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Opinion >  Column

Huckleberries: Politics in the public library

Dave Oliveria (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
Dave Oliveria (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

Seems a Trump supporter thinks the Coeur d’Alene Library is involved in a liberal conspiracy to besmirch the president.

Librarian Bette Ammon fished this complaint from the suggestion box: “I noticed a large volume of books attacking our president. And I am going to continue hiding these books in the most obscure places I can find to keep this propaganda out of the hands of young minds. Your liberal angst gives me great pleasure.”

The note was posted on a bulletin board. Typed below, the library invited the cranky patron to provide titles that s/he would like to see, adding: “We are sorry you feel the need to hide books you don’t agree with since that takes up valuable time to reorder and replace lost titles.”

P’haps the library should post a sign at the entrances: “Please remove tinfoil hats before entering.”

Spitting distance

Did you hear the one about the Kellogg PD Blue who picked up a drunken woman at the farmers market the other day? As he hauled her off, she “expectorated all over the back of the officer’s patrol car,” reports Sgt. Paul Twidt of the KPD Roll Call. So the cop slapped “an expectoration hood on her.” En route again, the officer heard “the all too familiar sound of someone drumming up some expectoration,” Twidt continued. The woman spit. But the “expectoration hood” contained it, prompting the policeman to say: “How did that work out for you?” The sot responded by wriggling around until the hood fell off. Then, she let another loogie fly – all over the officer’s dash and windshield. Triumphantly, she taunted: “How did that work out for you?” Is that stalemate? Or checkmate? Or simply touche?


In a Coeur d’Alene Press column 25 years ago, David Bond defended the ongoing immigration of Californians to the Inland Northwest: “Without the Californian in-migration two decades ago into North Idaho,” wrote Bond, tongue firmly cheeked, “gourmet dining here would still consist of deep-fried prawns, and you’d have to look in the witchcraft section of the local supermarket to find garlic” … And: Californians brought – in addition to the longer lines and real estate inflation we curse – “work, money, culture, grammar and an appreciation of the open spaces we often take for granted. Besides, it was time to mix the gene pool up. We were all beginning to look just a tad like cousins.”


Poet’s Corner: He’s all wild and woolly and rootin’-tootin’,/that rash commie cowboy, Vladimir Putin,/scaring the church folk with hollerin’ and hootin’/dang near as loco as Grigori Rasputin – Tom Wobker, The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“The Moscow Kid”) … Early Monday morning, Cis Gors of Kootenai, Idaho, awoke to a horrible noise. The heater had clicked on, for 20 minutes. Shaken, Cis went back to sleep and dreamed of the warm sand on Sandpoint’s City Beach … In Boise, Coeur d’Alene lawmaker Luke Malek interrupted a thief trying to steal his bike. Unabashed, the crook told Luke: “You should get a U-Lock” … Sign of the Times (on the creaky front door of the famous Wolf Lodge Inn, east of Coeur d’Alene: “This building is protected by high voltage and a man with a double barrel shotgun 3 nights a week. You guess the night” … T-Shirt (on the Lake Coeur d’Alene waterfront Wednesday AM): “Veterans before Refugees” … Sign of the Times, Take 2: Democrat Rebecca Schroeder encountered this sign while going door-to-door in her race for a Coeur d’Alene legislative seat: “No soliciting. We are too broke to buy anything. We already know who we are voting for. We have found Jesus. Seriously, unless you are selling thin mints – PLEASE GO AWAY!” Any questions?

Parting shot

The aforementioned Sgt. Twidt of the Kellogg PD also notes in Roll Call that he gave a “visual warning” to a leadfoot who was speeding at 32 mph in a 25 mph zone. What is a “visual warning”? you ask. Sgt. Twidt explains: “That’s when we see you speeding. Then, you see us seeing you speeding. And then we point a finger at you in a downward motion for you to slow down.” Hey, it beats a citation.

D.F. Oliveria can be contacted at

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