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The Slice: That’s the way we roll

Paul Turner

Mike Wirt and his wife were shopping for furniture in Seattle.

“We were deep into fabrics in the far corner of the store,” said Mike, retired director of the Spokane County library system.

A sales clerk named Anne was helping them.

Another customer approached and told Anne she was ready to order and only had 25 minutes. Anne informed this woman that she had already called for another clerk to come and assist her.

But this other customer was not exhibiting an abundance of patience. The heat was on.

“So we told Anne to go ahead and help her as we were in no rush,” said Mike.

A little thing, right? No big deal, right?

Well, when Anne the store clerk got back to Mike and his wife, she had something to say to them.

“People from Spokane are always nice. I’ve had a really bad day and it was great for me to have something nice done for me. Thank you.”

Just wondering: What’s your idea for a BBC-like Sunday night PBS series set in Spokaneshire?

Here’s mine. With the help of an easily exasperated elderly clergyman and a curious black cat (with a white collar) at a local cathedral, a team of bumbling but good-hearted church ushers solve murders and argue about whether the head greeter has been drinking and whose turn it is to be in charge of the collection plates.

Do you note any of these dates? A) The day you arrived in Spokane. B) The day your divorce became official. C) The day your loyal dog died. D) The day you achieved your weight/fitness goal? E) Your first day of work at the salt mine. F) The day you moved into your house. G) The day of your accident. H) The day the two of you met. I) Other.

Warm-up question: If you work at a place where people stare at computer screens all day, how can you usually tell if someone is actually attending to business related tasks as opposed to shopping for a silk scarf, looking at classic hockey fights on YouTube or texting with a love interest in accounts receivable?

Today’s Slice question: If you had one piece of advice for birds contemplating building a nest near your residence, what would it be?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email Is any part of business travel as trying as justifying your expenses when you get back to the office?

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