Advertise Here

Huckleberries Online

Archive for April 2009

Honest George Wild Card — 4/30/09

On this day in history: in 1789, George Washington took office as the nation’s first president. And, In 1945, Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun committed suicide. Also, Willie Nelson is celebrating birthday No. 76. And we’re observing National Honesty Day in recognition of Washington’s inaugaration. In the news this afternoon, scientists say they are at least 6 months away from being able to produce a swine flu vaccine in large quantities here. Now, to replay the Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 4/30/09

Amy Pryle, age 3, reacts as a Grey Pansy butterfly lands on her nose at the Natural History Museum’s Butterfly Jungle exhibition in London earlier today. The Butterfly Jungle exhibition recreates a living rainforest environment, where tropical butterflies roam freely and other insects are display. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)

Chatterbox: Seldom Sick Until Now

Chatterbox: I have had to use up a large portion of my accumulated sick leave since I had a mastectomy in early March, a biopsy on my right femur earlier this month and began chemo today.  I’ve used up almost all of my sick leave and will begin using my comp and vacation hours soon.  Up until a couple months ago, I rarely got sick.  I would take an hour of leave here & there for the various yearly doctor appointment and twice a year dentist appointment. But I hated it when co-workers would come in sick.  Without a doubt, someone else in the office would catch the bug and spread it all around.

DFO: Keep Chatterbox in your thoughts and prayers as she goes through chemotherapy treatment.

FHB: My Kingdom For A Parking Spot

Frum Helen Back: I had a lady get furious with me in that parking lot when I unknowingly took the spot she wanted. As she yelled obscenities at me I nicely apologized and told her I would move my car. With that she sped off to find another spot, still filled with rage. I practically ran into the hospital to the elevator because I was scared to death she might get on the same elevator with me. Some people are just way to sensitive about parking spaces. But then, maybe she was headed for the Psychiatric Ward.

Question: Have you ever been involved in an argument over a spot in a parking lot?

PM Huckleberries — 4/30/09

Coeur d’Alene High baseball player J.J. Turbin is shown at a recent practice. He’s a multi-sport star with a 4.1 GPA and a deep religious faith. Greg Lee tells you about the young star in his weekly SR sports feature here. Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review.

PM Scanner Traffic — 4/30/09

  • 5:41 p.m. R/P reports that a man is urinating in front of his Seltice Way construction company. Suspect is wearing a cowboy hat, tan hoodie, and Levi jacket.
  • 5:18 p.m. 2YO child has ingested almost an entire bottle of Ibuprofen on Promenade Loop/Post Falls.
  • 5:03 p.m. Car fire @ Shell gas pumps, 4100 Expo Parkway & Jacklin/Post Falls. Fire is out. Car still smoking.
  • 4:37 p.m. 69YO woman has fallen in the alley behind 307 E. Mullan Ave/Post Falls.
  • 4:08 p.m. R/P reports possible out-of-control slash burn @ English Point & Lancaster, next to a recreation area. But Forest Service responds that it’s a prescribed burn.
  • 3:37 p.m. A vehicle that has been racing around neighborhood is now parked in 2100 block of James Crow/Hayden.
  • 3:20 p.m. Tina @ Black Sheep wants to speak to marine deputy re: requirements for boat throwables.
  • 2:53 p.m. Smoke is pouring from a truck w/double trailers on the onramp of I/90, MP 17.
  • AM Scanner Traffic, more PM below

Moscow Nearly Nude Bike Ride Friday

A number of bicycling events are planned in Moscow for May to commemorate National Bike Month, starting with the first-ever Nearly Naked Bike Ride on Friday. Riders will meet at 5:30 p.m. at Friendship Square. Cyclists are invited to clean out their closets of clothing to get rid of and wear as many layers of clothes as possible. Prior to the ride at 6, riders will remove as many clothes as they feel comfortable riding in (no nudity, please). The shed clothing will be donated to the Sojourner’s Alliance thrift shop. The guided ride will travel through Moscow on a preselected route. The ride is expected to last 30 to 45 minutes/Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question (for JeanC, Digger, Moscow Minidoka): What will you being doing around 5:30 p.m. tomorrow?

KMC Lot Incident Leads To Arrest

Richard Lloyd Vivian, 50, of Coeur d’Alene, was charged with aggravated assault and taken to jail in a parking lot incident reminiscent of a scene from the movie, “Fried Green Tomatoes.” According to a Coeur d’Alene police report, Vivian was waiting for a vehicle to exit a handicapped parking spot in the north lot of Kootenai Medical Center about 11:38 a.m. today, when another vehicle zipped into the space before him. After the driver left his car, Vivian rammed the parked car with his Jeep SUV. Then, Vivian quickly backed his car up, almost hitting a pedestrian. No injuries were reported. The other two vehicles were unoccupied. Total damages to the three vehicles is estimated at $2000. Vivian was standing near his car when officers arrived. He told police that he thought the parking spot was his. In “Fried Green Tomatoes,” the character played by Kathy Bates repeatedly rammed a convertible Volkswagon driven by two uppity young women that speeded into a parking spot she’d been waiting for/Huckleberries Online.

Probably Swine Flu Case In K-County

Get Adobe Flash player
KJRB and PHD’s Taggart re: local swine flu case

A Kootenai County woman in her 60s who recently traveled to Texas has become the first probable case of H1NI (swine) flu sent by the Idaho State Laboratory to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for confirmation. The woman is recovering and did not require hospitalization, according to the Panhandle Health District. “This is a strong reminder to everyone of the importance of practicing respiratory etiquette and good hygiene to protect themselves and others,” said Lora Whalen, director of Family and Community Health for the Panhandle Health District/Huckleberries Online. PHD news release here.

Vinyl Collector’s Trove Needs Home

stands in the basement of his home Wednesday. He is being evicted from his modest South Hill home and is wondering how he will store his massive record collection estimated at more than 100,000 albums, mostly vinyl, but including CDs, posters and other collectibles. Doug Clark’s SR story here. (Jesse Tinsley/Spokesman-Review)

Question: Are you still hanging onto a treasured record album or two that you can’t part with? Which album is it?

LPOSD Sends Swine Flu Letter Home

The (Lake Pend Oreille School District’s) letter to parents does not address district policy regarding student absences – currently, a student who misses more than 9 days in a semester is in danger of losing their credits. … Superintendent Dick Cvitanich stated in an interview that the district has “made no decisions on attendance. However, we do review attendance and reasonable excuses at each school when determining credit/excessive absences. When a student exceeds the limit much discussion takes place regarding reason, efforts to keep up with school work, other absences throughout the year. In short, although there are limits to absences, each one is reviewed individually”/Trish Gannon, River Journal. More including copy of school district letter here.

Question: Any parents out there receive a letter from another school district re: swine flu outbreak?

Officials: Bloomsday Show Will Go On

After consulting with the Spokane Regional Health District, Bloomsday will continue as planned Sunday, officials announced this afternoon. The health district said there is no need to alter or cancel Bloomsday events because of swine flu concerns, according to a Bloomsday press release. However, health district officials urge those feeling ill to not participate, the release said/Bert Caldwell, SR. More here.

Question: Do you plan to run Bloomsday this year? How often have you participated in the Spokane event in the past?

Spokane Airport Traffic Down 15%

Item: Airport traffic down 15 percent this year/SR 

More Info: Spokane International Airport reported a 15 percent decline in passengers in the first quarter of the year versus the same period in 2008. In the first three months of the year, the airport handled 703,541 passenger boardings, down from 768,961 a year ago. March traffic was down 13.6 percent over March 2008, the airport said today.

Question (for North Idaho Hucksters): Is use of the airport the principal reason you travel to Spokane? If not, what is?

Huckleberries INW Best — 4/30/09

Corky Loo, left, and Glenn Shea make minor repairs as they prepare a fishing dock for spring fishing at Winchester Lake State Park, even as winter makes a statement Wednesday in Winchester, Idaho. (AP Photo/Lewiston Tribune, Barry Kough)

High Noon: Stay Home When Sick?

In an internal SR memo today, Editor Gary Graham urged sick staffers to stay home. Quoth: We have sick days for a reason. I know that it’s often difficult to just stay home. We all feel responsibilities to our jobs and to our co-workers. And many times we just feel plain guilty about resting on the couch instead of going to work. I try to set an example by staying home when I have a cold, sore throat, etc. But I confess that I’ve come to work with my share of illnesses.” He concluded by mentioning the current swine flu scare and saying that “staying home is being considerate of your co-workers.” Also, he tossed in an “I mean it” to emphasize his point.

Question: Do you have a difficult time staying home when you’re sick?

Dems Blast House Adjournment Try

Democrats from the House and Senate held a news  conference this morning to object to the House Republicans’ move last night to attempt to unilaterally adjourn the legislative session/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

HBO Poll: American-Made Vehicles

HMO: Biden’s Lips Too Loose

IMHoffsuite: Our wonderful vice president, Joe Biden, the master of talking before thinking, today said he would tell his family not to fly or ride subways, cause of the flu situation. Great words to hear for the airlines, hotels, etc that rely on travelers for their business. Stupid comment to make, imo. But, it is only one of several for him. Story here.

Question: Do you find VP Joe Biden’s shoot-from-the-hip candor refreshing or embarrassing?

AM Scanner Traffic — 4/30/09

Redux: At 1 p.m. Wednesday, Scanner Traffic published an item re: that car fire that destroyed a Dodge Nitro here. Now, you might like to see video of the fire provided by the Timberlake Fire Protection District. In the first of the three videos, you’ll hear an explosion of the car’s gas tank as the fire truck pulls up the scene here.

  • 11:59 a.m. A mother and her daughter are separated after a physical fight on the 2500 block of Apperson/CdA.
  • 11:38 a.m. R/P reports that a driver is ramming parked cars in KMC’s north lot. Update (11:47 a.m.) Suspect driver is now standing alongside his Jeep Laredo. CPD Blue report.
  • 10:49 a.m. Ralph @ Worley Fire reports the theft of items from the fire boat.
  • 10:38 a.m. Officer who responded to a Fernan complaint re: a speeding commercial vehicle said he saw no traffic violations after watching the town for a half hour.
  • 10:31 a.m. A CdA bank is nervous that someone in a Bronco with tinted windows is casing the place by driving in and out of the parking lot.
  • 10:28 a.m. R/P reports that an International Water Truck that is parked at the Spirit Lake boat launch doesn’t have license plates.
  • 9:09 a.m. Michelle wants to talk to an officer re: dog killing her chickens.
  • 9:05 a.m. A vicious brown-and-white boxer of pitbull, with an eye patch, is biting other dogs. It’s now in the alley in the 1600 block of 2nd Street.

Quotable Quote: Palouse Prostitution

“To be honest with you, we live in a university town and most people give it away for free. There isn’t a market” — Pullman Police Commander Chris Tennant re: Lewiston Tribune story re: possible prostitution being advertised on CraigsList on the Palouse. Story here.

Question: Bent thought the comment by Commander Tennant was “stupid.” Sisyphus found it “refreshingly honest.” What do you think?

In The News: Car Rams Spectators

A car ploughs through spectators in Apeldoorn, Netherlands, this morning. A speeding car raced toward an open bus carrying Queen Beatrix and her family during celebrations for the national Queen’s Day holiday, careening through spectators. Dutch television says two people were killed and about a dozen injured. The small black car appeared to be deliberately heading at high speed toward the royal bus and passed within a few meters before it plowed into a stone monument. About 20 people were seen flying through the air after the car swerved across police railings, where crowds of people lined five or six deep to see the royal family pass on its way to a palace on Thursday. The TV put the number of casualties at 14. (AP Photo/Robin Utrecht, Pool)

Question: It’s rare to find a photo like this one the AP wire, showing a possible assassination attempt in progress. But is something like this too graphic to publish here?

Fort Boise: No Joy In Midvale

But Moyle preceded Clement, as did also Nonini
And the former was a hoodoo, while the latter was a flake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat;
For there seemed but little chance of Clement getting to the bat.

(Tom Von Alten’s superb Fort Boise spin on “No Joy In Mudville” continues here.)


ITHO: Idaho Must Outshout Aryans

Butler (photo) is dead, but unfortunately, his legacy lingers. Some Butler followers want to hijack Idaho and reclaim it as their world headquarters for hatred. Group leaders won’t say how many members they have recruited. But an Associated Press story about the recruiting efforts quickly got picked up across the region and as far away as the New York Times and the Boston Globe. In an age of Web links and social media, a story can move rapidly. And that means we cannot afford complacency. Idaho needs to speak up, proactively, forcefully and swiftly. Our state needs to shout down -again - anyone who would paint Idaho as a racist enclave. This isn’t us/Idaho Statesman Editorial Board. More here.

Question: Did the one or two Aryans in the Lake City achieve their purpose by gaining national attention for their middle-of-the-night literature distribution?

CdA Schools Still Hurting Financially

Item: Coeur d’Alene School District may declare financial emergency despite passage of levy/Maureen Dolan, CdA Press

More Info: Since January they have identified $3.2 million in reductions for the next fiscal year that begins July 1. Another $1.9 million needs to be shaved for a balanced budget. The supplemental levy approved by voters April 21 is $1 million less than the expiring levy it replaces. Some teachers were upset that the district chose to trim the levy amount rather than campaign for the higher existing amount.

Question: Should Coeur d’Alene school officials have asked for at least another $1M for the easily passed school levy, if they knew they would stil be facing a financial crisis?

Spokane Man Likely Has Swine Flu

Item: Swine flu has likely arrived: In Washington: Spokane resident, back from California, among six probable cases/John Stucke, Jonathan Brunt, and Sara Leaming, SR

More Info: A Spokane man in his 40s is among six Washington state residents who probably have swine flu, health officials said Wednesday night. The officials have been unable to interview the man, who hasn’t returned their phone calls. They don’t know if he is married or has children in local schools. Three of the other likely infected state residents are in King County, and two are in Snohomish County. There have been no confirmed cases of swine flu in Idaho

Question: Does the probability that a Spokane man has swine flu heighten your concern about the spreading health threat?

PM Huckleberries — 4/30/09

In one of the strangest moments yet in this year’s most unusual legislative session, the House finished its calendar and attempted to adjourn sine die, which means without a day to come back. But when the House sent its formal delegation to the Senate to inform it that the House was adjourning, no one was there - it was nearly 9 at night/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

APhoto Of The Day — 4/30/09

World’s No 1 ranking Zhang Yining of China keeps eye on the ball during a match against Nikoleta Stefanova of Italy in the World Table Tennis championships in Yokohama, Japan, Thursday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)

HBO Poll Sez … Dead Tie

You Merry Hucksters are exactly split re: your concern about the swine flu pandemic. 49.6% of you responded to a question about the flu by saying you were either very (18 respondents) or a little (39 respondents) concerned. And another 49.6% responded by saying “no” (29 respondents) or “heck no” (28 respondents). Actually, the no’s had it, if you consider that one person was totally unconcerned and marked: “What swine flu?”

Sixty Ain’t Old If You’re A Tree

The pyramids in their well-worn track
Have timeless stood so free.
And to virgin stands of tamarack
Sixty’s young if you’re a tree.

The redwood forest ages hence
Will soar so breathlessly.
One thousand years have spoken since:
Six decades’ short to me.

(John Austin’s complete poem for JeanieS’s birthday below)

CindyH: Why I Still (Heart) HBO

1) Aliasjax “cone of silence” cutline made me spew my beverage.
2) Where else could I read about an ISP officer removing a strainer from I-90?
3) The HBO Poll feature is fun and offers instant gratification.
4) No other blog featured this tidbit: “There’s either a “contained cow” or a “contained chow” on Tudor Drive.”
5) On this date 4/29/09 KageMann was commended for his sensitivity. I’m pretty sure that’s never happened ANYWHERE else before. Full post below.

DFO: CindyH nailed it. Yesterday was magical. And fun. I hope you enjoy HBO, too.

Liz: Men Also Can Get Short End Of Stick

Liz: I’m gonna open a can o’ worms here and point out that MEN also get the short end of the stick in various ways. I think that instead of genderizing the whole issue, we really just need to refer to “relational violence”. Also, while adult women don’t usually rape adult men, a certain percentage of child abuse is in the form of women molesting boys. I just cringe when I see events such as this one because they make it sound like women are ALWAYS the victims and men ALWAYS the perps, when really, there are simply a lot of screwed up people out there doing stuff to other people.

Question: Do you agree/disagree with Liz’s point?

Taryn: Don’t Look To Avista For Help

Taryn Hecker: I’m delighted that Avista’s CEO is putting warm and fuzzy and sympathetic letters out to the community in the form of half-page and full-page ads saying that Avista will work with people in these tough economic times, but when you call up and ask about payment arrangements it couldn’t be further from the truth. The proposal they gave me was something like this: Pay us $500 this week and another $100 next week and we won’t shut off your power. And yes, they will take a credit card.

Question: Anyone out there with something nice to say about Avista?

Arpie: It Ain’t That Way, Mr. Bond

Arpie (re: 007’s Wednesday AM post here)To start with, the school I’m in now, is the first one that has an art teacher, I know of no other elementary schools in the state that have one- although I’m sure there are some. Our art teacher is not a certified teacher so she doesn’t get paid much, but due to the fundraising by our PTA who values the importance of the arts, we have her. She is a blessing. Another thing I’ve never seen in Idaho Schools is a school nurse. The book I was reading to my class this week had a scene taking place in the nurse’s office, and I had to stop and explain to my class that some schools have a nurse available for when they are sick or hurt. In Idaho, the blessed, but again untrained and underpaid, secretaries handle this duty. Full post below.

Question: Do you think Arpie’s experience is typical of Idaho teachers?

Anderson: Avoiding Swine Flu Panic

Nick Anderson/Houston Chronicle

JeanieS Birthday Wild Card — 4/29

You should know by now that JeanieS turned 60 today here. But did you know that Beth Bollinger/Accidental Rabbit Trails clocked another birthday yesterday here? Congrats to both. Now, for this evening’s news: A 777 made an emergency landing at Sea-Tac here. A woman believes her father was the infamous Zodiac Killer here. WHO ratchet’s up the swine flu alert level here. And the Wild Card remains in play …

PS: Priggee’s Swine Debt

You can see political cartoonist Milt Priggee’s work regularly in the Seattle Views section of the Seattle P-I here. And the SR’s Today In Photos here.

Do You Know Your Historical Figures?

You can find a fun test of your historical knowledge by clicking onto this link provided by Cis/Simple Mind here. (You can find the correct answers by holding your cursor over the historical figure you try to identify.)

Nonini: ‘I Don’t Hate Teachers,’ But …

Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d’Alene, the House education chairman and sponsor of HB 373, told the House, “Counter to everything you might read in the newspaper, I don’t hate teachers - I admire teachers. I think it’s an admirable profession.” But he said no other state employees get an early retirement incentive. “In a time of budget constraints … we need to try to keep as much money in the classroom as possible,” Nonini told the House/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

Huckleberries PM — 4/29/09

Idaho Gov. C.L. Butch Otter greets constituents outside a meeting room at the Red Lion Inn after speaking at the Rotary Luncheon today in Lewiston. (AP Photo/Lewiston Tribune, Kyle Mills)

APhoto Of The Day — 4/29/09

Cyclists take cover from the rain in public phone booths in Rio Branco, Brazil, Tuesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Karel Navarro)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. Facing harsh budget cuts, U.S. CIA operatives overseas have returned to the use of 1960s era technology, the “cone-of-silence,” to hold clandestine meetings — Aliasjax.
  • 2. Bob Nonini’s latest teacher torture device, designed to make teachers feel good about working 2000 hours per year and appreciate their State funded opportunity — RedMan.
  • 3. Bike helmets are compulsary in Brazil, whether they fit or not — Marmitetoasty.
  • HM: John Austin

PM Scanner Traffic — 4/29/09

At about 1 p.m. today, the Timberlake Fire Protection District was dispatched to a vehicle fire on Highway 95, just south of Silverwood. Firefighters arrived to find a 2008 Dodge Nitro fully involved. But the driver was safe. The driver reported that the transmission light went on and the vehicle started to loose power. She pulled to the side of the road and flames appeared from under the vehicle. More photos here.

  • 5:38 p.m. Husband in Apperson/Elmwood area has grabbed a rope and entered field behind the house, saying he’s going to hang himself.
  • 5:29 p.m. ISP officer removes strainer from I-90 @ M/P 4.
  • 4:58 p.m. R/P reports metal shelving across both I-90 lanes b/tn M/P 4 & 5.
  • 4:48 p.m. Post Falls parks workers report two males with suspicious items in their backpacks and holding machetes are walking up a Q’emlin Park trail.
  • 4:11 p.m. Woman suspects drug activity in a boarded house @ Harrison & B/CdA.
  • 4:06 p.m. Resident of Collingwood Avenue/Post Falls reports that a drunken man keeps trespassing on his property. PFPD Blue responds that the man is known to be ornery.
  • More below

Briefs: PFPD Blue Seek Possible Perv

Post Falls police are looking for a man who tried to entice four juveniles into his silver or white Honda Saturday night. The youths told police that the man drove up to them at Syringa & Horsehaven at about 9 o’clock and told them to get into the car. According to a police report, he threatened to follow two of the teens until they got into his car. The juveniles fled the area and sought help from a local off-duty officer. The suspect car is described as a newer Honda Civic 4-door, with tinted windows, and a spoiler on the rear trunk and dark rims. The youths could not provide a description of the driver. Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact Post Falls police, 773-3517.

Simple Mind: When Dancin’ Stops

I use to love to go out and do the fast dances, and even the slow ones. I was never really good at it, but I tried and I had fun. I didn’t do as bad as Elaine on Seinfeld, but I was about average or lower. Think, white girl has no rhythm. So what stopped? I don’t know, as I look back at it. I guess it was when I went to work, at the nursing home. My days or nights off, which ever I was working, had a lot to do with it, It took 6 weeks to get a weekend off. And there was so much more I rather do than go to a bar and dance/Cis, From A Simple Mind. More here.

Question: Well, do you still dance?

Nonini ‘Golden Parachute’ Bill Wins OK

The House Ways & Means Committee has voted 4-3 in three straight party-line votes to introduce three new bills: A compromise on election consolidation, with the state covering school district and local government costs; a concurrent resolution calling for an interim committee to study transportation funding; and a new version of Rep. Bob Nonini’s education fundning bill, this time to phase out a teacher early retirement program. Minority Democrats on the panel objected in all three votes/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

ISP Report From AM H95 Fatality

“(33YO Jamie A.) Neverdahl was traveling northbound on US95, when he crossed the median just south of Wilbur Ave. Neverdahl then traveled northbound in the southbound lanes for a few hundred yards before striking several trees on the embankment. Vehicle came to rest on it’s top and the driver was ejected. The driver died at the scene, investigation continues. Next of kin has been notified”/Updated ISP report of Highway 95 fatality today. Report here. KREM2 slide show and video.

