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Huckleberries Online

Archive for April 2005

Wild Card — Saturday (4/30/05)

I’m almost all the way relaxed and ready to take on the day (as Dr. Laura Schlessinger might say, if you tuned into her program with a relational problem) when I return to work. I appreciate that you folks have played nice today and hope you continue to do so. I also hope you enjoy the nice weather that has moved in on Coeur d’Alene. You can find your next-to-last unattended vacation Wild Card here.

Wild Card — Friday (4/28/05)

Only 3 more shopping days until I return to my duties as blogmeister. Here’s your TGIF Wild Card …

Wild Card — Thursday (4/28/05)

I’m going to stick to Wild Cards for the next four days to try to simmer things down. I’ll post one each night …

Question No. 2 (4/27/05)

Issue: Boise now Northwest”s third-largest city at 208,000: Traffic a concern for some residents/Associated Press.

DFO: Dunno if that’s good or bad for the subjects in the Kingdom of Ada. Sounds like too much congestion to me. What we have in Kootenai County is bad enough.

DFO: How long before Kootenai County (current population about 122,000) reaches 200,000?

Wild Card — Tuesday (4/26/05)

I admit the warm sunshine outside and duties in the yard have driven bloggable thoughts from me — that, and the “Da Vinci Code.” Gotta see why everyone’s swooning over Dan Brown’s novel. (I just got to the part where they’re flying to England with the keystone and the albino in tow.) I see Bearable Bob and Any Mouse were involved in a religious war today. And you guys don’t think you need me to send everyone to their respective corners when the blows are landing hot and heavy. Be nice. And here’s another Wild Card, for Tuesday.

Wild Card — Monday (4/25/05)

For those who want to chat while I’m on vacation …

Best of Huckleberries Online — April 18-22


Clare Bozarth mighta slipped and said she was about to “bake a maybe” but she didn’t name the maybe after Betty Crocker above. See below.

How hot is property in North Idaho? Cis Gors/From A Simple Mind reports a strange rumor about the Sandpoint area housing market. Seems an owner wanted $150,000 for a house, without a foundation, on five acres in the Samuels area. And was surprised that her sorry property triggered a bidding war among three prospective buyers who jacked up the price to $220,000 – and counting. Inspired, one of the other neighbors is thinking of selling her beautiful place because she’s heard offers that are too good to refuse, sez Cis. Quoth: “Trouble with that idea is – where is there a place to go in this area that isn’t going to cost you, your profits and more?” A voice of reason.

Spoon This
First you should know that a “spoonerism” is a misstatement in which initial sounds are transposed in a pair of words. Then, you might appreciate that Clare Bozarth was excited years ago when she told her sister that she and her hubby were about to “bake a maybe.” Nah, sez Clare, “We did not name our daughter Betty Crocker” … Those keeping tabs on Duane Hagadone’s 17-boat flotilla should check out the latest Vanity Fair, where the Lady Lola and her Shadow are mentioned in a paragraph on Page 254 in an article devoted to the truly Big Dogs, like Paul Allen and his $250 million, 413-foot Octopus … Quotable Quote: “Ever larger boats have replaced palaces, estates, and art as the ultimate symbols of wealth” – Sir J. Paul Getty’s son, Mark, owner of the Talitha G, which charters for $350,000 per week. Does the toy carrier in my bathtub count?

Elephant Droppings
Seems Kootenai County Demos were told what to bring to a Centennial Trail cleanup: “Gloves, water, and some jokes or stories about Republicans to share with the group. The (Carl and Marilyn) Weiks will supply the trash bags, but they will not be big enough to clean up the mess left behind by Republican politicians.” Hey, Huckleberries would hate to pick up after an elephant, too … In the “Grandkids Say the Cutest Things” category, 4-year-old David Lowry thrilled Grandma Jeanne Helstrom Sunday with a quip. Seems Jeanne asked him what kind of stuffed dog he was carrying around in his pocket. Replied David: “It’s a basket hound.” Grandmas are easy to entertain.

Poets Corner
“With winter past and now once more/grass growing green outside his door/the age-old question does appear:/will that darn lawn mower start this year? – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“The Mystery of Spring”) … I ’spose there’s a reason to hope/Now that there’s a new Pope/But don’t look for support/If you want to “abort”’/Cos all he’ll say is “Nope”! – The World According to CDADave (“Nein”) … “You’ve got to know when to hold them and know when to fold them especially if you’re doing origami” Bob Salsbury/Shallow Random Thoughts.

Huckleberries
What’s with that photo of a guy in drag grabbing his crotch in the latest NIC Sentinel? Crotch grabbing is so Michael Jackson – and look what happened to him … Ya gotta wonder what a guy’s thinking when he blocks traffic coming and going for 10 minutes by parking his big red rig at the CDA post office entrance, especially when Phil Corless/The Old Goat Trail is there with his camera to photograph his license plate. (You’ll see it by clicking on Huckleberries Online) … Bumpersnicker (spotted by HBO commenter Brian Keatts) on a car driven by a young femme: “I think! Therefore, I’m single!” … Quoth: “I’m starting to subtract points. You guys are cheating too much!” – instructor Mr. Leary of Post Falls High, in the underground ezine, Post Falls Uncensored.

Parting Shot
Didja hear the one about the guy who thought Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was John (“Cliff”) Ratzenberger from “Cheers” and wondered how many other former postal workers became pope?


Overheard …

…at Hastings Saturday night (a little after 10) a thirtysomething femme with highlighted brown hair talking to a male in shorts:

“Brian got a tape stuck and had to take my VCR apart. It was porn. But that wasn’t the worst part. It was guy porn. I’m not into the guy on guy stuff.”

DFO: In a way, this is funny; in another way, it shows how prevalent porn is now. And I don’t think that’s a good thing. It’s demeaning to women. And it can trigger men on the edge to commit sexual crimes or brutalize their mates. Or am I all wet here?

Public has a right to know …

… about settlements with Sam Grubbs and Marina Kalani worth a combined third of a million dollars. From my editorial this morning:

The commissioners have only themselves to blame for being in the dark. As individuals who rule over county purse strings, commissioners should insist on knowing the facts when insurance claims are paid. Rather than hide behind their insurance contract, they should explain why two embattled workers hit a jackpot after filing claims having to do with mysterious employment mistakes. By mimicking Sgt. Schultz, county commissioners are inviting the public to draw conclusions that may or may not be true about these two messes.

You can find the rest of the editorial here.

Vacation Question No. 2

Issue: Police handcuff 5-year-old: Girl had arms pinned behind back before being put in back of squad car/ABC News.

Frum Helen Back: Children like this little girl need help, not handcuffs.

Question: Do the police do the right thing by handcuffing this little girl?

121 & Counting

Any Mouse and Side Note are throwing down re: the question of the week, month, year, etc. Yesterday’s question asking your reaction to the latest major Kootenai County settlement with a former employee (Sam Grubbs) has attracted 121 comments and still counting. The two previous bests were in the 50s. You can get caught up to date on the terrific comments, including one from Deputy Civil Prosecutor Erika Ellingsen Grubbs, by scrolling down a few spots or clicking here.

DFO: I’ll have an editorial coming out tomorrow or Sunday opining on the curtain of silence that surrounds the payouts to Grubbs and Marina Kalani. And some elected county officials aren’t going to like it.

Vacation Question (4/23/05)


Issue (provided by Phil Corless): No sympathy for the devil: Pope Benedict XVI hates rock ‘n roll/Stereogum.com.

Kick Shoe Kooy: How can the Beatles and the Eagles be aligned with the Devil. This is what happens when you let life get out of balance. I knew I was uneasy about this Pope for a reason.

Question: Is the Pope in touch? Or totally out of touch?

Wild Card — Saturday (4/23/05)

I’ve been totally lazy my first day on vacation and off the blog — garage sale-ing, sleeping and finishing Brent Andrews’ book, “The Pot Plan.” (Just got to the part where Andrews’ finally sez enough after a fiasco involving a mutual friend on a camping trip on the Coeur d’Alene River.) I’ve also enjoyed leisurely reading your postings. You guys bring a lot to the blog. I’ll check in once or day or so. A may post a deep thought or two. But I’m not going to be very active. (Don’t worry Cis, et al, I’ll try to keep my blog addiction under control.) However, if you want to talk to your mates, I’ll post the Wild Card each day, including this one…

P.S.

Issue: Kara Eberle, left, and Marki Grimsley, right, are the valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively, at Coeur d’Alene High for this year. In the past, there have been as many as 12 valedictorians because there were so many high performing students whose perfect grades were considered equal. but the school has instituted a weighted grading system so that it will yield only one valedictorian/Jesse Tinsley photo.

DFO: On the other hand, schools that allow all students with hard-earned straight-A’s for four years give them the opportunity to land great financial packages from a private college. I prefer the old way.

Question: Has Coeur d’Alene High done the right thing by limiting the number of valedictorians and salutatorians to one and one?

Question of the Day

Issue: County makes second major payoff in month: Former Kootenai Sheriff’s Department captain gets $267,400 settlement/Erica Curless, SR.

DFO: Fuhgeddabout trying to win the lottery. I want a county job that I can leave under and cloud — and pull down at least $70,000 (Marina Kalani, pictured, for a year’s work in the drug court) and mebbe as much as a quarter mil (former sheriff’s captain Sam Grubbs). Which higher-up goofed up that the insurance company deemed it wiser to provide hush money than risk a nasty court battle? Heads should roll.

Question: What’s your reaction to the latest Kootenai County settlement with a former employee?

Deputy Prosecutor Erica Ellingson Grubbs has posted an answer in this comment section to many of your questions re: her (lack of) involvement in the settlement and the ICRMP insurance situation. And you can find a good argument from Rikki Copen (dunno if that’s a real name or not) why this matter was handled properly by county commissioners here.

Duane’s fleet running with Big Dogs

Our fave multimillionaire, The Duane, and his 17-boat flotilla has earned a paragraph in a lengthy article about megayachts in the latest Vanity Fair mag. You know the drill — Lady Lola at 205-feet, LLShadow at 186-feet and all the other float toys. But the main spotlight shines on Paul Allen’s 413-foot Octopus, with its 7 decks, 2 helipads and concert spaces for 260 — all for a cool $250 million. Mark Getty, son of Sir J. Paul Getty, explains the megayacht phenomenon in the statement: “Ever larger boats have replaced palaces, estates and art as the ultimate symbols of wealth.” Mention of The Duane and his fleet is halfway down the left column on Page 254 of the Vanity Fair article, titled “The Good Life Aquatic.”

DFO: I’m still trying to confirm if The Duane has sold his big boats and flotilla.

Not that Ratz-whoozit

Sausage/Disjointed was shocked to learn the identity of the new pope here (caution ubersensitive Catholics: spoof).

Question No. 2

The Way We Were: 1951 Coeur d’Alene.

Issue: Moratorium isn’t best step for city
Posted
, Coeur d’Alene Press idiotorial. Quote: “A moratorium on all downtown construction could prove lethal to some very positive developments.”

DFO: Now, why would Duane Hagadone’s newspaper advocate for a pellmell rush to throw up buildings downtown, fearmongering that a moratorium would stop progress? It’s not like him to push public officials to make bad decisions (think: Coeur d’Alene Greyhound Track). Editor Mike Patrick earned his meal money today. The city needs a moratorium to consider where it’s going with these high-rises.

Question: Do you support a moratorium on downtown high-rises to give elected officials a chance to hear from the community about them?

SR Morning Headlines (4/22/05)

*Analysis of vomit catches the interest of Court TV: Cable show looks at investigation into 1999 murder of 11-year-old/Thomas Clouse, SR — Our very own CSI-type case.

*Study reports West to have growth spurt: Idaho, Washington among states projected to have increases between now and 2030/Christopher Smith, AP — And you know which county is going to catch a good percentage of that growth. Aha. Kootenai. Make it stop.

*Chomsky draws crowd at Gonzaga: MIT professor, leading dissident delivers speech on key policy issues/Kevin Graman, SR — The UN take a lead role in solving international crisis? Ya gotta be kiddin’. When the corrupt UN isn’t involved in oil-for-food scandals, its reps are raping babies in Africa. Then, there’s the various genocides it ignores. Yet, people listen to Chomsky. Amazing.

*Jurors selected to hear RPS trial: Panel of five men, four women told trial over malpractice claim may last five weeks/Jim Camden, SR — There goes their summer vacation.

*Politician Watson commits suicide: Ex-District 4 representative had lost job on Tax Commission/Susan Drumheller, SR — Dunno which to discuss here — the awful thing he did to his son and granddaughter by killing himself in their home. Or the good service he did for Shoshone County. So I’ll leave it at that.

Quick Fix 6/Best of Northwest (4/22/05)

Sgt. Hasan Akbar, center, was found guilty of killing two US officers, including a Boisean, in a frag attack at a Kuwait camp March 23, 2003. See No. 5, Northwest Fix/APhoto.

As we gather to celebrate another Earth Day, the Pacific Research Institute, tongue firmly cheeked, provides “The Top 10 Reasons You Know the Environment Is Not in Danger” here. Meanwhile, the Competitive Enterprise Insitute argues the sky isn’t falling and the Earth is greener than ever here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Chuck Asay (Driving up gas prices), Henry Payne (“Hardline” Pope Benedict), and Guy Gilchrist (Your Angel Speaks, inspirational).

