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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Crowd Gives Movie Critics The Thumb

A couple from Bellevue, Wash., made quite an impression at a Sandpoint movie theater over the Fourth - all bad. Apparently, inclement weather drove the two indoors, and they weren’t any happier when “Apollo 13” was sold out. Then, they exploded like bottle rockets when several minutes were missing from the latest “Die Hard” incarnation. (Hey, if you’ve seen one Bruce Willis’ smirk, you’ve seen them all.)

The manager gave them a free pass, but eventually told them to leave when they continued to gripe. As did theatergoers. Viewers bellied up to the snack bar and began chanting for the obnoxious duo to get lost. Some customers followed the piqued pair to their car to make sure they had the right directions out of Dodge. Now, that’s going the extra mile.

Oopsies: Apparently, the photo published in Travel Holiday’s summer issue of “North Idaho’s lake country” shows the Vista House, 30 miles east of Portland, on the Oregon side of the Columbia River. Not the Maryhill Museum of Art, near Goldendale, Wash. (as reported in Huckleberries Past). Either way, it still was the wrong photo to illustrate S-R colleague Doug Clark’s travel piece on North Idaho. And the photograph also was printed backward, making it difficult to tell which side of the river was pictured.

Running on empty: You gotta wonder how serious this Bonner County Marine Patrol financial pinch is. Sometimes, the patrol sits idle because its budget doesn’t have enough money to waste gas. But that didn’t stop the deputies from refusing $20 over the Fourth of July weekend from boaters who’d taken pity on their plight. You can’t fill a gas tank with pride. … It’s My 2 Cents: Sign me up with those who want the two local high school bands to march in the Fourth of July parade. I enjoy the antics of the Perfection-Nots and the Red Hot Mamas. But there’s nothing, this side of the Stars and Stripes, as thrilling as seeing your school tax dollars at work marching in step up Sherman.

Huckleberries: CdA Councilman Mike McDowell’s ears must have burned as he rode along the Fourth of July parade route in a red Corvette. Whispered a spectator: “I don’t like him either. I can’t believe as young as he is, he doesn’t go with ecology.” … Later, a teenager sniffed, “Why does the mayor ride in a lousy car when McDowell’s in a ‘Vette?” Apparently, the young man has no use for the councilman or Henry Ford’s invention… Don’t bother trying to contact the Internal Revenue Service through its 800 number - unless you like classical music. An S-R reporter finally hung up on the IRS last week after being placed on hold and listening to 26 minutes of Vivaldi. And this is the slow season! … Sightem: Bob Whaley of Post Falls spent an entertaining morning last Monday boating behind a moose that swam from Squaw Bay to Bennett Bay on Lake Coeur d’Alene - at 3 mph. The moose climbed up onto old I-90 and wandered back and forth for awhile before it lumbered out of sight. … Then, there’s the local woman who saw a deer chasing a dog. And fretted to KCSO deputies that something was wrong with the deer. How about the dog? … Bumpersnicker spotted near Sandpoint: “Visualize Whirled Peas.”

Parting shot: Brother-in-law Tom Coombe of Big Sur, Calif., stayed unexpectedly long in Coeur d’Alene recently. First, the transmission went out in his truck. Then, his trick knee locked in place. And didn’t unlock. But the unkindest cut of all (this side of a pending knee operation) might be the $21 he blew so his three kids could spend one hour at Wild Waters July 6. Tom was on a tight budget, but he splurged for his children. Unfortunately, a fierce storm hit, and everyone had to leave or freeze. Wild Waters wouldn’t refund any money. It’s a posted policy, you know (never mind that the park’s hot tubs were out of service at the time). Afterward, Tom’s family opted for the beach, where you get your money’s worth - rain or shine.

, DataTimes

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