Walking A Mile In Her Shoes

Men wearing high heel shoes take part in the recent Walk-A-Mile in Her Shoes event in downtown Roseburg, Ore. About 100 men took part in the one mile walk to raise awareness about sexual violence and rape. (AP Photo/The News-Review, Robin Loznak)

Question: Is society more sensitive to the terrible issues of sexual violence and rape that it was a decade ago?

Bayview Bob: Raise Your Own Eggs

Bayview Bob: “One dozen store brand grade AA large eggs: Albertsons - $1.79, WinCo - $1.32, Fred Meyer – $1.69, Wal-Mart - $1.50.” Way too much money. A store bought egg is a joke. It has no color or flavor. Raise your own in your backyard. It is so easy! Have a real egg sometime and you will NEVER buy that crap they sell at the super market again. I will give you a 1/2 dozen of real eggs if you don’t believe me.

Question: Did you spend any part of your childhood living on a ranch, farm, or dairy, eating home-grown or produced food? How does that rural life compare to yours today?

CraigsList Killer Has Palouse Fallout

Item: CraigsList Killer affects prostitution on the Palouse/David Johnson, Lewiston Tribune

More Info: Moscow Assistant Police Chief David Duke and Pullman Police Commander Chris Tennant confirmed that their departments are fully aware of the local Craigslist entries and that prostitution, at some minimal level, may be behind the entries. But so far, said the two, neither department has taken any active action. “We talked to the prosecutor about setting up some kind of stings on it,” Duke said, “but currently we haven’t proceeded with it.” “To be honest with you,” added Tennant, “we live in a university town and most people give it away for free. There isn’t a market.”

Question: Should police departments — even in small towns like Moscow and Pullman — crack down on prostitution? Or do you consider prostitution a high-priority crime?

Crump: A Birthday To Ignore

Years ago, as a younger and far more foolish man, I listed my wife’s age in a newspaper column. That’s not a mistake a guy makes twice. So this week, when Victoria will celebrate A Significant Birthday, I’m at a complete loss for just what to say. When I tell co-workers and friends that I’m planning to take Friday off, they ask why. If I tell them why, they want a number. So I pretend that I didn’t hear the question, or that I speak only Portuguese. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it/Steve Crump, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

Question (for the guys): What did you say the last time you found yourself in the dog house?

HBO Poll: Swine Flu

Huckleberries INW Roundup — 4/29

Spokane Police Officer Frank Erhart, confronts an angry homeowner who had just discovered his house at 2932 N. stone of had been extensively damaged in a fire Tuesday evening. Two family pets, a dog and a cat, died in the blaze. The fire is under investigation. (Colin Mulvany/Spokesman-Review)

High Noon: Stung!

I had never been stung by a bee or a wasp. Perhaps for that reason, I’m very afraid of them. Many, many years ago, when I was quite young, I was at a picnic north of Los Angeles, eating apple pie. A bee landed on my lip, and walked around for what seemed like five minutes, but was probably only a few seconds, before it flew away. Anyway, Friday I reached into the mailbox, to grab the mail. As I grabbed onto the collection of mostly junk mail, I felt something like a cross between electric shock and fire in my finger—and then I saw the wasp in between the envelopes/Clayton Cramer. More here.

Question: When and where were you last stung by a wasp? How bad did it hurt?

AM Scanner Traffic — 4/29/09

  • 11:41 a.m. R/P is following a white Ford pickup driven by 2 men and filled with manhole covers along Diagonal toward Rathdrum. R/P sez the 2 are acting suspicious.
  • 11:37 a.m. Motorist reports almost being hit by a dump truck that ran a stop sign and continued north of Ramsey Road from Garwood.
  • 11:12 a.m. There’s either a “contained cow” or a “contained chow” on Tudor Drive, east of Avondale Lake.
  • 10:58 a.m. A Rathdrum home, 8151 Colorado, is filled w/smoke. No flames are showing.
  • 10:15 a.m. Citizen dispute reported at the Harmony House
  • 10:11 a.m. 2 males in a pickup @ Clagstone & Highway 54/Athol reportedly are making off w/railroad ties and/or a steel conducting mechanism.
  • 10:01 a.m. ISP reports a minor injury from a crash between a semi & a passenger car on Highway 95 & Garwood.
  • 9:49 a.m. R/P reports a car going the wrong way on the onramp @ I-90 & Highway 41.
  • 9:33 a.m. Female suffering a panic attack @ the Flying J/Post Falls.
  • 9:30 a.m. A man @ Sysco’s/Post Falls believes he has been suffering a heart attack for 45 minutes.

JeanieS: Waking Up Old

So, I woke up this morning, my birthday morning, as an older woman. Older than yesterday when I was 59. And somehow jumped into another decade as I have just turned 60. Ok, now I can tell you that I was being kind of optimistically frivolous when I made up my 60 reasons I am excited about turning 60. It’s more like, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. I say it – 60 years old – and think to myself, uh, no that’s not me. That is not who I am. Age doesn’t describe the inner me. I am ageless in my mind – and you ask my two sons and they agree. I’m playful and goofy and pensive and romantic and introspective and soul searching. Has nothing to do with age/JeanieS, Nuts & Nonsense. More here.

Question: You can use this thread to wish a happy birthday to JeanieS. And/or to let other Merry Hucksters and her know at which age you felt “old”?

CdA Crash Victim Identified

Motorist Renee Nichols snapped this photo of the fatal accident on Aqua this morning. The ISP has released the name of the man killed in the morning rollover @ Highway 95, just past Prairie,  early this morning: Jamie A. Neverdahl, 33, of Post Falls. SR story hereISP report here.

Retiree: Otter Deserves A Spanking

“If I had been your mother, I would have come up there and spanked your little butt,” said the retiree (Doris Baker) from Indian Valley. “You say that you’re for the people of this state, then you better start showing it and don’t let the Forest Service and these environmental groups tell us what to do”/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Do you agree that Gov. Butch Otter deserves to be spanked for his performance as th state’s chief executive this legislative session?

ITHO: Nonini Enjoys Teacher Pain

No Idaho teacher will be surprised by Nonini’s bald expression of resentment toward “those people” in the classroom. It helps explain the motivation behind much of what he has done as a legislator, and probably helps explain why Speaker Lawerence Denney appointed him to head the Education Committee. When speakers support the state’s public school system, they put education supporters in charge of that committee. When they don’t, they don’t/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Do you agree with opinionator Fisher that House GOP leadership appointed Nonini to chair the Education Committee because he’s against public education?

Barack @ 100 — Prez Hits Milestone

In this Sept. 1, 2008, file photo, then-Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., speaks at a rally at the Marcus Amphitheater in Milwaukee. Today, he reaches an important milestone date for presidents — 100 days in office. Story here. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, FILE)

DFO: Comments by RedMan, Idawa, BlueinIdaho, & Brand X Ranch are included in a roundup of reaction of Obama’s first 100 days that begins on the SR’s Page One today. Link here.

Question: What is the most significant change that Barack Obama has brought about in his first 100 days in office?

Avista Doing Well As Bad Times Roll

Item: Avista’s quarterly earnings up 23 percent/Becky Kramer, SR

More Info: Avista Corp. reported improved first quarter earnings, citing revenue growth from higher electric and natural gas rates, as well as growth in the number of customers the utility serves. Avista reported net income of $31 million, or 57 cents per share, compared to net income of $25.2 million, or 47 cents per share, during the first quarter of 2008. The results were released this morning.

Question: Aren’t you, ahem, delighted that Avista’s doing so well, when so many others are struggling in our sour economy?

NI POST Too Pricey For St. Maries

When St. Maries Police chief Fred Cruzan sends an officer to the police academy for certification in October, the officer will drive 8 hours to the state’s Meridian academy instead of the 50-minute drive to attend the academy in Coeur d’Alene. Although it is less than an hour away, the Coeur d’Alene Police Officer Standards and Training (P.O.S.T.) Academy is too expensive, said Chief Cruzan. The state-run Coeur d’Alene academy costs between $1,200 and $1,500 per officer, but officers can train free at the Meridian academy. Benewah County Sheriff Robert Kirts won’t send his officers to Coeur d’Alene either. “I can’t afford $1,200 per hit,” said the sheriff/Ralph Bartholdt, St. Maries Gazette-Record. More here.

Question: Despite the higher cost, do you think it’s still a good thing overall to have a POST academy in North Idaho?

NIC Purchase Of Mill Site Nears End

Item: NIC mill acquisition nears end: Land cleanup one of major hurdles to closing the deal/Maureen Dolan, CdA Press

More Info: North Idaho College is moving closer to gaining possession of the DeArmond Mill site. The college, its foundation and lending sources are ironing out the final details of a complex land transaction expected to be completed sometime this summer, more than a year after Stimson Lumber Company, current owner of the 17-acre site, processed its last log at the mill that once stood adjacent to the college. They’re getting ready to clear one of the major hurdles to closing the deal — making sure the land has a clean bill of health.

Question: What will the Education Corridor mean to Coeur d’Alene 25 years from now?

AM Huckleberries — 4/29/09

Scott MacDonald of the UIdaho Argonaut points out that Idaho has the 7th highest suicide rate in the nation. He looks at the problem as it affects UI students here. Photo illustration Jake Barber/UI Argonaut.

HBO Poll Sez … Goofing Off

In the HBO Poll Tuesday, a plurality of 32% (17 of 53 respondents) said that their top worry in sending a kid off to college is that s/he will goof off. Another 23% (12 of 53) were concerned said child would party too much. And 17% (9 of 53) feared what would happen when the child encountered values different from those s/he learned at home.

JeanieS: Not Visiting CdA For 31 Cents

JeanieS: Here’s the conundrum. I can buy gas in Spokane at $2.29 a gallon for a total in my 12-gallon tank of $27.48. Or, I can buy gas in Coeur d’Alene at $2.09 a gallon (.20 less per gallon) for a total of $25.08, a savings of $2.40. However, in the 30 mile round trip drive, using one gallon, I will end up only saving a grand total of 31 cents, plus an hour out of my day. I love you guys – but 31 pennies doesn’t put food on my table.

Question: What generally brings you Spokane Merry Hucksters to Spokane?

JohnA: Bad Times Help Capital Projects

John Austin: DFO, did you notice that the Fourth Street Improvement Project bid came in $70,000 under the engineer’s estimate? That’s a trend we’re seeing around north Idaho as the economy has hit that sector hard. In Kingston, the low bid for water system improvements came in $400,000 under the estimate. Good time for governments to get those capital projects going, I’d say.

Question: John points out a silver lining in these bad economic times. Can you think of another silver lining that’s happening to you during the recession?

MM: How Did Nonini Get Chairmanship

Moscow Minidoka: Why does Nonini hate teachers so much? And how does someone who HATES TEACHERS, has NO CHILDREN, and thus has had NO INVOLVEMENT in public education get to be the chair of the committee? Do we have a Mormon in charge of the State Liquor Dispensary? How did this guy get elected? And how did he get this committee chairmanship? I’d articulate my honest feelings about Nonini, but DFO would delete the post - I’d better leave it at that.

Question: Do you think a legislator w/o children or college degree should be chairman of the House Education Committee?

007: Lots Of Excess In Education System

James Bond: I don’t know what it’s like up there, but the sheer number of sports teams in high schools has got to be double what it was when I was in school, and I was at a huge high school. I walk into new schools now, and they are soooooooooooooo much nicer and have a lot more stuff than we did. I live in Boise now, and within 1 mile of my home are 3 elementary schools, only one of which is anywhere near capacity. We have a junior high about 2 miles away that is maybe 50% capacity. I see a lot of things I don’t like in government, but our education funding system is about the worst. There are areas where more money is needed, but there are a lot of areas where I see incredible excess.

Question: Do you agree w/James Bond that the Idaho education system has a lot of areas that contain “incredible excess”?

Heller: Higher Credit Card Rates

Joe Heller/Hellertoons

Wild Card/Tuesday — 4/28/09

In the news this evening, Repub turncoat Arlen Specter condemned Jim Jeffords’ switch in 2001 here. Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius is confirmed as health secretary here. Obama orders review of that flight that frightened New York and cost $328,835 here. Cruise lines are avoiding swine flu-plagued Mexico here. And the latest Wild Card remains in play …

PS: Spirit Lake’s Jenks Helps Beat M’s

Chicago White Sox catcher Corky Miller, left, congratulates relief pitcher Bobby Jenks after their 2-1 win against the Seattle Mariners in the first game of a baseball doubleheader in Chicago this afternoon. Jenks is a former Spirit Lake area ballplayer. The White Sox and M’s are now playing the second game of the twinbill. The Mariners, behind Felix Hernandez, are leading 4-0 in the third inning of the second game here. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

KTVB: Cheapest Groceries In Town

We set out to find out who has the cheapest groceries in town - scoping out WinCo Foods, Wal-Mart, Fred Meyer and of course, Albertsons.  In each store, we took a list of 13 common items – including ground beef, potatoes, some eggs, a box of cereal and more/KTVB. More here.

Question: KTVB in Boise provided the story snippet and link above. However, the idea by the station to find the cheapest grocery store in its area is a good one. Do any of you Merry Hucksters have an idea re: which grocery store in Kootenai County or your community is the least expensive?

PM Headlines — 4/28/09

Despite the on again - off again Spring in North Idaho, fields of wildflowers color the walking trails at Q’emiln Park on the Spokane River in Post Falls/Councilwoman KerriT, OnLocation North Idaho.

APhoto Of The Day — 4/28/09

Filipino children look as scantily clad members of the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, PETA, hold a protest in front of Manila’s Zoo, Philippines on Tuesday. The group is calling for a boycott of Manila Zoo for making animals live like prisoners behind bars. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

Top Cutlines:

  • 1. The Peta girls were somewhat offended when they discovered, hands on, that this was actually a PETTING zoo — Bayview Bob.
  • 2. A fowl mood envelopes Manila’s aviary as youngsters try to stay abreast of the groups latest PETA principal: to rise to their highest level of insignificance —  JohnA.
  • 3. The little Filipino girl tries to focus on the PETA girls as she licks her fingers but can’t seem to get the delicious veal tartare sandwich she had for lunch out of her mind — Poolman.
  • HM: Token

Nonini: Teacher’s ‘Golden Parachute’

Rep. Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d’Alene, blasted an early retirement incentive program for teachers as a “golden parachute” Tuesday, and said teachers who no longer want to teach should “just gracefully retire and go to the golf course.” His comments sparked a protest to House leadership by Democrats on the House Education Committee, which Nonini chairs. They came as Nonini championed a last-minute bill to retroactively eliminate the early-retirement program and make other changes in public school funding - even though the Senate has specifically rejected that idea/Betsy Russell, SR. More here.

Question: What do you think of Nonini’s analysis re: retiring teachers getting a “golden parachute”?

PM Scanner Traffic — 4/28/09

  • 4:56 p.m. Update: Avista has turned the power off @ the Cedar’s parking lot, where a downed power line knocked a propane tank on its side. Also, workers have fixed the propane leak. Bt they’re still working on leak caused by the transformer landing in Lake Coeur d’Alene.
  • 4:42 p.m. R/P is worried that high winds may cause a sole handler with a hose to lose control of a large slash-pile burn @ 25976 Riverview (& Signal Point)
  • 4:03 p.m. Neighbor reports a pitbull is running loose — again — on Walrose Loop/Hayden.
  • 3:46 p.m. Update: Command chief @ Cedar’s is asking for KCSD marine unit to shuttle people at the restaurant back to the shore. KCSD responds: “Unless there’s some kind of medical emergency, it’ll be about 45 minutes to an hour.”
  • 3:27 p.m. A power pole @ Cedar’s restaurant has fallen in the parking lot, hitting a propane tank on the way down. Power lines are down. And the tank appears to be leaking propane.
  • 2:45 p.m. A 68YO woman is unconscious @ Miller’s Market, 31934 5th Ave., checkstand 2.
  • More below
  • All-Female Raining Jane To Perform

    The all-female band Raining Jane will perform at North Idaho College Wednesday, May 6. The band has performed at the college several times and has been well-received by NIC students and community members alike. The rock-folk band is made up of guitarist and cellist Mai loomfield, guitarist Chaska Potter, drummer Mona Tavakoli and bassist/guitarist Becky Gebhardt. All four band members provide vocals and contribute to songwriting. More here.

    Question: Which all-female do you consider to be the best of all time?

    Spokane Blogs Roundup — 4/28/09

    After plummeting from record highs late last year, prices have inched upward ever since January. That’s true across the board, but of course it’s often the differences in prices among regions that attract our attention — the steady difference of 15 to 20 cents a gallon between Spokane and Coeur d’Alene is the one that most often catches our attention. … Experts have said the difference results from a combination of factors: lower gas taxes in Idaho, generally higher wholesale gas prices as it’s pumped west from refineries in Montana, and the possibility that Washington gas retailers may have to raise their prices a bit to make up for business lost of Idaho/Shawn Vestal, Everyday Economy. More here.

    Question: Anyone mind that gas is 20 cents per gallon cheaper in Idaho than Washington?

    Briefs: NIC Sets Beach Cleanup

    Several free events will be held in conjunction with a cleanup of North Idaho College’s Yap-Keehn-Um Beach beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 2. Community members are welcome to help with the cleanup. A barbecue and open beach volleyball will be held following the cleanup. All events are free and open to the public. The events are sponsored by the NIC American Indian Student Alliance, Outdoor Pursuits, NIC’s chapter of Phi Theta Kappa and the Coeur d’Alene Tribe/NIC Press Room.

    DFO’s Animals: Wind-Blown Chihuahua

    Dorothy, left, and Lavern Utley of Rochester Hills, Mich. hold their dog, Tinker Bell Monday in Waterford Township, Mich. Tinker Bell has been reunited with her owners after a 70-mph gust of wind on Saturday picked up the six-pound Chihuahua and tossed her out of sight. (AP Photo/The Detroit News, Mark Hicks)

    Question: Any chihuahua lovers out there? Tell us something re: this breed of dog (other than it’s small, of course)?

    Poll: Nearly 1/2 Afraid Of Losing Job

    Item: Almost half of us worry about losing our jobs/Seattle P-I

    More Info: Two out of every five Washington residents are worried about losing their jobs, according to a survey released Tuesday. The increasing unemployment rate and fears about the economy’s getting worse have made workers more pessimistic, the Washington State Workplace Confidence Survey shows. The survey showed that 40 percent of Washington residents over age 18 and across almost all income levels fear job loss.

    Question: Are you afraid of losing your job?

    IVA Threatens Pols w/Tea Party 2

    Item: Alliance plans Tea Party 2 for Monday to demand that Legislature adjourn/Idaho Values Alliance action alert

    More Info: The Senate has the constitutional authority to call the House back into session next Monday if it chooses, but highly placed sources in the legislature tell me the only reason they would do so is an attempt to force the House to crumple under pressure and become complicit in raising our taxes. So, if the House is forced to come back to town next Monday, at a cost of a cool $30,000 a day to you and me, it will only be because the Senate has joined forces with the governor in trying to push through a tax increase during a recession, a foolish and economically harmful prospect at any time, and inexcusable coming from lawmakers who carry the GOP banner/Bryan Fischer, Idaho Values Alliance. More Action Alert here.

    Question: Would you like to see the forces that staged the Tea Parties around Idaho on April 15 reform to pressure the Idaho Legislature to adjourn?

    Huckleberries INW Roundup: 4/28/09

    Museum of North Idaho director Dorothy Dahlgren, right, talked about their new exhibit about women loggers at the museum in Coeur d’Alene on Friday. Story here. (Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review)

    High Noon: 1st Date w/Mr. Wonderful

    CindyH: On this day in 1985, a handsome helicopter pilot approached me after church on a Sunday evening and asked if I’d like to see a movie with him. We saw “The Purple Rose of Cairo” at the Fox theater, and then had pie and hot chocolate at Shari’s on North Division. We talked until 2 AM. The next day, my mom asked how the date went. I replied, “It was the best first date I’ve ever had.” It wasn’t the last. We’ve been dating ever since :-)

    Question: Do you remember your first date with your spouse or SO?

    AM Scanner Traffic — 4/28/09

    • 11:49 a.m. Construction worker accidentally triggered the fire alarm in the basement of Discovery/Sherman Avenue, CdA.
    • 10 a.m. Grounds keepers at NIC wonder why a fire truck and ambulance has rolled onto campus. College spokeswoman Stacy Hudson tells Huckleberries that an unannounced fire drill was staged at Molstead Library.
    • 9:40 a.m. A commercial vehicle has triangles out after stalling on I-90, M/P 3.5/PF.
    • 9:37 a.m. Resident of Lundy Boulevard/Post Falls reports a black Labrador is trying to get into her yard to attack her dog.
    • 9:33 a.m. R/P reports that a neighbor’s 13 dogs bark constantly.
    • 8:21 a.m. Elderly woman in 2400 block of 16th Avenue/Post Falls reports her chimney is on fire.

    Montana Public Health Notice


    To guard your health

    from flu and grippe,

    don’t kiss your swine

    upon the lip. 


    The Bard of Sherman Avenue

    HBO Poll: Sending A Kid To College

    College Drinking Worries Editor Mom

    Item: UIdaho senior dies from alcohol overdose/Idaho Statesman

    Vickie Holbrook/From The Editor: My son and I had pretty open discussions about what happened in college. In fact, he had a very scary situation occur when one of his classmates drank too much during the fall semester as freshman. My son and friends found him and got him to the hospital. Fortunately, the young man lived and a lot of young college students learned a very hard lesson early on: Friends must watch out for each other.  More here.

    Question: On Monday, Huckleberries Online posted a story in which Playboy declared WSU to be the No. 16 party school in the nation. On the same day, news arrived that a UI senior had died from drinking. Have you talked to your college son or daughter re: the dangers of too much drinking?

    In The News: Specter To Become D?

    In this Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2006 file photo, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, right, speaks with Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, before the start of a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington. Several officials on Tuesday said veteran Sen. Specter intends to switch parties, advancing his own hopes of winning a new term next year while pushing Democrats one step closer to a 60-vote filibuster-resistant majority. Story here. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

    Question: Do you respect a politician who switches parties for political expediency? Or: Is a filibuster-proof Senate good for the country?

