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Readers question online ire

Sun., Jan. 10, 2010, midnight

It didn’t take Dan Gookin long to return to bashing CPD Blue spokeswoman Sgt. Christie Wood. Ornery Gookin reinvented himself as Mr. Nice Guy last fall in a council bid that fell short of unseating incumbent Deanna Goodlander. In doing so, he put distance between himself and past nasty remarks about Christie, whom he has called “Sgt. Cupcake” and “a snake.” Now, he’s back on the attack against Wood, questioning in an online comment the quality of a news release she wrote about the downtown shooting involving Coeur d’Alene businessman Adam Johnson – after she’d been up all night collecting information about the crime. Bill McCrory, one of Gookin’s easily agitated playmates at Mary Souza’s, bloviated at length about – gadzooks! – the improper use of an apostrophe by Sgt. Wood in the release. All of which prompted Sgt. Wood to offer to bake a made-to-order cupcake to any of my online readers who can explain why Gookin is angry at her 24/7. Berry Picker “Eagle Eye” may have won the prize with his response: “Gookin is intimidated by an attractive woman who carries a gun!”

To Kitty with love

I don’t like cats much. They’re aloof. They don’t respect property boundaries. I grew up on a dairy with them underfoot and reproducing exponentially. However, I don’t mind that others appreciate cats. Even men. Few men I know relish mousers with the wit and eloquence of Bill Hall, the former opinion editor of the Lewiston Tribune. Bill may be the only person in the world who can write a book about cats I’d read. Bill could pen an interesting series of essays from Hagadone Directories black phone book. In his latest book, “Cat Butler” (available at Hastings and, Bill agrees there is substance to the French saying: “A man who is partial to cats is a man who will marry an immoral woman.” After all, cats and immoral women, writes Bill, “enjoy comforts and other pleasures.” Then, my old Trib colleague frets about what his love for cats says about his wife. Concludes Bill: “Only a dog would answer that question.” In another essay, Bill contends that cats are the most American of animals. Quoth: “They are born rebels. If you had a country full of cats and some clown tried to take over, the cats would dig a hole and bury him.” Even a dog might enjoy this book.


For those keeping score at home, the attorneys in challenger Jim Brannon’s long-shot attempt to overturn the 2009 Coeur d’Alene city elections met twice over the holidays to seek a compromise – once just before Christmas and once just before New Year’s. Nothing of note occurred. Which was expected … Reacting to attorney Starr Kelso’s argument on behalf of Brannon’s ill-fated attempt to block Coeur d’Alene from swearing in election winners Tuesday, one Huckleberries Online regular quipped: “He reminds me more of a blogger than an attorney.” Which wasn’t a compliment … Huckleberries Poll: He may be 80-something and long retired, but “Bubblehead Bob” Hough was the easy leader in response to the online question: “Who’s your favorite KVNI news announcer of the last 25 years?” Dick Haugen and Brett Bowers were running a distant second, with Dave Walker and the recently laid-off morning team of Norm McBride and Chris Wager vying for third.

Parting shot

It’s official. Joe Kunka is the most gracious losing candidate in the 2009 city elections. While Brannon sued and Gookin gnashed his teeth, Kunka approached the council microphone prior to the swearing-in ceremony Tuesday to thank Mayor Sandi Bloem, who defeated him, and council members for the good job they do, adding: “You need to keep protecting us.” Kunka deserved the spontaneous applause he received from the audience.

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