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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Community Comment

Finding humor in a snowbank…

Good morning, Netizens...

Now that I have pilloried and castigated the our union Street Department, as is usually my rule, now I'm going to take an ironic look at this entire disaster called snow day 2008 and see if there is any comedic content to be taken from it.

My first candidate is the reference by both Mayor Verner and others to the "the city's 967 miles of streets". Oh, really? Was this done with a computer program, or not? I have visions of four harried city engineers armed with yardsticks last summer measuring each street for future snow events. Don't laugh. I've seen stranger things happen with engineers, and I know more than a few.

I watched a neighbor's three-legged dog navigating through through the snow earlier today totally convulsed in laughter. Most of the dogs I've seen over the last 24 hours hip-hopped through berms, keeping their heads above the snow, but in the long run, they didn't do any better than the three-legged mutt. The only difference was the poor miniature schnauzer minus a rear leg completely disappeared each time he ended up in the deep snow. Then you'd see him re-emerge as he hopped upwards again, then disappear back into the two feet of snow. When he jumped the last time, he ending up on a section of the sidewalk which had been cleared from snow, he stood stock-still a moment, as if in shock. Then, shaking himself free of snow, he trotted nonchalantly on down the sidewalk as if it were an ordinary day and he owned the town.

Among the various combatant vehicles I have seen plowing through knee-deep snow on our street in valiant attempts to reach the main thoroughfares North or West of our community, perhaps the most amazing was the three-way vehicle. Some truly kind soul driving one of those huge Dodge four-wheel-drive pickup trucks chained up was proceeding in a stately manner down the street, and behind him were two small front-wheel-drive cars, daisy-chained to one another and attached to his rear bumper with a tow rope. In retrospect I thought it was probably illegal as could be, but then laughed when I realized that the police cars haven't been able to negotiate side streets for several days, and thus these snow warriors were safe from prosecution. The last car in the ad hoc train was a Honda, which did a nice job of plowing a small furrow through the snow on the street. We cannot get snow plows or road graders to come down our street, and it is nearly 48 hours since it stopped snowing, so I give you the Hillyard answer: a Honda on a tow rope.

Two of my neighbors, a delightfully ambitious and very active pair of senior citizens, have a daily regimen they have followed since moving into the neighborhood. Each day, rain or shine, arm-in-arm, they take what they refer to as their constitutional walk around the block. While most of our neighborhood walkers have all but disappeared from the snowscape due to the depths of depravity that Mother Nature has bestowed on us, yesterday I saw them walking through the snow wearing what to my untutored eyes seems to be traditional Swiss Alpine gear, complete with snowshoes. She, of course, hails from Germany and Switzerland, and thus it didn't seem the least to be out of the ordinary.

Anyone else able to find humor in our present cataclysm?


Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.