2. Humor Fix: “Did you see that huge crowd they had in Saint Peter’s Square? They were holding up all kinds of handmade signs. Here’s my question; where was that ‘John 3:16’ guy? You know what guy, he wears that wig, he shows up at every sporting event, football baseball and he holds up that big sign ‘John 3:16.’ Finally the most religious event of the decade comes along there’s a huge crowd and nobody can find the guy” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Video shows crash survivor being executed here, NASA said to loosen risk standards for shuttle here, Woman in Wendy’s finger case arrested here, Canada urged to shelter US deserters here, and NY sex offenders may be tracked by satellite here.

5. Northwest Fix: US soldier guilty of killing Boisean in Kuwait here, Idaho college students to face fee increases this fall here, Washington election lawsuit buries both parties in debt here, Washington gay rights bill falls one vote short here, and WSU students interrupt “The Passion of the Musical” play here.

6. Opinion Fix: Charles Krauthammer/Washington Post (Judicial Insanity), Daniel Henninger/WSJ (A pope who loves Augustine), Ralph Peters/NY Post (Iraq terrorists losing), Mona Charen/Townhall.com (Bolton’s common sense), and Deborah Simmons/Washington Times (The rap on gangsta rap).

*America’s immigration problem defies US Sen. Larry Craig’s narrow solution, according to The Idaho Statesman, here.

*A House enviro meeting in Spokane Saturday may be deaf to dissent, according to Joel Connelly/PI, here.

*The Coeur d’Alene Press urges city officials not to stop the high-rise boom downtown here.

P.S.

Item (from front page of current NIC Sentinel): What lies beneath? Chris Fannon (above in drag and below) struts his stuff in the second annual drag show in the residence hall.

DFO: Crotch-grabbing seems to Huckleberries Online to be so last century — I mean, Michael Jackson’s been doing it since the 1980s. And look what it’s done for him lately.

Question: The NIC Sentinel certainly produced an eye-grabber here. But isn’t it a bit over the top? Second Question: Have you, O Mighty Man, ever dressed in drag as a lark?

Spoonerisms, anyone?

First, you need to know that a spoonerism is an unfortunate funny statement that can occur when you transpose initial sounds in a pair of words. Example: “The Lord is a shoving leopard [‘loving shepherd’].” And: It is kisstomary to cuss [‘customary to kiss’] the bride.” The term, spoonerism, comes from the name of the Rev. William Archibald Spooner (1844-1930), a kindly but nervous Anglican clergyman and educationalist. The above examples were committed by (or attributed to) him. But Spoonerisms aren’t exclusive to the padre. Diana Malloy once meant to compliment a “smart feller” for his wall of academic degrees, with disastrous results. Have you ever uttered a Spoonerism?

DFO: Newcomer Harry Cooley scores first with this excellent Spoonerism: “This is so funny! My boss just caught me using the company internet, asked me what I was looking at and I said my daily dose of ‘Buckle Herries’!”

Ex-Rep. Larry Watson, 54, RIP

Huckleberries Online has confirmed a report that former state representative Larry Watson, 54, shot himself to death last night at his son’s home in Star, Idaho. He left the legislator to accept a job with the Idaho Tax Commission. But wasn’t reappointed. He’d recently married the assessor of Lewis County. Like his successor, Mary Lou Shepherd, Larry was respected as conservative Democrat who could reach across the aisle and therefore was an effective representative from Shoshone County.

Question No. 2

Issue: Estimated US highway deaths up slightly to 42,800: Sport utility rollover fatalities rising sharply/Reuters.

DFO: A number like 42,800 doesn’t mean much — unless a friend or a loved one was part of that number. In 1976, I lost my father in an accident in San Joaquin County (Stockton area), Calif. To this point, it remains the most tragic event in the lives of my mother and siblings. I’ll always remember what I was doing when I heard the news.

Question: Have you lost a loved one in a traffic accident?

Photo of the Day (4/21/05)

Dunno who thought up this spoof, but it’s making the rounds in Cyberspace. Tombstone inscription: “JOHNNY COCHRAN: O.J. DID IT.” You write the cutline …

Hat Tip: Gary Cuff

Dang Cutline: “Cochran’s chances of getting into heaven improving.”

Where tattoo?

Issue: Pam I Am asked last night: “I want a tattoo and have done extensive research on price, quality, and pain issues. I would appreciate advice from any seasoned artists out there on placement for a first timer (and convincing the hubby that it is a good idea).”

DFO: Don’t look at me, I’m tattoo free.

Question (again from Pam I Am): “Where is the place that would be the least painful and easiest? Shoulder, ankle, hip, top of the foot? It would need to be someplace that could be covered easily…thanks for your thoughts.”


Quick Fix 6 (4/21/05)

Don’t look now, “American Idol” fans, but ABC News “Primetime Live” is preparing an expose in time for spring sweeps designed to knock the hit show from its perch. Not much is being said about the expose — but it’ll focus on the relationships between the judges and the contestants. Stay tuned. And click here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Wayne Stayskal (Living fat), Chuck Asay (Intelligent design), and Robert Airail (Liberal Catholics message).

2. Humor Fix: “We have a new pope! Cardinal Ratzinger of Germany is now the most powerful Catholic in the world. Well, second most powerful if you count Mel Gibson” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Florida to become 3rd largest in 25 years here, Vet has no regret for spitting on Fonda here, Craig’s bill legalizing illegal workers fails here, Lott: Senators can’t win presidency here, and “20th man” ruled competent here.

5. Wishy-Washy Fix: The surprise announcement by Repub-turned-Independent Sen. James Jeffords that he’s going to retire after 2006 has Republicans eyeing an increased majority here.

6. Opinion Fix: David Brooks/NY Times (Roe’s birth, death), Newt Gingrich/Former Speaker of the House (Conservative movement at crossroads), Peggy Noonan/WSJ (New pope speaks to inner adult), and Emmett Tyrrell Jr./American Spectator (Battle over Bolton), and Paul D. Gallagher/Townhall.com (Breaking the DaVinci Code).

P.S.

Issue: Don’t look now, but next week is national TV Turnoff Week. TV-Turnoff Network is a national nonprofit organization that encourages children and adults to watch much less television in order to promote healthier lives and communities.

DFO: I’m cool with the anti-TV movement, as long as some joker doesn’t come along and propose a national Quit Reading Blogs Week. Children should be encouraged to turn off the TV and read Huckleberries Online.

Question: Do you watch too much TV? And would you be tempted to observe the anti-TV week?

New allegations against Bolton (spoof)

NEWSFLASH: (AP) TODAY, DEMOCRATIC MEMBERS OF THE SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE ANNOUNCED NEW ALLEGATIONS AGAINST JOHN BOLTON, THE PRESUMPTIVE NOMINEE AS U.N. AMBASSADOR.

RANKING DEMOCRAT JOE BIDEN (D - DEL) ANNOUNCED THAT A FORMER CLASSMATE OF BOLTON’S HAD STEPPED FORWARD WITH ALLEGATIONS THAT, 52 YEARS AGO, JOHN BOLTON, AS AN 8 YEAR OLD, CUT IN FRONT OF SEVERAL OTHER PEOPLE IN THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL LUNCH LINE. MR. BOLTON WAS ALSO REPORTEDLY SENT TO TIMEOUT ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS AS WELL.

Report from — The Toxic Avenger

Call me Rock (Site’s back up)

First, you need to know that a woman has alleged that pro QB Michael Vick knowingly gave her herpes. And that Vick sought tests under the fictitious name Ron Mexico. Now, a Web site has cropped up to have fun with Vick’s alias. Basically, you type in your name, and you get what your alias would be using the Vick system. Me? I’m Rock Trinidad. Click here.

Best of the Northwest (4/20/05)


Unabomber Ted Kaczynski is shown in this April 1996 booking mug shot taken at the Lewis and Clark County Jail in Helena, Mont. See Item No. 3.

If ballots cast by dead people, felons and illegal aliens weren’t county in the Washington gubernatorial election, a statistical analysis contends Republican Dino Rossi would have won by 100 votes, according to the PI, here.

1. David Horsey/PI prepares US Catholics to meet the new pope here.

2. Inc. Magazine ranks the Boise metropolitan area second in the nation on this year’s list of “Best Cities to Do Business in America,” according to Mike Maharry/Idaho Statesman, here.

3. The brother and one of the victims of the Unabomber, Ted Kaczynski, underline their message of forgiveness with personal friendship here.

4. The historic Blackwell House on Sherman Avenue will become the Gozzer Ranch Golf and Lake Club HQ, according to the Coeur d’Alene Press, here.

5. EWU’s Easterner provides its report of the controversial Young Republican Bake Sale here. And young EWU femme Nicole Fisher offers her thoughts on the bake sale here.

6. IMHO-NW: Missoulian (Protect gun manufacturers), Robert L. Jamieson Jr./PI (Analysis of a hate crime), Joel Connelly/PI (Water tops agenda — finally), Brian Baer/Easterner (Why can’t we all just get along?), and Art Thiel/PI (Quirky Sonics).

German shepherd

So it didn’t take long to determine
That the churches new shepherd is German
He’s a good enough fella
But they’ll need an umbrella
Cause he spits when he preaches a sermon

Scott


Just Curious

Several of the far-flung readers of the blog responded last night to my call to identify where you read the blog. Alaska. Lynden and Kirkland, Wash. South Bend, Ind. Tennessee. I’m reposting this to see if there’s anyone else in the great beyond who’ll tell me where they call home. If you’re blurking from beyond our immediate region, could you check in via the “comments” area below and let me know where you’re from? Thanks.

DFO: Fort Worth, Texas; Battle Creek, Mich.; Southern California and another Washington, D.C., have checked in. Cool.

Question of the Day (4/20/05)

Issue: White House: Democrats Trumping Up Charges on Bolton: Claim abusive behavior toward subordinates/Reuters.

DFO: I hadn’t heard of John Bolton before the D’s began making a big deal re: his nomination. Frankly, I’m sick of these character assassinations of conservatives by Senate D’s who claim to represent mainstream America. We need to send someone tough to represent us at the corrupt UN.

Question: Are the Senate D’s just doing their job? Or is there something diabolical going on re: their continual trashing of White House nominees who’d fit in nicely politically in North Idaho?

Quick Fix 6 (4/20/05)

George Soros told a carefully vetted gathering of 70 likeminded millionaires and billionaires last weekend that they must be patient if they want to realize long-term political and ideological yields from an expected massive investment in “startup” progressive think tanks” — Hans Nichols/The Hill (lead paragraph). For the whole story, click here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (Pope Bill I?), Chuck Asay (Bomber Eric Rudolph), and Mike Luckovich (Tom DeLay).

2. Humor Fix: “The cardinals say they have to be very careful in the process of electing a pope because this person will be interpreting God’s law for them - you know, kind of they way Republican leaders do for us in this country” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Schwarzenegger: Close the borders here, DeLay slams Justice Kennedy here, More than 50 bodies found in Tigris River here, Report: Zarqawi a nuclear threat here, and Injured priest pleads mercy for illegal alien here.

5. Tax Survey Fix: In the latest survey of attitudes on Tax and Wealth, the Tax Foundation found: Survey respondents overwhelmingly report federal taxes are too high, too complex, and the value received from the federal government is poor. Click here.

6. Opinion Fix: Joseph Bottum/New York Post (A pope for grownups), Bob Novak/NY Times (Rome’s radical conservative), G. Tracy Mehan II/National Review (Dems reach out to Catholics), Michelle Malkin/Creators Syndicate (Victims of Blackboard Jungle), and Kathleen Parker/Tribune Media Services (Seeking balance in either-or world).

Wild Card — Tuesday (4/19/05)

It’s time to bring the curtain down on another interesting day at Huckleberries Online. Some flames. Some hurt feelings. Some meeting of the minds, behind the scenes. One eviction. And a new pope. All carefully blogged. You know what to do with your Wild Card. Nice Mouse, nice Mouse …

Amo Poetica 1

I never learned how you cook love, is it two parts lust and one part like, slow boiled on a stovetop or is it a freezer burned heart you thaw in a stainless steel kitchen sink full of room temperature water until soft and into the oven it goes! Or maybe, just maybe, love isn’t something you prepare over varying degrees of heat after seasoning and shaping with your hands, maybe love is something you find in a garden or a forest and yank out of the ground and shove raw into your mouth.

Bob Salsbury/The Unbearable Bobness of Being


DFO: Bob’s riffing and posting even as I type this. Check it out.

Text of Pope Benedict’s first speech …

Here is the text of the speech delivered by newly elected Pope Benedict XVI from the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica today (courtesy of WorldNetDaily).

Dear brothers and sisters, after the great Pope John Paul II, the cardinals have elected me – a simple, humble worker in the vineyard of the Lord.

The fact that the Lord can work and act even with insufficient means consoles me, and above all I entrust myself to your prayers.

In the joy of the risen Lord, trusting in his permanent help, we go forward. The Lord will help us and Mary his very holy mother stands by us.

Inside Huckleberries

4:57 p.m. I’m halfway through ex-CDA Press reporter Brent Andrews’ book, “The Pot Plan.” It’s a bare-all book about teen drinking, the punk scene, rehabilitation, jail, and (I hope somewhere in the next 200 pages) redemption. It’s well written. At this point, I’d give it a thumbs up — and I haven’t gotten to the juicy part about the Press, yet. Yeah, I know somewhere in the pages ahead, Brent’s going to recommend pot as a remedy for alcohol addiction. Stay tuned.

