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Huckleberries Online

Mmm Mmm Good Edit

You remember that old Campbell's soup line: “Campbell's soup is mmm mmm good”? Well, as I write this, I'm eating Dannon Oikos Greek nonfat yogurt with Walkabout's huckleberries from the Fernan Saddle mixed in. Mmm mmm good.

Question: What food/treat would you describe as “mmm mmm good”?

Joker: If DFO Sold Out To Political PR

Joker: We all know DFO would rather die than work in public relations. But I believe if somebody added enough zeroes to the check he would join Popkey in the blink of an eye. If money were not an issue, here are the politicians that he could work for. I’ve also added priority action steps for DFO to be successful.

  • Bob Nonini – Take away Cathyanne’s email account (easier said than done) and make Bob read, “How to win friends and influence people.”
  • Anne Nesse – Driving Mrs Nesse! Anne has trouble getting around Kootenai County to talk to voters. DFO has a map and he’s not afraid to use it.
  • Mike Kennedy – Get him to register as a Democrat.
  • Kathy Sims – Hire OTV for a fashion makeover. The 1957 hair do and outfit need updating.
  • Mary Souza – DFO is the official tape recorder confiscator. He can also connect the dots and schedule a PR coup by getting Mayor Bloem on her online radio show.
  • Steve Adams – Take away his pocket U.S. constitution. Then actually hire a civics professor to explain how the United States government works.
  • Cheryl Stransky – Get her on the back of a milk cartoon stat! People need to recognize her.
  • Mike Jorgenson — Schedule Jorgenson on the senior MMA tour. Younger people just love brutal cage fights.
  • Vito Barbieri – Convince Vito that he needs to run against Raul Labrador. This will be a classic PR battle of wills between Popkey and DFO. Who will win this showdown? Everyone!

Hump Day Wild Card — 7.30.14

When I was a teen-ager, I worked all day long in the alfalfa/hay fields for my Uncle Manuel, hauling hay in the California's Sacramento Valley on days when temperatures hit 100-110 degrees. As a 20-something, I played softball all weekend in double elimination tournaments in the Red Bluff, Calif., area, on days that temperatures reached well north of 100. On the day I interviewed for a sports editor job with the Red Bluff Daily News, in June 1972, the temperature reached 118 degrees. Triple digits in Coeur d'Alene. Pfffttt. Here's today's Wild Card …

PM Scanner Traffic — 7.30.14

  • 1:26 p.m. Unknown medical emergency @ Dawn/Stephanie, Post Falls.
  • 1:23 p.m. PFPD officer reports that males were cleaning up graffiti (1:07 item), not vandalizing.
  • 1:19 p.m. Male has suffered 2-inch gash to the bone in leg @ 6792 Govt Way/Hayden.
  • 1:18 p.m. Drunk 52YO female may be suffering alcohol poisoning on 3rd Avenue/Post Falls.
  • 1:07 p.m. 2 males in gray Wrangler shorts spray-painting graffiti on Spokane Street bridge, near Qemiln Park/Post Falls.
  • 1:02 p.m. 71YO male may be suffering heart attack @ 1300 block of N. Spokane/Post Falls.
  • 12:59 p.m. PFPD Facebook: Cows in roadway at Poleline & Clark Fork (east of McGuire, south of Poleline). Animal Safety is on scene.

Popkey Hire Leaves Journalism Hole

Marc Johnson/The Johnson Post contends that Congressman Raul Labrador underscored his position as Idaho's most interesting man — and possibly most important politician — by hiring Statesman political reporter Dan Popkey (pictured). In this most-read column, Johnson also explained the blow suffered by Idaho journalism by this hire: “The other thing the Popkey hire illustrates, sadly, is the continuing and steady demise of real political journalism, and not just in Idaho. Dan’s reporting – along with the excellent work of the Spokesman-Review’s Betsy Russell – has long been required reading for anyone in the state who cares about politics and public policy. The kind of perspective, experience and knowledge of the political players that a reporter develops over 30 years can’t easily be replaced. Here’s hoping the effort continues to be made, but the trend lines are hardly encouraging.” More here.

Question: The Statesman has now lost three important journalists in the last year — Opinion Editor Kevin Richert, Outdoors writer Pete Zimowski and now political reporter Dan Popkey. What will the Statesman be like now?

