Sen. Shawn Keough, R-Sandpoint, is accustomed to seeing moose, turkey, deer and bears while working at her “day job”: executive director for the Associated Logging Contractors. The association’s office is at Mica Flats, south of Coeur d’Alene. Shawn tells Huckleberries: “It is not unusual to see all types of wildlife wander through – at a distance.” That’s why Shawn and other hired hands were surprised to see a black bear cub on the back porch eating cat food Tuesday. The cat grub was intended for a now-grown litter of kittens that the staff adopted after someone dumped them along Highway 95 a few years ago. The commotion in the office as well as the clicks of cameras and cellphones drove little Yogi back into the woods last week. The cub seems to have moved on, much to the relief of the state senator and her staff, which didn’t want to see a Mama Bear up close, too.
So you don’t think Kootenai County Republicans are dysfunctional? Consider. On Tuesday, staunch Republican Duane Rasmussen snapped photos of a county workshop on the Unified Land Use Code project at the Coeur d’Alene library, attended by a rival contingent of the local R’s, including Lorri Erickson. Rasmussen’s photography upset Erickson, the former GOP Central Committee secretary. Erickson mentioned the photos in a letter she fired off to commissioners, critical of the presentation. In the final paragraph, she asked them to stop Rasmussen from taking photos with his “long lens camera” at future meetings: “Is this an intimidation process?” she fumed. “Personally, I would like to know what he does with the pictures.” Well, for one thing, Duane shares some of them with Huckleberries Online ( spokesman.com/blogs/ hbo). Which agrees with the commissioners that photographers are free under our Constitution to snap photos at public meetings. What a concept.
Poet’s Corner: “It takes a mighty ride / to complete the Ironman, / required are thighs of steel – / and of course an iron can” – The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“112 Miles on a Bike”) … The frowny-faced Coeur d’Alene CAVErs (Citizens Against Virtually Everything) dismiss the new public art at the wastewater treatment plant as “poop art.” The statues of various micro-organisms that break down sewage don’t rival Michelangelo’s “David.” But they’re unique and interesting – for those of us who don’t spend our days sucking on lemons … Scanner Traffic: Couldn’t help being amused when a Coeur d’Alene resident on Howard Street complained Friday that his neighbor was playing his metal music too loudly. Cross street? Quiet Place … HucksOnline Poll: The tragic death of triathlete Sean Murphy in Ironman Coeur d’Alene hasn’t dampened community enthusiasm for the event. Almost 85 percent of Huckleberries Online readers remain strong supporters.
Rick Price, a third-grade instructor at Farmin Stidwell Elementary in Sandpoint, notes that the Idaho Transportation Department and community dignitaries did everything necessary at the dedication of the Sandpoint bypass Friday, except open the dang thing. Sez Rick: “The most anyone is saying is that it will open soon. Given that it’s taken some 50-plus years to get this far, ‘soon’ could be one or two years. Just sayin’.” At this point, ITD Region 1 spokeswoman Barbara Babic is defining “soon” as mid-July. Stay tuned.