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The Slice: Spokane isn’t the only local burg that gets mispronounced

Cheney isn’t actually named after a vice president, of course.

But if residents tire of outsiders wondering how to pronounce the name of their community, perhaps they might want to look to the list of past vice presidents when coming up with a new name.

I’ll get us started by quickly rating the contenders.

Adams. (Nah.) Jefferson. (Nope.) Burr. (Get serious.)

Clinton. (George Clinton. Would make sleepy Cheney sound funkadelic.) Gerry. (Can’t say it moves me.) Tompkins. (Might be OK.) Calhoun. (Pretty easy to pronounce.)

Van Buren. (Isn’t there already one in Washington?) Johnson. (Don’t think so.) Tyler. (Used.)

Dallas. (No, the idea is to lessen confusion.) Fillmore. (This might be my favorite.) King. (Another that might not clarify matters.)

Breckinridge. (Isn’t that a ski resort?) Hamlin. (Like in the Pied Piper?) Colfax. (That’s claimed.)

Wilson. (Another favorite.) Wheeler. (Also good.) Arthur. (Arthur, Washington, sounds like a person, not a place.)

Hendricks. (Maybe if it ended with an x.) Morton. (No. Already being used. ) Stevenson. (Same problem.)

Hobart. (I could live with this.) Roosevelt. (People would associate it with the big dam.) Fairbanks. (Residents would feel cold all the time.)

Sherman. (Too far from the mountain pass of the same name.) Marshall. (Too late to dibs that.) Coolidge. (Wouldn’t be in my Top 10.)

Dawes. (Another I could live with.) Curtis. (Easy to pronounce. But claimed already.) Garner. (Good, solid name.)

Wallace. (Too close to the town in Idaho.) Truman. (Well, he did once badmouth the S-R.) Barkley. (Of the Stockton Barkleys?)

Nixon. (Uh, no.) Humphrey. (I’m not feeling a zing.) Agnew. (EWU would have to switch from Eagles to Nattering Nabobs.)

Ford. (Taken.) Rockefeller. (Just not the right fit.) Mondale. (Sounds like a ’70s mall.)

Bush. (Can’t see it.) Quayle. (People would think it’s misspelled.) Gore. (The verb form is troubling.)

Biden. (It might grow on you.) Pence. (Prefer Farthing.)

OK, time to cast your ballots. Remember, this is strictly an advisory vote.

Items collected when traveling: “I have 180 shot glasses, if that gives you a clue,” wrote Lee Hirschel.

Familial brushes with fame: “My grandfather and Tom Brokaw’s father were brothers,” wrote Pam Meyer.

Warm-up question: What was the sickest you’ve ever been when someone, much to your astonishment, still tried to have intimate social congress with you?

Today’s Slice question: In the Spokane area, March “comes in” like what manner of beast and “goes out” in what animalistic fashion?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email pault@spokesman.com. Readers regretted acts of kindness when they discovered the strangers to whom they had given money were liars.


 
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