    CdA Schools To Trim Sport, Activities

    Item: CdA school district to trim sports, activities 11%: Some upset that cuts being made after passage of $7.8M school levy/Maureen Dolan, CdA Press

    More Info: The district’s proposed entire athletics and activities budget for next year is nearly $1.5 million representing an 11 percent, or $187,000, reduction from the nearly $1.7 million in this year’s budget for activities. The $1.5 million for next year includes the money from the levy and an additional $161,000 from the district’s general fund. “The only misunderstanding was when we said that all building budgets would be cut in half, we meant all building budgets,” Bauman said.

    Question: Do you believe school administrators are being responsible here, in trimming budgets for activities and athletics. Or did they fail to warn that the cuts would be made, despite passage of the school levy?

    ITHO: Nellis’ Hire Method Troubling

    The University of Idaho’s alums and boosters got the president they wanted. But at a cost that should give all Idahoans some pause. The university’s foundation will be allowed to kick in more than a tenth of President Duane Nellis’ $335,000-a-year salary - because the State Board of Education was willing to cast aside policy in order to close a deal. There is a making-things-up-on-the-fly feel to this. Considering the State Board’s past lapses in attention to detail, this is more than a little bit troubling. In fairness to the board, the search for a new U of I president was turning into a fiasco/Idaho Statesman Editorial Board. More here.

    Question: Did the method used by the University of Idaho to hire Duane Nellis make you easy, by allowing the university’s foundation to chip in money to reach an acceptable pay figure?

    JR: Miss California’s Un-PC Answer

    Many have said they were shocked when they heard Prejean’s response. I think I was more shocked to hear she did not give the traditional politically correct answer. Buzzwords that are thrown around whenever controversies like this one arise seem a bit misleading. Politics might be on Miss California’s side. All those attacking Prejean seem to forget, not only is Prejean a so-called bigot, the majority of the state of California, 46 other states and President Barack Obama agree with her. According to a CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll, 55 percent of Americans agree with Prejean. If anything, she was properly representing her state. People need to live with the fact some people have different views. She answered as respectfully as one could and did not attack Perez for his views. CNN contributor Roland Martin recently wrote, “The day we condemn folks for speaking honestly is the day we become a bland society”/Jeffrey Reznicek, UI Argonaut. More here

    Question: What do you think of the flap involving Miss California?

    AM Headlines — 4/28/09

    Tire tracks were cut into Guy Wicks field on UIdaho campus earlier this month when a vehicle was used to knock down a pedestrian sign and tear out turf. According to University of Idaho emergency and security services officer Ryan Bretalotto, there has been an increase in vandalism across the campus. Courtesy Photo.

    HBO Poll Sez … Mixed Results

    In the final tabulation from the weekend toll, 47% (100 out of 214) gave President Barack Obama A’s (61) or B’s (39) for his performance over his first 100 days of office, while 44% (94 of 214) gave him D’s (52) and F’s (42). Only 9% (20) took a middle ground and awarded him C’s. All of which is a good indication that this site has achieved political balance.

    Cis: Wake Me When Swine Flu Blows Over

    Cis: It always amazes me each year, we have a strain of some kind of flu and people go wild. When the death rate comes at 20 to even 100 … it is hard to get excited. When there are over 100,000 dying every year from the common flu … So am I worried? No. And yes, the correct thing to do, be it flu, or colds. is wash your hands, wash your hands, and make dang sure your Dr. and nurses wash their hands if you go. And never have a shot of something you don’t know the side effects.

    Question: We get warned and warned to wash our hands all the time during flu season. Do you?

    BrentA: Hula Hoop w/Best Of ‘Em

    Brent Andrews: Picked up a hula hoop at a church retreat a couple of weeks ago on a lark. I hadn’t seen one in years. To my wife’s dismay and embarassment I proceeded to style that hoop up and down and around and around, until I drew a small crowd of surprised kids. I can send the hoop down to my thighs then bring it up to my chest whirling all the while. I only dropped it when I tried to go below the knee. I don’t know what being an awesome hoola-hooper says about me. There is no cornier thing than a grown man working a hula hoop, but it’s hecka fun.

    Question: What kind of corny thing can you do to embarrass your kids, wife, or friends?

    JohnA: UI In Party League Of Its Own

    JohnA: I remember when Playboy compiled their list in the mid-70s and failed to include the U of I. Many thought it was an honest oversight seeing as how the lower Idaho drinking age encouraged a flood of Wazzu students to cross the border. Anyway, when someone checked with an editor at Playboy, they said they couldn’t include the U of I on their list because they only recognized ‘amateur’ party schools! Made sense to us after that.

    Question: Were you much of a partier in college?

    Otis: KXLY Is Only Network For Me

    OtisGExperience: Kalae Chock … seems like someone who’d be fun to b.s. with at a coffee shop. And, of course, she’s extremely attractive … in an exotic kind of way. I kinda wish they’d find her a new co-host, though… they’re a bit of an odd couple. She’s spunky and fresh, and he’s kinda straight-laced and “same-old.” But then again, I’m a captive audience… KXLY is the only network channel I pick up at my house with those weird extendable wire things. I always hear people talking about “other” channel.

    Question: Which Spokane station do you watch for local news?

    Heller: A Perk To Being Laid Off?

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Swine Flu Wild Card — 4/27/09

    In the news this evening, a jet fly-over of lower Manhattan triggered a panic today here. Fox won’t air Obama’s prime-time press conference Wednesday here. Swine flu delays the Mexico release of ‘Wolverine’ here. The fiancee still stands by accused Craigslist killer here. WHO raises swine flu alert to unprecedented level here. And the Wild Card remains in play …

    Parting Shot — 4/27/09

    Painter Michael D’Antuono has decided not to unveil his controversial painting, “The Truth,” on President Obama’s 100th Day in Office at NYC’s Union Square this week after receiving widespread negative reaction to it. You can read about that here. (PRNewsFoto/NOAH G POP FAM)

    Question: What do you think of the D’Antuono painting?

    CindyH: Which Song Takes You Back?

    CindyH: It happened again. I’m driving down the road when “Babe” by Styxx comes on the radio. Instantly, I’m 15 again, and hearing Ricky Donovan’s voice on the KJRB dedication line. “I’m dedicating this song to Cindy. ‘Cuz, uh. She’s my babe.” Sigh. I’m wondering if other Hucksters out there have songs that work like a time-machine for them?

    JeanieS: My time-machine song is Rod McKuen’s “Jean” from 1969. I got married on December 19, 1969 and my future husband and best man went from piano bar to piano bar the night before in Spokane, constantly requesting that song until the best man got sick and tired of it about the 29th pass.

    Question: “House of the Rising Sun” by Eric Burdon & The Animals takes me back to summer 1966 and a first crush that never went anywhere. Which song takes you back to your Glory Days?

    PM Headlines — 4/27/09

    The historical mural wall in the rotunda of Post Falls City Hall dwarfs visitors like Emily Park of Blackfoot. Town founder Frederick Post is immortalized on the mural, posts Councilwoman KerriT, OnLocation North Idaho.

    APhoto Of The Day — 4/27/09

    Entrants in the Conch Republic Bed Race propel their entry down Duval Street Saturday in Key West, Fla. The wacky event was one of the closing activities in the 10-day long Conch Republic Independence Celebration. The festival commemorates Key West’s 1982 “secession” from America, after the United States established a surprise roadblock at the top of the Florida Keys Overseas Highway ostensibly searching for illegal drugs and aliens. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Florida Keys News Bureau, Rob O’Neal)

    Top Cutlines (Monday):

    • 1. The CAVErs left their monthly meeting a little early to rush Mary Souza down to witness the ribbon cutting at the Kroc Center. It’s rumored that LCDC illegally spent taxpayer dollars on the ribbon, and then donated it to the church-based community center — Bent.
    • 2. JBelle practices with her team in order to make a grand entrance to next year’s Blogfest — Shannon.
    • 3. No conchs were harmed in the production of this image. Any likeness to other conchs, living or dead is purely coincidental. We can’t say the same about the baby seals however, that may or may not be involved in the manufacturing of those MuckLucs. Do not try this at home. This stunt was performed by professional crazy people on a closed track. In the case of a wardrobe malfunction, some items may appear smaller — Bayview Bob.
    • HM: JohnA

    Top weekend cutlines here

    Scanner Traffic — 4/27/09

    • 4:31 p.m. Dalton Gardens resident reports hitting a natural gas line while digging in his yard.
    • 4:03 p.m. Woman believes someone shot out her car windows on Highway 95.
    • 3:48 p.m. An unconscious male was found in the parking lot of the CdA Bingo Casino.
    • 3:26 p.m. 2 14YO juveniles want to see officer re: wallet they found on Centennial Trail.
    • 2:58 p.m. R/P reports seeing a dog almost fall off a pile of debris on the back of a moving pickup twice @ Appleway & Government Way.
    • 2:33 p.m. A canopy flew off a boat on a trailer and possibly hit a red car on I90 & Pleasantview exit area.
    • 2:21 p.m. One of 2 men on the Falls Park bridge is performing lewd acts.
    • 1:46 p.m. Someone at the Ramsey Road transfer station has broken a knee and possibly a fibula by stepping improperly off stairs near the garbage-truck dump area.
    • 1:39 p.m. R/P reports that a driver in a purple Jeep w/temporary Parker Toyota plates is driving recklessly on I-90.
    • 12:33 p.m. An elderly woman is unconscious and possibly not breathing at the Legacy House/Mullan Avenue, Post Falls.
    • 12:31 p.m. R/P has followed a reckless driver into the parking lot of Taco Bell/Appleway and is waiting for an officer to sign a complaint. The other driver is in the restaurant.

    Quotable Quote — JeanC

    Went to the staff recognition awards today and got a certificate for 25 years recognition. Looking at my certificate I got for my 20 I wonder if I will get one someday that isn’t signed by an interim UI president/JeanC’s Cat House & Shooting Gallery.

    EOB: Guv Not Tossing In White Flag

    But Jon Hanian, press secretary for Gov. Butch Otter, said lawmakers are mistaken if they viewed the governor’s letter to them this morning as a surrender on transportation funding. “There’s nothing in that letter that says anything about that he’s walking away from transportation funding,” Hanian said. “That’s not what the governor is doing.” Asked specifically, Hanian said, “It’s not a white flag”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here. Decide for yourself here.

    Butterfly: My Don Johnson Birthday

    A few days ago I mentioned the birthday card I got from Don Johnson. It was 1986. Just at the height of Miami Vice mania. I watched that show every week and had a huge crush on the star. I loved his pink shirts and rolled up jacket sleeves and loafers with no socks. I loved his fast cars and even faster boats. I loved that he had a pet alligator. He was cool. Very cool. Well, very cool in 1986. I even bought his record when it came out/Jen, A Butterfly Moment. More here.

    Question: Did you have a crush on a movie or television star when you were a young teen?

    Swim Spaw Treats Hurting Dogs

    Swim specialist Kendra VanNorman, left, laughs as Lacey pops out of the water with his toy at the Swim Spaw, a Poulsbo, Wash. business. On the right is the dogs owner Susan Perry of Port Orchard. Perry brings in her dogs to the facility for agility training. Janice Hill a veterinary assistant who worked at a clinic in Kingston, saw many dogs, some old and arthritic, others recovering from injuries and surgeries, who they thought might have benefited from low-impact exercise in water just as people with joint problems may find swimming or aquatic aerobics helpful. The existence of therapy pools for dogs dates back at least 13 years, (AP Photo/Kitsap Sun, Larry Steagall)

    Question: What do you think of this Washington business?

    Downtown Group Eyes Green Spaces

    Terry (Cooper, of the Downtown Association) shared that this site has been wonderful for hosting several downtown events.  This year, the Association assumed operational management of Sherman Park and is paying the property taxes.  The Association has been meeting with the owner of Sherman Park to see if there is some way the (Downtown) Association can purchase the property in order to keep it a viable green space in the downtown area for the long-term/Minutes, LCDC strategic planning meeting, April 9.

    Question: Would you want to see an events center for things like a Farmers Market (bulleted item No. 1) be established on McCuen Field?


    ITHO: Tyke On Bike Powered By Love

    As the world worried the other day over its growing energy woes, I saw a small girl suffering through a traditional form of transportation powered by twin forces of nature - her own little legs and a grandfather’s love. She was maybe 5 or 6. And there she was on a bike path along the Snake River, riding a shiny little pink bicycle with a gray-haired protector trotting alongside ready to catch her if she fell. She was there with her grandpa doing what we all must do - what we all long to do at that age: She was learning to ride a bicycle/Bill Hall, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: Who taught you how to ride a bike?

    WSU No. 16 On Playboy Party List

    Once again, Washington State University has made a national list of top party schools. This time, WSU came in at No. 16 on Playboy Magazine’s periodic ranking. It was No. 18 on the 2002 list, and has been included in the Princeton Review’s list in previous years. “It doesn’t trouble me at all,” WSU Vice President for Equity and Diversity Mike Tate said of the ranking, noting his belief that the university should be known for its academic programs, not partying. “We know who we are and we know what we are as a university.” But WSU has suffered from an increasing level of alcohol-fueled assaults and accidents in recent months, Pullman Police Commander Chris Tennant said. “Assault cases are going up,” Tennant said. “We’re seeing more and more broken bones and facial injuries”/Joel Mills, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: Did you attend a party school? (My alma mater, Chico State, is No. 20, after being No. 2 in 2002.) Is it some to be proud/ashamed of?

    High Noon: Hanging w/Ana Cabrera

    Hostess Ana Cabrera is my favorite news gal ever. She’s pretty, down-to-earth and sincere, not overly made up and scattery like Sunshine Shelly or uberdetached like Concerned-Eyebrow Queen Stephanie Vigil. She likes to make little dorky jokes, little comments on the music. She’s somebody you’d want to hang out with anyway, mix up some International Delights coffee, stretch out on the couch and paint each other’s toenails while catching up on the week’s news and gossip. Lately her foil has been Tom Durian, who I do like in kind of a mellow, Eeyore sort of way, but I miss the jazz and high energy of her usual co-host Sean Owsley. Sean, Sean, where have you gone?/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More here.

    Question: Who is your favorite Spokane female newscaster?

    EOB: Otter Writes To Each Legislator

    Gov. Butch Otter sent a letter to every member of the Senate and House of Representatives this morning, thanking them for their work this session and their friendship. “We all have gotten more than our fair share of news media coverage the past few weeks - most of it negative, focused on our challenges and a few issues on which we have not yet reached agreement,” Otter wrote. “I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all for those many issues on which we have worked together so well and effectively, and on which we have made real progress and agreed on real solutions for the people we serve. There is far too little coverage of the success stories of this legislative session, and of the honorable and noteworthy job you are doing under extraordinarily difficult economic conditions”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    Question: Do you agree with the AP’s John Miller (second bulleted item) that Gov. Butch Otter’s legacy is at stake in the battle over increased Transportation funding?

    Meanwhile, At Priest Lake …

    The denizens at Priest Lake seem to be more open to au naturel outdoor activities than the Swiss, as is evident by this photo provided by Pecky Cox/As The Lake Churns. Pecky tells Huckleberries Central that the sign hangs along the Priest Lake Beach trail on west side of lake.

    North Idaho Gets Swine Flu Drugs

    An outbreak of swine flu in at least five states has prompted a declaration throughout the United States of a public health emergency. Although no cases of swine flu have been diagnosed in the five northern counties of Idaho, Panhandle Health District (PHD) is working with health care providers, schools, governments and more in the region to monitor the situation. About 7,000 doses of antiviral medication are heading to northern Idaho from the federal stockpile. The antivirals should arrive within a week. The medication is for people diagnosed with swine flu and will be distributed to health care providers, if needed/Cynthia Taggart, Panhandle Area Health spokeswoman. More here

    Question: Are you concerned re: the swine flu outbreak and subsequent emergency health declaration?

    Ah’m Your Huckleberry …

    Huckleberries hears of a close encounter between a Berry Picker and two city workers who were cleaning up the beach between the Coeur d’Alene Resort and Independence Point Sunday morning. Seems the worker bees didn’t take into account the wet shifting sand at the beach — and were stuck. The Berry Picker noticed the bad tires on their rig, and offered to pull them out with his 4-by-4 pickup and a tow rope. The BP said he could do so without getting driving onto the beach and tearing it up any further. But the city workers declined the offer, stating that they’d call in a tractor of some sort from elsewhere in town. One way or the other, you can bet the truck will be gone and the sand smoothed in time for tourist season.

    Swiss Vote No To Naked Hiking

    People in Appenzell Inner Rhodes, Switzerland, vote by raising their hands on Sunday. Voters have banned naked hiking after dozens of mostly German nudists started rambling through their picturesque region. By a show of hands citizens of the tiny canton of Appenzell Inner Rhodes voted overwhelmingly at their traditional open-air annual assembly to impose a 200 Swiss franc ($176) fine on violators. (AP Photo/KEYSTONE/Ennio Leanza)

    Question: How would you have voted on the issue, if it affected your town?

    NYTimes Reports CdA Aryan Activity

    When the Aryan Nations compound was publicly bulldozed eight years ago, many people here thought they had seen the end of a neo-Nazi group that brought notoriety and violence to this part of the Northwest. But the group has surfaced again, distributing fliers that say it is recruiting members to create a “world headquarters” here. That has drawn the attention of the human rights advocates who helped destroy the old Aryan Nations/AP story in New York Times. More here.

    Related: Encountering white supremacy in Inland Northwest/Whitworthian

    Question: The AP report of the leaflet distribution by individual purportedly associated with the Aryan Nations was published in the New York Times as well as papers around the country. Is there any way for the region to combat such publicity?

    6-Story Building To Replace Froggy’s

    Item: 6-story building planned on old Senor Froggy’s site/Nils Rosdahl, SR Handle Extra

    More Info: About two years ago this location held Señor Froggy’s, a popular Mexican fast-food eatery. Suddenly it was torn down to make way for investment property. It has taken a little while, but evidently the bucks are right for that to happen. The Plaza on Sherman, a six-story office building, is planned for this southeast corner of Sherman Avenue and Seventh Street. Offering views of Lake Coeur d’Alene and downtown, the Plaza will have balconies on the top three floors and include the downtown amenities of shopping, restaurants and lakeside living. At 70,000 square feet of leasable office space, it will include underground parking and large view windows.

    Question: Do you mind another tall building on Sherman Avenue?

    OTV Met Blotto Bigs At Henry’s Gig

    My Henry’s career didn’t last that long before I realized that sweaty kitchen work wasn’t my forte and found employment at a record shop instead. Still, it remained a go-to place to eat at least once a week, and became a regular neighborhood night-spot, dimly-lit and frequented by a boisterously entertaining crowd of local movers and shakers. It was truly a great place to watch local politicos and business bigwigs get completely blotto and cause uproar. The scene could get rowdy, but like Las Vegas, what happened at Henry’s stayed at Henry’s. No one cared; it was all in good fun/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More here.

    Question: Did you ever work in a restaurant — as a hostess, waiter, bus boy, cook, dishwasher, etc. What was that experience like?

    AM Headlines — 4/27/09

    Coeur d’Alene resident Muriel Buckner gave a demonstration of how to use a Hula hoop on the grounds of The Coeur d’Alene Library on Wednesday. She has decided to help people discover a fun path to fitness with the use of Hula hoops. Story here. (Kathy Plonka/SR)

     Question: Did you ever know how to Hula-Hoop?

    HBO Poll Sez … A’s & B’s, D’s & F’s

    Mebbe HBO has finally achieved some sort of ideological balance, if the weekend poll is any indication. On Saturday, HBO asked readers to grade President Barack Obama’s performance over his first 100 days in office. Of the 187 responses, 89 (or 47%) gave the president A’s (29%) and B’s (18%). On the other end, 80 (43%) gave him D’s (25%) or F’s (18%). Eighteen chose middle ground and gave him C’s (10%). You can still vote in the poll by clicking here.

    JeanieS: Driver’s Photo Simply Awful

    JeanieS: I just got back from getting my license renewed. Oh.My.God. I want a “do over”! I think it has to be the worst picture I have ever had taken of myself. I look like a convict! Just think - if something happens to me to make the news, they will use my license picture! GACK!

    Question: Do you look anything like the photo on your driver’s license?

    Bent: Haunted By ‘Cat’s In The Cradle’

    Bent: “Cat’s in the cradle and the silver spoon/Little boy blue and the man on the moon/When you coming home dad…I don’t when/But we’ll get together then, yeah/You know we’ll have good time then …” DFO, after all my days (and nights) working in the newspaper business, this song haunts me. My kids’ biggest complaint growing up was that I was never home. So far, I have been lucky with both my oldest children living close by. I just hope they don’t grow up to be “just like me…” (Excuse me while I go hug my last two kids.)

    Question: How do you react when you hear Harry Chapin’s “Cat’s in the Cradle”?

    Chatterbox: Boss Can’t Make Decision

    Chatterbox: My immediate supervisor is a dream and a blessing to work with/for. She is honest, fun-loving, hard-working, understanding and treats her empoyees as adults. Our boss, however, is a different story. He is the director of the department and has a difficult time making a decision…any decision. Things have to be discussed over and over and over again. And then thought about for a couple of weeks. Then discussed again because he’s forgotten what was discussed the first time around. Several key employees are tied up in meetings throughout the week that use up 8-9 hours that could be used much more productively.

    Question: Describe the worst boss you’ve ever had?

    HMO: Not An Old Guy In An Old Car

    HMOffsuite: No doubt about it, hopping in classic car takes you right back to the day. When people see me at a stop sign, they see an old guy driving an old car. And, I am looking back through the eyes of an 18 year old. That is what drives the collector car business. Most people either want the first or favorite car in their lives or want the one they couldn’t ever have, but always wanted, and left it to the rich kid down the street.

    Question: What was the make and model of your first car? How old were you at the time you took possession of it?