3:38 p.m. I wished the North Idaho College Sentinel was up-to-date online. I’d provide a link to a front-page photo of some guy in drag, grabbing his crotch through a pink mini-skirt. Cutline? “What lies beneath.” Over the top, Sentinel. Go stand in the corner.

12:38 p.m. Side Note has come in from the cold. And he was right. I’d never have guessed whom he is. He brings a load of good stuff to this blog. Welcome, SN.

12:15 p.m. Blog numbers have remained good: 25,137 for last week, with a high of 5417 on Tuesday and a low of 2789 on Sunday, April 10. Weekday average: 3977.

Seattle 5, LAngels 3 … Final Score

You can find the box score for today’s game at the ESPN link here.

Peanut Gallery (Disappointed Lib Catholics)

“Expect some hand-wringing over this choice. Cardinal Ratzinger is considered by many to be even more conservative than John Paul II” — The Heimlich Maneuver.


DFO: It’s already begun; several Catholics in my circle have bemoaned the politics of the new pope and are considering joining the Episcopalian Church. My guess? Easier said than done. The sour-grapers are soul brothers and sisters to the Democrats who threatened to move to Canada because they don’t like Dubya.

Ratzinger

Cardinal Ratzinger from Germany has become Pope Benedict XVI here.

Peanut Gallery (Marina Kalani)

re: Fascinating post from last night:

I’m sure Marina would kill me for writing - but someone who actually knows her should chime in. Marina’s father worked in prison administration in California. She holds college degrees in Criminal Justice and Education. She was a director of Big Brothers - Big Sisters in California and off topic, Shasta County’s rep to the Miss California contest several years back. She is very educated, very talented and very dedicated to causes that she believes in. In my view she was a perfect fit for the Juvenile Drug Court position. But she doesn’t hold with the position that the function of juvenile justice is limited to control and consequence; rather my experience is that she believes that dignity and education play a role as well. Was she qualified for the job? You bet.

Former Boss

Running Late

It’s Pastor Steve Tuesday, so I’m running late … there’s white smoke at the Vatican, so the Catholics have a new Pope. Stay tuned.

P.S.

Issue: Lance Armstrong (in yellow jersey above) retiring: Will hang up yellow jersey after this year’s Tour de France/Associated Press

DFO: Yeah, I know he dumped his wife for a celeb after she’d stood by him through cancer and that he’s been accused of using illegal drugs, but ya gotta love the guy for dissing American-hating Europeans, especially the French, by winning race after race.

Question: Any thoughts on Armstrong’s pending retirement?

Peanut Gallery (Yuppiefication of CDA)

You might grouse about out of state real estate agents telling the nation [through Fox News Channel ] about our supposedly “cheap” real estate. However, I have a somewhat different take on the issue. Housing on x by x lots once cost between 80 to 95 thousand sawbucks. Truly expensive homes were lake front and having plenty of acreage. But, I think that Coeur d’Alene and the real estate brokers saw a real opportunity in jacking up the prices on even houses on x by x lots. If the incoming [from out of state] buyers of homes in CDA can pay 95 thousand, they can pay 100 thousand. If they can pay 100 thousand, they can pay 150 thousand. If they can pay 150 thousand, they can pay 191 thousand. However, between the price of rent (of apartments) and the increased price of permanent homes. Both real estate agents and the city of Coeur d’Alene seem to have forgotten that most jobs don’t pay above 35 thousand a year unless you are the CEO of Avista, etc. And most working stiffs (outside of teachers) might not see 35 thousand per year in after tax income. In short, putting the price of rent and real estate beyond the reach of most people of low income has the unfortunate consequence of producing a homeless population.

Joan Harman
Dalton Gardens

How hot is our housing market?

From Cis Gors/Kootenai:

Heard the wildest thing yet in real estate … Up in the Samuel area of Sandpoint is a house with out a foundation, on 5 acres.. the woman wanted $150,000 for it. That isn’t the crazy part … the crazy, wildest part is … there are 3 buyers who want it … who are raising the price by bidding higher than the one before. So far the bids have gotten up to $220,000 and still going. One of the other neighbors is thinking of selling their beautiful place because the offers they are hearing are too good to refuse. Trouble with that idea is, where is there a place to go in this area, that isn’t going to cost you, your profits and more?


DFO: Anyone top that?

Question No. 2

Issue: Boundary schools to cut extras: Failed levy leaves things from sports to pep band on chopping block/Taryn Brodwater, SR.

DFO: If I had children in Boundary County, Idaho, I’d do every thing possible to move. Despite the best efforts of people of goodwill in Boundary County, Property Owners from Hell have seized control of the asylum and are destroying educational opportunities.

DFO: Is it time for young families to abandon Boundary County and let the anti-tax activists take over?

Q & A

Question: Why do only Democrats post comments on your blog?

Answer: Dunno.

Best of the Northwest (4/18/05)


Gonzaga University ROTC cadets take a rest after advancing on an ‘enemy” postition and “killing” the soldiers during a 2003 training exercize/Dan Pelle, SR. See Item No. 3.

After 90 years, the only WSU coach to ever win a Rose Bowl may be getting his due as the college Hall of Fame considers his credentials for membership. Ever heard of William “Lone Star” Deitz? Can’t blame you. Bud Withers/Seattle Times tells you all about the old Coug here.

1. David Horsey/PI envisions a Blue State Romeo and a Red State Juliet here.

2. As a victim of date-rape, Jami Hoppen/The Easterner has words of advice for others here.

3. For the second straight year, Gonzaga’s Bulldog Battalion ROTC has been named tops of the 140 battalions in the West here.

4. Brian Levin-Stankevich will become interim prez at EWU July 2 after current prez Stephen Jordan leaves for a new gig in Denver here.

5. Washington D’s are trying to turn the table on the R’s by searching for errors that helped GOP gubernatorial wannabe Dino Rossi here.

6. IMHO-NW: Pete Zimowsky/Idaho Statesman (Trail etiquette), Paul Andrews/Seattle Times (Get ready for — vlogs), Sarah McGuire/Daily Evergreen (WSU beats Minot, ND, any day), Liam Hughes/The Easterner (Ward Churchill’s bark worse than bite), and Chrissy Cook/Gonzaga Bulletin (Reviewing Marilyn’s casino on Monroe).

The Idle Idahoan is off and running …

… with this rant against red-light cameras in the nation’s capitol here.


DFO: The Idle Idahoan is a North Idahoan who works in D.C. but longs for sunny days on Lake Coeur d’Alene.

SR Morning Headlines (4/18/05)

*Miles behind him, miles to go: As a child, Michael Roos fled Estonia as a refugee, led by a single mother who sought a better life for her children. Now the football standout is poised to make EWU – and NFL – history/Jim Meehan, SR — Amerika, whatta country.

*Boundary schools to cut extras: Failed levy leaves things from sports to pep band on chopping block/Taryn Brodwater, SR — It doesn’t make any sense to build a new high school and then reject a levy that cripples the school district. Then, we’re dealing with Boundary County, Idaho, here.

*More girls taxing justice system: Counties try to cope by creating programs/Associated Press — Seems sugar and spice and everything nice is passe, too.

*Trail looks nicer, thanks: Hundreds give morning to cleanup of Centennial Trail/Virginia de Leon, SR — Three cheers to the cleanup volunteers.

*93-year-old sentenced to jail: Convicted for molesting 6-year-old girl, Clifford Schackel gets a year behind bars/John Craig, SR — You can take the perv out of society, but you can’t take the twistedness out of the perv — no matter how old he gets.


Best of Huckleberries Online — April 11-15


Dustin Hoffman looks over the stockinged leg of actress Anne Bancroft, his seductress in this scene from the 1967 film “The Graduate.” See Huckleberry No. 1.

“Girls Gone Wild” has nothing on some mothers who have gained infamy at the U-of-Idaho’s Mom’s Weekend. Such is the problem that the UI Argonaut advised Dear Old Mom Friday not to be “that mom” over the weekend. And what has “that mom” done in the past? Well, sez Argonaut Editor Abbey Lostrom, one has stripped at a party. Another got frisky “with her son’s roommate on a pool table.” A third slept with her son’s best friend. Rumor has it that Moscow stores sell beaucoup beer and condoms on Moms’ Weekend. Scolded Lostrom: “…there is a difference between the cool mom who can beat everyone at caps and the embarrassing mom who has to be carried home.” In other words, no “coo coo ca-choo, Mrs. Robinson.”

Blabbermouth
Why can’t Barbara Corcoran put a sock in it? When we last visited the New York real estate exec a month ago, she was on ABC’s “The View,” talking up Coeur d’Alene as the hottest USA “up and coming neighborhood.” Last Tuesday, she blabbed about us on FOX News Channel’s “Your World with Neil Cavuto.” Quoth: “It’s like the sweetheart of the Northwest right now. The average house is $190,000 and what that $190,000 gets you is a great place. They have skiing in the winter and great swimming in the summer. And that area is going up through the roof. It’s a great area for young families … a good bargain and a beautiful place.” There goes the up-and-coming neighborhood.

We’re No. 6
According to GQ, WSU football fans rank No. 6 nationally. But Coug boosters shouldn’t boast. The mag was ranking the worst fans in the nation. Toss a few water bottles at the end of a poorly officiated Apple Cup overtime, and they’ll never let you forget it … “I talked with my mom about it over Mom’s Weekend,” WSU frosh Kensi Hamilton told The Daily Evergreen. “I told her I was thinking about it and she was supportive.” It is posing nude for a chance to be ogled in Playboy’s “Girls of the PAC-10” edition … Izzit me, or were those geese pictured in the Bonner County Daily Bee Tuesday domestic rather than “Canada geese”? No black heads and necks – no Canada geese.

Poet’s Corner
“We need more cash/so do not fail/to send us yours/or go to jail” – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“Tax Day”) … “Liberals and conservatives can’t get along!/Whether muffins or donuts, their song,/They food fight and cat fight/And chew on their hate spite./Can’t we force a truce with a Ding Dong?” – George Thomas (“EWU Republican Bake Sale”) … “A bird in hand is worth two in the bush, the possible exception being if you find yourself holding an angry red tailed hawk and it’s about to claw or peck your eyes out then I’d suggest tossing it back in the bush” – Bob Salsbury/Random Shallow Thoughts.

Huckleberries
You know the review of your Bonsai Bistro isn’t going to be great when Making Flippy Floppy applauds the absence of smell from the building’s previous incarnation as Dakotah Direct … We’re not surprised that Break Down the System, the Lake City High underground ezine, is unhappy about a biz group’s opposition to a proposed school district levy. After all, the Break Downers hate everything: United Nations, Pledge of Allegiance, the Bible, finals week, Fight for the Fish, vegans, etc. … Sure Sign of Spring: Kootenai County commish Gus Johnson is wearing shorts to work again.

Parting Shot
A funny thing happened to the Hauser Times when it arrived at the Coeur d’Alene post office: It got trash-canned. Seems the post office tossed the newsletter because it doesn’t have a “Route 1.” Quoth angry Editor Frum Helen Back: “Maybe they looked and saw the zip code was 83854 and couldn’t find the zip code book to see they should send them to Post Falls?” The post office won’t pay for a reprinting, but it has agreed not to charge postage. No wonder many eschew snail mail for the Web.

Sunday Question No. 2

Issue: Women of Bountiful plan summit: B.C. polygamist colony facing increasing scrutiny/Susan Drumheller, SR.

DFO: These women want to do — what? To explain that they’re not “brainwashed chattel of a male-dominated cult”? And that polygamy is the key to ever-lasting life? Sorry to ruin Sunday morning with a return to religion, CDADave. But that group just north of the Canadian border is odd.

Question: Sorry, when I hear about polygamy, I think of horny old goats who’ve brain-washed gullible women.

Beware of UI mothers

It’s said ‘mongst fraternity brothers
Some women are wild as no others
“Not coeds”, they say,
Who’ll lead you astray”,
They’re talking about the MOTHERS!

CDADave


DFO: In honor of Monday’s lead Huckleberry below.

Wild Card — Saturday 4/16/05

You guys haven’t been using this as much but here it is in case you need it today.

Question of the Day — 4/16/05

Issue: Wounded CdA cop making ‘baby steps’: Wife says Kralicek in good humor during recovery after shooting/Susan Drumheller, SR. (And Carrie Kralicek talks about her husband’s condition here.)

DFO: Sometimes, you forget the human toll involved in protecting the public; officer Kralicek and his family have paid that toll. May he continue to recover from his horrific wound.

Question: Why are episodes like the tragedy that felled Officer Kralicek becoming increasingly common? Are we, as a society, becoming unhinged?

P.S.

Issue: Wendy’s Doubles Chili Finger Reward to $100,000: Burger franchise hurt by bizarre discovery/Reuters

DFO: I wouldn’t think twice about eating at the franchise; however, I usually don’t grab burgers when I’m looking for fast food.

Question: Would the discovery of a human finger in a bowl of Wendy’s chili in the San Jose, Calif., area affect your decision to eat at the local Wendy’s?

Huckleberries Online has birthed …

…another blog, Idle Idahoan. I’m not at liberty to say who the blogger is because he’s an Idahoan trapped in a Washington, D.C., office. But he’s an HBO reader who introduces himself with this: “I expect it will be a good cathartic exercise for me, since I plan to highlight some of the craziness of living in DC, whether it’s traffic, crack-smoking mayors/councilmen, or whatever. You can claim all the credit. I never would have started this if I hadn’t started reading yours many months ago. Thanks for the inspiration. We’ll see where it takes me!” For his first two postings, click here.

Congrats to Bearable Bob …

…upon being published in The Inlander here.

