed nation that must be changed. No people should have to live under the present conditions. *****The best show of the past week was the question and answer session between President Obama and 140 members of Congress, the Republican caucus. I don’t know of any president that would have had the guts. The Republicans weren’t interested in asking questions, they made long political statements using their talking points. They weren’t interested in finding solutions, just tearing down the Obama administration. The president smiled and waited patiently and then fired back. In the end – newscasters, all but FOX of course – agreed Obama had won by a long shot. I watched it twice and he cleaned their plow. President Clinton would have been the only president in my adulthood who might have come close to doing the job Obama did against a hostile “just say no” to everything group. *****Last week the Wednesday Lunch Bunch dined at Robert’s. A good crowd, including Sheriff Keith Merritt, his lovely wife Marlene and the sheriff’s Chief Deputy Rodney Harrison, Parks Director Donna Scales, Mayor T.W. Permenter, Constable Mark Philpott and Babette, who always brightens the gathering. Attending also were Rev. Leo Anderson and former police chief and longtime lawman Wilson Roberts, who is always full of surprises. Twenty-one other interesting characters attended. This week the group gathers at Novrozsky’s, next week it’s the big seafood buffet at Van’s Tuffy’s. Everybody is welcome. *****Thank you for your time. Read us cover to cover and shop with our advertisers. Take care and God bless.