    Heller: M.A.D. Revisited

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Wild Card/Weekend — 4/25/09

    You still have time to vote in this weekend’s poll, rating Barack Obama on his first 100 days as president. At this point, you Merry Hucksters who think he has performed A or B work outnumber those who believes he has earned a D or worse. More than 100 have voted so far. The polls will stay open until Monday morning. Also, the editors are looking for your opinion of Obama’s first 100 days, in 100 words or less. You’ve provided two dozen comments so far, beginning on Thursday. I’ve re-posted the original thread just below this Wild Card. The best comments will be published in our Wednesday paper. You can also try your hand at the cutline contest. Or the other posts that are held over from Saturday. Enjoy your Sunday. I’ll see you back here on Monday …

    Wanted: Your Thoughts On Obama

    The Spokesman-Review is compiling a package of stories and comments to observe President Barack Obama’s first 100 days in office next Wednesday. As part of that package, we’d like to have your observations about the new president and his administration — in 100 words or less. Editors will select the best comments and publish them with the Wednesday package. You can use your pseudonym. So here’s the question:

    Question: Wednesday marks President Barack Obama’s 100th day in office. Tell us whether you’ve changed your mind about him, and why or why not?

    APhoto Of The Weekend — 4/25-26/09

    Dirt flies as Hunter Owens, 5, of Lewiston, Idaho holds on tight as his sheep during the mutton bustin, drags him across the arena floor at the kids rodeo Friday in Asotin, Wash. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Lewiston Tribune, Kyle Mills)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. Montana kid says,”I don’t understand why I can’t stay on this sheep. My Pa doesn’t have this problem” — Herb.
    • 2. Mama don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys — Pecky.
    • 3. Lambchop schools Hunter on eating dirt — Charlie.
    • HM: Phaedrus

    Costello: Obama = Higher Joblessness

    I came across an interesting graphic last week. It displayed, in varying shades of blue, the state-by-state unemployment rates. The darker the shade of blue on the map, the higher was the unemployment rate. It occurred to me that I had seen a similar map. In fact, it looked a lot like last November’s electoral map. So I tracked down a map that showed which states voted for which candidate in last year’s presidential election and, sure enough, with a few exceptions, those states with the worst unemployment were Obama’s states. I checked another site that rated states as blue (Democratic) versus red (Republican) and found that the correlation, though, not quite as good, still matched pretty well. That great swath of middle America, from the Dakotas to Texas, from the Mississippi to the intermountain West, is suffering far less pain during this recession than the mostly blue West Coast, Great Lakes states and the Northeast/Michael Costello, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: What do you think of Costello’s analysis that tries to equate Obama/blue states with higher unemployment?

    HBO Poll: Obama’s Grade @ 100 Days

    Review: Michael D’s Gets ‘A Daddy Do’

    Walking into Michael D’s reminds me of growing up in Colorado. Occasionally my family would visit friends who lived in a farmhouse out in the country. That’s what this feels like to me. Very eclectic, but yet themed with country, farm, farm animals, and miscellaneous signs & plaques.I feel I’m back in the kitchen or front porch of some farmer & his wife during breakfast time. With the exception of the farmer coming out of the barn with a steel bucket of fresh milk of course.The employees are friendly, but laid back. Maybe country casual is a better way to describe it. Don’t get me wrong… they are way above truck stop employees/Dad’s Diner. More here

    Question: What’s your opinion of Michael D’s?

    Me: Dream Car Will Soon Be Mine

    Me: Fitting - do you see my new avatar? If all goes well one of those will be mine Wednesday. I have wanted one since they were announced. Decided I better do it. I’m helping the economy right?

    Question: If you had the vehicle you desired most, what would it be?

    JeanieS: Dealing w/Boss Can Be Difficult

    JeanieS: I have been a secretary since I was 18 years old. It has its challenges and its rewards. The difficult part is dealing with the personality of your boss and multitasking multiple bosses. I majored in college in social work and music - and the social work skills have been a boon working with clients AND bosses. I wrote about my job a few years back here

    Question: Is your boss easy to work with?

    Brand X: Fighting Like Cats, Dogs, PKs

    Brand X Ranch: My brother and I fought constantly … with big, bad, potentially lethal blows. We fought in the hose, outside, and everywhere! The biggest and bloodiest one was on Sunday after church on the church lawn as our two groups of friends encircled us screaming and cheering. Our dad was the Pastor. We were both grounded for a long time.

    Question: Are any of you Merry Hucksters a “PK”: Pastor’s Kid. Or is there a member of your extended family who is a pastor?

    Truly: The Kids Are Coming Home!

    Truly: Kids coming home!!!! I don’t know about any of you but I have to say – when they grow and leave you it hurts. When they can come home for whatever reason (in our case a funeral) it doesn’t matter — they are coming home!!! My heart is skipping and the house has been cleaned and floors mopped (like they care) but I do:) I am soooo excited!!!! God I sound pathetic but I don’t care about that either!!! I am just so excited to have a full on hug from my Sam!!!

    Question: Are you lucky enough to have your children living nearby (those of you with grownup ones)? Or are they scattered to the wind like mine are?

    Escapee: Memories Of Dad

    Escapee: I understand him a more and more as time goes on, as I go through some of the emotions he went through. I was in awe of him. I knew I could never be as good as he was. He was the kind of person who could do anything, and I mean, anything. He was dashing in a Clark Gable sort of way. Later on, I saw an interview with Jackie Gleason; by that time, Gleason was old, gray and very cynical, that that, too, reminded me of Dad. Dad worked hard, very very hard. My Dad was the classic definition of ‘old school’, ‘by the book’, and when he meant something, he Really Meant something. And more than anything, I hope he’s at peace now, because I don’t think he ever was when he was alive. Full post below.

    Question: What is/was your father like?

    Arbor Day Wild Card — 4/24/09

    In the news this evening, there’s an interesting story in the Seattle P-I re: conservative blogger Stefan “Shark” Sharkansky winning a $225K settlement with King County for refusing to provide public documents here. You can read the Seattle Times story on the aborted Apple Cup move to Qwest Field here. The S-R’s still looking for your thoughts on President Obama’s first 100 days in office here. And the Wild Card remains in play as we head into the weekend …

    Parting Shot — 4/24/09

    Idaho Dad/A Family Runs Through It is among the first to pick up his Kroc Center membership for his family of four. He e-mails: I picked up our family membership for the Kroc Center today.  I don’t know if you’ve already mentioned this on HBO, but they have started signing people up at the old CdA Library. And, here’s the great news. From now until April 30th, the $50 sign-up fee is being waived.  So get down there soon and save some money! You can find membership rates here.

    Question: Do you think the Kroc Center rates are reasonable?

    Mrs. Mac: Go Away, White Noise

    I’ve raised a whole brood of kids (and a hubby) that are addicted to white noise. It all started with my husband working the night shift … and I needed a way to keep the noise level down while I home schooled the children many moons ago. Then Patrick decided he couldn’t get to sleep without a fan running in his room (just for the noise). This went on even in the winter time with him. Ann has her own exhaust fan in her bedroom closet … a closet that one day may be my main floor laundry room … thus it was set up with the fan & a light; some nights I get up just to turn her fan off … I won’t even mention that I also hear her phone beeping every few minutes with a message waiting most nights/Mrs. Mac Energetic, Whatever Happened To … More here.

    Question: Do you like to have some sort of noise going on around you at all/most times?

    PM Headlines — 4/24

    “She’s been going to dog parks since she was a baby,” said Dorothy Hatch of Coeur d’Alene about her 13-year-old Golden retriever Cassie on Wednesday. The two were in a field at the corner of Nez Perce and Atlas Road, the future site of Coeur d’Alene’s first dog park. Story here.

    APhoto Of The Day — 4/24/09

    Lanie Towell wears a red door over a wedding dress to demonstrate against immigration through fraudulent marriages on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canada on Thursday. Towell’s husband left her after she sponsored him to immigrate to Canada. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Fred Chartrand)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. He said he adoored me, but I Ottawa’ve known better — Nick Adams.
    • 2. An open door or a closed one. He left me at the alter cries Lanie after I opened the door for him. Now that I have stated my piece in the latest of political stunts, man this door is heavy — Arch Druid.
    • 3. How dumb does he think I am? Telling me I have to *carry* the threshold, instead of him carrying me through the threshold — JeanieS.
    • HM: Cabbage Boy

    PM Scanner Traffic — 4/24

    • 5:47 p.m. 2 males in a pickup are shooting @ mailboxes w/a shotgun on Conkling Road/Worley area.
    • 5:34 p.m. 3 life preservers are in the w/b lanes of I-90 near Highway 41.
    • 4:31 p.m. R/P complains that a man riding a blue-and-silver motorcycle passes him daily on I-90 @ speeds up to 100 mph between CdA & PF before getting off at Pleasantview.
    • 4:11 p.m. A black VW Jetta, driven by an extremely intoxicated woman, has crashed by the gate @ Signal Point, off Riverview.
    • 3:53 p.m. Two ambulances are en route to 3-vehicle, rear-end accident in the e/b lanes of Appleway in front of Perkins. One driver is confronting another.
    • 3:27 p.m. Resident wonders why Mount Carrol is blocked @ Dalton Elementary.
    • 2:50 p.m. Car on fire @ Honeysuckle Beach/Hayden.
    • 2:24 p.m. Flames are showing in a vehicle fire along I-90 & Pleasantview exit/Post Falls.
    • More Scanner Traffic below

    Briefs: Ironman Helps Community

    Over the past six years, North America Sports, owner of Ford Ironman, has contributed more than $180,000 to the Coeur d’Alene community, which is distributed to a variety of area organizations.  Over $15,000 a year goes to volunteer groups that help at various aid stations throughout the bike/run course, as well as to volunteers who help during the Ironman Event.  In addition, North America Sports donates $15, 000 a year in grant funding through the Ford Ironman Coeur d’Alene Community Fund to groups that promote healthy activities for local youth/Coeur d’Alene Today. List of recipients here. 

    Hold My Hand, Daddy

    Hold my hand, daddy. Don’t let go. Hold my hand, don’t drift away too far.

    Hold my hand, help me try something new. Steady me, just be there with me. Tell me it’s going to be alright. 

    Someday, son, I’ll have to let go. Someday, I’ll have to let you skate on your own. Someday, son, I won’t be there to hold your hand.


    But, right now, I’m here. Right now, I’m not going anywhere. Right now, I’m holding your hand.


    Daddy, I only want to talk about right now. Let’s not remember the future. Let’s remember the now.


    Ok, son. Ok.


    Toadman/Synaptic Disunion

    HBO Blogosphere — 4/24

    It is a difficult job if it is done right. There are plenty of folks, mostly women, who are exceptional secretaries. … My mom was right up there with the best of them. Mom was a secretary back when they were still called “secretary”, when pencils, shorthand, carbon paper, little eraser wheels with a brush on the end, and typewriter ribbon were still in style. She took all the classes in High School that would enable her be competent/JanTri, Brand X Ranch. More here.

    Question: Have you ever performed secretarial work? How difficult is the job?

    House Tells Guv: ‘Not Day Or Time’

    It’s time for the Legislature to wrap up its business and go home. As House leaders, we recognize there may be a day and time that we need to consider raising the fuel tax to supply more revenue for our roads and bridges. But this is not the day or time to raise them, considering the record amount of financing available for highways in Idaho. The votes for a fuel tax increase have not been there after multiple tries in the House and we don’t see many colleagues changing their minds./Reps. Lawerence Denney, Mike Moyle, Scott Bedke and Ken Roberts. Full Eye On Boise post.

    Spokane Workers OK 15% Cut

    Dozens of Spokane County employees are taking a 15% pay cut to avoid anyone being laid off. Unlike most of other agencies the Building and Planning Department in Spokane County relies solely on revenue. That revenue is made from new construction. Demand is down on construction projects. So now the department is making cuts. Instead of lay offs the employee’s union decide to shoulder the burden as a whole. Everyone will take a 15% cut. A union staff representative says there are a majority of people not at risk for the layoffs who still voted to save jobs/KREM2, More here.

    Question: What would you be willing to do — in terms of pay cut, furlough, 4-day week, loss of benefits — to enable your co-workers to keep jobs and help your employer through this tough economic time?

    Pirates Top Economy As Top Story

    In this April 17 file photo, Capt. Richard Phillips, center, hugs his children after arriving on a plane in South Burlington, Vt. At left is son, Daniel; at right is daughter, Mariah. According to the Pew Research Center for People & The Press, in a recent survey, 34 percent of the respondents named the Somali pirate story, in which U.S. cargo ship skipper Richard Phillips was rescued by Navy snipers after five days held hostage in a lifeboat, as the most-followed news story. The economy came in second, at 27 percent. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot)

    Question: Why are we so fascinated by the Somali pirate story?

    Smelterville Woman Survives ‘Storms’

    Item: ‘Storms Never Last’: Smelterville woman writes story of triumph in long battle against epilepsy, abuse/Sarah Rose Fredlund, Shoshone News-Press

    Review: “A story of multiple obstacles on life’s road, including a childhood injury followed by progressive epilepsy, physical and sexual abuse, and parents who assume that her seizures are just a bid for attention. In her twenties, when her seizures make further progress in school almost impossible, Laura enrolls in a clinical epilepsy study at UCLA, and finally has brain surgery to remove the left temporal lobe of her brain, eliminating the seizures. But by its very nature the surgery causes further physical disability” — Dr. Keith Dahlberg, More here.

    Question: Do you know a disabled person who inspires those around him/her?

    Nellis Didn’t Say, ‘Me And Ruthie’

    Well, as I said Thursday, sometimes a quote just takes on a life of its own. Unfortunately, that goes for a misquote too. On Wednesday, the Associated Press attributed this gramatically challenged quote to an incoming university president, new University of Idaho hire Duane Nellis: “Me and Ruthie hope to complete our careers here in Moscow.” A review of the tape shows Nellis used the proper grammar, prompting the AP to move a correction with the correct quote: “This is more than a job for me, this is something that Ruthie and I hope we can complete our careers here in Moscow”/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

    Question: Are you satisfied that the media properly correct mistakes that make it to print or the airwaves?

    HBO Poll: New Wal*Mart Stores

    Apple Cup To Qwest Deal Dies

    A deal to move the Apple Cup to Qwest Field, which seemed so close a week ago, is dead, killed not by fan outrage, but by a lack of seats. “It became evident an understanding on ways to maintain the neutral-site atmosphere in regards to ticket allotment could not be reached,” Washington State athletic director Jim Sterk said in a release Friday that announced WSU was ending discussions to move the game, “therefore, our student-athletes and Cougar fans would not be best served without this key component.” According to sources in the WSU athletic department, the original agreement gave WSU and the University of Washington each 31,000 seats in Qwest Field every year. But in the past week, UW expressed its desire for about another 7,000 additional seats, the sources said, in an attempt to mollify season ticket holders/Vince Grippi, SR. More here.

    Question: Now that the $2M-per-year deal is dead, does anyone know where WSU is going to come up with more than $1M to hold off deep athletic department budget cuts?

    High Noon: Top Auto Repair Shops?

    Shucks and NAPA have been great to me, and I will continue to use them for the parts that I need and am able to install myself. I have had terrible experiences with the Ford dealer repair shop in Cd’A, however, and not only felt powerless and intimidated, but lots poorer after two visits to fix problem that never did resolve. They really blew me off. I won’t ever go back there. On the other hand, the guys at Knudtsen’s in PF recently were awesome. Their priority is customer service, and it shows; I was treated like royalty!! What a difference a dealership makes!!

    Question: Which vehicle repair shop in your community — and/or service manager — would you recommend to a friend?

    HBO’s INorthwest Roundup — 4/24

    Third-graders from Whitman Elementary get an up close look, and smell, at the City of Lewiston transfer station as part of Earth Day Wednesday in Lewiston. (AP Photo/Lewiston Tribune, Kyle Mills) 

    AM Scanner Traffic — 4/24/09

    • 11:48 a.m. Woman suffering chest pain near Wal*Mart Vision Center.
    • 11:35 a.m. Woman is unconscious near jewelry department @ Penneys.
    • 11 a.m. Golfer possibly has suffered stroke about 1/4-mile from Highland Golf Course clubhouse/Post Falls.
    • 10:37 a.m. 53YO man suffering breathing difficulty @ Fresh Start, 1524 Sherman/CdA.
    • 10:05 a.m. R/P reports an injured cat @ 8597 Autobahn/Hayden.
    • 9:42 a.m. Woman @ Brookside & Ainsworth/Hayden reports a black-and-white dog is harassing her cat in her yard.
    • 8:52 a.m. Fight reported on 1500 block of Mary Lane/CdA.
    • 8:43 a.m. Passing motorist reports smoke coming from roof of Burger Haven/Rathdrum. But fire responders discover later that it is only steam.
    • 8:32 a.m. An abandoned older vehicle is partially blocking traffic @ I-90/NW Boulevard onramp.
    • 8:29 a.m. Stop sign missing @ Ramsey & Seasons.

    EOB: 26 Of 70 Reps MIA This Morning

    The House convened this morning at 8:30 Boise time, and was done by 8:45. There were 26 members absent out of the 70-member chamber. When Majority Leader Mike Moyle moved to adjourn until 9:30 on Monday morning, Assistant Minority Leader James Ruchti responded, “Mr. Speaker, I reluctantly second the motion.” Only a few people audibly called out “aye” to vote in favor of the motion, and a fair number loudly called out “nay.” After a pause, Speaker Lawerence Denney said, “The ayes have it.” Asked later, amid laughter, whether it didn’t sound like there were more nay votes, he said, “No, not to me”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    Question: Do you mind that some many legislators were missing this morning for the short session in the Idaho House?

    Spring comes To Post Falls

    Get Adobe Flash player

    We’ve been celebrating the arrival of spring for a week now, despite days like Thursday when some experienced a spit of snow in the outlying areas. Recently, Jesse Tinsley/SR took his camera to film the emerging spring in the Post Falls area. You can see what he produced above.

    OTC: No Hassle To Get My Gas Cap

    I don’t pretend to know what is going on when it comes to fixing my car. I also don’t appreciate it when I go to the car parts store, and the men working look at me like I should be born with this knowledge or pity me because I’m just another woman without a clue. That’s why I want to thank the guys at Schuck’s Auto Supply for helping me figure out — without judgment — which gas cap my car needed Tuesday morning. You guys rock/Editor In Chief Christina Lords, UI Argonaut. More Off The Cuff here.

    Question: Are you intimidated by service managers at car dealers or the guy behind the counter at auto parts stores b/c you don’t know much about your vehicle?

    ITHO: Otter @ Throttle Of Train Wreck

    Let’s answer right now the question of who will win the standoff between Gov. Butch Otter and the Idaho House’s Republican majority over maintenance of state roads: Neither. A governor who lets his top legislative priority of the last two years sit unaddressed by leaders of his own party until after most legislative sessions have ended, and then starts vetoing bills en masse to force his will on legislators who never had any intention of supporting him is inept. A legislative session is a time for the chief executive and the legislative branch to come together, which has happened in Idaho even when they were of different parties. But when a governor and a legislative chamber in which 75 percent are members of his party can’t do that, it’s a train wreck/Jim Fisher, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: Jim Fisher points out that Gov. Butch Otter waited until late in the 2009 session to press leaders of his own party to provide more funding for his top priority over the last two years: Transportation. Do you believe, as Fisher suggests, that Otter’s inept?

    CdA Man eBays God’s Hand In Rock

    Item: Coeur d’Alene man sees God’s hand in back yard basalt rock: He’s asking for a starting bid of $100 on eBay to photograph the scene/Alecia Warren, CdA Press

    More Info: “Now I have a sign of the Hand of God to strengthen, fortify and sustain my faith,” Grayhek has written on his eBay Web account online. “My faith is strong but my mind and body are weak; the lord’s hand strengthens me.” Just above the revelation, the Catholic lists his starting bid: $100.

    Question: Do you believe God provides such signs of His presence of Jesus’ face in a potato chip or His hand in back yard basalt rock?

    AM Headlines — 4.24

    At As The Lake Churns, Pecky Cox provides another shot of the routine scenes she sees outside her front door at Casa Cox on Priest Lake.

    HBO Poll Sez … Unfortunately

    In the Huckleberries Online poll Thursday, 47 of 65 (72%) respondents said they have suffered the loss through suicide of a family member or loved one. Eighteen (28%) were fortunate not to have suffered such a loss.

    Nick: Gotta Stand Up To Bullies

    Nick Adams: When I started at a new school in second grade, the class bully immediately started in on me. After two days, I challenged him to a fight after school. We scuffled. I think he probably won, but because I stood up to him, we eventually became good friends and he stopped bullying people.

    Question: Were you involved in a physical fight as a kid?

    Sisyphus: Oh To Look Good Naked

    Sisyphus: “Are you as fit as President Obama appears to be?”—questions like this are the best justification for a pseudonym yet. We are the same age almost to the day. He can kick my ass on the court but I’ll give him a workout on bikes going up the Boise front. Alas I’m not as svelte or as tall, and I haven’t achieved the holy grail of middle aged men as expressed by Kevin Spacey’s character in American Beauty, looking good naked.

    Question: Yesterday, I asked: Are you as fit as President Obama appears to be? Today, I’ll change it somewhat. Are you more/less fit than others your age?

    Escapee: Reality TV = Dog Food

    Escapee: Reality TV programs like this one (“Idaho seeks Seattleites for reality TV/Seattle P-I) are basically on the level of dog food. Remember that reality show about the Gotti’s, starring their bleach-blonde mom and obnoxious, bratty, destructive, loud and rude immature young men? Reality shows are cheap, though. You don’t have to deal with expensive screenwriters or erect a bunch of staging. That’s why there’s been such a proliferation of these reality shows that are so inane that they’re really not reality at all.

    Question: We all roll our eyes at reality TV. But some of us obviously watch them. So I’ll go first. I watched “Survivor” for many seasons. But finally tired of it. My interest in “American Idol” picks up as the list of finalists narrows to the last half dozen or so (if “Idol” is reality TV). Which reality show(s) is your favorite?

    Bent: No Big Deal Re: $15 Bag Charge

    Bent: What sucks are the tight wads that try to save $15 and clog up the bording and unbording by trying to stuff bags anywhere they’ll fit in the cabin. You can also get around the fee by carrying your “too-large-to-fit-in-the-overhead luggage” to the gate. The ticket person will then take the bag and have it checked because you can’t take it into the cabin. My boss did that on our last business trip. I don’t know why people are so hung up on carrying bags on. The luggage handling has improved dramatically in the past decade or so — especially on Southwest. They usually have the luggage spinning before I even get there … Maybe they should charge $15 to carry a bag on. That would solve more problems in my opinion.

    Question: What bugs you most re: other passengers at airports or on airplanes?


