What a game. The lead changed three times in the last five minutes. Each time the fans cheered, sure their team had just won the game. With Alabama leading by three points and only six seconds left on the clock, Clemson could have tied it up with a field goal, putting the game in over-time, instead Clemson took the big gamble. On the last down they went for the win, completed a pass in the end zone for a 35-31 win over last year’s champion Alabama. One second remained on the clock. The win sent shock waves around the country. It had been 35 years since Clemson had won a national championship so the final score was appropriate. The loss broke Alabama’s 26 game winning streak. A win would have tied Coach Nick Saban with coach Bear Briant’s six national championships. The Bear took 19 seasons to accomplish his record, Saban has won all since 2003. He’s still one behind Bryant but he still gets $8 million a year, more money than Bear saw in his lifetime of coaching. At 65, he’s still the king of college football. Alabama’s senior class earned 51 wins, one short of the NCAA record. Saban still has 18 year old quarterback sensation Jalen Hurts to go along with a great crop of recruits coming back. For now though the day belongs to Clemson who never gave up when they were trailing and put it all on the line on one play to win it all. My only problem was it lasted too long and too late, nearly midnight. I don’t believe I will ever again see a more exciting final five minutes in a college game.***** I have to move on. Please come along, I promise it won’t do you no harm.

Dictators handpick their own military leaders who are loyal to them. That gives them the military power to rule the country. In dictatorships, the government controls all news outlets. Dictators strike back at anyone who opposes them. They want and demand total control. Most have big egos that often lead them to bite off more than they can chew. In a democracy it’s difficult to accomplish what a dictator can because of the lack of absolute control. However, what we know about president-elect Donald Trump is that he has vowed to change all the military generals, naming some loyal to him is probably his thinking. The way Trump diminishes the news media is by calling them liars and insisting that all of the nation’s media puts out fake news. He can’t control them so he goes around them with his Twitter account. He’s a top salesman but not by any ethical gold standard. Most of his claims are falsehoods. He has a type of disrespect for the United States Constitution and the common voter. He led working class people to believe in a man who rides a golden elevator and sits on a gold commode that he represents their best interest. Trump doesn’t believe he should produce his tax returns nor should his appointees be required to. Trumps refusal to accept anything that contradicts him is consistent with the thought process of a narcissist, a trait of most dictators. Donald Trump will become more unpopular and untrustworthy at home by continuing to support our enemy Vladimir Putin. He doesn’t seem to care that Putin is no friend to the U.S. For Trump to believe the intelligence reports he would have to admit that our intelligence agencies know more than he does. His sick ego won’t accept that. The senate will rush Trump’s appointments through in one week, which usually take two months. Like the dictator does, forget the vetting and background check, just do what I say do. Trump was going to “Drain the Swamp” but he’s loaded his cabinet with folks from Goldman Saks, folks he called evil and would have no place in his administration. Here’s Trump’s hypocrisy. Evils from Goldman: treasury secretary Stevin Minuchin, chief strategist Stephen Bannon, securities and exchange commissioner Jay Clayton, economic council director Gary Conn and others. Trump, who promised to look after the little guy, has brought in folks that are not going to change the system. The middle-class will carry the load while the rich get richer.

