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Huckleberries: ‘Stickman’ Oss flying high after fan’s generous donation

Stickman was aboard that vintage World War II B-17 that flew over Coeur d’Alene on Tuesday afternoon, thanks to a generous fan.

A Vietnam War vet, Stickman (aka Norm Oss) has delighted thousands by freely distributing his hand-carved walking sticks from a breezeway near Coeur d’Alene’s East Tubbs Hill Park. He was sitting in that breezeway minus his sticks when I handed him an envelope filled with $450 in cash Monday afternoon.

Stickman was forced to give up his hobby because of a change in ownership of his apartment. However, the anonymous contributor who’d given me the money hadn’t forgotten Stickman’s labor of love. And he’d seen this Stickman comment on my Huckleberries Online blog about the old war planes visiting the Coeur d’Alene airport: “If I had the money, I would go in a second to maybe experience what those men did back in WWII.”

You should have seen Stickman’s face when I handed him the envelope. We both were amazed moments later when a B-17 flew over our heads, as if to confirm the generous gesture to a generous man.

He kilt it

That fellow wearing a kilt Thursday in Coeur d’Alene’s McEuen Park was none other than interim Parks Director Bill Greenwood.

I encountered him on the path between the dog park and the pickleball court. Rather than make small talk, I asked: “Why the kilt?”

The explanation was complicated. He was wearing it, on a dare, to guide 2014-15 Leadership Coeur d’Alene on a park tour. Also, he had worn the kilt while playing the role of a stripper in a mock Coeur d’Alene City Council hearing involving Leadership Coeur d’Alene. The faux council decided that a fictitious strip club in town hadn’t violated city zoning codes. See, I told you this was complicated.

Later, I discovered a group of Greenwood men in kilts on Bill’s Facebook page. Which leads me to believe that the city official is comfortable in his own skin – and kilt.


Poet’s Corner: “The whole world is in turmoil,/the outlook is dark –/yet the roses are blooming/in Manito Park” – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“One Coin, Two Sides”) … Taylor Viydo/KREM2 tweet: “While talking with the Mexican Ironman family (at Ironman Coeur d’Alene Village in City Park on Friday), I discovered that ‘hamburger’ is a truly international word. I directed them to Hudson’s” … Cindy Hval, writer of the S-R’s Front Porch column and my Huckleberries blog sub, deserves mega-props. Casemate Publishers has accepted for publication her “War Bonds: Love Stories from the Greatest Generation.” The book launch is scheduled for Valentine’s Day 2015 … Quotable Quote: “Every four years – win, lose or draw – you can count on one thing. Commentators bashing soccer and thinking they’re oh so clever because, evidently, no one else has ever done it before. It’s as predictable as the World Cup is unpredictable. I wish these folks would kind of go away until the 2018 Winter Olympics, when they come back to bash curling. Which is just fine. ’Cause that never gets old.” – Kevin Richert, IdahoEdNews … So what triggered the fire alarm and evacuation of the Candlelight Christian Fellowship, off Highway 95, last Monday morning? Fog machines. Pastor Paul Van Noy’s sermon illustrations must be impressive.

Parting shot

A giant tarantula was the source of that high-shrill eek coming from Coeur d’Alene Place (where it was discovered on a sidewalk) and the Coeur d’Alene Police Department. CPD spokeswoman Christie Wood tells Huckleberries that some of the male officers have a higher-pitched shriek than she does. Duncan’s Pet Shop picked up the tarantula, reports Sgt. Wood, because “animal shelters are not set up for Spidey.”