    Heller: The 1st 100 Days

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Secretaries Week Wild Card: 4/23/09

    The nation is observing Administrative Assistants Week (formerly Professional Secretaries Week). And Eddie Albert (“Green Acres”) is observing his 97th birthday. On this day in history, in 1954, Hank Aaron hit his first home run. In the news today: White House reporters are sharpening their pens to analyze Barack Obama’s first 100 days in office (which will be reached next week) here. Obama still ranks high in the polls here. Suicide bombers are still killing dozens of people in Iraq here. And the Wild Card is in play …

    Parting Shot — 4/23/09

    A nest of baby robins begins to hatch in a nest in a bush by the White House Press Room at the White House in Washington Thursday. (AP Photo/Ron Edmonds)

    Montana Jail To Be New ‘Gitmo’?

    Item: Hardin jail tries for detainees from Gitmo/Becky Shay, Billings Gazette

    More Info: Economic development officials in Hardin are looking at the soon-to-close detention facility in Guantanamo Bay as a possible fix for the jail sitting empty in Hardin. President Barack Obama signed an executive order Jan. 22 to close the Guantanamo detention facilities in Cuba where hundreds of enemy combatants have been held since 2002. The closure is to occur in a year, during which time remaining detainees must be returned to their home countries or detained elsewhere. Meanwhile, a 460-bed detention facility sits empty in Hardin. Built by Two Rivers Authority, the city’s economic development arm, the facility was meant to bring economic development to Hardin by creating more than 100 high-paying jobs.

    Question: Would you like to see the Hardin jail in neighboring Montana become the new detention facility hundreds of enemy combatants from Guantanamo Bay.

    PM Headlines — 4/23/09

    At Priest River, where photographer-blogger Pecky Cox/As The Lake Churns holds court, the weather continues to play tricks on the natives. Pecky provides proof that it was hailing this morning in her neck of the woods.

    APhoto Of The Day — 4/23/09

    A member of the security personnel tries to get to grips with a naked cricket fan waving a South African flag during the final ODI cricket series between South Africa and Australia at the Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, recently. South Africa won by 61 runs. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe)

    Top Cutline:

    • 1. When Wanderers go wandering, fellow fans are not left wondering about what lies down under — Cabbage Boy. 
    • 2. The security guard said ‘thats no way to *bowl a maiden over* young man … but we can see you’re pleased to see her — Marmitetoasty.
    • 3. In a symbolic scene, a taxpayer shows all he has left as he tries to escape the grasp of President Obama’s economic policies — JohnA.
    •  HM: KeithinCDA

    Scanner Traffic — 4/23/09

    • 5:21 p.m. Wal*Mart has nabbed a female shoplifter.
    • 4:38 p.m. Bedridden elderly R/P is asking for aid but cautions that her Malamute is loose in the house. She said the dog is all bark and not bite. But responding EMTs should allow it to smell their hands before coming to her room. EMTs are wary.
    • 4:35 p.m. 2 juveniles on dirt bike are tearing up the Post Falls 7th Day Adventist softball field and have refused repeated requests to leave the church property.
    • 4:12 p.m. R/P @ U.S. attorney’s office reports her tires are slashed.
    • 2:53 p.m. Resident reports there’s a moose in a field @ Prairie & Huetter. She’s worried that it could cause trouble for kids returning from school at a nearby bus stop.
    • 2:09 p.m. R/P on northern Ramsey Road said a drunken renter threatened her with a gun before leaving the house to enter a nearby shop building.
    • 1:14 p.m. Police are looking for an Alberta, Canada, man who left Spirit Lake in his pickup Tuesday but hasn’t arrived back home.
    • 12:34 p.m. Two males, one with a mustache, riding a red bike reportedly have an open container in the alley behind the 1300 block of Sherman Avenue.
    • AM Scanner Traffic below

    Alaska, Horizon To Charge For Bag

    Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air will start charging passengers $15 for a first checked bag. The charge will take effect July 7 for tickets purchased beginning May 1. Many major U.S. airlines already charge a similar amount for checked luggage; Southwest Airlines is one of the few that has no fees for checked luggage. To compensate for the new charge, Alaska and Horizon will guarantee passengers that luggage will be at baggage claim 25 minutes after their flight parks at the gate. If it isn’t, passengers will get 2,500 frequent-flier miles or $25 off a future flight/Seattle Times. More here.

    Question: I doubt that the new bag-check fee will cause many of us to stop flying w/Alaska & Horizon. But it is an annoyance. Do you fly as much today as you did before delays, cutbacks, and new fees became a way of life in the friendly skies?

    Are You As Fit As A President?

    This magazine cover released by Washingtonian magazine shows President Barack Obama on the cover shirtless.(AP Photo/Washingtonian)

    Question: Are you as fit as President Obama appears to be?

    Update: Hospitals Releasing Children

    Two of three Spokane hospitals have started releasing the children injured in a rear-end collision between two city-owned vans this morning on the North Side, officials said/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR. More here.

    He Said: ‘Help Me, I’m Going To Jump’

    At A Family Runs Through It, Idaho Dad takes us on a photographic tour of the Kroc Center, which is not three weeks from opening, off Ramsey Road, here.

    The Walk Home: I’m always aware of people when I’m walking. I try to assess them and make up a story about them. This one though was different. He was older than me, wearing a plaid shirt and jeans. My first thought was, where’s his coat – it’s going to rain and it’s cold still for early April. I got closer and just wanted to get past this guy. I was chanting in my head “don’t turn around, don’t turn around, don’t turn around.” I was just inches past him when he said “Hey lady.” I planned on ignoring him and I planned to keep on going, but there was something about the tone. I stopped and looked back. He looked at me, soft sad brown eyes. “Yes?” I hesitantly asked. “Help me. I’m going to jump”/JeanieS, Nuts & Nonsense. More here.

    HBO Numbers: 7534/4165

    Question: Do you plan to buy a membership to the Kroc Center?


    HBO Poll: Loss By Suicide

    ‘Twilight’s‘ Edward Cullen Is A Myth

    Girls around the world are trying to search for their own Edward Cullen but with all the wrong criteria and motivation. In reality, he doesn’t exist. Not just for the obvious reason of immortality either. In the series, Edward is supposedly an irresistible and absolutely breathtakingly beautiful man. And that is just the physical attributes. In addition, the character is attentive, gentlemanly, polite and loving. With the growing demise of chivalry, some of these attributes are becoming extinct. It’s now more likely to hear about the perfect hookup than the perfect date/Kelsey Carey, WSU Evergreen. More here.

    Question: Do chivalrous men still exist?

    Solons Mull Options For Road $$$

    The House Ways & Means has introduced two new bills, one with Rep. Frank Henderson’s car registration fee bracket change, which raises $3.1 million a year; and one with the $13.1 million in annual increases in DMV fees. The idea, House GOP leaders said, is for a four-part plan: Those two bills, plus another already introduced to repeal the fuel tax exemption for ethanol; plus another that’s still being worked up to shift a portion of Idaho’s future general fund growth into road work/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    Question: Do you agree with counterproposals offered by Rep. Frank Henderson and others to raise some revenue to help fund road work?

    HBO’s INorthwest Roundup — 4.23

    Dan Bingham of Silverdale shows his daughter Heather, 15 months how to blow a dandelion Tuesday at Island Lake County Park, in Poulsbo, Wash. (AP Photo/Kitsap Sun, Larry Steagall)

    HMO: What To Do w/Somali Pirate?

    HMOffsuite: What does everybody think should/will be done with this ‘teenage’ Somalian pirate?  My guess is that he will go to juvi for a year and a half, then get out as an immigrant and become a citizen.  Then, of course, go on welfare and get food stamps.  Get married, have octupulets.  They are sickly and require 5 years of hospitalization.

    Question: What does everybody think should/will be done with this ‘teenage’ Somalian pirate? 

    High Noon: Ruthie Was Susan Boyle

    The turning point came at story time one chilly fall morning. Mrs. Pendergast was reading “Charlotte’s Web.” We sat in a circle and Ruthie squeezed in next to me. Everyone else moved away. The class sat in rapt silence as Mrs. Pendergast read how Charlotte had written the word “humble” in her web. That silence was fractured by the unmistakable ripping sound of flatulence, and immediately a foul, sulfuric stench permeated our little reading circle. Groans and guffaws erupted. “Ewww, Ruthie!” my classmates howled. Ruthie’s face turned a mottled scarlet. “It wasn’t me,” she protested. She looked around desperately and then pointed a shaking finger. “It was Cindy!” I sat stunned. No amount of chocolate was worth this kind of betrayal/Cindy Hval, SR. More here.

    Question: Do you ever think back to your childhood days and a duckling that was bullied by your classmates — and possibly you — and wonder how they turned out?

    14 Kids Hurt In 2-Van Spokane Crash

    A Spokane, WA. fireman fits a neck brace on a child involved in a two vehicle accident at Cook and Wellesley Thursday. Two vans were filled with children headed to Regal Elementary for a before school program. The large number of passengers required a two alarm response from the fire department and every AMR ambulance available. Fourteen children and an adult were taken to the hospital. Story here. KHQ video here. (Christopher Anderson/SR)

    Idaho Seeks Seattleites For Reality TV

    Item: Idaho seeks Seattle family to star in reality series/Monica Guzman, Seattle P-I

    More Info: Forget travelogues and brochures. To market itself as a tourist destination, the state of Idaho is making an online reality series — and it wants a Seattle family to be the star. “It’s very exciting. I’ve not heard of anyone doing this,” said Kellie Kluksdal, spokeswoman for the Idaho Division of Tourism. … The agency, Drake Cooper, came up with the idea after considering the rise of digital media, the popularity of reality TV and the need for fresh thinking in tourism marketing — especially at a time when vacationers might stay closer to home, and Northwestern states will compete for their attention.

    Question: Good idea? Or a waste of money?

    Hawk Mascot Didn’t Read Script

    “Spirit,” the Atlanta Hawks real-life mascot, perches on the shot-clock during the first quarter of Game 2 of NBA Eastern Conference basketball playoff action between the Miami Heat and the Hawks on Wednesday in Atlanta. Spirit was supposed to fly from the from the upper level to a handler on the court but decided to fly around the arena for a few minutes. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

    Court Restores Custodian Stress Suit

    Item: Nine Mile Falls custodian’s stress-disorder suit restored/Meghann Cuniff, SR

    More Info: Debbie Rothwell, who still works at Lakeside High School in Nine Mile Falls, suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, according to a lawsuit filed in May 2007 by her lawyer, William Powell, of Spokane. The 16-year-old student shot himself in the head inside the school’s main entrance in 2004. The lawsuit was dismissed in January 2008 by Spokane County Superior Court Judge Greg Sypolt, who ruled the incident was covered by the Industrial Insurance Act. But the Court of Appeals, in a 2-1 ruling, disagreed and reinstated the suit.

    Question: Do you agree/disagree with the appeals court that this case have merit?

    Teacher Sends 5YO Home w/Poop

    Item: Yakima teacher sends boy, 5, home with baggy of poo/

    More Info: Jason says his son’s kindergarten teacher had bagged up a piece of human feces and stuck it in his son’s backpack. His wife found the stinky mess. “She found a clear plastic bag with a piece of fecal matter wrapped up in a brown paper towel with the note on it,” he said. The note read, “This little turd was on the floor in my room.”

    Question: How would you have handle this situation, if you were the teacher?

    ITHO: Otter Totally Out Of Touch

    Governor Otter this past week has shown all the diplomacy and tact of a run-away freight train this week. In addition, he has failed to grasp the times in which he’s governing. If there were an Out of Touch magazine, Otter would be the cover boy. I was there when Bryan Fischer asked the crowd at the Boise Tea Party whether they consented to have their gas taxes increased and the “no” was resounding. The public isn’t in the mood for a tax increase, particularly on the order of what Otter is asking for/Adam Graham, Adam’s Blog. More here.

    Question: If Otter loses this battle of wills with the Idaho Legislature over road funding, how much will his governorship be hurt?

    AM Headlines — 4/23/09

    Patrick and Carrie Augerlavoie were accused of robbing a pharmacy last summer. Carries charges were dropped and Patrick was acquitted by a jury. They talked about their case at their home in Hayden on Wednesday. Meghann Cuniff/SR tells you all about it here. (Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review)

    Question: Do you see any problems with the UI Foundation sweetening the pay offer to land Kansas State provost Duane Nellis as the new college president?

    HBO Poll Sez … Nature Preserve

    In the Tuesday HBO Poll, a plurality of 48 of 103 (47%) votes showed that Huckleberries Online readers want Tubbs Hill set aside as a Nature Preserve/Historical Landmark to protect it from commercial adventures of any sort. Another 21 (20%) said the Coeur d’Alene police should crack down on owners running their dogs w/o leashes on the hill. In third and fourth place, 18 voted to keep the status quo on the hill and 13 indicated they wanted the proposed guided tours. Only 3 voted for Duane Hagadone’s old proposal to pave a path around the hill for easier access for his Coeur d’Alene Resort guests.

    CindyH: When Your Kid’s Friend Dies

    CindyH: My 16-year-old son came home quite shaken this afternoon. He’d just found out that a classmate committed suicide last night. Alex had just gone paintballing with this boy a week or so ago. “He sat in front of me during WASL testing yesterday,” Alex said. “And now he’s just gone.” A few minutes ago, I dropped him off for his soccer game, and even though I’m going to watch him play in an hour, I hugged him and kissed him and told him that I loved him. And you know what?
    He let me.

    Question: I’ve never asked this question. So I’ll go first. I had a cousin who hanged himself. And an aunt prevented my paternal grandfather from hanging himself in the barn, after he began suffering dementia. Have you ever been touched by suicide?

    JimmyMAC: Classmates, Friends Forever

    JimmyMAC: I had 10 groomsman at my wedding (really 6 with 4 ushers) and 8 of them were from my hometown with 5 of them being from my graduating class. Pretty crazy but I can think of about a dozen guys from my graduating class that i stay in pretty constant contact with. That is out of a graduating class of 97. I have a lot of good friends from college as well but I think we had ton of stellar guys from the St. Maries Class of ‘97.

    Question: Yesterday, I asked how many of your high school classmates are you still in touch with. Let’s vary that theme a little. How many people in your wedding party are you still in touch with.

    Sam: Not All My Facebookers Are Friends

    Sam: I don’t consider everyone on Facebook a friend. I have different profiles set up with varying security settings for that reason. I generally add everyone and give them the appropriate listing. But I’ve been keeping in touch lately with people from high school and my Hollywood days that I either lost touch with or weren’t close to in the first place. It’s odd where you can find friendships you never thought you would.

    Question: How many friends do you have on your Facebook site?

    Digger: Ball’s Now In House’s Court

    Digger: The legislature can adjourn subject to a date certain of say June 27, 2009, go home and come back when the Governor is up against the wall since all budget bills need to be passed before July 1 which is the new fiscal year. What they can’t do is adjourn “sine die”, meaning “without a date” (or for good) without having budget bills passed and signed by the governor. (You can read Digger’s superb analysis of the Otter/Idaho House showdown in the drop-down box.)

    Question: Do we have any prophets out there? Pick the day that the Legislature will adjourn.

    JeanieS: ‘It’s Not Like I’m Pole Dancing’

    JeanieS: When I was much, MUCH younger, my husband and I were stationed in Val d’Or, Quebec, where my youngest son was born. One of the Canadian soldiers and his family would often come to our house. They had five children. I was fascinated that he was so tickled with breastfeeding. I first ducked into the bathroom to hide so I wouldn’t be offensive. He gave me a long story about how beautiful he thought it was and one of the most natural and wholesome actions. It was never an illicit deal - it was a true sign of motherly love. And we have several ways of being very discrete about it. It’s not like I’m pole dancing in my g-string with florescent pasties swinging from my pendulous breasts.

    Question: We had a terrific discussion on Washington’s decision to provide civil rights protection for women who breast-feed in public. Jeanie’s comment was the best of a string of very good comments. Still, you can use this thread if you have anything else to say re: the subject.

    Heller: That Ain’t Waterboarding

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Earth Day Wild Card — 4/22/09

    If you’re wondering what happens to the comment numbers on many of today’s posts, you can find Blogmeister Ryan’s explanation here. Basically, it sounds like the techs have given the software a bit of an enema to make things go faster and that resulted in goose eggs instead of actual comment counts for several threads. But the payoff seems good. Meanwhile, some of the stories that are making the news this evening include: GM plans to shut most plants for up to 9 weeks this summer here. Study: Painkillers can’t block Alzheimers here. And the Wild Card returns to the table …

    Parting Shot — 4/22/09

    A child holds a panda doll in Rome’s Piazza del Popolo square Saturday. The World Wide Fund for Nature environmental association placed 1600 paper pulp pandas, symbolizing the last pandas still present in nature, on the square. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)

    Question: Did you have a favorite teddy bear as you grew up? What was its name?

    Spring Is Now Official

    In warm April sun

    while birds sweetly sing,

    look— on that tulip —

    the first slug of spring. 


    The Bard of Sherman Avenue

    Nic: Don’t Re-Live Glory Days Much

    There are a few former classmates I’ve requested to be friends with. But for the most part, I’ve shunned my fellow MPHS alumni. The shunning part is true of one facebook member (who I won’t name… in case any of my friends are friends with him - lets just call him “dude”). It’s not like I’m trying to be a snob… but I refuse to be some one I’m not. Most of the best friends I’ve had were not people I knew in high school so it doesn’t make sense for me to request a bunch of people that didn’t really like me back then to be friends with me now. Yet I still skim the list of my classmates - rarely finding people I want to befriend/Nic, Rants, Raves & Random Thoughts. More here.

    Question: Have you stayed in touch - or tried to get in touch with — any of your former high school classmates?

    PM Headlines — 4/22/09

    In this August 2008 file photo by Jesse Tinsley, Susan Nipp stands in the Plaza Shoppes. She has written a childrens book, “Mudgy & Millie”, about Coeur d’Alene, interweaving a hike around Tubbs Hill and downtown Coeur d’Alene, which will be marked, in real life, by giant bronze statues of the moose, seen at left, named Mudgy, who is playing hide and seek with his friend, Millie the mouse. Now, Nipp’s creations have earned an Idaho Tourism award for their contribution to the state’s travel industry. See below.

    Question: Have you taken time to walk the Mudgy & Millie trail weaving around downtown Coeur d’Alene and the waterfront?


    APhoto Of The Day — 4/22/09

    Porterhouse sits on the throne after being crowned the winner of the 30th Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest on Monday in Des Moines, Iowa. The bulldog is owned by Kevin and Erin Bell, of Des Moines, Iowa. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. Public breastfeeding makes you queasy? Fine. I’ll clean my nose instead — JeanieS.
    • 2. Porterhouse gives a demonstration of how he won the talent portion of the competition — Shannon.
    • 3. When asked what he would do next Porterhouse replied, “As soon as I can get this stupid crown off my head I’m going to participate in Earth Day by fertilizing the lawn – Organically - if you know what I mean — Poolman.
    • HM: RedMan

    Scanner Traffic — 4/22/09

    • 5:19 p.m. R/P reports 18 males involved in a scrape @ PF skate park, including a 17YO w/a T-shirt message that reads: “I (Heart) PF.”
    • 4:59 p.m. 2 individuals are playing “chicken” w/trains @ Atlas & Camrose Lane.
    • 4:21 p.m. Gas is leaking from a 1996 Jeep Cherokee that hit a power pole @ 6878 W. Highway 53. Power lines are down. Accident has knocked out power to nearby Panhandle State Bank.
    • 4:14 p.m. CPD Blue wonders re: a male wearing a pirate suit @ 3rd & Annie.
    • 3:47 p.m. A Honda has lost its right front tire on I-90 @ M/P 4. The ISP officer said he’ll try to retrieve it, on the other side of the freeway. Driver is on supervised probation from Washington state.
    • 2:28 p.m. Woman reports her ex-husband is in her home with their kids, threatening to lock her out.
    • 1:58 p.m. Dead deer partly on Highway 95 @ Bunco Road.
    • 1:56 p.m. Officer: “I’m out on Loch Haven looking for an address that doesn’t exist.”
    • 1:44 p.m. Stoplights @ 95 & Ironwood are “skipping; they’re not working correctly.”
    • 12:59 p.m. Child locked in a vehicle in the 1200 block of Julia/CdA.
    • 12:08 p.m. Brenda wants to speak to an officer re: lost wallet @ The Shanty.
    • AM Scanner Traffic below

    Comment Counter Malfunction

    Kage Mann & Dan of the County have both noticed that the comment counter is on the fritz. You’ll notice a bunch of goose eggs on posts (like the one for APhoto of the Day) when there are a number of comments in the thread below the item. I’ve e-mailed Blogmeister Ryan re: the problem. Until it’s fixed, simply ignore the goose egg and check to see if there are comments under items that attract your interest. Or you can do what I do — click on the “Latest Comments” line in the right rail and read all the latest comments from all the blogs as they arrive at HBO Central …

    EOO: UW Protest Takes To Air

    You can see the protest message that this little plane was sending to Washington legislators earlier today by clicking Rich Roesler’s Eye On Olympia link here.

    JeanS: 60 Reasons Glad To Be 60

    • I don’t look it – see me next year
    • I am healthy (mostly)
    • I am content
    • I am mature (something I am extremely grateful for – no more hot emotions, no more being jealous or petty; just nice calm maturity)
    • However, I can be cranky if I want to. I’m OLD.
    • I love the person in the mirror that looks back at me.
    • I laugh at myself way too much. And that’s perfectly fine.
    • I am hardly ever sad.
    • More from Nuts & Nonsense here

    Question: Do you have a short list re: why you’re glad — or not — to be your age?

    HBO Blogosphere — 4/22/09

    You can see what the dogs at Marianne Love’s Lovestead are looking at and find out a little about girdles by clicking here.

    What Pecky Found On Litter Patrol


    3 big plastic bottles
    2 small plastic bottles
    6 candy wrapers
    5 plastic bags 
    76 cans (76!!!) 
    1 un-opened beer - (next time please leave it in bucket with ice and  lime on the side)
    2 beer bottles
    1 cd
    1 piece of carpet.. (jeez!)

    More from Pecky Cox/As The Lake Churns here.

    Question: What is the weirdest thing you’ve found while on a litter patrol?

    In The News: Animal Rightist Protest

    Demonstrators against animal research march during protests on both sides of the heated debate over animal research have gathered at the University of California, Los Angeles, Wednesday. The rallies follow this week’s unsealing of an indictment of two animal rights activists on charges of stalking and intimidating university researchers and executives of a juice company. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

    Question: Do you support/oppose animal research?

