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The Slice: Keeping it real in Spokane Valley

Fri., Oct. 16, 2009, midnight

If Spokane Valley sometimes seems fuzzy about its own identity, maybe there’s a good reason.

Perhaps it’s because no one ever took the time to spell out the essential differences between the Spokane Valley of real life and “The Big Valley” of TV reruns.

Until now.

In Spokane Valley …

The women typically are better-looking and smarter than Audra Barkley.

Most of the men aren’t angry all the time like Nick Barkley.

Relatives don’t just vanish and find themselves forgotten, a la Eugene Barkley.

What you see is the real thing. The place doesn’t pretend to be “Stockton” even though it’s Southern California.

Widowed, iron-willed matriarchs tend to be a bit taller than Victoria Barkley.

Family connections can get way more complicated than the whole thing about Heath Barkley not being the fruit of Victoria’s loins.

Only some of the neighbors are crazy.

Love interests don’t conveniently disappear before next week.

Unlike Jarrod Barkley, most lawyers do not just pursue their profession as a hobby.

Most families don’t have a major-domo named Silas.

Not that many residents have names like Jubal, Maybelle and Barbary Red.

Newlywed brides typically have a life expectancy longer than five minutes.

Amnesia is less common, there isn’t all that much hauling of nitro in wagons and people are slower to declare someone a jinx.

Breaking wild horses isn’t an everyday thing.

When you get shot, the round doesn’t always just graze your temple.

Saloons are not quite so brightly lit.

Not everything ends happily with brandy and a toast.

There. Hope that helps.

Today’s Slice question: Who is Spokane’s fastest e-mail deleter?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; fax (509) 459-5098; e-mail For previous Slice columns, see Some kids will believe that the Review Tower used to be a secret missile silo.

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