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The Slice: Blurring the lines of good taste

Sun., Jan. 15, 2012

Odessa school librarian Apryl Wraspir wore a fuzzy angora sweater to work the other day.

A first-grade boy sized her up.

“Mrs. Wraspir,” he said. “You look like you’re out of focus.”

Agree or disagree: People with “big” personalities don’t stay here long.

OK, that’s a ridiculous generalization. But I’ve long suspected that newcomers who tend to fill the room with their volume often get impatient and decide that people here are lifeless and boring, when actually we’re just quiet.

Of course, you could argue that this might be the perfect place for loud personalities as bombast isn’t standard-issue here and maybe there’s less competition for audience attention. But even some of those who view themselves as the perpetual life of the party eventually recognize that others are wincing, not smiling.

Which isn’t to suggest that Spokane is exclusively populated by strong, silent types. Many of us do, in fact, have a discernible pulse and a willingness to speak up.

It’s just that soft-spoken people don’t always enjoy being involuntarily cast as extras in someone else’s performance.

Back when we all had to possess a safecracker’s touch: If you had a dollar for every minute you spent adjusting a television’s horizontal hold, how much money would that be?

If you have no idea what I’m talking about, ask someone who has a little gray hair.

What to say to a little kid plopped down and reading in a high-traffic pathway in your home: “Nothing,” said Linda Rise. “Leave him or her alone so he or she doesn’t stop reading. If necessary, walk around him or her.”

Alice Spray suggested saying “Good book?”

Agree or disagree 2: You’re not a real Inland Northwesterner if you haven’t tried to sell 35-year-old 8-track tapes at a yard sale.

Identifying with a character on “Downton Abbey”: “I would definitely be Anna, the downstairs lady’s maid for Mary,” wrote Pam Pierson. “I would fall for the valet with the limp.”

Today’s Slice question: Does time spent in a car count as being outdoors?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email Scruff of the Neck could be a band name.

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