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Yesterday and today

Sometimes the way we remember something isn't exactly how it really was.

But people who grew up here are entitled to their recollections about the city's snow-plowing zeal and efficiency years ago. If they say it was great, I'm in no position to challenge that. I wasn't here.

I think there's another dynamic at play, though, when it comes to the often-voiced dissatisfaction with Spokane's response to snow storms.

My theory: There are quite a few people here who grew up in other northern locales. They remember how the city of Syracuse, N.Y., got after street-plowing in 1979 or how Mankato, Minn., handled it in 1984.

And these folks can't resist comparing the efforts of 2012 Spokane's crews to the way it was done back in the old hometown. That's just natural.

But here's the thing. I'll bet a lot of those other northern cities have experienced budget cuts and possibly reduced performance when it comes to clearing the streets. Maybe those bastions of plowing excellence aren't all that perfect anymore.

So perhaps, in some cases anyway, Spokane is being held up to a standard that exists mostly in the haze of memory. 


Saturday’s highlights

Greenacres Liquor Store manager Natalie Murphy and owner Keith Peterson are confident that their location and loyal customers will enable them to successfully compete against big-box stores when state-run stores close and liquor sales are privatized. SR photo/J. Bart Rayniak

If it's a Tuesday morning in a holiday week, it's time for the Saturday Valley Voice highlights. Liquor stores from Millwood to Liberty Lake to Greenacres are considering whether to stay open under the new rules in place under the intitiative that passed to remove the state from the liquor business. Everyone seems unsure how things will work under the new rules, but some are determined to stay open. Others are planning to close.

Repoter Lisa Leinberger talked to University High School principal Daryl Hart, who plans to retire this year. He has been at the school for eight years, topping off a 38 year career in education. The Spokane Valley City Council discussed the city's snow plowing policy and whether the rules about plowing the residential streets on the Valley floor should be changed.

Correspondent Steve Christilaw has a story on the girls basketball team at West Valley High School. It's a young team, but coach Loren Carlon appears confident that the team will rebuild.