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Her best (broken) foot is moving forward

You’d better smile if you call ex-SR colleague Erica Curless “horse whisperer.” If you’re lucky, she’ll repeat the line she heard earlier this fall at the Prairie Winds Equine Massage Therapy College in Colorado from founder Michael Stenson re: horse whispering: “There is no element of mystery or of special talkers and skills and abilities.” If you’re not lucky, she’ll say, as Stenson does: “That’s all crap.” Erica’s beginning a new career as a certified EMT. (Read: Equine Massage Therapist, for those of you keeping score at home.) “Massage isn’t just for human athletes,” Erica told Huckleberries. “Horses and dogs also benefit from bodywork. The idea isn’t just relaxation but to get the muscles to work together and rebalance so the horse or dog can move better – meaning better performance whether it’s rodeo, polo or dressage horses or herding, hunting or service dogs.” Erica named her business Dog and Pony Show. You can schedule an appointment by calling her at (509) 991-7314 (Liberty Lake). Or you can send her a get-well card. Adding injury to the insult of getting laid off while studying massage, Erica was stepped on by a horse. Which broke her foot. Otherwise, she’s off and running in her new career.

Winning isn’t everything

Earlier this fall, Family Phil Corless found himself in one of those situations that occasionally confronts parents. No one was available to coach his son’s soccer team, comprised of boisterous fourth- and fifth-grade boys. So he volunteered (as reluctant soldiers do). As Phil explains in his popular blog, A Family Runs Through It, he had one thing going for him: “The boys were blissfully unaware of my almost complete lack of knowledge of the game of soccer.” Sure, Phil knows that the object of the game was to kick the ball into the opposing goal. So he practiced useful running-and-passing drills. Which helped the boys stay close in most games (except the one where a wunderkind named James kicked seven goals while his coach yelled out team strategy: “Get the ball to James”). But Phil’s crew lost all six games. Phil admits that the losses upset him more than his charges who were “happy just to run all over the grass field kicking a ball around with their buddies.” Phil sez he’s going to hang up his clipboard and let another parent take over next year. But he does have one memory he’ll cherish from this season. Phil: “I especially liked seeing the goofy smile on my son’s face when he kept calling me ‘Coach.’ ” Score!


Poet’s Corner: They ran like the wind,/they passed straight and true;/they blew the poor Cougs/right out the Wazoo – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“USC”) … Scanner Traffic: At 12:55 p.m. Tuesday, Huckleberries Online reported: “Local employer requests assistance in terminating a male employee.” To which Berry Picker Dennis quipped: “Has anyone heard from DFO in the last 20 minutes?!?!” … Speaking of news biz layoffs, Taryn Hecker (Erica Curless’ partner in the two investigative stories mentioned above) has landed part-time gigs with a nonprofit organization in Spirit Lake and Tom Burnett’s Rathdrum Star … In the “Where Have All The Hummers Gone” Dept., Berry Picker Kevin Taylor/Inlander observes: “On my way to work this morning I was next to a giant-ass, two-story, fully equipped Hummer. Shiny white. It hit me that I hadn’t seen one in months.” Good riddance.

Parting shot

At Huckleberries Online, we debated the need for a stoplight at Kathleen Avenue, between Fred Meyer and the CdA Charter Academy, where a speed racer killed 14-year-old Isaac Norris two years ago. Berry Picker Big Mac nailed my position thoughts: “That fatality accident was caused by someone breaking the law. I can’t see how a new law would have stopped that person. Do we think that someone traveling 70 mph in a 35 mph zone would stop for a light? Try enforcing the laws we have. Get police patrolling that strip of Kathleen. Start handing out tickets.” Others suggested that a more reasonable approach than a stoplight would be to eliminate the left-hand turns across two lanes of traffic from the charter school and Fred Meyer parking lots. What about you?

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