PFHS Jr Prom drinking incident

On Thursday, you read Taryn Brodwater’s report re. a 16-year-old winning the Post Falls Junior Miss competition despite being cited for being a minor in possession alcohol at her Junior Prom in March here. You can find the Post Falls police report about the incident here.

DFO: This is for information only, not comments.

SR Morning Headlines (4/15/05)


EWU students protest the Young GOPers anti-affirmative action bake sale on campus Thursday/Colin Mulvaney photo.

*Affirmative action protest draws more from other side: Bake sale by EWU’s College Republicans attracts Democrats, interested students/Rob McDonald, SR — And no Young Republican was hit by a free pie. Amazing, but true.

*Jobs draw residents to Idaho: Population growth from 2003 to 2004 ranks fourth in nation/Associated Press — So, if Idaho stops producing new jobs …

*Child’s death still being investigated/Staff reports — Whichever way this turns out, the parents will be living with the tragic loss of their daughter.

*Hard work and horse sense: Equestrian Developments builds high-quality horse fences/John Stucke, SR — An immigrant shows the Inland Northwest that hard work still can provide a good payoff.

*HotZone wants a place in the sun: Promoters, city offer discounts for outdoor café licenses/Tom Sowa, SR — Why do I see a wireless laptop in my not-too-distant future?

Sightem …

… at the Seltice Way/Highway 41 light in Post Falls, a woman in Blue Kia Optima applying mascara as she turns onto freeway onramp. Be careful out there.

Sweet P’s — to SR colleague Taryn Brodwater for spotting this one.

Mike K didn’t do it

An inadvertent F-bomb slipped into a Gizoogled version of Mike Kennedy’s online column, “The Loyal Opposition,” yesterday. Mike sent me the original, which asked for jokes he could use at the annual North Idaho Democracy Dinner Saturday night, here. I published the original and a Gizoogled gangsta rap version for fun. In running it through the gangsta rap filter, I failed to see the F-bomb in the first paragraph. Needless to say, I replaced the gangsta rap version with an Elmer Fudd one as soon as the F-bomb was brought to my attention. Mea culpa. (And, if you have some good jokes for a Demo event, please send them to Mike: (kennedmi1@yahoo.com).

Tax Day Quick Fix 6 (4/15/05)

Believe it or not, the Internal Revenue Service has a seven-man staff working to save hours in tax filing by eliminating unneeded requirements. Still, Americans spent 6.6 billion hours doing the paperwork for tax filing this year, including 1.6 billion hours for the basic 1040 form. You can read all about before tonight’s deadline for filing income taxes here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Brian Fairrington (Tax Day), Daryl Cagle (Picking John Paul’s successor), and Gary Varvel (Gas prices).

2. Humor Fix: President Bush had lunch with U.S. troops yesterday. It’s been exactly two years since the fall of Baghdad and just as Bush predicted, Baghdad fell, Iraq fell, Saddam fell — the only thing that didn’t fall was the price of gas” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Unborn baby threatens Mom in Carl’s Jr. ad here, Authorities free 1 million aliens here, Tax Freedom Day April 17 this year here, Accused fragger GI wrote of killing comrades here, and Protesters picket Victoria’s Secret here.

5. Tax Day Fix: You may not want to read how the government will spend the $22,039 it collects per household — $4,000 more than in 2001 when the Bush administration took over. But the Heritage Foundation provides an analysis for you anyway here.

6. Opinion Fix: Alexander F.C. Webster/Orthodox Church (Another Christian patriarch dies), Daniel Henninger/Wall Street Journal (“Tradition!”), Jonah Goldberg/National Review (Happy Birthday, McDonald’s), Catherine Seipp/Cathy’s World (Righty Warrior Horowitz), and R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr./American Spectator (DeLay will survive — easily).

Wild Card — Thursday (4/14/05)

Whew! Whaddaday! The little F-bomb flap at the end created a little excitement. Sorry I didn’t catch that thing before it went online. Oh well. I won’t think about it today. I’ll think about it tomorrow. Meanwhile, enjoy your Wild Card …

As a former teacher, Marianne Love …

…knows something about the sweeping scope of Mark Twain’s “Huckleberry Finn.” And she has something to say about the controversy it’s causing in the Central Valley School District here.

Marianne: “I learned over the years that teaching Huckleberry Finn requires great care, preparation and sensitivity toward all students. I doubt that I ever came close to mastering this unit with my junior English classes, but I did recognize, with each year’s new experience along the Mississippi with Huck and Jim that Twain was offering a heckuva lot more than a good adventure story.”

Question: Is there ever a good reason to ban a book?

Commish Johnson’s shorts

Despite everybody’s pleas
He ended up showing his knees
He hoped at the meeting
He’d get a nice greeting
Instead he heard gasps and a wheeze.

CDADave


The Loyal Opposition … needs your help

OK, Huckleberries bloggers. I’d like to offer the first ever direct “Blog-to-Speech” opportunity. I’m MC-ing the annual North Idaho Democracy Dinner this Saturday night, and I normally mix some fabulous humor in with the scintillating political speeches. There will be about 300 Democrats in attendance at Templin’s in Post Falls (yes, there are that many) and I’m putting this request out to you - Give Me Your Best Political Humor Material!

Obviously those jokes that skewer Republicans and anyone named “Bush” are best-received, but we laugh at our own, so all submissions are welcome. Whether it’s a knock-knock joke, a website with good material, a classic funny political story - I don’t care. It should be clean enough for the ears of Bethine Church, (the widow of legendary US Senator Frank Church) but it doesn’t necessarily have to be clean enough for a stray Amish guy who might wander in accidentally.

So - let ‘er rip. If I use your stuff I’ll try to credit the submitter or their blog from the podium (and Huckleberries, of course).

If you need to email me directly the good non-publishable stuff, send it to the link on my name (kennedmi1@yahoo.com).

Yours in Blog Humor,

Mike Kennedy

Whazzup?

Frum Helen Back tells Huckleberries that the latest print edition of the Hauser Times was (drum roll, puh-LEEZ) — trashed by the Coeur d’Alene post office. Sez Helen: “Maybe they looked and saw the zip code was 83854 and couldn’t find the zip code book to see they should send them to Post Falls? Maybe someone was just too lazy to do anything but throw them in the trash!” You can read about this outrage and see the latest edition online here.

Seattle 10, KC 2

You can find the Mariners’ victory boxscore for today’s game here.

A sure sign of spring …

…Kootenai County Commish Gus Johnson wore shorts at a public hearing today. Izzit me, or is that a bit unprofessional?

Earth — to CDADave … we need a limerick here.

Photo of the Day (4/14/05)

Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles open a new play park in Scotland today — their first public engagement since their marriage. You right the headline.


Early Leader: “Camilla and Charles respond to a reporter’s question about their attitudes toward marital fidelity” — Bill McCrory/Whitecaps.

Question of the Day

Issue: News Corp.’s Murdoch: Newspapers must embrace Internet — or else risk losing 18- to 34-year-old demographic for good/Associated Press.

DFO: A coupla you sent in this story re: the future of newspapers. I agree with Murdoch’s analysis. And I’m thankful I have an editor who understands that newspapers have to top the Internet if they’re going to have a future. 24/7 news and blogs are part of that future.

Question: What will the newspaper biz look like 10 years from now?


Sweet P’s — to Big John Rook and Kristin Hoppe/Not So Fast for sending the link along.

Quick Fix 6 (4/14/05)


Plaintiff Mary Li, right, and her partner Becky Kennedy are seen in this, Dec. 15, 2004, file photo, outside the Oregon Supreme Court, in Salem, Ore. Li and her spouse were the first same-sex couple to get a marriage license in Oregon.

The Oregon Supreme Court on Thursday nullified nearly 3,000 marriage licenses issued to same-sex couples by Multnomah County a year ago, saying a single county couldn’t take such action on its own, according to The Associated Press, here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Daryl Cagle & Co. (Tom DeLay’s Dilemma roundup), Paul Nowak (April 15 … da-dum, da-dum), and Timothy Kelly (Minuteman project).

2. “A very scary moment in Washington, D.C. yesterday. Capitol Police tackled and dragged away a desperate man with two suitcases. He stationed himself in front of the Capitol building, stayed there for an hour, and demanded to get into the White House. You know, I think John Kerry’s starting to lose it” — Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day In History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Texan indicted in Iraq UN oil-for-food scandal here, US hostage pleads for life here, Senate panel delays vote on Bolton here, Car bombs kill at least 18 in Baghdad here, and Connecticut House OKs same-sex civil unions here.

5. Faith Fix: Eight of 10 freshmen believe in God and are interested in spirituality but far fewer are secure in their faith, according to a UCLA institute study of more than 112,000 freshmen, here.

6. Opinion Fix: David Brooks/NY Times (John Bolton’s UN vision), Carol Iannone/Academic Questions (A Christ for Conservatives?), John Carlisle/Washington Times (AARP’s dishonesty), George W. Will/Washington Post (Eugenics by abortion), and Ann Coulter/AnnCoulter.org (Pied in Arizona).

P.S.

Issue: Pastry-wielding hooligans ought to learn a new trick — or go attack someone other than nerdy types/Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun-Times.

DFO: Roeper’s column is worth a read. In it, he points out that creeps who hit speakers with pies generally target nerdy types. Targets have included: Ann Coulter, Microsoft Bill Gates (shown above after he was hit with a pie in Brussels in 1998) and Ralph Nader. Me? I’d prefer to be hit with a cream pie over a berry one — and be within arm’s length of my assailant.

Question: What kind of pie would you want to be hit with?

Calling all area bloggers …

Kimberley Osberg/Fresh Air needs your help. Quoth: I’m trying to get an understanding of why people use different blogging tools – i.e. what draws them towards one tool set versus another, particularly for those who use more than one for different types of writing. I could really use your help to find out what’s making people tick in this regard. If you’re interested, check out her post here.

Peanut Gallery (Whatta Story)

Tom Clouse’s story “Police investigate infant homicide” on the paper’s website was remarkable here. I’m going to watch Eyenitwit News at 4, 5, and 6 tonight to see how well (and breathlessly with intense urgency) our local television news people cover this “breaking story”. I’m betting that it was on the paper’s website before it aired on television. I’m also betting that Tom’s story has more detail and substance than what we’ll see from the TV reporters’ standups. Radio and television used to be the only “immediate” media, but the Internet has thrust newspapers (or at least the Spokesman-Review) into that category as well. Maybe that immediacy is what will keep newspapers alive and their reporters and editors employed.

Bill McCrory/Whitecaps
Coeur d’Alene

Bonsai Bistro undergoes review …


Bonsai Bistro General Manager Christine Ramos and Executive Chef Troy Chandler/Tom Davenport photo

by Patrick/Making Flippy Floppy, who was impressed that the Hagadone Corp got the smell out of the old bank/bomb shelter/Dakotah Direct building and by the ambience, but not by the food here.

Also, Patrick has reviewed other Idaho Chinese places: Noodle Express/Hayden here, The Canton/Coeur d’Alene here, and Chinese Village/Moscow here.

APhoto of the Day (4/13/05)

U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Afghan President Hamid Karzai at a press conference on Kabul today. You write the cutline …

You be the editor

First, you should recall that talented sportswriter Mitch Albom (right) wrote “Tuesdays with Morrie,” the heart-warming story of his relationship with his college mentor, Morrie Schwartz. Now, you need to know that Albom was caught fabricating a column for the Detroit Free Press. Editors at a national confab said they’d give the talented writer a break if he showed true contrition here. Bill McCrory/Whitecaps asks: Should Mitch Albom be fired? Does the experience level and the public visibility of the reporter matter in deciding? If not, would a new-hire reporter be fired if s/he did the same thing? What about the editor(s) who let him do it? How much damage to the company’s credibility has been done?

Responding to a CDA Press online poll …

…question: “Do you support the Coeur d’Alene School District’s proposed $7.3 million levy, which in part would improve education for advanced learners?” 56% of 57 people said yes (as of 9:21 a.m.), 32% said no. Where do you stand?

Question of the Day

Issue: Years after war, a son is lost: Vietnam veteran poisoned by Agent Orange to be honored at Wall/Kevin Graman, SR.

DFO: One of my most moving experiences last summer was to visit the traveling Vietnam memorial wall when it stopped at the Coeur d’Alene Indian reservation last year and see the names of friends on it. They remain forever young.

Question: Do you know someone who’s name is on that wall?

Quick Fix 6 (4/13/05)


APhoto Fix: Oakland pitcher Barry Zito is making a contribution to the war effort. See No. 5.

Wal-Mart plans to spend $35 million over the next decade in compensation for wildlife habitat lost under its corporate footprint. The corporation estimates that the doughnation will preserve at least 138,000 acres of prime wildlife habitat here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Chuck Asay (Modern-day civics test), Mike Luckovich (Jane Fonda book tour), and Larry Wright (Tom DeLay).

2. Humor Fix: “The College of Cardinals has set the date of April 18th for the secret vote. What they do is an elite group of robed figures meet behind closed doors and they choose the new leader. Today Bush said ‘Yeah, that’s how I got elected the first time.’” — Jay Leno

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Video shows US captive in Iraq here, Critical facilities employ illegal aliens here, Explosions kill 12 Iraqi police officers here, LexisNexis to notify 280,000 more of breach here, and New effort to restore cross to LA seal here.

5. Support Our Troops Fix: Oakland A’s pitcher Barry Zito is donated $100 for every strikeout to help wounded war veterans and their families — and is challenging other pitchers to match his gift here.