    House, Senate Adjourn To ‘Cool Off’

    The Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee has canceled its meeting that had been scheduled for 8 a.m. tomorrow. “House leadership requested that we postpone our meeting until perhaps Monday,” said  Senate Finance Chairman Dean Cameron, R-Rupert. “We will make our decision later, but we will not be meeting tomorrow.” House leaders expressed an interest in “cooling off” and concern about passing appropriation bills that simply would be vetoed, Cameron said. Meanwhile, there’s lots of talk in the House about taking Friday off for “cooling off”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    Question: Which side do you think will blink first?

    ITHO: Margaritaville w/o Salt Shaker

    I became the man of the hour a couple of months ago when I scored tickets to a Jimmy Buffett concert in California. See, my wife is more than a fan of Buffett and his rum-soaked “gulf and western” sound; she’s a Parrothead with a real parrot. Victoria and her ex-husband traveled to Buffett concerts all over the country, including two separate trips to Cincinnati (I don’t think Cincinnati is what Buffett had in mind when he wrote “Changes in Attitude, Changes in Latitude,” but that’s another story.) Nevertheless, Buffett has more money than Butch Otter, so he doesn’t sing just anywhere (like Idaho). So on May 19, we’re bound for the Oakland suburb of Concord for an outdoor gig. Don’t mind telling you, I’m a little nervous/Steve Crump, Twin Falls Times-News. More here.

  • Wednesday 4.22; and: Wednesday Brew: Alaskan’s Summer Ale/Unequivocal Notion
  • Spokane should have risked arbitration on chiefs’ salary/SR
  • Why Otter is losing the battle/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman
  • Idaho: State of contusion? Or confusion?/Dennis Mansfield
  • Time to play ball/IdaBlue
  • Idaho Environmental Council prints final newsletter/Rocky Barker

    Question: Are you part of Parrothood Nation?

    EOO: Public Breastfeeding Protected

    Gov. Chris Gregoire today signed into law House Bill 1596, which declares that the right of a mother to breastfeed her child in public places is a civil right protected by Washington’s anti-discrimination law. “This new law will eliminate one more obstacle that women are faced with day in and day out,” said Rep. Tami Green, D-Lakewood. It takes effect in 90 days. Washington is already one of at least 25 states that have passed laws explicitly declaring that breastfeeding or expressing breast milk does not constitute indecent exposure/Rich Roesler, Eye on Olympia. More here.

    Question: Do you agree with the step taken by the state of Washington to elevate breast-feeding in public to a civil right?

    HBO’s INorthwest Roundup — 4/22/09

    This view from the patio at the Coeur d’Alene Visitor Center sums up how North Idahoans feel when the sun comes out. This week the temperature reached 80 degrees, a preview of what’s just down the road for summer!/Councilwoman KerriT, OnLocation North Idaho.

    High Noon: Judge Shuts Defendant Up

    An eastern Idaho judge who lost patience with the disruptive behavior of a defendant ordered court officials to tape the man’s mouth shut with duct tape during a court hearing. The unusual move was ordered by 6th District Judge Peter D. McDermott during a probation violation hearing for Nicklas Frasure, 23. Frasure was convicted of felony theft in 2008, but the judge retained jurisdiction for sentencing depending on Frasure’s response to treatment. In October, Frasure was released from a state mental hospital in Blackfoot./Huffington Post. More here.

    Question: What are some of your odd uses for duct tape?

    Nellis Named New UI Prez

    Duane Nellis (seen speaking at a public forum on the UI campus Feb. 3), a native of the Northwest and Kansas State University provost, has been named president of the University of Idaho. The state Board of Education made the announcement Wednesday during a meeting in Moscow. Nellis, 54, was hired despite turning down the job last month over differences in salary. But the board approved a salary for Nellis of $335,000, making him the highest paid president at Idaho’s four public universities/AP. More hereNellis bio.

    Question: Obviously, the state Board of Education had to come up with more money to land Duane Nellis. Do you think the state of Idaho did the right thing by doing so?

    Barista Flasher Cop Triggers Law

    An encounter that involved a sheriff’s detective flashing a barista at a drive-up coffee stand has led to a new state law that Spokane County will use to expand the volunteer panel that overturned the detective’s firing. It took nearly three years, an act of the Legislature and a signature from Gov. Chris Gregoire to get from the flashing to the expansion. But county commissioners said Tuesday they will probably increase the board from three to five members this summer. Sheriff’s Detective Joseph Mastel (pictured, center) was fired in June 2006 after exposing himself to a barista at the On Alert coffee stand in Airway Heights. He was off duty at the time and said he had a “flirtatious relationship” with the woman, who was about 30 years younger. The woman said she was taken by surprise and felt violated by his actions/Jim Camden, SR. More here. Gov. Gregoire about to sign bill here.

    Question: Izzit just me, or do the police officers and firefighters in Spokane operate under a different set of rules that allow them to get away with things normal citizens don’t?

    HBO Poll: What To Do w/Tubbs Hill?

    MK: Tubbs Hill A Nature Preserve?

    Councilman MikeK: I raised the issue last night about researching and pursuing a different designation for Tubbs Hill - perhaps a historic landmark site, a nature preserve, something that would distinguish it from any other “city park”. I don’t know what that process is as I sit here, but it was an idea that was well-received I think and we need to pursue that. Full comment below.

    Question: Should Tubbs Hill be designated as a historic landmark or a nature preserve to protect it from commercial ventures and/or other attempts to change it?

    Pitts: We’ve Changed, Not Mrs. O

    In his column, Leonard Pitts contends that the nation has changed rather than First Lady Michelle Obama. As a reminder, he points back to the campaign when some viewed her as “a fire-snorting amalgam of Angela Davis and Sister Souljah … a militant, terrorist fist-bumping sister girl whose hatred of America was exceeded only by her hatred of ‘whitey.’” Now, Pitts continues, “Pollsters tell us she is more popular than her very popular husband. You cannot pass a magazine stand without seeing her smile.” Full column here.

    Question: Has the First Lady changed? Or has America?

    Quotable Quote — Ron Edinger

    “You have to respect and cherish certain things,” Councilman Ron Edinger said in leading the vote against the proposal by Coeur d’Alene’s ROW Adventures. “Tubbs Hill and McEuen Field are two of those things”/Alison Boggs, SR. Story here.

    CdA Levy Gets 74.11% Approval

    Wow. All the votes have been counted. 74.11 percent of 9,010 voters approved. That’s 6,677 yes and 2,333 no, with seven spoiled ballots. (hanging chads?) All 19 polling places passed the levy, along with the absentee ballots. Largest approval was 87 percent of 391 voters at Sorensen. Largest turnout was at Hayden Meadows, with 69.59 percent of 1,184 (!) voters saying yes. Remarkable fact: Lake City and Coeur d’Alene High each recorded 554 votes. LC had 86 percent approval, CHS had 75 percent. (You can see all the numbers from the various precincts by going to the district site here/Meghann M. Cuniff, SR.

    Originally posted 9 p.m. Tuesday

    Question: In this tight economic times, how do you explain such an overwhelming vote in favor of the $7.8M school levy election?

    Popkey: Guv Bets Farm On Roads

    Otter has grown testy at questions about what message he’s sending, biting off one reporter’s head at Tuesday’s veto-fest. He thinks everybody should know by now what’s been driving him for two years: an unshakable conviction that more money is necessary, even in dire economic times, to fulfill a core duty to protect public safety and promote commerce. In his youth, Otter served in the House. Were the clock turned back, he would have been among the crowd saying no to any tax increase. The mature Otter knows taxpayers are tired of extending the second-longest session in Idaho history. He knows the risk of pressing so forcefully for taxes during a brutal recession. He knows he might not have winning cards/Dan Popkey, Idaho Statesman. More here.

    Question: To continue the gambling analogy, is it time that Gov. Otter folds and survives to play another hand?

    AM Headlines — 4/22/09

    This is just the first step to privatizing this hill,” said Coeur d’Alene attorney Steve Bell, right, as Ryan Ghramm, left, of Hayden signed the petition on Tuesday to prevent the Coeur d’Alene City Council from allowing guided hiking and kayaking tours on and around Tubbs Hill. SR story by Alison Boggs here. (Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review)

    Question: Do you agree with the 4-2 decision by the Coeur d’Alene City Council to reject commercial tours of Tubbs Hill?

    HBO Poll Sez … Resounding No

    In the HBO Poll Tuesday, 57 of 87 (66%) respondents said “no” when asked whether the City Council should approve a proposal to allow guided tours on Tubbs Hill (which accurately reflects the 4-2 no vote last night by council members). Only 16 (18%) said yes. Fourteen (16%) said they don’t care.

    CindyH: Family Member Missing

    Update: Missing salesman located in Ferry County/Thomas Clouse, SR

    CindyH: My sister-in-law called early this morning. Her brother is missing. He left for the Ione/Curlew area yesterday morning and hasn’t been heard from since. He delivers medical supplies. His employer has mapped out his likely routes. My sister-in-law and her husband have searched for him all afternoon, joined by his coworkers. Local law enforcement has been notified as well as the WSP. Please keep Greg (missing man) and his wife Brenda in your thoughts and prayers.

    Kage: Tubbs Tour Plan Nixed 4-2

    Kage Mann: 4-2 vote (by City Council against the guided Tubbs Hill tour proposal Tuesday night). Four voted (No) and Two voted (yes). No votes to the commercialization of Tubbs Hill: Edinger,MK, Woody and grudgingly, Goodlander. Yes votes were: Hassel and the other guy (John Bruning). I’m assuming the mayor only votes to break council ties.

    Question: All 3 incumbents facing re-election voted against the proposal. Do you think they would have voted differently, if this wasn’t a municipal election year?

    Digger: Gas Tax Hike? Chump Change

    Digger: We hear from the House that this is so bad because an economic downturn is not the time for a tax increase. I beg to differ - we’re talking about .03 per gallon of gas. Thats chump change in the long run. I did the math and (revised from my ealier post) it would cost Spazz and I an extra $2.40 per month assuming we use our budgeted maximum fuel allowance of 80 gallons between the two cars we own. (My Tahoe takes 20 per fill x 3 per month and his Cavalier takes 15 per fill only once a month) That goes to a whopping $4.80 per month in a year when the tax goes to .06 cents.

    Question: What would this gas tax increase cost you per month?

    Nick: Earth Day? Change Oil In Street

    Nick Adams: Earth Day! I have big plans. First, I’m going to fire up the ol’ lawnmower and mow my yard twice. Then, the gas-powered weed-eater and edge every yard in my neighborhood. Next, I’ll get my 1976 Ford pick-up going and tow the boat up to the lake whilst throwing all the cans, paper and cardboard I’d normally recycle out the window. I’ll drive the boat back and forth across the lake until I’ve just about hit empty. Back to town, where I’ll change the oil in the truck and boat and dump the old oil right into the street drain. Wash them both in the street with as much phosphorate-laden detergent I can find. Full post below.

    Question: Nick, of course, is being facetious. How do you plan to celebrate Earth Day today?

    Cis: I Fish Like Patrick McManus Does

    Cis: I like all kinds of fishing but fly fishing is my love … I fell in love with the movie River Runs Thru It. … a few years ago, and realized that my fly fishing was more like Patrick McManus. More like a beating of the rug with a pole… actually I do get it right about 40% of the time. Looking at this picture, I wish I was there to see it done. It looks awesome… but the true cast of fly fishing and hearing the reel sing… brings so much joy to my heart. Even if I do more like Patrick McManus.

    Question: Which Patrick McManus book is your favorite? Why?

    Heller: Internet Ball & Chain

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Levy Election Wild Card — 4/21/09

    I’m heading out to vote in the $7.8M Coeur d’Alene School District levy election. Meghann Cuniff will be publishing the results of the election tonight on a separate entry that I’ll post at the top of the thread in a few minute. Results should begin coming in by 8:30 or so. Meanwhile, you should tune in on the public access channel, if you’re interested in the results of the City Council vote tonight on the proposed Tubbs Hill commercial tours. Thanks for tuning in today. I’ll re-play this Wild Card and hit the streets on my bike …

    Parting Shot — 4/21/09

    President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama watch as former President Bill Clinton plants a tree as they participate in a national service project at Kenilworth Aquatic Garden in Washington Tuesday. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

    SR’s Today In Photos

    Question: The world celebrates Earth Day on Wednesday. Are you going to do anything special in way of observing this event?

    MikeK: Mind Not Made Up On TH Plan

    Councilman MikeK: My mind is NOT made up on this issue and won’t be until I hear the discussion tonight. I made that point to the reporter, but since I’d been okay to look at this as a demonstration project when it first came up (after recommendation from staff), I owe it to people to hear them out entirely. Since I did vote to look at it, that was where I was “leaning” at the time. We now have a proposal and a formal option in front of us which I’ve read and reviewed and will hear more about tonight. I’ve been contacted by a number of folks, and I’m listening.

    Question: The City Council meeting to discuss the Tubbs Hill tour proposal starts at 6 o’clock. How do you think Councilman MikeK will vote on the matter? Do you think it’ll be approved?

    FHB: What, Me Worry? Indeed

    Frum Helen Back: My grandmother was my Sunday school teacher and she was always telling us that the end of time was very near. That was along with fearing a nuclear bomb being dropped on us. I stopped fearing grandma’s prediction when my dad told me she was saying the same thing when he was little. But it wasn’t until the end of the cold war that I stopped worrying about nuclear bombs. Now I have other things to worry about.

    Question: What worries you most today?

    PM Headlines — 4/21/09

    House GOP Leader Mike Moyle, R-Star, foreground, answers questions during the House Leadership press conference at the Capitol Annex in Boise today. Also in attendance was House Assistant GOP Leader, Scott Bedke, R-Oakley, GOP House Speaker Lawrence Denney, R-Midvale, House GOP Caucus Chair, Ken Roberts, R-McCall. Gov. Butch Otter and the Idaho House are playing a game of legislative chicken re: Otter’s insistence that the Legislature increase taxes and fees to help pay for Transportation projects. Betsy Russell/Eye On Boise is providing blow-by-blow coverage here. (AP Photo/The Idaho Statesman, Shawn Raecke)

    APhoto Of The Day — 4/21/09

    Dalton Lucas, 9, from Goodview, Va, has a large carp splash its way out of his hands after he tried getting it out of the water at Bridgewater Plaza Marina at Smith Mountain Lake in Roanoke, Va., last week. “I can usually get them out of the water, but that was a big one,” Dalton said. Dalton’s father, Ricky Lucas said that one of Dalton’s favorite things to do is coming to the marina and trying to grab fish out of the water. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/The Roanoke Times, Kyle Green)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. A dream by Gov Butch Otter when he was a boy practicing a choke hold on a Carp … only to wake up with his hands around the throat of Bob Nonini. Said the Gov … ”why did I wake up? — Talkjoc.
    • 2. Dalton Lucas, 9, catches yet another possible culprit in the loss of his favorite lure last season. The avid angler has stated he will catch every fish in the lake and interrogate them with his new found air boarding technique until he finds the mastermind of the lure theft — Northerner.
    • 3. Roanoke, VA. is one of the few remaining places where it’s still legal to use your kids as bait — CindyH.
    • HM: RedMan

    Scanner Traffic — 4/21/09

    • 5:57 p.m. Bicyclist remains on the ground @ Lancaster & Rimrock/Hayden Lake after being hit by a vehicle.
    • 5:26 p.m. Mother on Blueberry Circle/Hayden reports her 10YO daughter was bit by a neighbor’s dog.
    • 4:59 p.m. Hayden woman reports that an angry neighbor is trying to break down her door.
    • 3:58 p.m. Hanley Avenue resident reports her neighbor’s dog killed her sheep.
    • 3:55 p.m. Red pickup lost a wheel @ 15th & Mullan/Post Falls, causing more than $1500 damage.
    • 3:46 p.m. Blue T-bird flew off roadway @ Prairie & 41, hit a sign, and ended up in a ditch.
    • 3:19 p.m. Confused elderly woman in a wheelchair is in Denny’s parking lot after almost taking an offramp onto I-90 @ 4th Street.
    • 3:02 p.m. Officer calls for more flaggers at road construction site on Highway 95 @ Chilco. Only one flagger is working now. And trucks are backing up.
    • 3 p.m. A 48YO man is semi-conscious but breathing after a gun blew up in his face at Center Target Sports, 3295 Mullan/Post Falls.
    • More below

    Otter Vetoes 25 Bills, Demands Action

    Gov. Butch Otter is vetoing 25 budget bills, telling lawmakers he’ll continue the vetoes until they act on his transportation plan.  “We’ve got to continue to try, because every day the problem is going to get worse,” the governor declared. “They’re all bills that need to be addressed by the Legislature before they go home, and they know that.” He said, “We’re going to continue to take this kind of action until we see some concrete movement. They need to know that I’m serious.”

    Question: Is Otter melting down? Or performing like a statesman?

    Wrong Number

    Mrs. O was surprised to find this wrong-number message on her cell phone this afternoon: “If this is what it feels like to get cold feet, no one would get married. So this must not be right.” Hey, don’t look at me. Mrs. O & I are about to clock 34 years of wedded bliss. No cold feet here.

    Question: Anyone want to take a crack at interpreting the message?

    Trib: UI To Name Prez Wednesday

    The State Board of Education will hold a special telephonic meeting Wednesday morning to name the next University of Idaho president. The leading contender appears to be Kansas State University Provost Duane Nellis, who earlier turned down the job, citing salary issues. But earlier this month, UI alumnus and former U.S. Sen. Steve Symms mounted an effort to raise private funding to supplement Nellis salary/Lewiston Tribune.

    Spokane Blogs: Bicycle, Bicycle

    At Accidental Rabbit Trails, blogger Beth Bollinger made my day with a post about a 1970s bike that Arpie rescued from the “Dufort Mall” and offered free to anyone at Huckleberries Online who wanted it. Arpie has yet to make delivery. But you can see the bike in store for Beth above. And read all about it here.

    Question: Have you ever salvaged something from a Dumpster for personal use — you know, Dumpster Diving?

    MamaJD: Why No Levy Mention

    MamaJD: - I’m not finding any mention of the school levy vote today. Did you forget or are you ignoring?

    DFO: D’oh! I thought I’d posted a comment about the levy early this morning. But I’d only posted a link in the AM Headlines roundup. Here’s the KHQ story re: today’s levy.

    Question: You can vote until 8 o’clock tonight at any school for the $7.8M, two-year Coeur d’Alene School District levy. Which is $1M less than the levy that will end. Do you support/oppose the levy?

    DC: Memories Of WWII Death Camp

    Eberhart was appalled at the news that the Aryan Nations organization was apparently trying to make a comeback in North Idaho. After his speech, the old soldier recoiled when I showed him a clipping of a Spokesman-Review story about racist fliers appearing Friday on the lawns of north Coeur d’Alene residents. “I thought that had been taken care of,” Eberhart said, shaking his head in disgust. So did I. After decades of preaching racial hate, Richard Butler and his vile operation were busted in 2000 when a jury returned a $6.3 million verdict against him. Butler died four years later. I had hoped the old neo-Nazi had permanently relocated to a new compound in one of hell’s hotter subdivisions. Like a really bad intestinal virus, alas, some of Butler’s feeble-minded minions seem to be still hanging around and itching to make trouble/Doug Clark, SR. More here.

    Question: Eberhart fears that today’s youth don’t understand history. That the terror of the Holocaust will fade as the eyewitnesses to the horror die. How can each of us do our part to prevent another Holocaust from occurring?

    Fly Or Sinker?

    Ian Gordon of Scotland makes a spey cast at the Jimmy Green International Spey-O-Rama & Fly Casting Festival Saturday in San Francisco. Spey casting is a form of fly casting generally done with long rods with two hands, making the caster able to make longer casts and cover more water. (AP photo/George Nikitin)

    Question: Which kind of fishing do you prefer? Fly? Sinker?

    HBO Interrupts Regular Programs …

    … to bring you this important public service announcement. Subway restaurants have switched back to offering only a handful of secondary sandwiches for the $5 specials. A co-worker says that she was delayed over the lunch hour b/c a number of the cuss-tomers in front of her couldn’t get the sandwiches they wanted that’d been on special as late as Sunday. You’ve been warned. Now, back to your regular programming …

    Off The Cuff: Already Sun Burnt

    It’s only April, and I’ve already got myself a pretty good sunburn. I wasn’t even outside that long over the weekend, and I’ve already got to break out the sunburn cream. My geeky, pale skin isn’t ready for this kind of weather/Photo Editor Jake Barber, UI Argonaut. More Off The Cuff here.

    Question: Do you sunburn easily?

    Poll: 1 in 3 Kids Fear Earth Meltdown

    Poll: One in 3 children fear Earth apocalypse/Treehugger

    More Info: There’s a new bogeyman lurking in the closet, and this one isn’t imaginary. Us. One out of three children aged 6 to 11 fears that Ma Earth won’t exist when they grow up, while more than half—56 percent—worry that the planet will be a blasted heath (or at least a very unpleasant place to live), according to a new survey.

    Question: Do you fear the Earth apocalypse bogeyman, too?

    HBO’s INorthwest Roundup — 4/21/09

    The House has come back on the floor, its caucuses concluded, and will be taking up the amended transportation bill, HB 96. In this photo, just before the bell rang to convene, representatives looked at newspapers with headlines asking, “Will House yield to Otter’s threat?” Betsy Russell/Eye On Boise provides complete coverage of the House’s showdown w/Gov. Butch Otter here.

    High Noon: Debit Or Credit?

    But whether you choose debit or credit, either method is safer than using cash or writing checks. Lose a check card and you’re covered for almost everything you lose (usually there’s a $50 out-of-pocket cost) and it’s easy to cancel cards and order new ones.  When you lose cash, you’ll probably never see it again. Checks can be easily altered and they’re also time-consuming (just think back to how you felt the last time someone paid by check for a candy bar or bottle of soda)/Shawn Vestal, Everyday Economy. More here.

    Question: When you’re shopping, do you prefer to use: credit, debit, cash, or check?

    ITHO: Today’s Religo-tainment

    I went to church two weeks ago and had this epiphany while listening to the house band warm up the audience for the headliner. The minister wore jeans and a fleece zip-up. His voice was amplified by a wireless clip-on microphone, which was fed to the technical booth, which blasted his voice with remarkable clarity over the audience. As he gave his sermon, two giant projector screens presented visual aids that coordinated seamlessly with his talking points. All the while, a digital video camera recorded him and sent a feed to the lobby’s giant flatscreen tv. I was in awe. Sitting back in my plush, theater seat, I thought to myself—if this is just one example of the modern church, what does the future hold for young church-goers?/Loren Kelly, North Idaho College Sentinel. More here.