10 Years Ago-2007
Congrats to Jerry McGinnis chosen ‘Citizen of the Year’ by Bridge City Chamber. There is no one more deserving. *****Belated happy birthday to Kenneth Young. He celebrated his 76th on Friday, Jan. 5. Kenneth, who still lives in Bridge City with wife Joyce, was the first president of Bridge City Little League and was the driving force to build the first Little League Park. He’s a great guy for a Republican. (Editor’s note: Kenneth and Joyce have since passed away.)*****Also happy birthday to Collin Slade Gros, who celebrates his 12th birthday on Jan. 10. ‘Billy Jack,’ to us around the Creaux’s Nest, is just a great, fun kid. *****Sorry to hear that Barry is shutting down the Yellow Rose. It’s a going business that serves a great barbecue. It and the Frame Shop are both for sale.*****Do you remember when the Bush Administration was pushing so hard to allow drilling in Alaska? There was a good reason for that and it wasn’t the shortage of oil. It had to do with big oil companies not having to pay royalties on public lands, including the Gulf of Mexico. They knew some day the jig would be up and that time has come.*****I’ve been puzzled by the lack of military medals presented by the Pentagon, only two silver stars and 26 service crosses for both Iraq and Afghanistan. *****The Neo-cons made fun of global warming with its climate changes, warm weather in the East, cherry blossoms on the trees in Washington, the weather today in Boston is 72 degrees, it should be 32 degrees. *****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch will dine at Robert’s, 12 noon. Last week the group was joined by Rodney Price, new Pct. 4 Justice of the Peace. He was getting some tutoring by Judge Joe Parkhurst and Judge Derry Dunn. Both of Derry’s parents attended a two-room schoolhouse. That’s amazing, all grades in two rooms, 1st. to 11th.*****This should make Cajuns happy. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who served from 1933 to 1945, listed as his favorite food a corn meal mush cooked in an iron pot. It was started with a little grease and stirred often until smothered. Hell man, that’s Couche Couche, (Cush-Cush). It’s still one of my favorite foods. The 32nd president was one of my favorites. Now that I know he was raised on Cush-Cush, I like him even better. *****Our buddy, Neighbor Cox, is named after the 13th president, Millard Fillmore. Here’s what I found out about him. After sneaking around with his schoolteacher, he married her. The teacher-student relationship, in some cases, has been around a long time, even in my day. There was one I would have married. *****Country singer Del Reeves, 74, died New Year’s Day just like Hank, Sr. did. Del did impressions of many artist, including Hank. He also has his own big hits and those he wrote for others. He cracked me up when he did Jimmy Stewart, Walter Brennan and Johnny Cash. *****Our buddy Mary Stanton is back at work as manager of the Exxpress Mart after being away a couple of months. Husband Don is on the mend. She will work the good shift, 3:00 a.m. to 12 noon. ***** Elvis Aaron Presley was born this week, Jan 8, 1935, in Tupelo, Mississippi. *****Former Texas House Speaker Bill Clayton, 78, who served four terms as Texas speaker, died in Lubbock on Saturday, Jan. 6. Clayton was a conservative Democratic, at a time when the Texas Democratic Party was split down the middle, between liberals and conservatives. Local state representative Wayne Peveto, a conservative, sided with Clayton, who helped him pass the Peveto Bill, a tax reform bill. Clayton appeared in Orange on behalf of Peveto’s re-election bid against challenger Ron Lewis, which Peveto won. Clayton was born in Olney, Texas, on September 11, 1928.***** GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN: Jeanne Maultsby, 81, died on Dec. 29. A memorial service will be held Jan. 14, 2:00 p.m., St. Paul Episcopal Church in Orange. We had personally known Jeanne and her late husband, Bill. They were married 57 years and went through great personal losses, daughters Tana, died in 1995 and Darla, died in 2000. Bill was a longtime newspaper, radio and television newsman. Jeanne was one of the kindest, sweetest ladies we have known. Despite all her problems, she was always available to help others. The four people in that family are now gone from this life but I’m sure they have had a joyful reunion. Our sincere condolences to the grandchildren.***** Geraldine Trahan, 77, passed away Jan. 3, 2007. Services were held Sat. Jan 7. Our condolences to Frances, Becky, Tina and the rest of the family. Geraldine had a large family who loved her very much.