6. Opinion Fix: Tony Blankley/Washington Times (Keep DeLay or pay the price), Austin Bay/RealClearPolitics (Al Qaeda trapped in Vietnam fantasy), Dorinda C. Bordlee/Bioethics Defense Fund (John Paul II knew what women wanted), Michelle Malkin/michellemalkin.com (Pandering to the Left), and Cal Thomas/Tribune Media Services (Beauty and the Beasts).

P.S.

Issue: Marianne Love/Slight Detour was willing to stick her neck out today and admit she’s cuh-razy about “American Idol” here.

DFO: I should know better, but I’ve been a BIG fan of “Survivor” since it went on the air with Nature Boy Richard Hatch, Sinister Susan and Rambo Rudy. Dunno why. Mebbe it’s a “Lord of the Flies” thing. However, I haven’t been able to get into “The Apprentice” series. Too mean. And I can’t get past Donald Trump’s hair.

Question: Have you been hooked by a reality show?

Is something happenin’ at McEuen Field?

Phil Corless/Old Goat Trail chronicles the transformation of McEuen Field with a photograph and a conceptual drawing here.

Break Down The System …

…doesn’t appreciate the stand by Concerned Businesses of North Idaho against the School District 271 levy. Quoth BDTS commentator LinZ:

What we have to ask Concerned Businesses and anyone else who opposes the levy is this: Do you want to deprive every student in our district of the most valuable learning experience of their entire lives? If you vote against the levy, you let our kids stay with the schools we have now, which, according again to the same unnamed teacher, gets less than 40% of students to graduate four year colleges.

For the rest of the editorial from the Lake City High underground Ezine, click here; for the Concerned Businesses letter in opposition to the proposed levy, click here; for Superintendent Harry Amend’s letter to the community about the levy, click here.

DFO: In other words, the Break Down The System brain trust is appealing to the system to fund its education? How ironic.

More national exposure

Verbatim from a guest on the FOX News Channel’s “Your World with Neil Cavuto” this afternoon:

Cavuto: So Idaho is hot right now?

Barbara Corcoran: Not so much the whole state of Idaho, but particularly Coeur d’Alene Idaho. It’s like the sweetheart of the Northwest right now. The average house is $190,000 and what that $190,000 gets you is a great place. They have skiing in the winter and great swimming in the summer. And that area is going up through the roof. It’s a great area for young families..a good bargain and a beautiful place.

Sweet P’s — to Khris Bershers of The Heritage Foundation for sending that to Huckleberries.

Bumpersnicker

Colleges Don’t Make Fools … They Only Develop Them.


Sweet P’s — to The Heimlich Maneuver who sez s/he was thinking of Colorado prof Ward Churchill when s/he sent this in.

Suburbia Poetica #22

Driving back from the lake
that hot July day,
Brittany and her friend Trevor
in the backseat eating hard ice cream
cones, they are five years old.
The ice cream isn’t so hard as it melts
all over their hands and faces and laps.
I’m trying to stop cold chocolate lava flows
and watch the road as semis skirting
the stateline weigh station blow down Trent.

Now my kids eat ice cream cones perfectly,
even on very hot summer afternoons.
I never have to yell at them to eat fast,
or hand back napkins at 65 mph,
or pull over at a gas station in frustration
and get water to clean them up.
If I still had that Nissan Pathfinder
I’d go out right now and see if I could find
an old chocolate stain or two.

Bob Salsbury
The Unbearable Bobness of Being


DFO: Dunno if the muse has taken control of Bearable Bob because it’s National Poetry Month, but he’s having a monster week with his rhymes on his blog. For those of you who don’t like poetry, Slate online provides anti-poetry poems here.

Question No. 2


Issue: Developer wants 18-story Parkside: Downtown CdA project would include 53 units in 14 stories of condos, plus retail-office space/From staff reports

DFO: I have mixed emotions about this. On one hand, McEuen Terrace, Coeur d’Alene North, this Parkside project, and others that will follow will save the downtown by providing patrons for restaurants, corner grocery stores and quick stops. On the other hand, there goes the waterfront.

Question: What’s your reaction to high-rises on and near the waterfront?

Inside Huckleberries

1:37 p.m. Weekly record blog number for April 3-9: 26,172 for an average of 3739 per day.

12:42 p.m. Remember yesterday’s bumpersnicker: “You can accomplish more with a kind word and a gun … Then you can with a kind word alone”? Milt Nelson/Rathdrum knows who said it first: Al Capone.

12:30 p.m. Kristin Hoppe/Not So Fast provides a link that questions conventional wisdom that illegal aliens do jobs Americans won’t here.

9:47 a.m. Cis scored big last night on the Wild Card by asking the other commenters/bloggers to describe their first job and pay. If you haven’t done so, you can add your comment below. Me? Hauling, raking and bailing hay for $1 per hour. First check: $100 for 100 hours work — and Mom took 3/4s of it for groceries. (BTW, if you have a good idea for a morning or afternoon question, don’t hesitate to e-mail me about it. Cis’ was terrific.)

9:30 a.m. Geo, Toadman & others confirmed I’m not a computer geek; to be a computer geek, you not only have to spend time on a computer, but you have to know how to program the dang thing. Whew!

Running Late (4/12/05)

I’m running late as a result of meeting with my padre, Pastor Steve, this a.m., road construction on Government Way (stay away from the stretch from Appleway to Dalton), computer re-hookup, and the dog ate my software. QF6 ETA about 30 minutes — DFO

P.S.

Issue: GQ Magazine names Washington State football fans 6th worst in the country/GQ.

DFO: Ya throw a coupla bottles at an Apple Cup game decided in overtime by West Side refs and they never let you forget it.

Question: Are you proud of WSU’s top 10 ranking or do you believe they should have been ranked higher?

It’s My 2 Cents

I got another reminder this a.m. re: how dependent I’ve become on my computers. I showed up for work early, signed on, typed in my password, and — nothing. I was stopped dead in my tracks. I didn’t know what to do. I can’t function in the morning without a cup of joe in my hand and the world at my fingertips via computer. Thank goodness it wasn’t my home computer. Or the situation might have lasted for days. I might have been forced to pull myself away and spray the apple trees. Instead, I swapped computers and sent my faulty one downtown to the computer fix-it crew. Then, Blogmeister Ken walked me through some software fixes and, voila, I was up and running and the day brightened immediately. What am I trying to say? I’m hooked on computers. I’m dependent on the downtown computer magicians to keep me functioning online. Have I become a geek?

DeLay T-shirt


Last week, I gave a double dollop of rotten potatoes to the family Web site that was circulating T-shirts commemorating Terri Schaivo — even before she was dead. Now, a clueless Lefty outfit has topped that for poor taste or worst. I can’t reproduce the T-shirt (although there’s one at The Drudge Report here), but it features black letter on white and this message: “Dear Tom DeLay (photo), please commit suicide, sincerely, Everyone.” That, from CafePress.com. Why does the Left always get away with hate?

Peanut Gallery (Who Would The Donald Fire?)

Where to start??? Sam Grubbs is married to Erica (Ellingsen), the commissioner’s attorney. He evidently did something that warranted an investigation by the state police but is able to gag the county from ever letting a prospective employer know about the investigation or potential wrong doing.

As far as who looks the worst, you always have to place responsibility at the top. The departments couldn’t be in such disarray if leadership was keeping everyone accountable. If Trump were in charge, he’d fire Gus first.

What if this is a botch job on the sheriff’s part, and Grubbs was pushed out the door as a result of a power struggle? What’s irritating here is that no one knows the truth, and the gag orders have succeeded only in allowing rumors to run rampant. Who’s back side is being protected by the gag orders?

QF6/Best of the Northwest (4/11/05)


A worker performs maintenance on a sign reflecting high gas prices Monday, April 11, 2005 at a station near the University of Washington in Seattle. Gas prices soared an average 19 cents in recent weeks, a trend some believe is due to lingering high crude oil prices, growing demand and higher refining costs.

Don’t look now but Playboy mag will be trolling for nudity as it invades Pullman for another “Girls of the PAC-10 pictorial.” The Horndogs have been to the Palouse before — in 1985 and 1993. The Daily Evergreen tells you all about it here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Eric Devericks/Seattle Times (Military recruitment), Chip Bok (Bad intelligence), and Rob Rogers (Patriot Act).

2. Humor Fix: John Kerry is on crutches after knee surgery. The good news – today he put in for another Purple HeartJay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: D.C. cops tackle suspicious man here, Baghdad raid nets dozens of suspects here, Zarqawi had close call with Marines here, Bush meets with Sharon in Texas here, and Singer licked boy’s head, former publicist testified here.

5. Northwest News: Outside panel to scrutinize King County voting here, WSU tries to unlock mysteries of bear hybernation here, Senator likens stem-cell research to Holocaust here, Whoopi pokes fun at religion, politics, hormones here, and Brothers lead WSU baseballers here.

6. IMHO NW: Dan Popkey/Idaho Statesman (Retiring ISU prez), Joel Connelly/PI (Passports no panacea), Idaho Statesman (2005 Idaho Legislature), Art Thiel/PI (Mariners’ woes), and Paul Andrews/Seattle Times (MoveOn.org).

Peanut Gallery (Inappropriate photo)

I have read that the CP devoted it’s entire issue to prom (here). After I had graduated, I was aganist the Idea of a prom issue from the start, we did an alumni issue where we focused on people that have gone through SHS and then made something of themselves. I am honestly disgusted to where the CP has taken itself. Even though these are things that go on in today’s world they’re things that shouldn’t be talked about in a newspaper. I left a nationally award winning newspaper in 2002, it still may be that but in my book it’s gone to pot. I would have NEVER published a photo/graphic illustration in that newspaper if I were there.

Nick Walker
SHS CP editor 2001-02

Inside Huckleberries

3:13 p.m. Blogmeisters Ken and Stacy have put me mostly back together computerwise, so I can do my blogging on a borrowed computer, including photos. God bless ‘em, everyone.

1:21 a.m. Reminder: If any of you folks see an interesting bumpersnicker or sight, overhear something and witness a slice of life, please remember to send it in to me, so I can post it here. You’re my eyes and ears out there. Also, enjoy rumors for the rumorama, but I may have to check those out. Send it to me via e-mail. Thanks.

10:31 a.m. I have my e-mail back.

9:31 a.m. I’m flying blind today because my PC has given up the ghost. No access to e-mail. Or photos. So, I’ll just blog and see what happens. If you want to get a message to me, you have to do it through the blog. Or by phone: 765-7125.

8:36 a.m. It must be Monday because my office computer is down, and I’m forced to use a backup machine. Which means I don’t have access to my favorites list. Which means “Quick Fix 6” is in jeopardy. I’m going to start with the “SR Morning Headlines” and hope the computer guys can fix my PC problems. Stay tuned.

Question of the Day (4/11/05)

Issue: Survey: U.S. not ready for female president: Pollsters say voters often have given politically correct answer/New York Post.

DFO: I wouldn’t want Hillary as president. But I have no problem with a woman prez. After all, I remain a ha-huge fan of England’s Maggy Thatcher. Dunno what’s the big deal about a woman running the White House.

Question: Do you think the U.S. is ready for a woman president?

Best of Huckleberries Online

The Nos. 18, 104, 15,000 and 14 are magical to Oregonian sports scribe Bob Robinson – 18 holes in one, 104 concrete blocks that serve as pontoons, 15,000 square feet of surface, and hole No. 14. In a column Wednesday, Robinson makes no excuses for being smitten by the source of those numbers: the floating green on Duane Hagadone’s 6,757-yard Coeur d’Alene Resort Golf Course. Quoth: “You’ve read about it and you’ve seen pictures, but none of that prepares you for seeing the famed floating green in person for the first time.” Then, he wrote something I didn’t know about the green. A day after seeing Lee Trevino score a hole-in-one on the island green of the PGA West Stadium Course in LaQuinta, Calif., Hagadone was sitting on a stump at the future golf course site watching a tugboat pull a round boom of logs when the idea hit him for the floating green. And the rest is local history. The only things I get from sitting on stumps are splinters.

Bustin’ Buttons
Bob Hamilton, retired J-school instructor from Sandpoint High, gets a chill up his spine when he realizes a former student, Cindy Wooden, of the Catholic News Service has been covering the biggest news story in the world this month – Pope John Paul II’s death and succession. Did Bob ever think something like this would happen? No way. “My dreams back then rarely imagined anything further down the line than, ‘Are these idiot children going to make deadline or not?’ It never occurred to me at the time that any of my students might have any further association with newspapers than perhaps thumbing through one now and then.” Bob begat Marianne Love/Slight Detour, another Sandpoint High J-instructor extraordinaire, and Marianne begat Erin Daniels, the current adviser of the award-winning Cedar Post – and Bob’s granddaughter.

Poet’s Corner
“Buds ablooming,/birds asinging,/lord amighty/spring’s aspringing” – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“April”) … “Property tax relief was the plea/From Post Falls to Bonners Ferry/But lawmakers said/ “Let’s help Micron instead/And then form another committee” – Betsy Russell/Eye on Boise (“The Year of Corporate Tax Incentives”) … While watching a program about dinosaurs, Phil Corless’s son learned about carnivores, herbivores and omnivores – and then declared himself a candyvore. If that doesn’t make you go, “aw,” a coupla days later Phil’s little daughter asked for some “Cop porn.”