    Question: Do you enjoy the modern church w/its lively worship band and multimedia presentation? Or do you prefer ritual and/or a more traditional approach to church?

    AM Scanner Traffic — 4/21/09

  • 11:36 a.m. 66YO woman on Bruin Loop & Strahorn/Hayden has gotten physical with care-giver and is trying to throw herself out of wheelchair off residential ramp.
  • 10:56 a.m. Woman reports that her ex-boyfriend is taking items from her house in the 3400 block of 1st Avenue/PF that don’t belong to him. He’s loading up his pickup after gaining entry through a back door. He is suppose to take only the stuff on the porch.
  • 10:47 a.m. A boat is abandoned @ Driftwood Point/Lake Coeur d’Alene.
  • 10:40 a.m. 2 aggressive pitbulls are running loose @ Spokane & Stanway/Post Falls(?).
  • 10:04 a.m. A woman called to ask assistance in dealing with a man named “Anthony.” The line cut off with the woman yelling: “Get off of me!”
  • 9:30 a.m. A man reported that his neighbor regularly has trespassed on his property and threatened him. Responding police asked if weapons were involved in the threat.
  • 9:26 a.m. The stoplights aren’t recycling @ I-90 & Highway 41, resulting in motorists in the n/b & s/b lanes running the lights.
  • HBO Poll: Tubbs Hill Tours

    MPDN: Document Fee Hike Bad Idea

    Item: Fee increases for Moscow public records is a bad idea/Sandra Kelly, Moscow-Pullman Daily News

    More Info: The proposal before the council would make it more difficult and expensive for members of the public to access records they have every right to see. Given the limited number of instances cited to justify this proposed increase in cost, there is no legitimate reason for the council to approve these increases. It’s a slippery slope when someone in City Hall is given the bureaucratic tools to label a specific request to public information as somehow “excessive.”

    Also: ISP asks SR for $5595.55 for record of jail prescription drug scandal investigation

    Question: What would be a good criteria for assessing costs for a public-documents request?

    Gun Advocates Fight Control

    John Sigler, president of the National Rifle Association address the crowd during a gun rights rally in the Capitol rotunda this morning in Harrisburg, Pa. In Idaho, the 2009 Legislature already has passed 6 of 8 measures to strengthen firearms protection here. Meanwhile, Americans are arming themselves to the teeth for fear the Obama administration and the Democratic Congress will take steps to control guns, despite evidence to the contrary here. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

    Question: Are you more concerned that the Obama administration and/or Democratic Congress will try to control guns, or that we’re arming ourselves to the teeth, increasing the danger that innocent people will be shot by hotheads wielding guns?

    Fire Chiefs To Get 3.6-5.8% Raises

    Item: Fire chiefs to get raises despite layoff concerns: Council members say options limited: agree to raises or face arbitration/Jim Camden, SR

    More Info: Spokane city fire battalion chiefs will get raises over the next four years, despite concerns by some City Council members that the economy is forcing taxpayers to take cuts or face layoffs. The Spokane City Council was told Monday that it had little choice but to give members of the Spokane Association of Fire Officers – the union that represents 10 battalion chiefs – raises negotiated in collective bargaining sessions. If the council refused, the city could be accused of bad-faith bargaining and facing binding arbitration, said Gita Hatcher, who represented the city in negotiations.

    Question: What do you think of Spokane battalion fire chiefs getting raises in such a bad economy?

    VH: Otter Right Re: Road Funding

    Otter is right. Transportion needs more funding. We’ve editorialized on that for more than year. But is this the right economic environment to force a tax hike? Will this be better for the public in the long run? Yes, because the costs far outweigh the upfront costs to our individual pocketbooks. But convince a legislator whose political future may be on the line if he/she votes to raise our taxes when many people are taking pay cuts. The showdown has just begun/Vickie Holbrook, Idaho Press-Tribune. More here.

    Question: Who do you want to win the showdown over transportation funding that would include an increase in gas taxes — Gov. Butch Otter or the Idaho Legislature?

    600 Don’t Want Tubbs Hill Tours

    Item: Paid guided adventure not welcome to 600 citizens: Council to vote tonight on Tubbs Hill proposal/Tom Hasslinger, CdA Press

    More Info: Keep commercialization off Tubbs Hill. That’s the rally cry for a number of citizens fighting to keep guided walking tours off the Lake City’s pine-treed majesty. The City Council is expected to vote on whether to accept the proposal submitted by ROW Adventures at 6 tonight in the Community Room of the Coeur d’Alene Public Library.

    Question: How should the City Council vote tonight?

    AM Headlines — 4/21/09

    Councilwoman KerriT says it all with the photo above and this cutline: “It’s spring time in North Idaho!” At last.

    HBO Poll Sez … Instant Hit

    In the HBO Poll Monday, Huckleberries Online asked: “What would happen if someone tried to open an espresso stand run in the CdA area run by bikini-clad women?” 53 of 78 (68%) responded that a bikini espresso stand would be an “instant hit.” Another 18 (23%) predicted “nothing” would happen. In the superminority, 7 (9%) thought a bikini espresso stand would be boycotted.

    OTV: Grail Offers Free Beer Stirs

    OrangeTV: Last time I was (in The Grail):  was around last Christmas to see the all-girl punk band Bent Penny for a benefit show. I ordered a pitcher of beer and the hairy, scary bartender was nice enough to even pour my first glass full. Problem was, it had too much of a foamy head. I couldn’t believe my eyes when he suddenly plunged his nasty finger right into my beer and swirled it around - that trick you do to get rid of foam. I gagged slightly, but I’m not one to let a beer go to waste. I figured the alcohol would kill the germs…

    Question: Which bar is the seediest that you’ve ever had a drink in?

    RedMan: We Deserve Better From ISP

    RedMan: Well ISP is only half right in citing the code. They are going to fight an uphill battle if Megan sticks to her guns. They have to prove the cost of those records, and five grand is a bunch of Bull Pucky. I would expect other agencies (Fish and Game, and Health and Welfare) to be boneheads about public records but … ISP?????? Come on guys, your the last semblance of a truly professional organization we have left and then you guys go and do this, the citizens deserve better.

    DFO: RedMan, you need an avatar.

    Question: Do you believe ISP is truly trying to recoup costs by demanding $5595.55 from the SR to release public records on the investigation that led to the firing or disciplinary actions of five Kootenai County jailers. Or is it trying to stonewall?

    JohnA: Still Awed By Lake CdA View

    JohnA: My first view of Lake Coeur d’Alene each morning, especially these days with snow capped peaks rising above it, on my daily commute. I often see the amazed looks on the faces of out-of-staters as they view it as well, possibly for the first time. I watch as they pull off at the turnout near Mullan Trail just so they can experience the view. That’s when I’m reminded of how blessed we are to live here.

    Question: Which North Idaho view still inspires you, no matter how many times you’ve seen it?

    Stickman: How To Handle Shoplifters

    Stickman: I was such a great shoplifter in my day, never caught. My sister was even better, walking out with a very expensive canoe and waving her receipt. No one had a clue. Now, if I saw someone attempting such behavior, I might casually mention that if I saw them, someone else is definitely watching as well. Hopefully they would put it back.

    Question: Did you ever shoplift candy, toys, or anything else from a store, when you were a kid?

    Heller: Tea? Green? Let’s Party

    Joe Heller/Hellertoons

    Columbine+10 Wild Card: 4/20/09

    In the news this evening: Scientists: Fatsos cause global warming here. Boston police arrest CraigsList murder suspect here. The New York Times wins 5 Pulitzers here. Father of ’Slumdog’ actress accused of trying to sell her here. Miss California believes her anti-gay marriage answer cost her the Miss USA crown here. And the Wild Card remains in play …

    Parting Shot — 4/20/09

    Porterhouse, left, looks at Maxxis, right, during the 30th Drake Relays Beautiful Bulldog Contest today in Des Moines, Iowa. Porterhouse, owned by Kevin and Erin Bell, of Des Moines, won the contest and Maxxis, ownded by Robert Apt, of Des Moines, was runner-up. The pageant kicks off the Drake Relays festivities at Drake University where a bulldog is the mascot. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)


    DFO: Herb Huseland’s son, Brian, wrote the following poem after he and his wife, Jennifer, recently lost a child through miscarriage.

    A new twig on the tree
    But no leaves budding,
    Unfurling miniature fingers.
    Spring has come,
    But brittle branches
    Stretch with barren stiffness
    Poised for nothing?
    This little limb meant more.
    The ache of sap rises in my bones,
    Leaks into tears, small sighs
    For small deaths;
    Not for what is,
    But for what could have been. More here.

    Brian Huseland

    Worker Furloughs Replace Layoffs

    Item: More companies force workers to take time off: But not all welcome ‘banishment,’ especially when they don’t get paid/MSNBC

    More Info:  So you’re thinking the worst is now behind you because you survived a round of layoffs, accepted a pay cut and are doing the job of two people. Think again. There’s a new cost-cutting measure exploding among employers — furloughs. Many companies, universities and governments across the country are forcing their workers to take a day or two off a month, or to take a week off during a given quarter. There’s one catch — no pay.

    Question: What do you think of the “furlough” without pay concept?

    PM Headlines — 4/20/09

    Peter Paulovic whips out his phone camera to grab a shot of the Oscar Mayer Wienermobil earlier today as it passes through downtown Spokane, Wash. Various models of the famous car have been on the road helping charities and promoting food products around the United States since 1936. Drivers of the iconic vehicle are called ” Hotdoggers.” Christopher Anderson/SR.

    Idaho ranks 9th in amount of earmark money per capita/Idaho Statesman

    APhoto Of The Day — 4/20/09

    President Barack Obama, center, poses for a photo with Geeta Malik, left, and her daughter Reina Gibbs as John Gibbs, far right, takes a photograph, upon the President’s return to the White House on Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House Sunday in Washington. The Gibbs are related to White House press secretary Robert Gibbs. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. Say, “Hugo” — Phaedrus.
    • 2. “I’d like you all to meet Geeta, whose generation has graciously taken on the multi-trillion dollar debt of our great nation. All of it with very little hope of ever receiving Social Security for their old age, either. Thanks, Geeta, you’re a true patriot” — JohnA.
    • 3. I vote 14 times for this guy, and all I get is a lousy photo op? — Cabbage Boy.
    • HM: Pecky

    Scanner Traffic — 4/20/09

    • 5:17 p.m. Garwood Wrecking has apprehended a person stealing material.
    • 4:40 p.m. 2YO fell out of shopping cart onto his head (unknown location).
    • 4:23 p.m. R/P reports seeing a couple cussing and hitting their unrestrained children in a burgundy Intrepid w/Iowa plates in the Bank of America parking lot. The man who owns the vehicle has a long list of criminal activity, including battery and drug use.
    • 3:39 p.m. R/P reports rock from w/b dump truck hit his windshield on I-90, M/P 57 (Wallace area).
    • 3:07 p.m. Report of fire in trees near Thompson Lake & Blue Lake roads/Harrison area turns out to be a USFS control burn.
    • 2:58 p.m. Howard Johnson employee finds 56YO female guest in room sluggish & weak.
    • 1:33 p.m. An elderly man is walking in the median on Highway 95, n/b from Bosanko.
    • 1:11 p.m. Horses are loose @ Trails End & Mallory/Rathdrum area.
    • 1:09 p.m. CPD Blue is checking old Bureau of Land Management building for possible break-in.
    • 12:40 p.m. A possible burglary is taking place on Hudlow & Box Canyon/Post Falls, where man reports a woman is taking his washer & dryer.

    JeanieS: Things That Bring Joy

    • Passing a gradeschool during recess and listening to dozens of children laughing.
    • Watching the neighbor teen “race” with his little short-legged terrier running like it meant his life, the little dog’s tail wiggling so much that he zigzagged as he ran, stopping now and then to smile at his master and let the teen catch up.
    • Sitting at a light and hearing loud cheering from the car next door with its window down and realizing the guy by himself is singing at the top of his lungs to the radio, his head thrown back with glee.
    • Babies being strolled by on the first spring day
    • More here/Jeanie Spokane.

    Question: What do you find in a routine day that brings joy?

    Otter Vetoes All 8 Appropriation Bills

    Gov. Butch Otter has vetoed all eight appropriation bills that he threatened to veto this morning. “I have no problem with these bills,” Otter wrote in his veto message. “At some point they will merit positive consideration. However, consistent with my desire to provide you with the time to positively address our need for an ongoing source of transportation revenue, I am vetoing these bills and will continue vetoing appropriations bills until an adequate transportation bill is approved by the Legislature and delivered for my consideration”/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    Question: Who’s going to win this showdown?

    HBO Blogosphere — 4/20/09

    This photo from Pecky Cox’s As The Lake Churns Web site was selected as the best one from the annual Priest Lake Logger Days 2009. You can see all of the site’s Logger Days photos here.

    ISP Wants $5195.55 For Jail Report!

    In the Ripley’s Believe It or Not Department, SR buddy Meghann Cuniff tells your Huckleberry Hound that the ISP wants to charge us $5195.55 for administrative & copying fees for the report on stolen medication drugs at the Kootenai County Jail — you know, the one that led to some firings and disciplinary action against 8 jailers. E-mails the ISP per Meghann’s April 6 request: ““After consultation with the attorney for the Idaho State Police, it has been determined that your request is partially denied because the records you have requested will have to be screened for information that is exempt from disclosure and will have to be redacted accordingly before the copies can be provided to you, pursuant to IDAHO CODE 9-335(1).” Can you say “stonewall,” bay-bee? The SR plans to appeal.

    Question: What do you make of this development?

    DFO’s Animals: Easy Riding Dog

    Tiki, a 2 year old Pomeranian, wets his nose during the first Show and Shine at the Carson City Harley-Davidson in Carson City, Nev., on Saturday. (AP Photo/Nevada Appeal, Kevin Clifford)

    Sandpoint ‘Transition’ Lures NYTimes

    It was a Friday night last November. All around the little town of Sandpoint, beetles were blighting north Idaho’s pine forests. The previous day, the U.N. reported that emissions from automobiles and coal-fired power plants were collecting in brown clouds over 13 Asian and African cities and blocking out the sun. Iceland’s main banks had crumpled, and American auto executives were about to fly to Washington in private jets to plead for a bailout. Off the coast of Africa, Somali pirates were hijacking oil tankers. But the folks at the Panida Theater wouldn’t stop clapping. The Sandpoint Transition Initiative, a new chapter of a growing, worldwide environmental movement, was officially coming to life/Jon Mooallem, New York Times magazine. More here.

    H/T: David Taylor

    Question: Have you heard of the Transition Movement?

    Experts: Huggies Heist Sign Of Times

    Item: Huggies heist sign of recession crime, experts say/Jody Lawrence-Turner, SR

    More Info: On Saturday, the man started yelling “sorry” when a 28-year-old security guard stopped the two walking out of Safeway on Francis Avenue at North Monroe about 5:30 p.m. with Huggies in their cart, authorities said. Then the man punched the security guard, leaving a mark on his cheek, according to a Spokane County Sheriff’s Office press release. The security guard grabbed the man’s shirt to stop his escape, but the shirt ripped off, said Sgt. Dave Reagan. He ran from the area.

    Question: If you saw someone shoplifting, would you report it to store employees?

    OTV: Cabela’s White Pines Cafe

    The massive hype and excitement that accompanied the late 2007 opening of the burly sporting goods supercenter has waned enough that Q and I finally felt brave and bored enough to check it out on a recent gloomy Monday afternoon. I’d been packing around a Cabela’s gift card in my wallet for ages after having earned it from my bank as a result of spending $2,000 using my debit card. I browsed the Cabela’s Web site but couldn’t find anything that grabbed me for under $20 besides a 4-foot, stuffed rainbow trout pillow. I really don’t have a need for yet another one of those, so I decided to treat Q to a meal at Cabela’s in-house cafe/OrangeTV, Get Out! North Idaho. More here.

    Question: Do you regularly/seldom/never visit Cabela’s?

    HBO’s INorthwest Roundup — 4/20/09

    A raft sits in a rapid hole Sunday, on the Murtaugh Stretch of the Snake River, near Twin Falls, Idaho after four boaters were forced to jump from it, claiming the life of an Idaho Falls man. The rafter, Dirk Gombert of Idaho Falls, was later pronounced dead at St. Luke’s Magic Valley Medical Center. Story here. (AP Photo/Times-News,Ashley Smith)

    HBO Poll: Bikini Espresso Stand

    JS: Single Mothering Not For Wimps

    I had a few times where I sorely missed a partner — like when the oldest fell on the way to school and split his forehead open and had to be taken to emergency by the sitter — along with all the other kids she was caring for … The times in Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts where a father would have been so much better with knives and carving and fishing and making fires.  (I was demonstrating how to fix a tarp, slicing through the tarp and also slicing through my thumb and then standing there with blood gushing and calmly advising ten little boys on how to stop bleeding while also gluing the tarp, and ending it with, children, don’t do this at home)/JeanieS. Full post below.

    Question: When did you last suffer a significant cut?

    ITHO: Trillhaase To Replace Fisher

    The central figure in that bit of newspaper history was for many years Bill Hall, who started writing editorials at the Trib in 1965 and (with a short 18-month hiatus) kept at it till he retired in 2002. His successor was Jim Fisher, who’d written edits alongside Hall for many years and whose style significantly overlapped. Now Fisher is retiring, so a real question has been: Does financially-strapped Lewiston (which recently cut the editorial page staff from two to one) keep the tradition alive? Looks like it will, having just hired for the job Marty Trillhaase, who has been editorial editor at the Idaho Falls Post-Register/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press. More here.

    Question: Which editorial write in a local, state or national newspaper do you enjoy reading most?

    My 2 Cents: Careful w/McEuen Field

    Mayor Sandi Bloem & the City Council should approach the push by LCDC to transform McEuen Field w/extreme caution. A misstep — a decision to go too far in approving changes — will finally give diehard foes of this administration the rallying point to grab council seats, and maybe even the mayor’s one. For half a century, dating back to the 50s, threats to the waterfront have unified the community against those in power. In the ‘50s, the incumbents were turned out when they sided with advocates for a shopping center at the base of Tubbs Hill. In the early 1980s, the Save Our Shoreline ticket headed by Jim Fromm swept into power when a developer proposed building twin towers on the current site of The Coeur d’Alene Resort. The community has united against Duane Hagadone’s plans to restore hydroplane racing to the waterfront and build a botanical garden on McEuen Field and later the western end of Sherman Avenue. A Huckleberries Onlilne poll showed 44% of the readers here don’t want a thing done with McEuen Field. Others were OK with changes around the 3 ballfields. Only 17% wanted a complete overhaul. No one will be able to force wholesale changes down the throats of Coeur d’Alene residents. But they may usher in a council of naysayers if they try.

    Question: If you were an incumbent seeking re-election on the Coeur d’Alene City Council, what would you tell LCDC board members pushing to get moving on the McEuen Field upgrade?

    LeFavour: Ode To The House


    Oh larger body of elected ones, Majority like sheep you follow your leaders
    As the caucus doors close and thumbscrews turn
    Down hill you trod, the state, its schools,
    Its economy in tow. Full poem here.

    State Rep. Nicole LeFavour, District 19

    Columbine — 10 Years Later

    Jen Beaver, 23, holds her candle as she watches the candlelight vigil at the Columbine Memorial at Clement Park near Littleton, Colo., on Sunday. Today is the 10th anniversary of the murderous rampage at Columbine High School in Colorado. Story here. (AP Photo/Chris Schneider)

    Question: Are our schools safer today than they were 10 years ago?

    Otter Vetoes Bill Nonini Co-Sponsored

    Gov. Butch Otter says there’s no relationship between the two bills he vetoed this morning - HB 161a on security breaches that release personal information, and HB 245, which established a Parents as Teachers program under the Children’s Trust Fund - and his dispute with the Legislature over transportation. “I think I would’ve vetoed these bills no matter - in fact, I don’t even know who carried the bills,” he said. HB 161a was sponsored by Rep. Tom Trail, R-Moscow, and HB 245 was sponsored by Rep. Brian Cronin, D-Boise. However, HB 245 was co-sponsored by House Education Chairman Bob Nonini, R-Coeur d’Alene, an outspoken opponent of Otter’s fuel tax increase bil/Betsy Russell, Eye On Boise. More here.

    Question: Are there any other bills veto coulda/shoulda vetoed?

    Keillor: Poetry Wows Gals … Really

    April is Poetry Month, whatever that may mean to you, perhaps not much. Perhaps what with your nomination to be Assistant Secretary for Human Rights running into rough waters because of that silly song you sang at the company Christmas party in 1997 which has been used to make you look like an insensitive jerk, your interest in poetry is practically nil, and if so - hey, you’re not alone. The reading aloud of poetry has been shown, time and time again, to be effective at breaking up gatherings of people. Rather than tear gas or pepper spray, many police departments now use Wordsworth. Or T.S. Eliot, that small dark cloud of a poet/Garrison Keillor, in Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: Do you like poetry?

    7000 Participate In Race For Cure

    Breast cancer survivors gathered on the steps of the INB Performing Arts Center (Spokane Opera House) for a “survivor” photograph before the start of the Eastern Washington Race for the Cure, Sunday. Over 7,000 women, children and men raced, walked and participated as teams to raise money for, and recognize, those people whose lives have been touched by breast cancer. Story here. (J. Bart Rayniak/Spokesman-Review)

    Question: Is anyone in your family a cancer survivor?

    Camden: D’s, R’s Misread Tea Leaves

    So what? some Democrats have sniffed, rather derisively. When you have Fox News and talk radio and conservative Web sites promoting an event, of course people will turn out. These Tea Partiers who protest taxes don’t seem to understand that taxes for the vast majority of the public will go down if President Obama gets his way, other Democrats added. This is a mistake Democrats often make, countering an emotional argument with a process-based response. The fact is that a certain segment of the public was fed up enough last Wednesday to skip lunch, leave work early or have dinner late so they could cheer speakers, shake fists or wave signs in protest. But the real question for Republicans is: Protest what?/Jim Camden, SR Spin Control. More here.

    Question: We’ve been focused on the impact of the Tea Parties last week on a national level. Jim Camden brings up an interesting point. The Tea Parties were relatively well attended in the Inland Northwest. Will they have an impact on local and state politics?

