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Opinion >  Column

Huckleberries: She has a connection to a Wallace bordello – and she’s talking

Molly Tsalaky was laughing when she contacted Huckleberries.

My Wednesday column had brought back memories – you know, the one that told of a new book about the infamous Wallace brothels: Heather Branstetter’s “Selling Sex in the Silver Valley: A Business of Doing Pleasure.” You see, Molly and her late husband, John, have a connection to one of the houses.

And Huckleberries will explain the connection before you jump to conclusions.

In the late 1960s, the Tsalakys and Jim and Kathy Bourekis, Molly’s sister and brother-in-law, were in the process of bringing the Spaghetti Factory to Spokane. Tsalaky and Bourekis were Spokane Valley dentists. They agreed to a partnership with Spaghetti Factory corporate officials in Portland to open a local franchise. Among other things, they were told that the Spokane restaurant would need a bar.

A Rotarian friend suggested that they look for one in rough-and-tumble Wallace. And the partners found one – at the U & I bordello. The partners were told to bring cash. Of course. As they were dismantling the bar with the help of friends, the U & I madam invited them upstairs for sandwiches. Molly remembers her husband telling her that he didn’t know what to do – or where to look. While they ate, the men found themselves surrounded by four or five scantily clad women.

The bar is still at the Spaghetti Factory, as far as Molly knows.

There is an epilogue to this story. Afterward, Molly and John were having dinner in Spokane when they saw the U & I madam who had sold them the bar. She was accompanied by a, ahem, customer. But she stopped by the table to say hello and inform Molly’s husband that she still had his business card on her nightstand.

Molly, now 85, still laughs at her husband’s reaction to the news: “He was worried that a patient of his might see that card and get the wrong impression.”

Show went on

Councilwoman Kiki Miller of Coeur d’Alene has a son, Oskar, who will attend a conservatory musical theater school in New York City next month. So she knew the show had to go on, even with her right knee in a brace and a Dr. Jonathan King’s note that called for a modified dance. The “show” was the “Dancing with Celebrities” fundraiser for the Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre at the Coeur d’Alene Casino this past Saturday. Kiki and Red Hot Mamas founder Mikki Stevens had choreographed a show-stopping dance for the event. Kiki was one of 10 local celebrities who signed up for the fundraiser. But last Monday, Kiki tore her ACL. Not during practice. But by simply stepping sideways. There was no ligament or cartilage damage. So Kiki and Mikki modified their routine: “What kind of example would I be,” Kiki tells Huckleberries, “if I didn’t give it my all?” Huckleberries refrained from telling Kiki to “break a leg.”

Huckleberries

Poet’s Corner: He stood on the fringes/with a drink big and tall,/a very late bloomer/who might not bloom at all – Tom Wobker, The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“High School Reunion”) … Overheard (one student talking to another): “Did you know that teachers get like $100,000 a year in tips?” – Coeur d’Alene High instructor Bruce Twitchell via Facebook. #stuffmystudentssay – Poll: Ninety-four percent of my Huckleberries blog readers consider freedom of the press “critical” or “very important.” There’s hope for the republic yet … Yes, Virginia, Huckleberries did see a man with a live snake around his neck walking his girl on the Coeur d’Alene Resort Boardwalk Thursday noon. The guy probably didn’t mention the snake on his dating site profile.

Parting shot

On Thursday, Huckleberries told you that Yvonne Wallis, of Bayview, a December 2010 hammer attack victim, didn’t have the money to pay for a $700 operation for her companion dog, Ginger. Bladder stones. Yvonne still doesn’t have the money. But she has a guardian angel in the Kootenai County veterinary community who will perform the surgery for free. May his kind increase.

You can contact D.F. “Dave” Oliveria at (509) 319-0354 or daveo@spokesman.com.

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