Grandma used to say, “”Have the Robins come yet? Spring will come when the Robins come.” I always thought it was the other way around. The Robins would come when spring got here. Well, maybe she was right. For several years I’ve seen very few Robins, maybe a single one in an open field but over the last two weeks they have arrived in large groups. The old birds eat off the ground, they don’t eat out of the feeders, the many young Robins sit in the trees. The weather has been so up and down that about the time I think maybe Spring is here we get a cold blast. Maybe Grandma was right, the Robins are here waiting on spring to come. Also, many Rice Birds are here. They’re a black bird with a small red feather on its wing. As a youngster, I shot many Robins and Rice Birds with a sling-shot. Grandma made jambalaya and gumbo with them. I think there is now a law against killing Robins. I’m glad, but long ago they fed a poor family. Now it’s me and the birds waiting for spring. *****Saturday night don’t forget to “spring ahead” by moving your clock up an hour. We lose an hour in the spring but daylight gets here earlier, good for all us early birds. Spring break starts this weekend. That means more youngsters and police on the road. When kids are out of school, police work increases. *****By next week, maybe the youngsters and Robins will finally get to enjoy spring after a not so good winter. *****It’s time for me to spring forward for this week. Hop on board and come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.


The Texas Legislature is in session and it’s already obvious that Gov. Rick Perry is plotting his next national campaign. His opposition to Texas’ participation in the federal funding to expand state Medicaid, voted down Monday, is to show national Republicans who will be farthest to the political right in the 2016 presidential primaries. It doesn’t matter that his move is on the backs of six million Texans without health care provisions. Perry is playing games with the well being of millions of Texans. He’s refusing billions in federal funding to pay for universal care. It would mean $100 billion coming back to our state, most of which has been sent to the federal treasury by Texans in the first place. The Affordable Care Act would meet the needs of our citizens. Gov. Perry should join other Republican governors who have reversed their course and see the benefit for their citizens, even Gov. Scott of Florida, Gov. Chris Christi of New Jersey and a dozen others say it would be foolish and short change their people to pass up this deal. Perry is chasing his political fantasy and not taking care of business that is important to Texans. In the 82nd session, two years ago, Perry and the legislature took the wrecking ball to education in order to position Perry to run for president. Now the 83rd session is turning it’s back on health care and it could be two more years before it can be corrected. You would think, as bad as he made a fool of himself in his 2012 run, that he would know better. He’s punishing our citizens for his pipe dreams and apparently there’s no one in Austin with the balls to challenge him on doing the right thing for Texas like focusing on matters important to Texans instead of plotting his next national flop.


March 2 is Texas Independence Day. Strange how we pick our priorities. We celebrate people who were politicians, singers, athletes and actors. We forget that the men who came to Texas to find a new life and new opportunities found instead a war. Their belief in Texas brought death to many and we inherited an indomitable spirit. Actually, we should celebrate the entire week, beginning March 2, for it is also the week the Alamo fell. Had Santa Anna overwhelmed the Alamo in one day, the outcome of San Jacinto might have been different. Maybe God decided that Sam Houston should lead Texas because you see, Sam was born on March 2, in 1782 in Rockbridge County, Va. March 2, is Texas’ most important day. Thanks to Judge Thibodaux and Commissioner’s Court for recognizing that as a holiday by shutting down county government.


Twenty young singers have made it to the season 12 semifinals of American Idol. Between this week and May 16, all but one will be eliminated. Ten will go home Thursday night. The Tuesday and Wednesday competition is up to the judges, who will decide who makes the finals. In the finals, singers will be judged by nationwide television watchers in weekly competition. Judge Keith Urban has already identified two female singers as the best in the competition, Angela Miller and Kree Harrison, who performed Tuesday night. Local family and friends are hoping that on Thursday night Kree is one of the five finalists still standing. Her local relatives are grandparents Beverly Mire and Wilson Roberts. Stepmother V.J. Roberts and aunt Penny Harrison. All of Orange County will be pulling for Kree in her quest to be the American Idol finalist.