    Espresso Stand Features Bikinis

    A Spokane espresso stand has uncovered a new way to market its lattes and mochas by hiring bikini-clad baristas to serve its customers. While it may not exactly be bikini weather that’s not stopping the women working behind the counter at Busty’s Top Espresso on East Sprague from serving up coffee in bikini tops and shorts. The espresso stand has been around for over a year and is run by the same owner of the Bel-Air motel which is connected to the espresso drive thru. This week that espresso stand reopened as Busty’s Top Espresso, with signs & balloons advertising their bikini clad women and beverages/KXLY. More here.

    Question: Would you be more likely or less likely to stop at an espresso stand if bikini-clad baristas worked there?

    AM Headlines — 4/20/09

    Lake City High School senior Jessica Ross during softball practice at the school in Coeur d’Alene recently. Greg Lee tells you all about the LCHS star in his weekly high school sports feature in the SR Handle Extra here. (Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review)

    HBO Poll: Aryan Literature

    In the HBO Poll this weekend, 50 of 93 respondents (53%) answered some form of “no” to the question: “Are you concerned that the distribution of racist material in CdA Friday means the Aryans are back?” Among the “no” answers, 30 indicated that the distribution discovered Friday morning in some CdA neighborhoods was the work of a few malcontents. 37 of 93 respondents (38%) answered “yes,” with the top answer being (13 votes) being: “In hard times people are looking for a scapegoat.” Six respondents marked “maybe.” 

    B&R: Can You Make It w/o Home Phone?

    BandR: So who’d you go with instead of Time Warner, Dave? My phone/cable/internet bill with them is running around $140/mo which I would dearly love to lower. I’m thinking of dropping the land line completely since the kids and I all have cell phones. Anyone have any thoughts on that?

    DFO: I got a deal with Direct TV for $24.95 per month for a year for 150 channels ($54.95 for the second 12 month with a buyout clause. However, current Time-Warner package costs $62 for 70-plus channels). I bundled my Verizon/Internet service to add high-speed Internet and unlimited long distance for $50 per month. But I’m considering dropping a home land line, too — for greater cost savings. My total TW/Cable/Verizon bill had been $121.

    Question: Can those who use only cell phones and no land lines tell us whether it’s worth it?

    Herb: Both Extremes Equally Paranoid

    Herb: Paranoia comes in many forms. Those that choose the life of Nazi flag waving are paranoid. Those that find Nazis under every bush are equally paranoid. This issue, and many others are hotbeds of hatred, directed in both directions. It is always interesting to hear the squeals from both liberal and conservative camps when a toe has been stepped on. … Somehow, we have to climb down from our marble platforms of righteousness and talk to each other as friends and neighbors. Is it going to happen anytime soon? probably not, as most ideologues are firmly entrenched in their own little world, paying no attention to the other.

    Question: How much attention do you pay to political discussion in the comments thread of Huckleberries Online?

    Nick: Plenty Of Tennis Courts Already

    Nick Adams: Jesse’s correct about the Cherry Hill courts — which are fantastic! Also, the courts at LCHS, CHS are open to the public when the students and aren’t using them. I played tennis consistently in CDA for nine years and never experienced a time where I couldn’t find an open court. I may have had to drive to a couple of different places and had to play on a less than stellar surface, but given that the popularity of tennis has dropped fairly consistently in the last two decades, CDA is actually a little bit ahead (thanks to the Cherry Hill addition) in terms of courts-to-players ratio.

    Question: Can we all agree that tennis courts aren’t needed at McEuen Field because we have very good courts at the two high schools and at Cherry Hill?

    Marmie: Better Ronnie Than Me

    Marmitetoasty: I stood in the queue in the pub one summer about 15 years ago, I was double dared to bungee jump. … they had this massive crane rigged up … not some beautiful view over a canyon lol . … I was up for it, shaking in me boots but up for it. … Except … the bloke 3 in front of me, got strapped in and hoisted up to the platform. … he was as tough as old nails was Ronnie Harris, a bit of a wide boy of about 45. … he jumped … and screamed and in front of everyone had a massive heart attack … Dead on disembarkment. … So, they closed the whole thing down … Praise the lord in a sick way. … RIP Ronnie Harris.

    Question: Can anyone top this adventure of Marmie’s?

    Stantis: Watch All Of ‘Em

    Scott Stantis/Birmingham News

    Wild Card/Sunday — 4/19/09

    To sum up my Saturday: I spent a coupla hours rifling through direct-mail offers for better service at lower prices for home phones, cable TV and Internet access — and then dealing with sales reps on the telephone to save up to $65 per month. Time-Warner got the pink slip. I swept wood chips from everything within 20 feet of my winter wood pile, which is now down to 8 rounds, in preparation for seal-coating the patio this afternoon. Both my pro baseball teams — San Francisco and Seattle — lost 2-0, spoiling good efforts by pitchers who are paid too much to pity. My wife and I enjoyed pre-tourist-season City Park with 3 other couples late in the afternoon before the cold drove us home. I prepared 15 questions on John 20:19-29 for the adult Sunday School class I will lead in the morning. I capped things off by reading a coupla poems by Karl Shapiro, including one that recalled what garage sales were like years ago before they became popular. You can tell us what you did. Or use this Wild Card to start your own thread. Or just go out and have a nice day in the sun …

    Wild Card/Saturday — 4/17/09

    In the news early this morning: Ashton Kutcher beats CNN in a race to become the first Twitter user to attract 1M followers here. Money is pouring into U.S. Senate race coffers, despite the recession here. A Puyallup fair ride accident injures 12 children here. The pirate hostage captain gets a small-town welcome here. CIA objections slowed torture memo release here. And the Saturday Wild Card is in play …

    ‘What’s Wrong With These People?’

    “What’s wrong with these people, give me a break,” said Garvin Jones, of Coeur d’Alene about the Aryan Nations flyers that were dropped in his neighborhood early Friday morning. Jones and his neighbors awoke Friday morning to find white supremacist literature on their lawns and in their driveways, purportedly from the resurrected Aryan Nations. We began a discussion about this Friday evening in the daily Parting Shot here. You can find a multi-choice HBO Poll about it below. And you can read Alison Boggs’ story about it here.

    Pound Kitty Arrives In Teapot

    Item: Cat left in teapot at shelter highlights struggle of pet owners/Tom Hasslinger, CdA Press

    More Info: Then the top came off the teapot and out popped a kitten’s head. “She was crammed in there so tight nobody could hear her cry,” said Kate Cota, Kootenai Humane Society employee. “I can’t believe some people.” Backing up, it was last Saturday that now-named Teapot — a 2-year-old short-haired Russian Blue cat — first appeared at the humane society in Hayden.  Backing up further, animals have always had amazing ways of making entrances.

    Question: Did you ever get a dog or a cat for a pet from an animal shelter? How did that work out?

    MC: Joining Terrorists For A Tea Party

    I hadn’t planned to attend the local “tea party” protests. These days, both Democrats and Republicans go stone deaf when confronted with demands of fiscal responsibility. But after I learned from the Department of Homeland Security that there was a chance that I could meet some honest-to-goodness terrorists there, I had to go. In a report released early this week, DHS warned law enforcement to beware of tax protesters, pro-lifers and returning military veterans. How could I resist? After trying so hard to abolish such terms as “war on terror” and “terrorism” from the lexicon, our brand-new, post-partisan, unification federal government has discovered that indeed there is such a thing as terrorism threatening America after all. And the danger is from conservatives, such as those who attend tea parties/Michael Costello, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: Costello is referring to a controversial Homeland Security report in which prolifers, those opposed to immigration, and returning military veterans could be susceptible to recruitment by right-wing extremists. Do you think those who attended the Tea Party protests around the nation are susceptible to extremism?

    HBO Poll: Will Aryans Rise Again?

    Whippersnapper: What Aryan Foothold?

    Whippersnapper: What would you define as a (white supremacist) “foothold”? What does that even mean? Two? Five? Seven losers in a van somewhere talking about painting swastikas or scaring people with literature like this? If Butler hadn’t owned a house and a few acres, the few that were here wouldn’t have had a place to stay. I don’t think there was ever an ideological “foothold” here, just some violent, low IQ ex-cons who stayed at Butler’s compound, which is now gone.

    Question: Do your out-of-state family and friends associate North Idaho with Aryans today?

    Cis: Better Than Mother’s Day Card

    Cis: On March 31st I did a post on it isn’t easy being a parent and at the end of it, I put, I hope I did it right. I am the mother of 8 … grandmother of 17 and great grandmother of 4. I found out two days ago, that #4 child commented on my March 31st post. This is one of my children that it was a up and down times especially thru the teens. … It was a total surprise to find out that not only did my child read my blog, but the wonderful comment she left. And my answer is … is the trip worth it. … oh, yes. … will it always be good, no, but it is doable. And very rewarding. I told this child she never has to buy me another Mother’s Day gift or card the rest of my life, as she gave me a lifetime gift of her comment.

    Question: How many kids, grandkids, etc., do you have? Ages?

    CindyH: Wash That Boy Outta My Hair

    CindyH: I didn’t have angst at 17; it was more constant, unrelenting DRAMA. However, like most teenage girls I thrived on drama and intrigue. I wrote books filled with really bad poetry, so I’m happy to have gotten that out of my system at a fairly young age. I don’t want to be 17 again. Well, maybe for just a minute so I could kick my high school sweetheart really hard and break up with him before he dumped me during Christmas break my senior year. Yeah. That would be good.

    Question: What would you do differently, if you could return to your high school days and change one thing?

    Stickman: I Said Jump, She Did

    Stickman: I also once convinced my wife that if I did something for her that meant a lot, I would ask the same from her. She wanted me to go to the Juvenile Detention Center in Spokane and interact with the kids. I did it for about a year and loved every minute, the young sure need our help these days. In return, I asked her to jump out of a plane from 12, 000 feet with a tandem jumper and experience what I have over a few times in my life. She did, and she is scared to death to even stand on a chair, a height thing. I watched her fall from the sky that day, what an experience was that.

    Question: What is the scariest thing you’ve  done?

    Marmie: Tough To Raise 4 Lads On Own

    Marmitetoasty: Raising me 4 lads completely on me own for the past 9 years has been the hardest thing Ive ever had to do. … Ive had to be a mum and dad, Ive had to make up for my sons not having grandparents or aunties or uncles in their lives. … Ive been tugged and pulled every which way. … had to be in 4 places at the same time, stood on wind swept rain soak sidelines at rugby matches, being the only mum there, spending hours at hockey and tchoukball and boring cricket, cos I was the only one there that would be rooting for my sons. … Ive ran my soul and heart ragged with the love I have for my sons. … there are times when being a net for so many, having to make every single decision that would affect their lives forever, having to not just financially support us all but emotionally be their for 4 unique individuals … almost bought me to me knees (maybe thats why I have dodgy knees lol).

    Question: Is there a harder job to do well that being a single parent?

    TGIF Wild Card — 4/17/09

    In the news this evening: ‘Britain’s Got Talent’ sensation Susan Boyle won’t get a makeover here. The pirate hostage captain praises SEAL superheroes here. Seattle experiences a 44 percent increase in people seeking concealed-weapons permits since Obama took office here. Obama is reaching out to Cuba here. Obama’s administration unveils guidelines for broader stem-cell research here. And the Wild Card remains in play …

    PS: Aryans Drop Leaflets In Area

    Check back around 7 o’clock, and you’ll discover that white supremacists have been active again in North Idaho. They distributed leaflets like the one above. Story below (Kathy Plonka/Spokesman-Review)

    Many residents of a north Coeur d’Alene subdivision awoke Friday to find racist fliers on their lawns, distributed as recruitment letters by the white supremacist group, the Aryan Nations. “I saw Aryan Nations and put it in the trash,” said Garvin Jones, who lives in the neighborhood southwest of Atlas Road and Prairie Avenue. “What’s wrong with these people? Give me a break. I bet if you went back in their family history, not one is 100 percent white”/Alison Boggs, SR. More here.

    Question: Do you think a white supremacist group like the Aryan Nations could ever gain another foothold here?

    Wolverine/X-Men Author To Appear

    Chris Claremont, award-winning author of the X-Men and Wolverine comic books and a novelist, will be make a presentation at the Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave.
    Claremont’s visit to Coeur d’Alene, in conjunction with the release of of the new film, “X-Men Origins: Wolverine,” is sponsored by Lightning Comics, Regal Cinemas Riverstone 14, and by the Friends of the Coeur d’Alene Public Library. Claremont will conduct a Q&A session and Writers Workshop in the library’s Community Room beginning at 4 p.m. on Friday, May 1. He will also be available that day for a Signing and Meet and Greet at 6 p.m. at Riverstone and prior to the 7 and 8 p.m. screenings of the X-Men movie/Coeur d’Alene Today. More here.

    Question: Which comic book superhero is your favorite? Why?

    PM Headlines — 4/17/09

    Dan Mitchinson, the SR/KJRB news director, spent his 40th birthday recently jumping out of an airplane from 15000 feet above Lake Wanaka in New Zealand. E-mails Dan: “I made it to the ground. … so I guess I’ll get to celebrate my 41st after all!”

    Question: Have you ever gone skydiving or bungy jumping?

    Scanner Traffic — 4/17/09

    • 5:01 p.m. R/P has been following driver in a grey Honda who’s driving erratically and flipping off other motorists, from the freeway onto Seltice Way and now Poleline/PF.
    • 4:34 p.m. A juvenile and an adult, possibly the teen’s father, are trying to hang each other in a domestic dispute in the Hauser Lake area. One has a bloody face.
    • 4:02 p.m. CPD Blue is seeking a medical evaluation for a woman involved in an accident on 16th Street who hit her head on the windshield & has glass in her hair.
    • 3:40 p.m. A Hayden woman reports she’s received 2 checks from a Canadian company, but believes there’s a catch to cashing them. She wants an officer to pick them up.
    • 3:08 p.m. A mother wants to see an officer re: pressing charges against a daughter who stole her checks.
    • 2:50 p.m. 3 juveniles in a blue pickup are driving on the Centennial Trail 2/b from Atlas.
    • 2:05 p.m. A large tree is in the w/b lanes of I-90 @ M/P 9 (Huetter reststop area)
    • 12:55 p.m. Silver compact car over embankment and into marsh off Highway 95 @ Cougar Gulch Road. Update (1:04 p.m.): No injuries. All occupants out of car.
    • Morning Scanner Traffic below

    APhoto Of The Day — 4/17/09

    Ostriches seen at an ostrich farm in Hohenfelde at the Baltic Sea, northern Germany, on Thursday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Heribert Proepper)

    Top Cutlines:

    • 1. I’m going to sing “I dreamed a dream” from Les Miserables/Pecky.
    • 2. What hard-working Americans look like to the liberal media after thousands turned out for Tea Partys nationwide…saying they were cajoled by right-wing organizers and Fox News/TOCJALK
    • 3. Odie the Ostrich was so enamored with the Angelina Jolie look. Unfortunately, she found out what could happen when her Botox treatment went horribly wrong/Dennis.
    • HM: Laughing

    OTV Finds Fluky ‘My Dear Helen’

    OTV continues to find interesting ways to enliven his Get Out! North Idaho blog. Recently, he resurrected a feature that focuses on odd finds at local thrift stores, including the bizarre note above that he discovered “tucked in back cover of 70’s kids’ picture book about US Presidents found on 10 cent book clearance shelf, Idaho Youth Ranch Thrift Store.” OTV deciphers the note for you here. You have to draw your own conclusions re: the point of the message from there.

    Butterfly: A Life-Changing Day

    April 17 was the date of my car accident. Three years ago. It seems like a dream sometimes. Like it didn’t really happen. Or like it was a scene in a book I read or movie I saw. Those few seconds of rolling over and over in a metal box. Those few seconds of wondering what was happening and what would happen the next moment. Those few seconds of praying like I’ve never prayed before. Those few seconds changed my life. That evening in the ambulance and hospital room and the painful days that followed were just the beginning. That event caused me to look at life in a whole different way/Jen, A Butterfly Moment. More here.

    Question: Have you ever been in a serious vehicle accident?

    More KerriT Tea Party Photos

    In the famous word of Homer Simpson, “D’oh!” I didn’t realize that Councilwoman KerriT had dozens of photos from the Coeur d’Alene Tea Party gathering at Independence Point. She has some great shots of the crowd, speakers, tax tossers on a boat, and even a Demo or two. You can see them here.

    Toad: Parentin’ Is Work In Progess

    This week, our youngest turned two years old. I still don’t think we’ve got this whole parent thing licked yet…some days it still gets the better of me and I feel like it’s too difficult to carry on, some days I don’t want to carry on…but, I must…I have to. This is the choice we made…a choice I made. And the responsibility is bigger than anything I’ll ever do in my life. Bigger than my job, bigger than anything else. Happy birthday to my little two year old. To my children: I’m sorry for any mistakes I might make in your upbringing. I’m sorry for any disappointment or stress I may case. I don’t pretend to be perfect, but one thing you must know, is that no matter what failures I may have as a dad, my love for you will never falter, ever/Toadman, Synaptic Disunion. More here.

    Question: What grade would you give yourself as a parent?

    Doggone Thief Nabs Kennel Promo

    In this Nov. 18, 2008, file photo, Bob Macdonald (cq) and his dog Jake (third from right) visit with other dogs of all breeds at the Gateway Park at Stateline. Macdonald and others hope to have a dog park of their own in Coeur d’Alene. (Dan Pelle/Spokesman-Review)

    A funny thing happened to Bob Macdonald on his way to advertising the future site of the new CdA dog park. Not funny ha-ha. Funny Weird. Seems Bob, a former Kootenai County commissioner, had the idea to promote the site (on school property north of North Shire Park, off Atlas Road) and clean out his garage, too. After getting permission from other dog-park boosters, Bob took an old 6-by-12-foot kennel he owned to the 7-acre site Tuesday and planned to return with a bunch of dogs for a photo op and a banner that read: “Future site of the Coeur d’Alene Dog Park.” Only the kennel wasn’t there when Bob returned Thursday. Someone had walked off with it. Quips Bob: I should have hung the sign on it before. At least, the thief would know what he was stealing.”

    Question: Do you support the idea of a dog park for Coeur d’Alene?

    Priggee: Most Miserable Sports City?

    As some of you are aware, former SR political cartoonist Milt Priggee has joined Pulitzer Prize winner David Horsey to give the online Seattle P-I quite a one-two punch on the cartooning front. You can read about my old Editorial Page buddy’s new adventure here. You can find Milt’s Web site here. Of the cartoon above, Milt sez: “Seattle’s professional sports franchise fans, owners and players have a major competitor- our CREATOR.”

    Question: Are you a Milt Priggee fan?

    Ed Board To Fill UI Prez Post By 5/15

    The 10-month-long search for a UI president has been unsuccessful, with the top two candidates and another secondary candidate dropping out earlier this year. Terrell pledged the position will be filled by the end of the school year on May 15. He declined to answer direct questions about the status of the search, but said the board is engaged in “direct negotiations.” Last week the Idaho Statesman reported that some UI supporters think Terrell’s BSU boosterism is scaring away candidates. Terrell is a BSU graduate and a past president of its athletic association. He often wears that support on his sleeve at board meetings, but said when it comes to board work, the schools the board oversees are treated the same/Joel Mills, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

    Question: Do you think the search for a new UIdaho president has been hampered by the presence of a staunch Boise State booster as Education Board chairman?

    IME: Get Tough w/Pirates

    Action must now be taken quickly and with conclusive results, lest other nests of brigands are bred. Absent ship owners arming their crews or outfitting vessels with professional gun crews, one immediate solution would be to create an international exclusion in shipping lanes off the Somali coast in international waters. Any vessels entering the area from Somalia, and clearly not on some benign mission such as fishing, would be subject to immediate military action such as seizure or attack by warships patrolling the area. Furthermore, the United States could divert from the Iraq theater one or two of the new Q-9 Reaper unmanned aircraft to patrol skies for pirate vessels/Idaho Mountain Express. More here.

    Question: Do you favor the tough approach to piracy advocated by the Idaho Mountain Express?

    HBO Poll: Summer Action Movies

    HBO’s INorthwest Roundup — 4.17

    This image provided by the Utah Highway Patrol shows the dog tags Neo was wearing when he was found Thursday. Neo, was wearing the same harness and name tag shown in photos recovered from the crashed SUV of Joyce Moore of Kelso, Wash. Moore was killed when her SUV rolled April 4 on Interstate 84 in Box Elder County. Perry says her dog stood nearby as rescue crews attended to Moore, but fled when someone tried to catch him. Story here. (AP Photo/Utah Highway Patrol - Lee Perry)

    High Noon: ‘17 Again’

    Review: Review: ‘17 Again’: Light in substance, the movie doesn’t support heavyweight stars Zac Efron, Matthew Perry/L.A. Times.

    More Info: The movie, which makes high school seem only slightly less grim than “Lord of the Flies,” tries to deal with teen sexuality and social pressures, but it’s the same old song, sung out of key. The standard venal cliques are in place. If a film recycles images of the psychopathic jock boyfriend with the soul of a date rapist, or the Bratz-knockoff slutettes setting the fashion standard for the girls, at some point it risks not just reusing and commenting on these tropes but reinforcing them.

    Question: Would you like to be 17 again? Why? Why not?

    September Won’t Be The Same

    To part with friends must

    ever sadden:

    good luck and thank you,

    big John Madden. 


    The Bard Of Sherman Avenue

    How Big Was That CdA Tea Party?

    I’ve been trying to get a good handle on the size of the Lake City Tea Party crowd @ Independence Point Saturday. At, Mary Souza said security estimated the crowd @ 1300 to 1500. MamaJD figured 800 to 1000. Her father, who has a background in dealing with crowds, figures 1000. Organizers guesstimated the crowd to be about 1000.

    Question: Let’s settle on 1000 as the size of the crowd, for argument’s sake. What does that number say re: the mood of local residents toward spending by the federal government in particular and taxes in general?

    Squatters’ Rights Trump Homeowner’s

    Don Bain can keep an eye on his detached shop (reflected in sliding door) from his back porch in Spokane Valley, Wash., where he says squatters have moved into the shop and refuse to leave. He was surprised when he was told by police that the squatters had a right to be in the garage — and that they could even break a window to get back in, if he padlocked the doors. Story here. (Dan Pelle/Spokesman-Review)

    Question: What do you think of this situation?