I believe anyone who is even just a little knowledgeable about politics knows what the outcome was likely to be in most races. Locally, David Peck worked harder and smarter and by far ran the best campaign. He stayed on track with qualifications and why he should be elected judge of the Pct. 1, Justice of the Peace Court. On Friday we ran a phone straw poll. It indicated that Peck would win with over 50 percent, avoiding a runoff. A very unusual happening against two well-known candidates, Joel Ardoin and attorney Mike Abbott. One thing the local election proved is that, like the rest of Texas, the people believe the JP court, commonly referred to as the “People’s Court,” should be held by a layman. In Texas only 5 percent Justice of the Peace office holders are attorneys. In the Orange County courts, one judge out of four is an attorney, our friend Judge Rodney Price of Pct. 4. *****In the commissioner Pct. 4 race, Beamon Minton, considered a conservative Democrat, saw some of his vote going to the hotly contested Republican governor’s race, this could cause him to lose to Percy Flanagan.***** I believe Bill White, Democratic candidate for governor, will enjoy much popularity in Orange County. He was very instrumental in getting help to the county after Ike; any county and city official will attest to that.*****All of the above has been written on Sunday. I’ll either look smart or stupid but that’s how I see it three days out. Maybe at the end, before deadline, we’ll have the results and the numbers can be announced. For now I’ve got to get on. Come along, it won’t do you no harm.


We were sorry to hear of the death of Wendy Zavada Scow, only 38 years old. She passed away Feb. 26 after a lengthy illness. Services were March 2. The Orange native was the daughter of Darlene and Bob Zavada. To her husband Joe, daughter Madison and the entire family we extend our deepest sympathies. Please see obit.


The chicken wing craze sends prices soaring. Wings used to be a throwaway item; the poultry guys couldn’t even give them away. Now prices have gone through the roof for wings, while sales for the other parts of chicken has dropped. Wing prices for restaurants have gone up 39 percent in a year. To offset wing prices restaurants are adding “boneless chicken wings” made of breast meat. The boneless wing, which is not wing at all, is bringing a much higher profit margin.


American cattle producers are sending out warnings and I got one from David W. Forrest, Ph.D., PAS, Dipl., Texas A&M. Among fast food chains Dr. Forrest singled out MacDonald’s, who is going to start importing much of their beef from South America. The problem is that South Americans aren’t under the same regulations and they are loosely controlled. They can spray numerous pesticides on their pastures that have been banned here because of residues found in the beef. They also use various hormones and growth regulators that are banded here. American cattlemen must sign a paper at auction stating they have not fed their cows any part of another cow. Dr. Forrest says buying South American beef is all about the bottom line. It is however, jeopardizing the health of American families. We will just have to watch and see who admits using other than American beef. That’s my farm report of the week.


Last Wednesday the Supreme Court gave police more leeway with suspects. Investigators may resume questing a suspect, who invoked his Miranda Right to a lawyer, after the suspect has been out of police custody for 14 days. The 7-2 decision scales back a 1981 court decision intended to protect suspects from repeated police badgering to talk and to safeguard the rights established in the 1966 Miranda v. Arizona ruling. Justices John Paul Stevens and Clarence Thomas did not join the decision establishing the 14-day rule. Writing for the majority, Justice Scalia said once a suspect has been released from an interrogation and returned to his “normal life,” even if in prison, there is little reason to believe, if he talks, that it is considered coercing. The Supreme Court reversed a Maryland appeals court that had ruled a police detective could not talk to a suspect two and a half years later.

30 Years Ago-1980

The building has arrived for the Bridge City/Orangefield Community Center. According to publicity chairman Roy Dunn, “We are just waiting on good weather so the foundation can be laid, then the building will be erected.” Dunn and his partners have donated the property that will house the community center baseball fields and other projects. *****Walmart opens its doors in Bridge City on March 4. Frank Boren of Atkins, Ark. is the manager. He is being transferred from Crockett, Texas. He and wife Brenda have one son, Brant. Sam Walton was in attendance to open his 280th store. Over 100 city, county and area dignitaries attended the ribbon-cutting. Bridge City Mayor Gordon Harvey and County Judge Pete Runnels assisted in the ribbon-cutting with Miss Bridge City, Teresa Hearn. Roy Dunn was master of ceremonies. “Mr. Sam” commented that this was one of their finest stores and the response to the opening was the best they ever received throughout their chain. (Editor’s note: The Bridge City store was the very first Walmart store in the area. The other Triangle stores came later. It was the 280th store with locations only in Arkansas and Texas. Now Walmart is worldwide with thousands of stores.)*****Betty and Corky Harmon will host a birthday party for Uncle Jim McKay’s 95th birthday. Jim “The Fisherman” McKay, lives alone, does his own cooking and shopping and anything he wants to do. He is famous for his pie baking and catfish catching. (Editor’s note: Jim lived to be 101 and is buried in Orange. He had no family and counted as one of his many friends, “Pretty Boy Floyd’s” family. Floyd’s brother was a sheriff and Jim visited him often. He told many stories and could entertain for hours. Many families around Orange befriended him. He lived in the Opportunity Valley News office building where he prepared meals for the staff.)*****While visiting in Talcahuano, Chile, Joe Romano took a picture of a car that had a Harmon Chevrolet sticker on it. He brought the picture back to show that the Orange auto dealer is truly international. *****Happy birthday this week to the lovely Vickie Drake Brown. Also celebrating is Truby Shelton, Elaine Stansberry, Nita Williams, Alveda Williams and Nancy Staudt. *****Doing well is Maurice Gillet who had part of one thumb removed at M.D. Anderson. The thumb was removed due to diseased cancer tissue. *****The Orange Service league sponsored an old fashion western party at the Old Timer’s Pavilion. Some of the cow pokes and their cowgirls were Earl and Pat Geis, Barbara and Larry David, Diana and Brooks Hill, Bette and Phil Honeycutt, Karen and Bill Slade, Barbara and Jim Dawes, Elizabeth and Dr. Howard Williams and Fran and Hugh Meindl.