We were sorry to hear of the death of Bob Shinn, age 80, who died in Dallas Friday, March 1.*** Also longtime civic leader, Dr. Max Pachar Sr., 90, who died Sunday, March 3. Both of these men contributed so much to the advancement of our area. Both gave of their time and money. Dr. Pachar leaves behind a large family who are also involved in a variety of vocations and civic endeavors. Our condolences to his wife Justine, her family and to his sisters, brother and their families. Funeral services will be held at Claybar Funeral Home, Thursday, March 7, at 2 p.m. Visitation is Wednesday, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Please see obituaries.


15 Years Ago-1998

Austin has grown into the 22nd largest United States city, trading places with Seattle, which falls to number 23. *****CASA moves into new offices on Park Ave.  Gisela Houseman is president. ***** Former Orangeite, Kelly Ray Thompson, 30, is charged with murder in Tacoma Washington. He is accused of the murder of Cathy Jean Jackson Webb, 41. Kelly lived at 607 Orange Ave, with his wife Penny. The couple had been married at the Brown Center. Kelly admitted to the murder and says, “Killing comes natural.” He wove a chilling tale of murders in Washington, California, Colorado and Texas. (Editor‘s note: Kelly had made many friends in Orange County until he vanished in 1993, leaving his wife and friends behind. He was a nice looking fellow, very likeable, who made friends easily. We haven‘t checked on Kelly lately. The last we heard he might have killed someone in prison where he is serving a life sentence.)*****Pretty Vickie Brown, her dad Earl Drake and Jerry Wayne Bell all celebrate birthdays.*****Sheriffs Captain David Peck is a candidate for Justice of the Peace, Pct. 1.*****Wayne Reeh is a candidate for county judge.*****Homer Will is a candidate for County Commissioner, Pct. 2.*****A.R. Morgan is candidate for Commissioner, Pct. 2.*****C.J. Huckaby runs for re-election for Commissioner, Pct. 2.*****Vickie Edgerly, 10 year District Clerk employee, runs for the office of District Clerk.*****Todd Lindsey throws his hat in the ring for County Commissioner, Pct. 2.*****Vanessa Meaux announces for County Clerk. Karen Jo Vance also announced for re-election of that post. *****Ted Selman files for Port Commissioner, Pct. 1. *****Quote of the Week comes from Orange Port board president, “Buckshot” Winfree, when presenting Port Director Roger Richards, a going away plaque. “Buckshot” turned to Port Commissioner Joel Steirman and said, “Joel, you present the plaque, you had more to do with Roger leaving then anyone else.” (Editor’s note: I love it.)*****Former Orangefield Bobcat, Jacob Davis, takes first place in the Big 12 Indoor Championship with a pole vault of 18.5 feet. (That’s nearly in the clouds.) Jacob hopes to win the national title for the Texas Longhorns.*****Former Bridge City Cardinal, Shane Dronett, signs a two year contract with the Atlanta Falcons and his old coach at Denver, Dan Reeves.*****West Orange Stark great, Kevin Smith, had his contact with the Dallas Cowboys extended until 2003.

 40 Year Ago-1973

The crew at Butler-Baker Pontiac-American on Port Arthur Hwy. at the circle, are salesmen Joe Kazmar, Rocky Thomas and Doug Schulze, Houston Baker, owner and service manager Don Hebert, service technicians Joe Peveto, James Duhon, Richard Thomas, Royce Thompson, Roland Blanchard, Ellis Bartie, Turner Barnes, John McClelland, parts manager Ray Sautter, body shop men Eddie Joe White, Pat Stockman and John Hanks, office manager Carol Turner, Becky Longetreath and Barbara Henry.*****High school baseball begins. Stars-to-be at BC, Terry Bridgers, Wayne Meeks, Paul Trahan; at LCM, Bryan Carr, John Robins, Jerry Jenkins, Ted Seago, Tommy Martin and Leo Perry.*****Pretty Liz Wickersham has dropped out of school and is working in the Austin office of Sen. D. Roy Harrington.*****In the Capital they are talking about State Rep. Wayne Peveto becoming Speaker of the House even though he is just a freshman state representative.*****Mike Crawford is editor of Livingston’s Newslog.*****Mr. Chenella, at BC High, was overheard telling a tardy student who said he overslept, “What? You sleep at home, too?”*****A customer asked Dick Bivens, at Texas Avenue Grocery, if the eggs were fresh? Dick said to hired hand, Bubba, “Feel these eggs and see if they are cool enough to sell.”

