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This column reflects the opinion of the writer. To learn about the differences between a news story and an opinion column, click here.

Opinion >  Column

The Slice: Pinpointing the source of Spokane’s problem behavior

I seldom leave Spokane, so I cannot pretend to be an up-to-date expert on driving habits in other parts of the country.

But I can tell you what I observe here. It’s this.

A high percentage of the drivers stopped at an intersection who indicate with a gesture that I should proceed ahead do so in the most inexplicably annoyed manner.

What’s with this put-out impatience? Do they need to be sedated?

I don’t get it.

Maybe it’s just me. But this doesn’t happen only when I am riding my bike. If that were the case, I would have a guess about the source of resentment.

No, it occurs when I am driving, too.

It’s not a big deal. I realize that. But it sort of challenges my cherished belief that Spokane is basically a pretty friendly place.

Sure, we have our share of Crabby Appletons and worse. But there are so many kind, decent people here, it’s troubling to consider that Spokane might really be a sour city.

Then it hit me. I figured it out.

The uptight people I see waving me on in such an angry way? It’s just one person – the same guy, over and over.

That must be it. Somehow he is on more or less my exact schedule and we cross paths in traffic multiple times a week.

Yeah, that must be it.

But I wonder. Have you ever encountered this guy out on the streets of Spokane?

Is there any way we can beg him to get some therapy before he has a stroke?

Weighing your input: The next time The Slice solicits family photographs, what should be the category?

A) Kids freaking out about their Halloween costumes. B) Kids freaking out about being on Santa’s lap. C) Kids freaking out about raking leaves. D) Kids freaking out about having their piece of pie snatched away from them by the dog. E) Kids freaking out about the thought (incorrect, I assume) that the Thanksgiving turkey is a bird that had been walking around in the yard the day before. F) Kids freaking out about the fact their snowman had turned out to be both a structural and artistic failure. G) Kids freaking out about the fact they are freaking out and yet their parents have elected to respond to this crisis by taking a photograph of them in this distraught state. H) Other.

Today’s Slice question: Who is the most politically liberal pickup truck owner in the Inland Northwest?

Write The Slice at P. O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email pault@spokesman.com. In the year I was born, the World Series ended on this date when Brooklyn beat the Yankees in seven games.

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