Huckleberries
Separated at birth? Wacky Colorado prof Ward Churchill and (drum roll, puh-LEEZ) – Penny Marshall? Would you believe Lurch from the Addams Family? Or a ‘60s version of Gloria Steinem? Or the current Ozzy Osbourne? The Huckleberries Online gang had too much fun with this one last week … HBOnline question: “Why do all the photographs of criminals being arrested show the bad guys ith their shirts off?” Answer, from Kootenai County Undersheriff Gary Cuff: “CS gas makes you want to disrobe.” Morale to the story: Don’t do anything that makes you a target for CS gas … Bumpersnicker spotted by John Livingstone: “Trucks are like wives: If it ain’t yours, don’t touch” … “Spend your prom promenading, not procreating” – Sandpoint High senior Rebecca Fritz in the Cedar Post re: sex and high school proms.

Parting Shot
In the old days, the Brooklyn Dodgers regularly lamented in the fall: Wait’ll next year. Well, according to ESPN.com’s Andy Katz, Zag fans can say the same, too. Already, he has ‘em picked for No. 6 in the nation. Quoth: “Gonzaga coach Mark Few said this could be his best team since he has been head coach. We know what you’re thinking: We’ve heard this before. Well, did you watch Adam Morrison lately? He’s a lottery pick, and with three other starters returning, including J.P. Batista, a top-six ranking is warranted.” Feel better about that Texas Tech game?

Sunday Question (4/10/05)

Issue: Scientists boycott Kansas schools evolution hearing: ‘Intelligent design is not going to get its forum’/United Press International.

DFO: Ten percent of Americans believe in pure evolution, with the rest about evenly split between pure creationism and an evolutionary version of creationism (God started it and then kicked back while it evolved into what he wanted). Yet, the evolutionists insist that only their theory be taught. Seems to me the evolutionists of today are being every bit as close-minded as the Christian fundamentalists of Scopes day.

Question: Should both evolution and creative design be taught in our schools?

Faith Traditions Quiz

Any Mouse has come up with a dandy quiz to enable you to figure out where you stand re: your faith tradition (Catholic, Baptist, Pentecostal, etc.) here.

DFO: Any Mouse scored 100% Catholic, I scored 89% Baptist (Reformed/Particular/Calvinistic) & 11% Catholic. Interesting stuff.

Question No. 2

Issue: Costly calories: How much do we spend on diets?/Forbes.com.

DFO: I don’t diet because I become obsessed with food when I do. I prefer to exercise with weights and race-walking to keep myself somewhat healthy. I don’t know how many people succeed with diets.

Question: Are you currently on a diet? Of have you ever had success with a diet?

Wild Card — Friday (3/8/05)

It’s a wrap, folks; I’m headed home for dinner with friends and good conversation. I’ll let you entertain yourselves with the Wild Card. Of course, you never know when I’ll be checking in on it. So, be good …

Inside Huckleberries (3/8/05)

5:45 p.m. Blogmeister Ryan’ll be back Monday, so I’ll be adding names to the blogroll, including Scott and Toadman. Also, I’ll see if I can talk him into a poll and mebbe a forum feature. Stay tuned.

4:20 p.m. Question to self — Have most of my blogroll bloggers taken the spring off?

4:10 p.m. I’m not on top of my game today.

3:11 p.m. Huckleberries Online set a comments record yesterday with 207, fueled largely by reminiscences of squandered youth.

1:19 p.m. I’m flirting with the idea of having a brown-bag lunch for bloggers and commenters to discuss whatever’s on your mind Tuesday at the CDA office. Anyone interested?

1 p.m. You can find the link for the goose cam of Joe and Ima Vandal, outside UI dean Jack Dawson’s CDA office, here.

12:52 p.m. Joanne Stebbins/The Angry Commentator has made ex-Press reporter Brent Andrews’ “The Pot Plan” her first book of the month (left side of blog) here.

12:30 p.m. Kristin Hoppe/Not So Fast provides an important link to “How to Blog Safely (About Work of Anything Else) here.

An argument for liberalism at colleges …

…is made by an EWU friend of Toadman’s (I believe he goes by the nickname, Sausage) here.

Afternoon Question (4/8/05)

Issue: Do good looks mean better pay? Fed suggests handsome people tend to make more money, get promoted more/MSNBC.

DFO: Now, they tell me; mebbe it isn’t too late for a nip here and a tuck there.

Question: Have you ever lost a promotion to a handsome/prettier person with less capability?

Sentence: 6 days for semen-topped Brownies

Huckleberries Online has the presentence conversation involving Judge Robert Burton, Brownie Boy (the Coeur d’Alene High senior who gave semen-topped Brownies to some rivals) and Brownie Boy’s parents here.

P.S. You can find the original story about the Brownie Caper here, and the complete police report about the incident here.

BNSF endorsement — not

“…In addition the Coeur d’Alene Press leadership editorialized in favor of the Burlington Northern locomotive fueling depot on the Rathdrum Prairie not only before talking to their ace reporter about the matter; but before anyone had even seen anything like a final design. Frankly, if asked, I would have said this is crazy, don’t do this. Fight it all the way to the U.S. courts. The railroad had everyone’s nuts in a ringer. The BNSF man was able to cite U.S. law that said basically that the railroad’s service to the whole country is more important than the local wishes of a small town or even a state. You can either work with the railroad, or the railroad can go over your head to the feds and get its way” — ex-Press reporter Brent Andrews in his book, “The Pot Plan,” here. Text comes from Chapter 46 here.

Quick Fix 6 (4/8/05)

The first non-Italian pope in 455 years was buried at 2:20 p.m. (5:20 a.m. PDT) in the grotto under the basilica, attended by prelates and members of the papal household, the Vatican said, according to The Associated Press, here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (Dogmatism), Chuck Asay (Power politics), and Henry Payne (Sure sign of spring).

2. Humor Fix: “Not looking good for Michael. His accountants announced today he is finished doing his taxes. He’s declared three children as defendants, and 47 accusers…” Jay Leno.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Indians wish list: Big-city sites for casinos here, Marines training hampered by illegals here, Study: Good looks mean better pay here, Jury selection begins in fragging trial here, and DeLay: Judges have overstepped authority here.

5. Tom DeLay Fix: You might want to read this Slate scorecard, if you’re not sure why the D’s who ignored Bill Clinton’s scandals are whining about Congressman Tom DeLay’s shortcomings here.

6. Opinion Fix: Daniel Henninger/Wall Street Journal (Pope more popular in death), Patrick Buchanan/The American Conservative (Is protectionism racist?), Diana West/Washington Times (Journalists afraid to criticize Islam), Rebecca Hagelin/The Heritage Foundation (Scouting makes a difference), and Thomas Hibbs/National Review (Empty “Sin City”).

Wild Card — Thursday (4/7/05)

Ladies and (the one or two Huckleberries Online blog) gentlemen, start your engines …

Headlines @ Closin’ Time (4/7/05)

*Texas high-school football coach shot: Cops: Dad of player wounded son’s teacher, fled, now in custody/Associated Press — In Texas, football is bigger than religion. All it takes is a crackpot high school gridiron worshipper, and someone gets hurt.

*Teen girls held in suicide bomb plot: FBI document alleges 16-year-olds in U.S. illegally planned attack/Associated Press — Guess they didn’t get dates for the prom.

*CBS wins Peabody for Abu Ghraib report: Story anchored by Dan Rather, produced by Mary Mapes/Associated Press — It’s a good news/bad news thing. Here’s your Peabody for Abu Ghraib, and here’s your pink slip for the late campaign hit on Dubya.

*Iraq gets 2 new interim leaders: 2 Saddam foes take office as president, prime minister/Associated Press — Another small step for democracy, another giant step for the Iraqi people.

*Charles to acknowledge manifold sins and wickedness at wedding: Prince to marry longtime lover Camilla Parker Bowles/Reuters — Too late to live happily ever after?

Separated at Birth?

OK, this one’s for Toadman because he seems a bit down today, trying to harmonize the polarization of the Left and the Right. And, besides, he did such a dyne-oh!-mite job snapping and reporting Colorado prof Ward Churchill’s appearance on campus earlier this week. Toadman contends that EWU prez Stephen Jordan is a dead ringer for the character in all those “Where’s Waldo” books of days gone by. Jordan is to the right, and you can find Waldo here. Any other suggestions?

Inside Huckleberries

4 p.m. Got the full court report in the sentencing of Brownie Boy earlier this week. I’ll blog it tomorrow.

1:47 p.m. I’ve been thinking about changing the wording under “About this blog” to the left. It’s no longer accurate. How about: “Dave Oliveria is a recovering grouch with conservative leanings who rides shotgun on a menagerie of wild commenters, real and imagined”?

12:36 p.m. Henry Johnston/My 2 Cents is already running with the T-shirt idea here. But it certainly isn’t the authorized version because there isn’t one. No promo dollars for T-shirts from downtown. But that doesn’t mean we won’t be promoting HBO in other ways very, very soon.

9:45 a.m. BTW, if you see a line of a limerick deleted or a word changed in the text of a comment or an entire comment deleted, you can bet that you’ve written something inappropriate. Or I’m protecting you from defaming someone. You’re not immune from suits.

9:30 a.m. Monster blog number for Tuesday: 5417.

9:25 a.m. Night Report: Kick Shoe — Please post your blogopotamus on your site and then provide a link under my comments … I don’t channel The Edge. He’s a real person … The Edge was not part of the Summit Meeting with Death Star reps. Mike Kennedy, Any Mouse and Dang were … Mike Kennedy has been busy doing his real job and unable to post. He hasn’t been banished … I’m flattered by suggestions for Huckleberries T-shirts (CDA Photo provided the concept at right), but they aren’t in the SR promotional budget … Side Note and Hayden Hermit have come in from the cold, and therefore, are full-fledged members of the blog.

Best of the Northwest (4/7/05)

Stephen Jordan (above, right), EWU prez for the past 7 years, has announced his resignation to become prez at Metropolitan State College of Denver, Colo., here. Recently, Jordan found himself in the middle of a controversy when he disinvited wacky Colorado prof Ward Churchill to speak on campus. He lost that battle. Also, Toadman comes through for HBO readers by providing the text of Jordan’s resignation letter here.

1. David Horsey/PI re: the mixed legacy of Pope John Paul II here; meanwhile, you can see the package of cartoons that won Horsey the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for political cartooning (as well as what Horsey looks like) here.

2. Mike Weland/Kootenai Valley Press discusses Jerry Higgs, a former Hayden man who was posting signs in the Bonners Ferry area denigrating Californians here.

3. Former U.S. Sen. Slade Gorton yesterday joined the call for a criminal investigation of King County’s handling of the November election, even as county officials acknowledged a breakdown in the process for accounting for absentee ballots, according to the Seattle Times, here.

4. An Alaskan once banished to an Alaskan island as part of tribal justice is in trouble again after pressing a gun to the head of a sleeping teen here.

5. Idaho lawmakers wrapped up the 2005 session and headed for home after passing historic bills to protect Idaho’s water rights and fix highways here.

6. IMHO-NW: Tim Woodward/Idaho Statesman (A mission of honor), Idaho Statesman (Kempthorne scores with Legislature), Larry Stone/Seattle Times (Hitless Jeremy Reed), Joel Connelly/PI (NW Catholics want listening pope), and Stefan Sharkansky/Sound Politics (Bogus King County absentee report).

*WSU senior punter Kyle Basler is the subject of a Daily Evergreen feature here.

*The Idaho Statesman tells the story of fallen war hero Sgt. Kelly S. Morris here.

*RuralNorthwest.com provides Bonner County police logs (April 1-6) here.

Question of the Day (4/7/05)

Issue: Iraq’s presidential council sworn in: Country moving toward 1st freely elected government in 50 years/Associated Press

DFO: It ain’t over, yet, but it does look like Iraq has reached the Tipping Point — and its people are embracing democracy. BTW, I hear they found WMDs in Iran. ;-)

Question: Isn’t it time to say that Bush was right about invading Iraq?

Home Again Jiggety Jig

The days are warm and sunny
As “solons” come home to their honeys
They’ll spend their days
Thinking of new ways
That they can spend our money.

CDADave

P.S.

Issue: Senate votes to cut U.S. dues to U.N.: In wake of oil-for food scandal, sexual abuses by peacekeepers/Associated Press.

DFO: The United Nations has been corrupted under Kofi Annan’s (above) leadership and desperately needs reform. The oil-for-food and sex scandals are examples of the UN’s inability to police itself. Yet, the world organization has a role to play in hot spots, despite its anti-Americanism.

Question: Is it time to get the US out of the UN? Or would you rather the US pressured the UN to get its act together?

Best of the Local Blogs (4/6/05)

*If you want to know what carnivores, herbivores and sweet-toothed children have in common, ya gotta read this heart-warmer from Phil Corless/A Family Runs Through It here.

*Bill McCrory/Whitecaps makes a good case for throwing the book at former Clinton security adviser Sandy Berger for illegally removing and destroying top-secret documents here.

*Marianne Love/Slight Detour is struggling with the prospect of leaving her beloved home of 28 years here.

*Cathy Kooy/Kick Shoe Kooy, channeling Diedre, provides 10 statements to ease your conscience when you notice your yard’s a mess here.

*CDADave analyzes the theory that high-profile deaths come in threes and takes you on a chain-of-consciousness chase that leads to and through local newscasters who have died here.