 55 Years Ago-1958

State Rep. Louis Dugas will be the main speaker at a convention for the fourth district Texas Federation of Women’s Clubs.*****Three Stark seniors win merit awards: Jack D. Copeland, Carroll Shaddock and Mical Wood.*****Andrew Jackson was arrested in Memphis for robbing Delores Simian, cashier at First National Bank of Orange, on Jan. 23.*****The first woman ever to file for an office in a West Orange election, Mrs. E.W. Hammontree filed for the alderman’s post.*****Texas Lumber, a sawmill company in Mauriceville, burnt down. Damage is estimated at $150 thousand.*****County School Superintendent J.B. Peddy predicts an increase of 1,101 students. Next September will see 15,000 students county-wide.*****Little Cypress girls ousted by Waco in regional baskeball meet. “Pookie” Daughtry, despite a knee injury, sunk 17 points. Other stars were Francis Coward, Mary Brown and Mildred Teat.

 95 Years Ago-1918

Miss Allie Bland, County School superintendent, announced that an appropriation of $500 has been allowed for School District 8. (Editor’s note: Running a school district for $500 a year doesn’t sound realistic does it?)*****American troops in France have fought their hottest skirmish of the war with the Germans. The “Doughboys” fought until their guns ceased firing and then used their fists on the invaders until their sector was free. The fighting of the Doughboys is a glow of pride to Army men stationed everywhere.*****A strong committee headed by President W.H. Stark contests a plan by Beaumont to dam the Sabine River.*****National shipbuilding of Orange launches the “War Mystery,” the largest wooden steamer ever built. Over 300 men helped build the boat.*****American citizens are asked to deny themselves meat, (beef and pork), one day a week on Tuesday. Wheat is also restricted because of the war in Europe.


Pete Powell, Joseph Henry, Jerry Maldonado, Sam Moore, Trubie Beebe, John Philps, Kristen Rucker, Genevieve Simon, Glyndon Childress, Dana Bourque, Betty Henry, Charlie Bradley, Jennifer Barclay, Mike White, Libby Mitchell, Misty Thurman, Rick Trahan, Charles Day, Leisa Miller, Shelly Granger, Brandon Phillips, Carol Smith, Christi Wiegreffe, David Thibodeaux, Pat Pate, Ryan Buker, Liz Weaver, Angela Burris, Brittney Zenos, Gary Bradley, Don Grooms, Elaine Padgett, Claudia Gilson, Santiago Baca, Jordon Doiron, Josh Goss, Gloria Jones, Ken Hillsten, Blaine Slaughter, Mary White, Wade Gillett, B.W. Parks, Bob Izer, Pat Lund, Rick McCall, James McClanahan, Cindy Reynolds, Dottie Gunstream, George Baker, Kate Benoit, AJ Strahan, Colton “CJ” Dugan, Jack Morgan, Bryleigh Moore, Andrew Willingham and Carol Ann Kimbrow.