40 Years Ago-1977
It’s 17 degrees in Orange County on Jan. 10. Water pipes, citrus trees, plants, animals and humans are being affected. Natives say the Yankees can have back the cold and we’ll gladly take back the humidity and extreme heat. ******Bridge City police chief Wilson Roberts has lost 27 pounds on his diet. (Editor’s note: He has found the lost weight and many pounds more.)*****Beverly Parker, wife of new senator Carl, is sporting a cast on her leg. The break occurred while making her last run down a Colorado ski slope. *****Ann Segura’s mother sent the Opportunity Valley News crew their annual sweet potato pie made in East Texas. (Editor’s note: I remember that nice lady’s pies, never tasted better) Barry Wiseman has had knee surgery. This was the second time the old football knee has been worked on.*****Benis Lee has left Orange Bank. Word is out that he will join American National Bank in Beaumont. *****Sue Pate was selected ‘Woman of the Year’ by Professional and Business Women’s club. *****Dr. Mark Messer is elected president of Bridge City Chamber of Commerce. *****Flo Edgerly is in Austin attending a reception in honor of State Senator Carl Parker, who is taking his oath of office. Flo was also invited to attend Gov. Briscoe’s reception. ***** Bridge City Chamber banquet to be held Jan. 18 at the high school cafeteria. Harry Hubbard, state president of the AFL-CIO, will be the guest speaker. (Editor’s note: Flo worked for Harry a number of years. I suspect that was the connection to get him as banquet speaker, etc.)*****A behavior modification seminar will feature elementary school counselor Larry Buchman every Tuesday, 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. The seminar is to teach parents how to best react to their child’s behavior. Mary Stanton is PTA chairperson for the seminar. *****DERA held their first fishing tournament of the new year and Chief Atkinson won it. Other winners were, Virgil Wilson, Al White, Ordean Williams and Bob Rose. *****Top 10 Country single, ‘Broken Down in Tiny Pieces,’ by Billy ‘Crash’ Cradddock.

We were sorry to hear about the death of Sarah Jefferson-Simon, 55, who passed away January 6 in a Houston hospital. She was WOCC school board vice-president. She had been on the Orange Police Force for 25 years but was forced to retired due to a major accident. She was a special lady that will long be remembered.*****Orange County is approaching 90,000 citizens without a hospital. A hospital district sounds like the best and only approach to me. Many would prefer the district to be in the center of the county IH-10 to 1442, but what becomes of that big, nice building Baptist owns. I believe a 30 to 40 bed hospital at its present site is the only workable solution. It’s been several years since babies were born in Orange County. I recall when there were tee-shirts that read “Born in Orange Texas.” It was a pride thing. Now your obit may read “native of Beaumont, or some other place.”*****Ms. Pearl Burgess has written what she says may be her last poem that appears in this publication. Ms Pearl is 96 years old, hoping to make 97 next Oct. 27. She has been writing most of her life and is still very sharp but her health has slipped with each passing year. She has always been very active but the years have slowed her down. *****A few folks we know celebrating their special day. Jan. 11: Plumber, Orange city councilman, Bill Mello, notches another year down the road of life on this day. Also celebrating are Davie Thompson, Grant Gilson, Teresa Franklin and Ann Olliff. On this day our longtime friends Margie and Harry Stephens have been sleeping together at least 31 years. Happy Anniversary. Celebrities celebrating birthdays are singer Mary J. Blige, 46, soccer player Emile Heskey, 39 and reality star Kyle Richards, 48.*****Jan. 12: Celebrating today are Beth Linder, Bill Braus, Susan Leblanc, David Pendergast and Jimmie Allen. They are joined by radio host Howard Stern, 63, acress Naya Rivera, 30, and baseball player Bobby Crosby, 37.*****Jan. 13: Pretty Lyndia Permenter, T.W.’s longtime bride, celebrates a birthday today. She’s a very nice lady, also Kent Hannegan, Jack Stout, Patricia Coppage and Jolynn Sholmire all share birthdays with celebrities actors Liam Hernsworth, 27, Orlando Bloom, 40, Patrick Dempsey, 51 and Julian Morris, 34.*****Jan. 14: I’m drawing an inside straight because on this day Judge Jerry Pennington, Attorney Rodney Townsend, Judge Joy’s other half, Robert Simonton, Joey’s better half, Mel Campbell and a special beauty Stephanie Sehon all celebrate birthdays. They are joined rapper LL Cool J, 49, actor Jason Bateman, 48, and singer Dave Grohi, 48.*****Jan. 15: Don Thompson, Joy Hughes, Tyler Reves, Dee Culpepper, Brennan Broussard, Carson Peet and Margaret Cavanaughb all celebrate. They are joined by rapper Pit Bull, 36, Saints quarterback Drew Brees, 38, and actor Chad Lowe, 49.****Jan. 16: A good guy, our friend Glenn Oliver has a birthday today. Also celebrating are Kaitlyn Louvier, Clayton Gearhart, Gary Dearing, and John Arnold. Joining them are actors Richard Hones, 45, Josie Davis, 44 and TV talk show host James May, 54.*****Jan. 17: Attorney Jack Smith hits number 78 on this day. He catches up to Bearden and is ahead of Peveto, who will reach that number in March. All three of these lawyers graduated in the same year. Our buddy, Constable of Pct. 2, David Cagle is a year older as is Jeff Overman, Gail Meadows and Pattie’s oldest Erin Hanks. Celebrities joining them are First Lady Michelle Obama, 53, actor Jim Carey, 55 and comedian Steve Harvey. Happy Birthday to all.*****We were glad to see that Beth Meaux was back at work at the Bridge City Bank, Orange branch. Beth has been battling cancer with chemo and radiation. This is her second bout; she beat cancer 12 years ago. We pray that this nice lady’s health will continue to improve.*****Coach Les Johnson and his lovely wife Wanda stopped by a few days ago. They were running away from home for a couple of days. They had been visited by 32 children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren over the holidays. By the way, Les predicted Clemson would win the National title because he said Clemson’s defensive line is the biggest, fastest, best in the country, however, it was the offense that beat Alabama.

