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Opinion >  Column

The Slice: When something seasonal shines through

Countless sermons have addressed the theme of seeking the light in a long darkness.

Well, this isn’t a sermon. But today is the winter solstice. And perhaps you have noticed. Many of the outdoor Christmas lights adorning our neighbors’ homes and businesses seem especially merry and bright this year.

Maybe it’s because some of us in and around Spokane have not totally resumed our habit of taking electricity for granted. But the way the festive lights pierce the darkness seems so happy and hopeful. Silently hopeful.

Some of the best gifts are just a glimpse away.

As you know, the winter solstice is the shortest day of the year. From here on, we start seeing more and more sunlight.

Next up, Dec. 25 beneath a full moon.

What did Dr. Seuss say?

Welcome Christmas, bring your light.

Welcome Christmas while we stand.

Heart to heart and hand in hand.

Multiple choice: You know how animal tracks look in fresh snow? Sure. They might have been left by a cat or a squirrel, but sometimes little kids can be persuaded that another creature made those prints.

What is your favorite wildlife nominee?

A) Honey badger. B) Wolverine. C) Woolly mammoth. D) Unicorn. E) Minotaur. F) Raccoonosaur. G) Marmotodon. H) Condor. I) Chupacabra. J) Pterodactyl. K) Hillyard hound. L) Other.

Hahahahahahahaha: Maggie Fritz, a counselor, responded to the question about instances when you started laughing and could not stop.

“I could not begin to count the number of times I have laughed so hard I couldn’t stop, couldn’t talk, could hardly breathe, tears rolling down my face. The world is an absurd place and laughter is one of the best responses. It happens with family, at work – anywhere. I’m glad I have the gift to offset all the sadness I get to feel.”

Slice answers: After asking if people can be friends if they have opposite tastes in movies, music, books and TV, I heard from several readers who answered in pretty much the same way.

“I don’t know about friends, but I know you can be spouses.”

Warm-up question: Ever actually said “Uh, oh” in the middle of a ski run?

Today’s Slice question: What’s going to be different in your life by the first day of spring?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email From The Slice email: “We had a cat that ate tinsel then threw it up on the hot furnace.”

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