A few folks we know celebrating their special day. On March 6, longtime friend, the beautiful Vickie Brown, Sam Moore, and Pete Powell celebrate.***March 7, Mike White, former sheriff and Libby Mitchell,  also Rick Trahan, who deserves a great day of peace and quite. He’s married to Terry.***March 8, our own advertising executive Liz Weaver celebrates. Also having a birthday on that day is our friend Pat Pate, married to H.D. She also deserves a great day.***March 9, Jordon Doiron, Don Grooms and Gary Bradley mark a birthday.***March 10, Blaine Slaughter, whose good looking mother is Brandy Slaughter, Mary White and Wade Gillett celebrate.***March 11, Colton “C.J.” Dugan, Dottie Gunstream, Pat Lund and Kate Benoit celebrate.***March 12, Jack Morgan and Carol Ann Kimbrow have birthdays. Happy birthday to all. Our apologies to our lifelong friend Anna Bell Rost, who celebrated her 78th birthday last week. Belated happy birthday to a nice lady.*****The St. Paul Episcopal Church in Orange, established in 1894, will celebrate their 119th anniversary on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17.*****Did you know that the First Methodist church in Texas was organized in Bastrop in 1835. Back then, to organize a church required a minimum of 10 members. There were only nine white people who were Methodist so a slave, Celia Kraft, was added as the 10th member. She worshiped in that church until her death. Now you know the rest of the story from Breaux and Creaux.*****Charlie Warner, of Bridge City, always was a good boy. Last Friday, at Peggy’s on the Bayou, he fed an elderly couple. Many years ago, the old folks had fed Charlie, a youngster, many meals. His heart spoke to him and they appreciated the meal, but mostly the thought.*****This past weekend the north wind was really cold for those brave enough to attend the  baseball tournaments being held. However, besides seeing some good high school baseball, it made for a nice time to visit with some of the old timers. Coach Dan Hooks, Sam Moore, Sharon Bearden and others relayed war stories. Hooks and Moore could fill a book. Clint Landry is a true baseball fan. His son Chad is Bridge City coach and Clint is already teaching his 4-year-old grandson to hit. A left hander like dad, oddly enough he bats right handed. Anyway, Clint told the story about he and Cornell Thompson living in the country, at the end of Newton Street, in West Orange, raising chickens. Cornell still does, Clint raises money. Anyway, Cornell, a little older, had a scooter and Clint sat on the back holding a box of eggs and they rode all over town selling eggs door to door. Often Clint let too many eggs break and got a scolding from Cornell. I can’t put the Sam Moore stories in print, mostly because of space. Did you know Sam and Clint were cousins? Sam’s boy Brennan, it seems just a little guy a few months ago, is Sam’s size now and a starting third baseman for LC-M.*****A little bird told us retired WO-S Coach Mark Foreman will join the coaching staff of his son, Toby Foreman. Toby was just named the new head coach at Central.*****At the Orangefield tournament Mark got to visit with Terry Landry’s son Shea, who is a coach at West Orange and former star baseball player at LC-M and Lamar.*****I heard a coach from Jasper was spotted coaching first base with an Ipad*****Speaking of seniors, we understand Ms. Rosalie hasn’t tired of Judge Pat Clark, district judge now retired, hanging around the house yet. He’s doing a lot of church work. By the way, he informs us that the St. Joseph Alter at St. Mary’s will be held on St. Pats Day, March 17, right after 10 a.m. Sunday mass. Folks will be served starting at 11:30 a.m. Those Catholic ladies would make St. Joseph proud. They feed the masses great vittles, fresh baked bread and homemade deserts, the best I’ve ever indulged in. Hope to see you there.*****We heard from another retiree, longtime Bridge City educator Joe Chenella and wife Nancy,  now living in College Station. They haven’t sold their BC home yet and come to town occasionally, preparing to put it on the market. We miss visiting with Joe.*****Coach Les Johnson and Wanda stopped in for a visit last week. Les doesn’t like retirement, he would rather be coaching the Wing T. He’s quite a farmer however, and already putting out his spring crop in Bastrop.*****I need to let Lily know that OPEC sets crude oil prices, they don’t determine gas at the pump prices. Big Oil sets their own prices, they can sell for any price they want. In California they sell for over $5 a gallon, other places differ. Some places around the globe charge $8 to $9, so you see Lily, gas at the pump is not determined by global supply. Big Oil plays with the prices. Ever notice how they drop the prices at election  time. At $95 a barrel for crude, gas at the pump should be between $2.50 and $2.80. Big Oil is raping us.*****Things are not going too bad on Wall Street either. Monday, the Dow was within 30 points of a record high, Tuesday it hit an all time high of 14,253.91.*****Hugo Chavez, president of Venezuela for over 14 years, died today at age 58 after a long battle with cancer. Venezuela has the world’s biggest proven oil reserves.*****The mastermind of the “Great Train Robbery” Bruce Reynolds, died in London at age 81. He led the gang that stole sacks of money, $2.6 million, in August, 1963. It would be worth $60 million today. Books and movies have highlighted the famous train robbery.*****Also in London, Simon Cowell has taken over television screens around the world. Now he’s taking aim at the internet. Cowell’s Syco Entertainment empire and YouTube are launching “The You Generation,” a global online talent contest that is seeking entries from people with unconventional and original talents, from musicians, photographers, makeup artist, magicians and chefs. From American Idol to the X-Factor and now this.*****Our congratulations go out to Bridge City’s Hayden Guidry, who pitched a 7-0 shutout against Kelly Monday. He struck out 13, allowing four hits. Guidry and the Cardinals start play in the Jasper tournament Thursday.