*Kimberley Osberg/Fresh Air writes a heart-breaker about being estranged from a family member here. (Bring Kleenex)

Take your FOIA and shove it

In a book about his struggle with alcoholism, “The Pot Plan,” ex-Coeur d’Alene Press reporter Brent Andrews (above) tells of his aborted life as an investigative reporter. Seems he began digging around into cellular phone use at Post Falls City Hall (circa 1999) — back when you paid through the nose by the minute for cell use — and ran into a brick wall. After writing two freedom of information requests for city phone bills, Andrews was told in no uncertain terms to write a third letter stating he no longer wanted the phone bills. Quoth Brent: “The city manager of Post Falls was a personal friend of Duane Hagadone, and Duane Hagadone’s personal friends do not get investigated by his reporters.”

You can read this and other fascinating insights about Brent’s time in Coeur d’Alene and battle with personal demons by ordering “The Pot Plan” online here. You can read the first chapter of his book here, and you can check out his Chronic Discontent blog here.

Afternoon Question (4/6/05)


Republican Phil Harris kisses his wife, Lorene, after winning re-election in 2002.

Issue: Spokane County hires third Harris son: Commissioner says he had no role in decision/Amy Cannata, SR.

DFO: So, all three sons were hired since Commissioner Phil Harris was first elected in 1994. What are the odds that three brothers would be hired for a county job, if they didn’t have a friend/father in high places? The hirings don’t pass the smell test.

Question: Would you have a problem if three children of one of your county commissioners were on the county payroll?

A sign of spring?

That white-headed robin spotted and photographed by Norman Ernst on Hauser Lake Road March 30 is now featured in Frum Helen Back’s Hauser Times here and as Picture No. 25 on the Coeur d’Alene Audobon Society Web site here.

The year of corporate tax incentives

Property tax relief was the plea
From Post Falls to Bonners Ferry
But lawmakers said
‘Let’s help Micron instead
And then form another committee.’

Betsy Russell/Eye on Boise


DFO: Yeow, my colleague Betsy Russell is not only the best political reporter in Idaho, but she makes a case for being a darn good rhymer, too.

Question of the Day

Issue: Wal-Mart takes offensive: CEO Scott blasts critics, defenders of ‘status quo’/Associated Press.

DFO: Frankly, I see nothing wrong with Wal-Mart, other than trying to shop there on Saturday mornings and Christmas.

Question: Do you believe labor unions and community activists are going overboard in their criticism of Wal-Mart stores?

SR Morning Headlines (4/6/05)

*Train fueling depot artless and off track/guest columnist James Ball, SR — I love the closing paragraph by this former civil engineer: “We shouldn’t have to drink petroleum cocktails to protect BNSF profits. They have demonstrated again and again their inability and unwillingness to protect our water and have violated their contract with the Kootenai County commissioners and the people. It’s time to tell Burlington Northern-Santa Fe Railway to get off the aquifer.” Bingo.

*Churchill speaks freely at EWU: Controversial professor defends comparison of 9/11 victims to ‘little Eichmanns,’ condemns treatment of Indians/Rob McDonald, SR — Yawn. Yesterday’s news — thanks to Toadman.

*Spokane County hires third Harris son: Commissioner says he had no role in decision/Amy Cannata, SR — Must be nice having friends, er, family in high places.

*KMC tops in imaging field: High-tech scanners allow 3-D viewing of patients from inside out/Cynthia Taggart, SR — Another reason to applaud CEO Joe Morris and his fine troops at Kootenai Medical.

*In today’s climate, words of violence can’t be taken lightly: Reichert’s rant requires apology/D.F. Oliveria, SR — Great writing. Great reasoning. What’s that? Sure, I wrote this. What’s your point?

Q & A

Question, from The Edge: Why do all the photographs of criminals being arrested show the bad guys with their shirts off? See the front of page of the Spokesman Tuesday re. arrest of Thomas Bernard Graham, 40, after 10-hour standoff.

Answer: Undersheriff Gary Cuff: CS gas makes you want to disrobe. (Great job Kootenai County SRU!!Consisting of officers from Coeur d’Alene Police, Post Falls Police and Kootenai County Sheriff’s Department.)

Peanut Gallery (Toadman’s gets it first)

What amazes me about Huckleberries is I was an early reader and occasional emailer/commentor and it used to be very in your face aggro conservative and now, at times, it is a wonderful playground of commentors and their poetry and humor and the watershed moment yesterday of Toadman combining the often noted new wave blogger journalism of bloggers getting it first but doing it on a newspaper site! (Again, this may be a first)

Great stuff!

Bob Salsbury/The Unbearable Bobness of Being


DFO: Bingo! Toadman provided a glimpse of the future with his photos and commentary of Ward Churchill’s visit to EWU. He beat the newscasters at 6 by providing film at 1:30 and massacred the dead-tree media. If I could I’d declare a holiday in Toadman’s honor, but I don’t think your bosses would like it. So, instead, this one’s for Toadman: Saaaalute. (And I’ll provide a link to his site as soon as my blogmeister gets back from vacation.)

My 2 Cents

Ward Churchill reminds me of those academic frauds who peopled my college life back in the late ‘60s and early 70s. They made wild statements that whipped us gullible students into a frenzy, particularly against the Vietnam War and the establishment. We followed them around like they were tin gods, hanging on every word of theirs. All the while, many of them were lazy and looking for a good time with the coeds.

I remember one prof, in particular, an English teacher known for his radicalism, if anyone at party school Chico State could be called a radical. Every lecture, this Luddite would bring up his contempt for modern society, often going off on monologues about machinery — and how all of it made noise similar to flatulence. If you kept your mouth shut, you got a good grade. I can’t remember a thing about that class other than a kid reading his awful, profanity-laced poetry to the class.

When I read of college kids flocking to hear Churchill’s spiel and college profs defending his right to nab a check for a 20-minute rant at EWU, I realize few things have changed on campus in the ensuing three decades. When all the world has changed around us. P.T. Barnum was right.

DFO


P.S. Toadman points out in the “comments” section that Churchill spoke to the Indian studies for an hour and the 20 minutes to the other impressionable collegians was a bonus. Wonder if any of the Indian studies types asked him to prove his questionable claim that he’s a Native American. You’d think that would be important to them, if they weren’t star struck.

Headlines @ Closin’ Time

*Rudy rips Ward Churchill: Ex-NYC mayor says 9-11 prof should not be allowed to teach/Rocky Mountain News — You go, Rudy.

*Female boxer dies after match: Preliminary cause of death blunt force trauma to the head/Associated Press — Unfortunately, life sometimes immitates art.

*Officials urge renewal of Patriot Act: Gonzales: ‘It’s important that these authorities remain available’/Associated Press — I can almost hear Congressman Butch Otter squawking already.

*Bush says no to Carter request: Former president will not be part of official funeral delegation/Associated Press — Mebbe Dubya wanted only former presidents who aren’t embarrassments.

*Frist: Courts acted fairly in Terri case: Comments differ sharply from House counterpart, Rep. Tom DeLay/Reuters — This one’s for Dang, Sue and the other commenters on the other side of the argument.

Best of the Local Blogs (4/5/05)

*Put your hands together for Cis The Retired who turned 65 today and blogs about it here.

*Our Eye on Boise reports that the House Transportation Committee has voted unanimously to approve the governor’s highway bill, with amendments, here.

*His Bobness/The Unbearable Bobness of Being rewrites Idaho history as only he can here.

*The Angry Commentator discusses Brownie Boy’s sentence of six months probation and loss of a Coeur d’Alene High student body position here.

*CDADave looks at hoggers, floggers, doggers, shoggers and other denizens of the blogosphere here.

Afternoon Question

Issue: Threatening e-mail disturbs legislators: They should be ‘hung in public display,’ message from Frank Reichert states/Josh Wright, SR.

DFO: Is it just me, Dang, or do you Libertarians have too many loose cannons to take your party seriously?

Question: Is Frank Reichert’s e-mail simply a matter of a hot head blowing off steam? Or should it be taken seriously?

Extra! Extra!

“The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has decided to withdraw from participation in tomorrow night’s Community Forum on the BNSF,” according to a news release from the Kootenai Environmental Alliance and NIC Students for Progressive Change. “The reason given was that the agency does not want to jeopardize its request for preliminary injunction against the BNSF Fueling Depot.”

The community forum, “Protecting Our Aquifer, Where Do We Go From Here? will focus on the BNSF Fueling Depot Controversy. It will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the NIC Coeur d’Alene Room in the Edminster Student Union.

Panelists: panelists are: Post Falls Mayor Clay Larkin, Ken Lustig, ex-Panhandle Health District director; county P&Z director Rand Wichman; Mike LaScoula, Spokane Regional Health District; former Spokane councilwoman Cheri Rodgers; and Buell Hollister, Friends of the Aquifer board member.

Pulitizer Prize winner

“The 11-member AP team won the prize for breaking news photography, the news cooperative’s 48th Pulitzer, with a portfolio that included images of three charred bodies of U.S. contractors hanging from a bridge over the Tigris River; Marines praying over a fallen comrade; and U.S. soldiers taking cover during a gun battle in Najaf.” For a complete look at the APhotos that won the Pulitzer, click here.

DFO: The photo above by the Pulitzer Prize-winning AP team was the last one selected by late county commissioner Ron Rankin for the courthouse vets memorial. It’ll be put in place later this spring. It was part of the AP Pulitzer package.

Ward Churchill’s People

Dunno what type of radical prof Ward Churchill will draw at EWU today, but he attracted quite a few cuh-razies at a SF anarchist fair here (Caution: Icky nudity on display)

Sweet P — to Kristin Hoppe/Not So Fast for bringing this to my attention.

Quick Fix 6 (4/5/05)


Peter Jennings fields a question during a press conference at 2004 Washington State University during the Murrow Symposium.

Longtime ABC News anchorman Peter Jennings (above) has been diagnosed with lung cancer, according to WorldNetDaily. The network announced today that Jennings, anchor of “World News Tonight,” will begin outpatient treatment next week. Click here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Paul Nowak (Dow Jones & oil prices), Mike Luckovich (Pope John Paul II in heaven), and Steve Benson (John Paul II’s legacy).

2. Humor Fix: Daniel Kurtzman/Political Humor provides David Letterman’s “Top 10 Things Heard at the White House Easter Egg Hunt” here.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Pope’s shooter wants to attend funeral here, Border Patrol complains about volunteers here, Giuliani too busy to challenge Hillary here, Michael molested me, says maid’s son here, and Iraqi factions agree upon government here.

5. Blast from the Past Fix: Former veep Al Gore is planning to lure the MTV generation back to TV with a privately funded network that’ll blend interactivity with populism here.

6. Opinion Fix: David Brooks/NY Times (A house divided and strong), Jack Kemp/San Diego Union (John Paul and communism), Claudia Rosett/Wall Street Journal (Annan’s not exonerated), David Limbaugh/DavidLimbaugh.com (Sandy Berger’s wrist slap), and Suzanne Fields/Tribune Media Services (Closing of university mind).

Inside Huckleberries

2:39 p.m. Some of you have fretted about the chitchat nature of the blog last weekend, suggesting the problem would be solved by adding a “forum” feature. Nothing I can do about that until my blogmeister returns from vacation. No question the new “comments” feature has affected Huckleberries Online. But it’s too early to make adjustments. Let’s see where this goes. Meanwhile, I’m pushing for a “poll” feature.

11:45 a.m. Colleague Erica Curless and other journalists at the 10-hour standoff in CDA yesterday are ready to make Capt. Travis Chaney sheriff by acclamation. He allowed the shivering journalists who covered the event to eat sandwiches and chips provided by the sheriff’s auxiliary — and to use the police porta-potties. Sheriff Rocky and Capt. Gary Cuff (at the M’s opener) were out of town.

9:27 a.m. Toadman plans to cover the appearance of controversial Ward Churchill at the EWU campus today — and provide Huckleberries Online with photos from his site. How cool is that?

Wild Card (4/4/05)

After our wild weekend, I’m hesistant to play this card, but we’ll try again.

Best of the Local Blogs (4/4/05)

*His Bobness should be in the running for the Bulwer-Lytton contest for worst opening line for a novel with his two examples here.

*The Angry Commentator makes hay with that Coeur d’Alene Press story about the interesting e-mails between Judge Bob Burton and ex-drug court supervisor Marina Kalani here.

*Phil Corless/Old Goat Trail snapped photos of some of the monster homes at Black Rock here.

*In Bay Views, unretired Herb describes how a controversy over a Farragut firing range is busting up old friendships here.

*Henry Johnston/My 2 Cents discusses his first day on the job as a funeral assistant here.

*Marianne Love/Slight Detour notes, with concern, all the changes that are taking place around Sandpoint here.

Seattle 5, Minnesota 1

Story: here, Boxscore here

Bryan School lockdown

From the SR Web site and reporter Erica Curless re: lockdown at Bryan Elementary on CDA’s Harrison Avenue:

A Coeur d’Alene man wanted on a burglary warrant is holed up inside a duplex near Bryan Elementary School, though an unidentified woman who was inside the home has crawled from a window.

Thomas Graham, 40, is believed to have a gun. Sheriff and police officials did not know whether the woman was being held against her will, but the elementary school is in lockdown as a precaution, according to Kootenai County Sheriff’s Capt. Ben Wolfinger.

The incident began Sunday night when Coeur d’Alene Police got into a high-speed chase with a vehicle registered to Graham. Officers abandoned the chase when speeds became excessive, Wolfinger said.

Officers found Graham and the abandoned vehicle this morning at a duplex at 7th and Harrison. Neighbors in the adjoining duplex told police they heard someone crawling around in the attic this morning, and then saw someone cutting through their bedroom ceiling with a knife.