Alex Comeaux and Marie had been married a long time dem and dey were pretty happy. Da only ting was, Comeaux him, always complain ’bout everyting. One day, he was in da woods getting some firewood wit his ole mule. Comeaux complain so much dat da mule got aggravated him, and he kicked Comeaux with boat his back feets and kilt him. At da funeral, wenever a man walk by Marie and say something to her, Marie shake her head yes. Wen a woman come by and say something, she shake her head no. Da priest Father Dessarmeaux, he sees all dat and he can’t stand not knowing wat’s going on. He walk up to Marie and axe, “Marie, why you shake you head yes for the mens and you shake you head no to da womens?” Marie answer, “Da mens say how sorry dey are for me and I shake my head dat I’m alright. Wen da womens walk by dey axe me if da mule is for sale.”

I’ve written before about Mr. Kitty, the cat that belongs to the Jack Smith’s and hates to ride in a car. He’s smart enough to know what the Smith’s are up to when they load up bags and plan to hit the road. With the first opportunity Mr. Kitty pulls his escape. Last week, after leaving Colorado, the Smith’s stopped in West Texas at the same motel where the cat had escaped before. Loaded up and ready to go the Smith’s blamed each other for letting Mr. Kitty out. They searched the room and concluded the cat wasn’t anywhere inside. Jack had paid $99 for a gadget called a TAB CAT which was suppose to locate a cat within 200 yards. The gadget indicated the cat was in the room. The alarm got louder and louder showing they were within two feet of the collar Mr. Kitty was wearing. He had dropped down in a small space behind the microwave and TV set. Without the TAB CAT they would not have found him. They removed the micro and there he was wrapped in a ball. Jack suspects that’s where he was last year when the entire town couldn’t find him and they had to leave him behind. Mr. Kitty showed up later and the Smith’s had to return to get him. Once Mr. Kitty escaped in Colorado and the Smith’s had to drive back from Orange to retrieve him. Kitty could outsmart the Smith’s but he couldn’t escape Jack’s little gadget. Jack said “TAB Cat” was the best $99 he had ever spent.

Last Wednesday morning I stopped by the Penny Record office in Bridge City which was closed, to pick up the paper. The phone rang and I started not to answer but curiosity got the best of me. When I did a heavy male voice said, “Hey, where is the Cajun story in this paper?” I quickly turned to page four. Sure nuff, it had been left out of the Breaux column. “Sorry, I said, I don’t know why it’s not in.” The guy said, “Somebody is stupid down there,” and hung up. I know in at least 20 years that was the first time we missed but boy did it stir up the natives. We were called everything in the book. Heard from Cajuns in Louisiana and Yankees in Delaware, who read us on the web. I wrote a Cajun story but it didn’t make it to the folder. I don’t know why. “No lady, I’m not senile yet.”****The Wednesday Lunch Bunch dines at Robert’s this week, next week at PK’s Grill. Everyone always welcome. Good fellowship, great folks.****Barack Obama gave a great farewell speech Tuesday night.****My time is up. I thank you for yours. Please shop our family of advertisers. Take care and God bless.