Saturday, March 21, 2009


I needed some help today. I had ignorantly volunteered to help somebody (that I did not know) load up furniture for a move. This "somebody that I did not know" was a "good friend" of my ex-Sister-in-law. I figured, "Hey! It's a beautiful Saturday...nothing much to do until LSU faces stinkin' North Carolina in the NCAA Tournament (and shocks the world by beating the snot out of 'em), so I say "I'LL DO IT!"

It went real good. This fellow that I did not know turned out to be one hecukvaguy, and his wife was just as nice. His Momma had died, and he ain't from around here, and didn't know how to get help, and was okay. But he had this furniture that he wanted to get shed of, and I thought about my 3rd son, whose house echoes like an empty gym from lack of furniture. He offered to give me anything I wanted that we had not already loaded up on his Ryder truck. And I'll tell y'all, there was some halfway decent stuff there!

So, I needed some help to go back over there and pick up the furniture. My son is at work until 10 pm tonight, and I can't find anybody.... The Mrs. says, "Well, I'll go help you! I just need to get dressed and put my face on, but I'll go help." Man, I love her! She's always willing to throw in on a bet, not afraid of work, and just as HOT as a two dollar pistol! My "love light switch" got thrown to the "ON" position once again!

A little history:

I grew up here in Bossier City in the days when we were world famous for lawlessness. Yes we were. When I was about 8 years old, I remember reading in the Reader's Digest an article about the most "sinful" towns in America. Lo and hometown showed up as #2.

I already knew this. But it was fun to see my hometown listed in the Reader's Digest. The article talked about the infamous "Bossier Strip." I knew all about that. US Hwy 80 running through Bossier City was just filled with one dive, whorehouse, and night-club after the next. On any given night in the '50s & 60's, you might find Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, Johnny Horton, or Elvis Presley all liquored up...enjoying one of those fine establishments.

From the Gooble Search of "Bossier Strip":

Bossier City has just as rich a history as Shreveport. In fact, not many cities can boast of a past quite as colorful as Bossier City. The Bossier Strip was where the entertainers who performed in Shreveport went after their performances to "unwind". They drank, they fought, they gambled, and they might have even had a good time with some "ladies of the night" in any of the many motels lining Highway 80 through Bossier. We can't forget Bossier's importance in this region as it has always been a bigger player than it might seem. In fact, what is now considered to be the more desirable of the two cities by many was once considered "the wrong side of the tracks".

Gambling has existed (both legally and illegally) in Bossier City for decades longer than in Shreveport. There were illegal gambling rooms in some of the bars along Highway 80 back during the days of "The Strip", and in the 1970s, Louisiana Downs was constructed to bring legal gambling (horse racing) to the region. People flocked across the river from Shreveport to "bet on the ponies" because there were no places to gamble in Shreveport.

Bossier City has changed a lot since I was a kid. Now it is a hub of shopping, commerce, good schools, great entertainment, "high priced home developments," etc. And none of the "crooked nose" Dagos control the po-leese anymore.

I remember that the Reader's Digest article placed Phenix City, Alabama as the #1 "most sinful" town in America.

From the Gooble Search on Phenix City, AL

Phenix City was notorious during the 1940s and 1950s as being a haven for organized crime, prostitution, and gambling. As a result, the city had a negative reputation, and many people still associate this legacy with Phenix City. The Tragedy and the Triumph of Phenix City, Alabama by Margaret Ann Barnes chronicles these events. Which led to the small town to be known as "Sin City, USA".

Anyway, one of my most indelible memories of "The Bossier Strip" was a joint called "The Whisk-A-Go-Go" (yes, that was really the name of it). In fact, when the First Baptist Church of Bossier decided to buy up a bunch of bars and whorehouses to build their new church house right there on Hwy 80, they jokingly called it "Baptist-A-Go-Go."

The Whisk-A-Go-Go got torn down over a quarter century back, but I remember distinctly as a kid in the 60's riding by there. The sign read, "Every Saturday Night...Joe Stampley & The Uniques!...No Cover Charge!" Now, if you don't know who Joe Stampley is, he was just a young country boy from the hamlet of Springhill, LA (If you are a country music fan, you'll know that Springhill is also the hometown of Trace Adkins)...about 40 miles northeast of Bossier. This is what Wickipedia knows about Joe Stampley.

Anyway, I'm getting to my point...I just love The Mrs. more than I can ever prove to her...such a faithful wife, mother, lover, and friend. Every time my "love light bulb moment" switch gets hit...this song echoes in my brain like the Navajos screaming across Canyon de Chelles.

While doing some computer research, I discovered one very, very, very disappointing fact. Joe Stampley & The Uniques released this song in 1966. It just barely broke into the Pop 100, and topped out at #99. That sucks! As far as I'm concerned, it is one of the great love songs in the history of love...or songs. Joe released it many years later as a "two-step" country song, and it hit #1 on the Country charts. I guess cowboys got better taste in music than most folks (even though the Country version of it sucked in my humble expert opinion).

It's impossible to say that one love song, or another, is the "BEST." But "All These Things" is right there in the top of my list. It's kinda like when the great philosopher, Corch Bum Phillips, was asked about how good Earl Campbell was...He replied "Well, I won't say Earl's in a class of his own. But it don't take long to call the roll!"

The only version I could find of "All These Things" on YouTube (that I felt comfortable posting on a family friendly blog) is just a spinning 45. But that's close enough. My best memory of this song was on a 33 1/3...close enough. I just love The Mrs.! God is good...



  2. Growing up in East Texas me and my buds came to Bossier as a right of passage when we turned 18. I had a small glass from and I may be wrong on the spelling, Merle Kimberly's SAKS Boom Boom Room. I had the glass for 45 years until the new kitten knocked if off a shelf and broke it. Nostalgia has the best of me and I will pay too much money for a replacement glass. It was a small glass not more than 5" high, the writing was in black. If you run across one plase contact me at Thanks for your time.

  3. Hi RB, Thanks for stopping by! Oh yes, my friend, I remember Merle Kimmerly's Boom Boom Room. I have saved your comment, and should I run across one of those glasses here in town, I will certainly let you know.

    Man...Bossier was a wild and crazy place back in the day. It has changed a lot.

    Later, Andy

  4. Thanks, Andy. I spent quite sometime reading your posts and it seems you have had and still have a rich, full and wonderful life.
    RB in Texas


Don't cuss nobody out, okay?