Huckleberries Hears …

… That the Coeur d'Alene teen scene is aflutter re: news that Harry Styles of One Direction has been hanging out at Gozzer Ranch on Lake Coeur d'Alene. Styles is the front man for the mega-popular teen band. Styles has posted several photos of him and other teen-agers playing soccer at Gozzer Ranch. You can view them here. (AP/Invision file photo: One Direction members, from left, Harry Styles, Liam Payne and Zayn Malik perform on ABC's “Good Morning America” on Nov. 26, 2013, in New York)

Brothers Hit Each Other Avoiding Deer Edit

Two brothers were injured in a collision near Princeton, Idaho, early this morning, the Idaho State Police said. Wesley Orr, 23, was traveling west on State Highway 6 just east of Princeton when he encountered some deer in the roadway around 5:45 a.m., according to a news release. Kiel Orr, 31, was driving east on the highway at the same time. The two collided, closing the highway for two-and-a-half hours, according to the ISP. Neither men was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash, according to the news release. Both were driving Honda Accords. ISP spokeswoman Teresa Baker confirmed the Orrs were brothers/Kip Hill, SR. More here.

Question: Have you ever been to Princeton, Idaho?

Marathoner Tries Pend Oreille Swim

While the rest of us sit inside at our air-conditioned desks or do whatever else we can to stay cool today, it's fair to say Elaine K. Howley has the most strenuous plan to beat the heat. The 45-year-old open-water swimmer is attempting a solo, non-stop swim of the length of Idaho's largest lake, Lake Pend Oreille — a total of 34 miles from the southern tip at Buttonhook Bay up to Sandpoint's City Beach in the northwest. If Howley is successful, she'll be the first person to do so. It's expected to take the Boston-based ultra-marathon swimmer between 17 and 20 hours to complete her journey if conditions are fair, but could take as many as 24 hours if the water is choppy. Follow Howley's progress throughout the day via the Sandpoint Online Facebook page/Bloglander, Inlander. More here.

Question: Is there any water in the region colder to swim in than Lake Pend Oreille?

Gene: Why I Jumped To PR

Gene Fadness (RE: Popkey's financial future better — DFO): After 25 years as both an editor and a reporter in Nebraska and Idaho, I jumped ship back in 2001 to become the public information officer for a state agency. I was making decent pay near the end, but had no retirement plan to speak of. Newsrooms were already starting to lay off staff, work hours were increasing and, in my view, newspapers were moving away from in-depth reporting to becoming a print version of TV and radio. Hard-hitting, longer stories were being pushed aside to allow more room for large pictures and graphics in order to get younger readers who seemed to more interested in being entertained than informed. It used to be that newspapers couldn't compete with radio and TV for immediacy, so our niche was more detail and time to check more sources and provide in-depth coverage. With online reporting, the pressure is on to be quicker and be juicier. The result is shorter, quicker reporting and not as careful editing for both accuracy and balance. There are parts of journalism I really miss, but I don't think today's newspaper would take me even if I wanted to go back. I'm too old-school.


Balukoff’s 1st Campaign Ad

A.J. Balukoff's first campaign ad in his head-to-head race against Gov. Butch Otter.


AM Scanner Traffic — 7.30.14

  • 11:24 a.m. Female on 5th Avenue/Post Falls reports male choked her, he's still at residence.
  • 11:19 a.m. Vehicles are using emergency cross-overs to avoid traffic jam @ s/b H95/near Silverwood.
  • 11:03 a.m. Driver of electric blue Toyota Tacoma pickup cut of 2nd motorist while merging @ I-90/H95, CdA.
  • 10:51 a.m. Caller reports to CPD she's being harassed by phone.
  • 10:45 a.m. Motorist passed on double yellow in construction zone @ s/b H95/MP 452 (Bonner County line).
  • 9:50 a.m. Officer reports utility box w/cover torn off and wires showing along Atlas Road/Rathdrum Prairie.
  • 9:44 a.m. Business has supplemental info re: forgery @ 200 block of Ironwood/CdA.
  • 9:06 a.m. CPD officer reports man caught trespassing is high on something & insisting he's on supervised probation.
  • 8:57 a.m. Firefighters are attacking smoke & flames from re-newed fire (8:45 item) from Seltice Way/CdA side.
  • 8:45 a.m. Fireman reports fire extinguised along e/b I-90/MP 10, 1 mile east of NW Blvd/CdA, is smoldering again, w/flames seen in nearby trees. Smoke is coming from south side of Centennial Trail.

Poll: No To Obama Impeachment Try

  • Tuesday Poll: 3/4s of Hucks Nation would oppose any attempt to impeach President Barack Obama. 138 of 183 respondents (75.41%). Only 42 of 183 respondents (22.95%) support an impeachment attempt. 3 (1.64%) were undecided.
  • Today's Poll: What do you think of journalist Dan Popkey's decision to become Congressman Labrador's spokesman?

