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Opinion >  Column

The Slice: Relocated porcupine keeps quills to himself

A neighbor phoned Harry and Joyce Hansen with a warning.

A big porcupine that had left some quills in his Great Dane was last seen headed for their 5 acres south of Liberty Lake.

Soon enough, the uninvited rodent arrived.

The Hansens faced a quandary. They had no desire to harm the animal. But they remembered when Joyce had to extract 19 quills from the nose of one of their four horses. And with a porcupine sniffing about the place, they couldn’t let their two small dogs, Scruffy and Molly, out to make their rounds.

They decided to wait and see if the animal would move along of its own accord. Maybe it had places to go, things to do.

No such luck. The porcupine hung around overnight.

You aren’t supposed to tamper with wildlife, but something had to be done.

Then Harry, a retired truck driver, had an idea. Soon the plan was put in motion.

With his neighbor’s help, he placed a plastic garbage barrel over the porcupine. Then a flat-blade snow shovel was eased under the barrel and the trapped animal.

With the shovel forming a seal, the barrel was gently flipped upright. Then on went the barrel’s lid.

The barrel was then driven to a woodsy area some distance from any human residences. The humanely relocated porcupine seemed fine.

It walked out of the barrel, paused to give Harry what seemed like a grateful look, and headed into the woods.

Bathroom brushes with fame: Bryan Dooley was in the Air Force, stationed in Qatar, when he encountered Charles Barkley in a restroom. “Very down-to-earth and quite funny.”

Carolyn Thompson said she shared the restroom at a Ritzville café with Tanya Tucker. “She left without flushing or washing her hands.”

Patricia Sexton met Soledad O’Brien in a Spokane ladies room. “Lovely and unpretentious.”

Matt Jones was doing his business at a restroom in Sun Valley when Bruce Willis stepped up to the next urinal. “No, I didn’t peek.”

Today’s Slice question: What do you say to raccoons when you encounter them?

Write The Slice at P. O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email pault@spokesman.com. Kimberly Madore’s cleanliness-minded 4-year-old granddaughter, Maycee, asked to use the “handsitizer.”

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