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Doug Clark: Shrinkage humor falls short for some

Thu., June 4, 2009, midnight


Q: Wow. Because of the paper’s tasty new bite-size edition, I see that you couldn’t quite finish the last word – “work” – in your Tuesday column, in which the “Omdougsman” answered questions about changes at The Spokesman-Review.

The Omdougsman: Yes, my columns have to be a lot shorter now that we’ve incurred more shrinkage than a fat man’s genitalia after a polar bear plunge.

Q: Is it true that some readers didn’t get the joke? That a few of them actually called the paper to report that your last word had been chopped off?

The Omdougsman: Humor impairment is a terrible disease. And it seems to occur more in tight-sphinctered individuals, such as: my former teachers, my employers, the Spokane Police Department …

Q: You’ve bugged more human beings than scabies, haven’t you?

The Omdougsman: … my editors, the City Council, every Spokane mayor since Vicki McNeill, Democrats, Republicans …

Q: A lot of these folks would love to see you out of a job, huh?

The Omdougsman: They probably won’t have to wait much longer now that the paper is emulating that old Disneyland attraction.

Q: “It’s a Small World”?

The Omdougsman: Naw. I was going more for “Honey, I Shrunk the Newsprint.”

•The other day I started thinking about how I can help the area’s less fortunate.

I mean the shut-ins – people stuck in nursing homes, hospitals and jail cells. Not to mention all those sad, sad Havanaphobics.*

When you think about it, there must be literally hundreds of losers who haven’t seen the Dougbench at Broadway Avenue and Jefferson Street.

But I’ve come up with a way to make a few dreams come true.

I give you – ta-da! – the Traveling Dougbench.

I have had a life-size (6-foot-by-2-foot) replica made of the artwork that graces a bus bench on the sidewalk across from the Spokane County Courthouse.

I will bring this treasure (plus snacks and prizes) to three lucky readers who haven’t seen the Dougbench. It will make a wonderful backdrop for a keepsake snapshot. Just call me Mother Teresa.

All you have to do is call, e-mail or write me. Tell me why you are worthy of receiving this level of shameless self-promotion.

(*Spokane Valley residents who are afraid to venture west of Havana.)

•The seventh annual Spokane Street Music Week will begin at noon Monday on the downtown city sidewalks.

There’s still time to take part in our effort to raise money for the Second Harvest food bank.

Last year, 150 performers took part and raised a record $3,800.

All you have to do to get involved is contact me via the information below. I’ll get back to you with all the details.

Remember, this event isn’t about virtuosity.

It’s about generosity.

Doug Clark is a columnist for The Spokesman-Review. He can be reached at (509) 459-5432 or by e-mail at

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