H.D. and Pat Pate traveled the back roads last weekend through Lake Arthur, Pecan Island and other small towns to make their way to Abbeville. A nice trip and they claim they had the best food they had ever eaten at Shucks. H.D. said “Sassy Shrimp” is a special treat, dipped in Steen syrup and hot sauce and broiled. I’ve personally found all the items on the menu I’ve tried are hard to beat. By the way, happy birthday this week to Pat Pate. Going to Abbeville was a birthday trip.*****Other folks celebrating this week are former sheriff Mike White, Cathy Kimbrow, Rick Trahan and Carolyn Sheppard, (what’s become of her anyway?) On March 10 a special gal will celebrate a birthday. Karen Thibeaux turns 51. Happy birthday to all.*****The Monday Houston Chronicle carried a great story on Earl Thomas, a West Orange-Stark grad. Thomas has left the University of Texas football team with two years left to join the NFL draft. Since childhood he has been a Cowboy fan and would like to play in Texas; if he does it will likely be with the Houston Texans who have the 20th pick. His decision was all about family and getting his parents out of his grandparent’s home. Earl said, “They have taken care of me all my life, it’s going to feel good to finally be able to take care of them.” University of Texas tackle Adam U. Latoski said, “People look up to Earl, he’s a great player who’s smart and has a good attitude.” Colt McCoy said, “Earl’s going to be one hell of a player in the NFL.” Tuesday Earl went through the NFL Combine seen on the NFL Network.*****Correction from last week. We said that former Sheriff Huel Fontenot had come in first in a primary, only to lose in the runoff. It should have been Harold Haas who came in first and Fontenot second. Fontenot won the election over Haas. Anyway, I believe that was the last time the second man beat the first man in a race.*****Thanks to Jim Mestepey for bringing us a copy of the Louisiana Lagniappe magazine which featured the Louisiana Boxing Federation. The front cover pictured Phil Daley and Floyd East, two boxers familiar to this writer. If Claude Abney was still alive you can bet he would have been at that reunion. He never missed one.*****”Buckshot” Winfree was at the hospital Monday getting his sinuses fixed. He wasn’t getting the full aroma of good food. He’s fixed now and he and Montagne are ready to get back on the restaurant tour.*****Jay Leno slipped back into his old NBC 10:30 p.m. time slot. He started off Monday with two extremes, Sarah Palin from the radical right and Adam Lambert, from the extreme left.*****Saturday night found an overflow crowd at Peggy’s on the Bayou. Spotted was pretty Robin Lusignan, who recently celebrated a birthday. In her group was her mom Edna, with her husband and a group of friends including longtime friend Janice Overman. Janice’s husband Lyle provides the great music at Peggy’s. Richard was out back cooking hundreds of pounds of nice sized crawfish. Tuesday he was in bed with walking pneumonia. We hope you’re feeling better Richard. I suggest you plan to eat at Peggy’s on Friday night or be prepared to wait in line on Saturday. I like Wednesday and Thursday also.*****Neighbor Cox and Ms. Ginny are doing well. They say they are “Doing OK for their age” Millard saved me some copies of Mattie Dellinger’s “Party Line” columns, out of the Center, Texas Light and Champion. Ms. Mattie turned 98 in Oct. Her columns are always interesting even though I haven’t read them all. She writes about Clara Jane Davis, 109, born in 1891. She lives with her 86-year-old daughter. Clara’s mind is good; she gets around the house, dresses and feeds herself. She takes a high blood pressure pill and one vitamin daily. No other medicine. Her favorite foods are lettuce, vegetables, bacon and fried chicken wings. She had six girls and one son, now 90 years old. Her age must be a Texas record. Her longevity must be in the genes. More about Mattie’s “Party Line” another day. *****We’ve heard from people in the Bridge City area that speak highly about Renaissance Hospital in Groves. They say it’s a nice, friendly, and caring place. Under the new ownership it’s way advanced from the past.*****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch dined with Jim Larkin at Novrozsky’s last week. Judge Janice and Marlene Merritt were the only two ladies who showed up. They got all the attention from a bunch of guys. This week the Bunch will dine on the seafood buffet at Van Choate’s Tuffy’s. The following week the Bunch will dine at Robert’s. By the way, we will have some big breaking news about Tuffy’s soon. The restaurant plans to be closed a week for remodeling. A regular attendee the past couple of months is Rev. John Bernardini, a very nice guy, who is second cousin to Rev. Leo and first cousin of Mark Anderson. *****The Orange County sheriff’s office, along with other agencies, made a big drug bust Monday night between Vidor and Orange. Homes, autos and weapons were seized. A release from the sheriff’s office was being held up by U.S. marshals making it too late for my deadline.


