Smiley Anders's first book, "Best of Smiley," published by AuthorHouse, presented humorous excerpts from his six-day-a-week newspaper columns in the Baton Rouge, La., Advocate published between 1979 and 1990. This book not only contains funny stories from his columns published between 1991 and 2000, but also an account of his life, from his early days as a spoiled brat in Natchez, Miss., to his high school and college days in Baton Rouge and his journey in journalism that culminated in his award-winning column. Here you'll find Cajun jokes featuring Boudreaux and Thibodeaux, tales of Louisiana politicians both free and incarcerated and a somewhat less than serious look at the "Gret Stet" of Louisiana and its colorful citizens. It's as much fun as Mardi Gras, without the hangover.
From "Smiley: A Laughing Matter": "Growing up in Natchez, I was fortunate to have a passel of great-aunts and great-uncles. Many of them didn't have children of their own, so they took turns having me over, taking me out, showering me with gifts and feeding me royally. I must have been an insufferable little twit." "My teenage years spanned the 1950s, the time what teenagers began acting cool and discovering rock...Marlon Brando taught us how to mumble, scratch, wear a black leather jacket with style, and generally act cool..." "In an LSU English class, I discovered H.L. Mencken, who made working for a newspaper sound like a ringside seat at the circus...Mencken has a slashing style and a wicked wit, and left his many opponents eviscerated as he charged through life, merrily exposing the hypocrites and phonies of his time. I didn't want to be like him; I wanted to BE him..." "My standing joke is that I've worked in Louisiana all my life, except for two years in Shreveport." "I first danced with the lady I would later marry at the Spanish Town Mardi Gras Ball, where we were both in costume. I was in drag and wearing pumps, she was wearing combat boots. (This would give her much pleasure when she later described our first dance to friends.)
Smiley Anders (that's his real name) has been writing his light-hearted column in The Advocate in Baton Rouge, La., since 1979. The column appears six days a week, and has won numerous awards, including the Herb Caen Award for best items column by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists on five occasions. In 2011 Smiley was inducted into the Hall of Fame at LSU's Manship School of Mass Communications. A native of Natchez, Miss., he lives in Baton Rouge with his wife, the former Katherine Scales, who appears in his columns as "Lady Katherine." He has two children, six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren, plus three cats he shares with his spouse.