Thought For Today

So odd, the randomness of who has followed me on Twitter recently: Party 101. Supermodel Niki Taylor. 44 North Vodka. Kelly Osbourne News. Boysmutty. อุดม ประเหมือน. Move2Boise. KHQ's Stephanie Vigil. Performance Artist Kayvon Zand. KISS 98.1. Not sure what this says about me — OrangeTV.

Question: Who are some of the random individuals/companies that follow you on Twitter? Do you have a Twitter account?

Obama To GOP: Stop Hatin’ Edit

President Barack Obama on Wednesday continued to slam Republicans for moving to sue him over his use of executive actions, calling the move a “political stunt” and urging Congress to “stop hatin' all the time.” “They have announced that they are going to sue me for taking executive actions to help people,” he said during an event in Kansas City. “They’re mad because I’m doing my job.” Calling the vote a waste of valuable taxpayer dollars, Obama said Republicans are also taking time away from important legislation they should be addressing/NBC News. More here.

Question: Do you think Obama is correct — that GOP opposition is hatin' all the time?

Lilac Ice Cream, Anyone? Edit

Local legend has it that the first lilac bush was planted at a homestead near Hillyard after traveling by trunk from Minnesota in 1882. Another story puts the city’s first lilacs in the yard of J.J. Browne, a lawyer and developer who planted them in 1906. Whichever the case may be, civic leaders started promoting Spokane as the Lilac City. And this spring, those tiny fragrant purple and white springtime petals inspired Chef Bob Rogers, executive chef at Northern Quest Resort & Casino, to make his own lilac ice cream. He experimented in May, cutting big clusters of lilac blossoms early in the morning, getting them wet, then shaking off the excess water and trimming the stems. He used lilacs that are “the in-between color. Not white but also not very dark”/Adriana Janovich, SR. More here. (Courtesy SR file photo from Blair Becker: A butterfly lands on a lilac bush)

Question: Is lilac ice cream something you'd like to try? Any unusual ice cream flavors you like?

Risch: Tie Pastor Release To Iran $$$

Idaho Sen. Jim Risch today told the U.S. State Department’s Undersecretary for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman that the United States should cut off all funds to Iran until Idaho Pastor Saeed Abedini and two other Americans who are imprisoned in Iran are released. Abedini, of Boise, has been imprisoned in Iran since 2012 on charges related to Christian evangelizing. Risch said he’s sure the move would work. At a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing today on the topic “Iran: Status of the P-5+1,” Risch told Sherman, “I have urged that you do something about getting Pastor Abedini and the other two Americans released. As you know, I was incredibly critical of you guys because you cut billions loose without demanding this tiny, tiny little thing as far as Iran is concerned. I wanna ratchet that up again – you did it again”/Betsy Russell, Eye on Boise. More here. (Photo of Pastor Saaed Abedini by Be Heard Project)

Question: I'm glad that U.S. Sen. Risch is applying pressure to force the release of Pastor Abedini of Boise, who has been imprisoned in Iran for alleged crimes related to his Christian faith. You?

AM Headlines — 7.30.14

Christ Troupis talks with reporters outside the Twin Falls county courthouse on Tuesday. “We don’t want to preserve a conflict,” he said, noting that no appeals were contemplated. Troupis, who unsuccessfully challenged GOP Attorney General Lawrence Wasden in the primary this year, said the party needs to unify. Reaction to judge's ruling here. (SR photo: Betsy Russell)

Dancin’ To The Music

Maria Kitkarska, of Canada, performs in the Individual Clubs final at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre Precinct during the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland on Saturday. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File)

Quotable Quote

“I promise we won't have bobbing for Baby Ruth candy bars.”

Sid Fredrickson, wastewater treatment director re: games planned for department's 75th anniversary.

H/T: Taryn Thompson, Coeur d'Alene Press

Question: Remember the swimming pool scene in “Caddy Shack”?

DFO: Popkey’s Financial Future Better

DFO (RE: 007: Popkey's now a flack): There may be another angle at play here. Popkey is 55 years old — an age in which he's facing an uncertain future as far as newpapering goes. I know several individuals in the 45-55 range who are wondering if it's time to bail for another career because they don't know how long their newspaper will hold out. I'd guess Popkey's salary increased significantly when he signed on the dotted line with Labrador. Also, I'd guess that his benefits and retirement packages improved significantly. This could be a situation where a good reporter saw the writing on the wall and jumped for a signicantly better financial situation.

Question: Is this about money, bottom line?

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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