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Wed., July 20, 2011, 4:17 p.m.

Explaining why Spokane is the way it is

Here's a theory.

The reason we hear a lot of complaining about the Lilac City is that the people who do most of that grousing never leave.

But a fair number of our best and brightest, people who by and large think Spokane is pretty swell, eventually get tempted by enticing offers. And they end up being the ones who move away.

So who is left behind? An arguably toxic concentration of complainers, that's who.

I suppose, to be fair, I should include myself in that stay-behind category, though I always like to think I'm all about constructive criticism and tough love.

Anyway, I base this admittedly half-baked observation on a couple of visits this week with old friends. They just happened to be back here at the same time.

One moved to the Twin Cities a couple of years ago for a great job that could not be duplicated here. The other moved to Chicago and she has thrived there.

They like Spokane and feel free to say so. No, they don't think it's perfect. They're both smart enough to know that no place is.

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The online home for Paul Turner's musings and interactions with disciples of The Slice.