Theophile Gaspard showed up at da pool hall sporting two black eyes.

“Mais, wat happen to you?” Tee-Neg ask.

“Well, you know how Camilla has been tryin’ to get me to go to mass wit’ her during Lent. I went, me. Boy, Tee-Neg, dat is a dangerous place yeah.

“I was sitting in de pew and dere was dis big lady sittin’ in front of us and when she get up from kneelin’ down, her dress, it was caught in her butt. You know, like de cow eatin’ de cabbage.”

“Well, me, I help her. I pull it out.”

“Man, dat lady turn around’ and ka-pow, she hit me hard right in my eye.”

“So how you get de utter black eye?” asked Tee-Neg.

And Theophile say, “Well, me, I figure she don’t want it out, so I push it back in like it was.”


The most unhappy person in Florida this week is Marco Rubio. He just saw the Republican 2016 nomination slip away. Gov. Jeb Bush, the most popular politician in Florida, has hit the TV talk circuit. He changed his position on immigration and moved farther to the right than Rubio, leaving Marco in no man’s land, between Hillary Clinton and Jeb. Bush made a complete u-turn to get Tea Party support for the nomination but it won’t sell in the general election. On the other hand, Jeb is the most sincere, best qualified candidate the GOP has to offer. *****I like T. Boone Pickens outlook, the U.S. can’t beat OPEC at its own game. In the past year our production surged to an 18 year high, yet the Saudi’s cut their’s to a 19-month low. Pickens is calling for “fuel competition” for motor fuels. Natural gas is the answer. Gasoline prices are a complex calculation, several factors come to play like how much profit the oil companies want to make at the gas pump. The reason Big Oil doesn’t like natural gas is it doesn’t have bi-products like crude oil, plastics, motor oil, etc. Natural gas would drop prices big time at the pump. Tuesday, Royal Dutch Shell announced plans for two new plants that will double the nation’s supply of liquefied natural gas. A plant in Louisiana and Ontario will supply natural gas to truck stops, railroads and waterways. They will make LNG tomorrow’s fuel, available to today’s market. Just the plan T-Boone has been promoting. Gas at the pump will drop drastically in time. The two new plants will double the nation’s supply. *****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch dines at Novrozsky‘s this week. Next week the group will be at Robert’s. Our friend Joy Scarborough will furnish her famous fudge for dessert. Everyone is welcome.*****I’ve got to get out of here. Thanks for coming along. I hope I had a little something for everyone. Remember to turn the clocks forward an hour Saturday night. Take care and God bless.