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A lot can fit into such a huge house

For those keeping score at home, Huckleberries has more info on that 30,000-square-foot mansion that bazillionaire Duane Hagadone is building in Palm Desert, Calif. Here’s some factoids culled from a Desert Sun article, titled “Just how big is a big house in the Coachella Valley? In the battle to keep up with the Joneses, mogul Hagadone ups the ante to 30,000 square feet.” The cost: $30 million. The layout: A collection of separate buildings built into a mountainside and connected by pathways spread over 7.66 acres. The living space: 20,000 square feet, with an additional 10,000 square feet of garage and storage space. The neighbors: “Ocean’s 12” producer Jerry Weintraub, “Entertainment Tonight” host Mary Hart, tennis player Pete Sampras, and Starbucks CEO Orin Smith. The construction completion date: fall 2007. The only other house in the Coachella Valley that compares with the local Horatio Alger’s future haunt is Bob Hope’s mansion of about 40,000 square feet, reports Bill Byron/Desert Sun. Amusingly, Hagadone, who refused to comment to the Sun about his future digs, was described as “an Indian Wells (Calif.) man.” And the city of Coeur d’Alene wasn’t mentioned at all. Do you suppose CdA’s No. 1 native son is ashamed of his humble beginnings?

Yes, Oh Yes, Yes

On Thursday evening, a Berry Picker was sitting on an Independence Point bench when he noticed two seaplanes roar off, one after the other. That’s uncommon at CdA’s City Beach. Then, the local man noticed a guy rolling out a huge canvas on the beach. It read: “REBEKAH, WILL YOU MARRY ME?” As soon as the canvas was in place, the seaplane carrying two young lovers swooped down low over the beach. Seems the Father of the Future Groom did the honors below. With all the hugging and kissing going on after the couple deplaned, the eyewitness figured out the young woman’s answer. If things hadn’t turned out well for the young man, said the witness philosophically, he had the whole lake below to drown himself in. Of such things are silver linings made.


First, you should know that I was attacked by a mother hen when I was 3 or 4 years old – and have given wide berth to her kind ever since. The “galina shocka” (phonetic Portuguese spelling) was upset because I’d been stomping on her chicks. I was on my stomach, crying, with the mother hen on my back pecking away, when Mom rushed to the rescue. Now, onward. On opening night of the North Idaho Fair, I was eyeballing caged banty roosters in the chicken/rabbit barn when my mother-in-law pinched me. I didn’t say anything until she did it again. Why did you pinch me? I asked. I didn’t, she responded. At that point, I experienced deja vu and knew instantly what’d happened. A black pair of drum sticks with a beak had nailed me through its cage. Nah, I didn’t fall down on the ground and cry this time. Rather, I was tempted to buy that bird from its owner and have it for dinner.

Seeing Through A Glass Darkly

After Doug Clark penned a column with daffy predictions about the region’s future, I asked my Huckleberries Online readers to forecast the stories we’ll be reading soon, too. The responses: “On February 18th at 9:17am, four vehicles pull up to the four-way stop on Progress and Eighth and none of the drivers are on cell phones” – Bob Salsbury/Spokane Valley. “Coeur d’Alene biz-nessman Duane Hagadone has just been awarded the rights to launch the space shuttle from the rooftop of his CdA Resort. NASA officials supported Hagadone, saying, ‘Well, his hotel is just about as tall as one of our launching towers’ ” – The Rants ‘n Raves of CDADave. (BTW, CDADave wants to know who was driving that monster CdA fire dept. pickup that was tailgating him near Zip’s on Sherman about 4:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 19) … “Growth, really, really will pay for itself” – Stopthecrazygrowth.


Poet’s Corner: “Loveth thy neighbor, / so Jesus has said, / excluding the ones / that you prefer dead” – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“Reverend Robertson”) … Bumpersnicker (on a Ford Escort on Francis, spotted by Jon Livingston, Spokane): “I used to be Snow White, but I’ve drifted some” … Sightem: CdA Councilman Woody McEvers about to get hit with the gas in Doc Unruh’s dentist chair. When asked by Huckleberries about using gas for a simple cleaning, Woody grinned sheepishly and said, “I’m a wuss” … And the answer is “hobbyist.” The question? What is Idaho Deputy AG William von Tagen’s nickname for annoying citizens who concern themselves about such things as Open Meeting laws … The strangest sight I saw during a recent visit to uberliberal Portland? A Bush-Cheney bumpersticker on an older model sedan with Oregon plates that was making tracks out of town on Highway 84.

Parting Shot

Huckleberries hears that the new rumble strips installed to improve driving safety on the four-lane portion of Highway 95 north of Coeur d’Alene may be creating a greater hazard by taking up roadway surface and forcing vehicles closer together. Stay tuned.


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