On March 4, Chaz Bono will be 41; Patricia Heaton, 52; Chris Squire, 62 and Paula Prentiss, 72.***March 5, Niki Taylor will be 35; Kevin Connolly, 36; Dean Stockwell, 74 and James Noble, 88.***March 6, Shaquille O’Neal, 38; Tom Arnold, 51; Rob Reiner, 65; Marian Barry, 74 and Alan Greenspan will be 84.***March 7, Willard Scott will be 76; Lord Snowdon, 80; Ivan Lendl, 50 and Rachel Weisz, 39.***March 8, Kat Von D, 28; Freddie Prinze, Jr., 34; and Lynn Redgrave, 67.***Emmanuel Lewis, 39; Mickey Gilley, 74 and Keely Smith will be 78.***March Carrie Underwood, 27; Prince Edward, 46; Sharon Stone, 52; Osama bin Laden, 53 and Chuck Norris, 70.


Donna Sullivan, Carolyn Miller, Darrell Evans, Frances Brood, Travis Reeves, Barron Nimitz, Carolyn Sheppard, Cathy Kimbrow, Lenzi Childress, Carolyn Hillsten, Don Bayliss, John Philps, Kristen Rucker, Genevieve Simon, Glyndon Childress, Jennifer Barclay, Mike White, Misty Thurman, Rick Trahan, Charles Day, Leisa Miller, Pat Pate, Ryan Buker, Liz Weaver, Angela Burris, Brittney Zenos, Don Grooms, Elaine Padgett, Claudia Gilson, Christi Wiegreffe and Jordon Doiron.

• You wake up face down on the pavement.
• You put your bra on backward and it fits better.
• You call Suicide Prevention Hotline and they put you on hold.
• You see a “60 Minutes” news team waiting in your office.
• Your birthday cake collapses from the weight of the candles.
• You want to put on the clothes you wore home from the party and there aren’t any.
• You turn on the news and they’re showing emergency routes out of the city.
• Your twin sister forgot your birthday.
• You wake up and discover your waterbed broke and then realize you don’t have a waterbed.
• Your car horn goes off accidentally and remains stuck as you follow a group of Hell’s Angels on the freeway.
• Your wife wakes up feeling amorous and you have a headache.
• Your boss tells you not to bother to take off your coat.
The bird singing outside your window is a buzzard.
• You wake up and find your braces are locked together.
• You walk to work and find your dress is stuck in the back of your pantyhose.
• You call your answering service and they tell you it’s none of your business.
• Your blind date turns out to be your ex-wife.
• Your income tax check bounces.
• You put both contact lenses in the same eye.
• Your pet rock snaps at you.
• Your wife says, “Good morning Bill,” and your name is George.
Poul-Do Babineaux sent his boy Gater to Baton Rouge, da Capital, for to get Poul-Do’s birth certificate. Him, he wants to apply for some benefits. In about one hour Gater him, return to Breaux Bridge. His Papa is upset and he axe Gater, “Why don’t you go to Baton Rough like I toll you, hanh?” Gater answer, “Mais Papa, da bridge at Whiskey Bay, it was raised straight up on boat sides. I couldn’t cross me. Tee-Tom Comeaux, da bridge operator toll me dere was no use waiting, a tug pushing a barge full of Viagra had turned over in da river. Dat Viagra in da water had drawn boat’ of dem bridge spans straight up towards da sky and it could last for up to four hours. Tee-Tom say if dey don’t come down by den, dey would call da bridge doctor to take necessary steps to try and bring dem down.”


Well, for those not in a runoff, the primary elections are over for this election season. I’m going to shut down here and hopefully the staff will get the results in early enough to finish this column and insert the results. In the JP’s race David Peck received 791 votes, Joel Ardoin, 544 votes and Abbott, 226. Peck avoided a runoff with over 50 percent, 246 votes ahead of Ardoin.***** In the commissioners race between Minton and Flanagan, Minton, 682 and Flanagan, 792. The winner will face Republican Jody Crump in November. Every election Judge Thibodeaux gets a new commissioner. *****Gov. Perry received more than 50 percent and will face White in November. Kay Bailey Hutchison conceded. At presstime, in the governor’s race Perry was leading early returns with 52.7 percent, Hutchinson 30.8 percent and Medina 16.3 percent. Perry avoided a runoff and will meet Bill White in the General Election.*****The Peck victory party was at the Barking Dog Coffee Shop on Fifth Street in downtown Orange. Several hundred supporters were in attendance.***** Till next time take care and God bless.