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Opinion >  Column

Huckleberries: Washington driver gets his digs in

Washington State University license plate. Kathy Plonka/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Washington State University license plate. Kathy Plonka/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

Some chuckled at Dave Chamberlain’s Huckleberries slap at a Washington driver, but not Dave Vogel.

Remember? Dave C. said he felt sorry for a driver getting a ticket in downtown Coeur d’Alene recently, until he saw the Washington license plate. Then, he thought: “Cool.”

On the Washington side, Dave V. wasn’t laughing. He tells Huckleberries that he was “perplexed and offended.” As a longtime courier, he drives all over Spokane and makes a weekly trip to Coeur d’Alene. In doing so, he sees countless Idaho plates on the Washington side of the ledger.

“If Idahoans ‘dislike’ Washington residents so much,” wonders Dave V. in an email, “why are there so many of (them) over here?” Then he offers possible answers. The Idaho drivers are lost. They come to Washington for better-paying jobs, better health care, superior entertainment and better education opportunities.

Finally, Dave V. provides the dig that Huckleberries liked most: “You don’t even want to know how many Idaho plates we see parked in the lots of our pot stores.”

Huckleberries doesn’t travel to Spokane much, other than to visit the Spokane Airport and The Spokesman-Review office. So Dave V. probably hasn’t seen the Spud plates on the Huck-mobile.

However, this column is a ha-huge fan of that rather successful men’s basketball team from Spokane, the Gonzaga Bulldogs. And Huckleberries is also fond of those paychecks that the Cowles family has been sending to Huckleberries headquarters in Idaho for the last 33 years.

Sex-less in Wallace

We’ve been talking about the old houses of prostitution in Wallace since the release of Heather Branstetter’s book, “Selling Sex in the Silver Valley: A Business Doing Pleasure,” earlier this year. Well, a long-haul trucker had pleasure on his mind 25 years ago when he pulled into Wallace. An item in this column in August 1992 read: “The word apparently hasn’t reached some out-of-staters that the ‘houses’ in Wallace are closed. For example, a Wallace councilman saw a trucker pull his 18-wheeler behind the old Lux one morning this month. The long-hauler rattled the bordello’s back door several times before leaving reluctantly, love unrequited.”


Poet’s Corner: Some vampires now prowling/it seems fair to note,/care less for your blood/than they do for your vote – Tom Wobker, The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“Very Scary Creatures”) Seems Mrs. O isn’t the first one to wonder about that sign posted in the English Point hiking area, near Hayden Lake – you know, the one that reads: “Take your trash to the dump including deer carcasses.” Just how bad is the carcass dumping at English Point? Inquiring minds want to know … Poll: 67.63 percent of Huckleberry blog readers fear the chest thumping between President Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un will lead to war … How would you define “confusing”? To Betsy Hawkins of Coeur d’Alene, it’s hearing Italian violin music while dining in a Thai restaurant in Olympia. … Nic Casey of Coeur d’Alene is still scratching his noggin about the response he received from a barista after ordering a 12-ounce Kiwi Italian soda: “What size would you like.” Ah, that would be “tall” in Starbucks speak.

Parting Shot

Amy Yardley of Coeur d’Alene describes a trip to the Coeur d’Alene Kmart Wednesday as “the most depressing 30 minutes of my life.” The Coeur d’Alene store is one of the Kmarts going dark in October. Amy and her son, Spencer, spent beaucoup time at the Coeur d’Alene store over the years: “It was a perfect store for roaming and browsing because it was rarely busy and the staff … didn’t really care that we spent an hour looking at the Christmas tree display and fondling the bead garlands.” Kmart and the big box stores are going the way of the dinosaur. Only, not an ice age or meteor, is killing them.

You can contact D.F. “Dave” Oliveria at 509-319-0354 or

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