Wolfinger said the neighbors were evacuated, and negotiators are talking with Graham.

The woman crawled out a window at about noon, and is in police custody.

Zogby poll has different spin …

…on whether Americans really supported the killing of Terri Schiavo here.

“Zogby then asked: ‘If a disabled person is not terminally ill, not in a coma, and not being kept alive on life support, and they have no written directive, should or should they not be denied food and water?’”

Finding: “A staggering 79 percent said the patient should not be denied food and water. Just 9 percent said yes.”

Food for thought, hunh?


Inside scoop from Vatican

Cindy Wooden, a former Sandpoint High English student/drill team captain of Marianne Love/Slight Detour, is providing firsthand information on the Pope’s death, burial and the search for a new Pope from her position with the Vatican Press corps here, here and here. You can find the main Catholic News Service link here.

Peanut Gallery (Lady Lola)

re: Another rumor about the sale of the Lady Lola

From the “Small World” department…
Lady Lola and Shadow www.ladylolaandshadow.com were sold…reportedly for 88 million. I flew back from LA last night after touring Disneyland with members of the CDA Youth Orchestra. Wound up chatting with two Hagacorp employees!! One had worked as a chef on the ‘Lola’ and said the selling price was 88 mil…and the web site shows that they may have not been sold as a package!

Borah Triangle


SR Morning Headlines (4/4/05)

*Amtrak train derails in Columbia Gorge: Dozens injured; passenger, BNSF freight service disrupted/Tom Lutey, SR — That can’t be good for a gummint subsidized business.

*Red-light runners may get the blues: Police try new technique in effort to make state Highway 291 safer/Amy Cannata, SR — Be careful out there.

*Teen suspended for Web site: ‘Bad Dog’ allowed students to bypass Internet filter/Rob McDonald, SR — In the end, “Bad Dog” goes to the kennel, where he’s put down. There’s a lesson in this.

*Glover house’s new owners aren’t laughing: Online prank gives mansion a bad name/Doug Clark, SR — Speaking of bad dogs, former owners of the Glover Mansion are in a league of their own.

*87 unopened ballots found: King County workers found votes while reviewing absentee ballots for alleged felons/Associated Press — I’m now of the opinion that the King County elections department isn’t peopled with corrupt officeholders who want to see Democrats when. It’s simply incompetent.

Best of Huckleberries Online (3/28 to 4/1, 2005)


You may know that the biggest megayacht owned by a Kootenai County man is Duane Hagadone’s Lady Lola (above). But did you know another local owns a megayacht only a few feet shorter? Spokane’s Dave Lenartz was sailing the ocean blue in his 45-foot Megabyte, reputedly the third largest boat on Lake Coeur d’Alene, when he pulled into Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, and spotted a monster that shared the same hailing port: Coeur d’Alene. At first, Dave thought he’d found the Lady Lola. But he learned from the crew he was wrong. It was the Lady J – about 190 feet long, with a grey steel hull and three full-size decks. After describing the Lady J to friends via e-mail, Dave asked: “Who else besides Duane Hagadone has this kind of money from Coeur d’Alene?” Answer: Gary and Jeaneen Norton, owners of Silverwood Theme Park, near Athol. BTW, Gary has a ready reply when asked how he got the Lady J from CDA to wherever: “with a very big trailer.” It’s a rich man’s joke. (Huckleberries Online has a link to photos of the Lady J: www.spokesmanreview.com/blogs/nhb.)

Interlopers Anonymous
First, you should know that an “interloper” is “a person who mettles in others’ affairs.” Onward. In his CDA Press column last week, weather diviner Cliff Harris took a swipe at the SR while grousing about the accuracy of Washington forecasters in predicting North Idaho weather. Seems he was set off by finding a free copy of the “interloping Spokesman-Review” in his driveway. And used that to rant about the supremacy of “backyard weather observers” over Washington types. Speaking of accuracy, let’s look at Cliffie’s winter forecast from Nov. 29: “I still see a very SNOWY (his caps, not mine) mid-December through the end of January six-week cycle, even at the lowest elevations, where 30 to 40 inches of white stuff may accumulate with double the amounts in the ski resorts of the region, maybe even triple, near 120 inches (10 feet) in places. Skiing should be great.” Anyone who makes a prediction like that and still calls snow “white stuff” shouldn’t criticize others.

Poet’s Corner
Our legislators and their flunkies/are more laughs than barrels of monkeys;/but speaking frankly, heart to heart,/I fear they may not be as smart” – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“Idaho Legislature”) … My dentist likes a fun day/Serves treats to kids on Monday./But the gas he used/Had him confused./And he made an ether sundae” – John Austin (“The Meaning of Ether”) … “There’s more than one way to skin a cat and if you really need a good icebreaker to loosen up a group of criminally insane men in a state hospital just ask for some ideas on that one!” – Dave Salsbury/Random Shallow Thoughts.

Huckleberries
For those keeping score at home, Marina Kalani, the ex-drug court queen who’s embroiled with Prosecutor Bill Douglas at the heart of the Kootenai County Courthouse e-mail tug-of-war, changed her name in fall 2002 from Marion Keegan. She’s part Polynesian and wanted her name to sound that way. Works for me … Separated At Birth: OK, the photo on Huckleberries Online does make Prosecutor Douglas look a bit like Bill the Cat of Bloom County fame. Now, leave it alone … BTW, Lenartz (See: first item above) deserves credit for saving a 72-year-old man who was spitting up blood by piloting the Megabyte through 50 miles of rough seas as evening turned into night to Mexico’s Baja shoreline. The rescue was written up in Latitude 38, a West Coast sailor’s mag.

Parting Shot
On the day Terri Schiavo starved to death with judicial approval, the American Family Association offered this bumpersticker @ 50 for $47: “Remember Terri (www.stopliberaljudges.com).” Vultures – AFA Online, I mean, for trying to make hay outta this tragedy. As far as the judges go, my words for Greer & Co. can’t be printed in a family newspaper.

‘05 Mariners

A new baseball season is near
The M’s have high hopes, it’s clear
We’ll need Pepto-Bismol
If “this year’s” as dismal
As was their season last year!

The World According to CDADave

Sunday Question

Issue: Neil Young recovering from brain aneurysm: Singer-songwriter expected to make full recovery after procedure/MSNBC.

DFO: “The 59-year-old rocker underwent a procedure …” Wasn’t it just yesterday that we were protesting the Kent State Massacre and “four dead in O-H-I-O”? How did Neil Young get to be 59.

Question: When does the news make you realize that you’re getting older?

Saturday Wild Card (4/2/05)

The Wild Card works the same on Saturdays as it does weekdays. Feel free to use it, if the rainshine drives you indoors.

Weekend Question No. 1

Issue: Princes of the church begin their campaigns for See of St. Peter’s/Michael Valpy, Globe and Mail.

DFO: As Pope John Paul II slides toward death early Saturday morning, some are jockeying to replace him. I’d like to see the next pope continue John Paul II’s social conservatism as well as his advocacy for the world’s downtrodden.

Question: What kind of pope would you like to see replace the venerable John Paul II? Or does it matter to you?

Weekend Wild Card (4/1-3/05)

Dunno how much I’ll be posting this weekend because I have a big work day at church tomorrow. And, if it’s sunny, I’m going to retreat to my garden and tune in a Mariners Spring Training game. I always check the blog, however. Catch you on the flip side Monday. Here’s your Wild Card.

Headlines @ Closin’ Time (4/1/05)

*Fox News erroneously says pope died: Networks scramble amid conflicting reports from Italian media/Associated Press — Why is it important to beat another news organization by 5 minutes? The Drudge Report missed this one, too.

*No jail time for Sandy Berger: Prosecutors to recommend $10,000 fine for taking classified documents/WorldNetDaily — If Martha could cool her heels for a few months in the slammer, this bum should, too. What’s the disincentive for stealing classified material?

*Doctors complete Schiavo autopsy: Final report expected to take several weeks/MSNBC — Will Michael Schiavo be allowed to keep that from the rest of the family, too?

*Volunteers register to patrol Arizona-Mexico border for illegal immigrants and smugglers/Associated Press — A recipe for disaster.

*Openly gay Cheney daughter writing memoir/Associated Press — Betcha Daddy isn’t sleep well at night.


Ah’m Your Huckleberry


Seems Marina Kalani, the ex-Kootenai County drug court supervisor at the heart of the e-mail controversy with Prosecutor Bill Douglas, changed her name in fall 2002 from Marion Patrica Keegan. Why? She wanted a name with a Polynesian flavor, reflecting her heritage. Her mother’s first name is Leilani. Officially, Ms. Kalani’s name is now Marina Patricia Kalani-Keegan. Gotta admit. Marina Kalani is more distinctive name than Marion Keegan.

Separated at Birth?

The Edge contends that Prosecutor Bill the Douglas here resembles Bill the Cat of Bloom County and Outland fame here. DFO: No way. Edge: Way.

Afternoon Question (4/1/05)

Issue: With 365 days possible, Marianne Love/Slight Detour is amazed how family birthdays tend to clump together over a couple of weeks or a month. She has three such clusters in her family, including one now under way here.

DFO: We have a major cluster in January, including 6 or 7 birthdays that begin on the 16th with Amy Dearest and my twin brothers-in-law. So, mebbe Marianne has something here. BTW, for those of you keeping score at home, Mayor Sandi Bloem and I share a Nov. 20 birthday.

Question: Does your family have “birthday clusters”?

SR Morning Headlines (4/1/05)

*Hagadone revises marina plan: Blackwell Island plan calls for dredging channel, boosting capacity of marina to 368 boat slips/Erica Curless, SR — For some reason, we beat Brand X on a story from within its own corporate empire. Do those guys talk to each other over there?

*100 firefighters battle warehouse blaze: Seeds Inc. facility in Rockford stored straw/Jonathan Brunt & Dan Hansen, SR — Again, we have reason to salute a valiant group of firefighters.

*Car crushes 6-year-old’s foot as he crosses street: Kindergartner ran into street after being dropped off at school; driver not at fault/Nina Culver, SR — Accident provides a good argument for a crossing guard despite school district’s lack of money.

*Governor uses veto to punish House: Kempthorne attempts to force lawmakers to pass highway bill/Betsy Russell & Josh Wright, SR — You go, guv’nah.

*Former mayor of Valley fined for illegal e-mail: DeVleming had admitted error in seeking donors for Rossi campaign event/Jim Camden, SR — E-mails, e-mails … my kingdom for a do-over when it comes to my office e-mails.

Peanut Gallery (Nervous judges?)

Coupla dumb questions re: Prosecutor Bill Douglas’ attempt to suppress county office e-mails:

DQ #1: What about those judges’ E Mails between them and the Juvenile Drug Coordinator? Seems those were requested. Redacted? Someone protecting those judges, or is Douglas’ stance to protect all government employees privacy more important that we think? There may be a coupla nervous nellie judge types hoping Bill is right.

DQ # 2: So, why not wait for the court to rule on the SR’s request? What is the rush to judgment on Douglas?

Sports Fan


DFO: Sports Fan, are you an insider?

TGIF April Fool’s Day Quick Fix 6 (4/1/05)


APhoto Fix: Boguslawa Zaniewicz-Dybeck prays for Pope John Paul II, in the St Eugenia Catholic Church in Stockholm today.

The 2005 Polly Awards (given for the most outrageous examples of PC on college campuses) are in. And the winner is (drum roll, puh-LEEZ) — LeMoyne University (wherever the heck that is). Why? Quoth: “At LeMoyne College, graduate student Scott McConnell was expelled after writing a paper rejecting multiculturalism and advocating light spanking in elementary school classrooms.” This, despite exemplary grades. For the other top finishers, click here.

1. Political ‘Toon Fix: Jeff Stahler (Dubya’s “Easy Button”), Jeff Parker (Airport security), and Mike Luckovich (Jesse Jackson’s intervention).

2. Humor Fix: David Letterman’s “Top 10 Questions That Congress Forgot to Ask Baseball” (via Daniel Kurtzman’s Political Humor site) here.

3. My Way Fix: This Day in History here, Today’s Birthdays here, and Positive Quote here.

4. Top of the News Fix: Pope conscious, in grave condition here, Schaivo’s family plans separate funerals here, Assisted suicide bill coming to California here, Pat Buchanan doused with salad dressing at Western Michigan here, and Jobless rate drops to 5.2% here.

5. Terri Schiavo Fix: David Limbaugh believes the judicial execution of Terri Schiavo could awaken a sleeping giant here; Pat Buchanan believes, as I do, that Terri was executived here; and the Susan B. Anthony List provides a link for you to send a message to Terri’s family here.

6. Opinion Fix: Gerard Baker/London Times (“Loony Right” cooling heels), Seth Faison/Slate (Governator gets serious), John J. Miller/National Review (Dumb Daylight-Saving Time), Mark A. Thiessen/National Review (Pope still teaching), and Tony Blankley/Washington Times (“Scandalous” Internet).

Q&A — with CDADave

Question, from CDADave: Dave, maybe we can give you our credit card numbers, and then you can charge us each 25 cents each time we swear on the blog. I’ve been in some bars that charge for swearing! With everything that’s been happening in the news lately, someone’s bound to get rich.

DFO: Let’s do it this way … the cussing’s free. But it’ll cost $100 to get back on the blog afterward. In that way, ya gotta ask yourself: Do you feel lucky? Hunh, punk? BTW, I prefer debit cards.)

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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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