Idaho’s top treat is a trick

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Chat Day!

Before we begin the show, here's something you need to know ...

The survey we've been conducting to see what folks love about living in Kootenai County, and what might bother them, was never meant to focus on the negative.

It just happened that so many people seized on our traffic problems that it seemed sensible to look into that issue first.

We did that on Friday and Saturday, and I hope you now understand a bit more about why traffic is terrible in certain spots, and especially why it's unrealistic to put a moratorium on growth.

But throughout the survey, most of you were wildly positive about this place, and we'll get to some of that neat stuff in Thursday's column.

Fair enough?


ITEM: We're going to talk about Halloween for the next couple of weeks, partly because it's creeping up on us — but also there's the fact that the editor and his lovely wife are Halloween junkies.


So today, we present some wonky information from, which has tracked the amount of various candies sold (by weight) over the 11 years between 2007 and 2017.

That's a heckuva trick-or-treat survey, boys and girls.

They even broke the sales down by state, so that we know the favorite Halloween candies everywhere in America.


I have to tell you this one disappointed me: Apparently our top-selling Halloween treat is Candy Corn.

Starbursts were No. 2, followed by Snickers.


You could leave a bowl of Candy Corn up for grabs, and I wouldn't touch it.

And yes, I was shocked that Idahoans bought more than 68,000 pounds of the stuff during the period that was tracked.


Moving along ...


ITEM: Did you go crazy on Monday?

Hey, it was Columbus Day, celebrating the guy who got lost on his way to India, or Las Vegas, or wherever he was going.

Anyhow, we all learned in class (hopefully) that Europeans brought a lot of stuff to the New World — mostly diseases and objects with which to kill or enslave the natives.

But did you know that perhaps the most important thing that went in the other direction has a big-time connection to Idaho?

Yep, it was the magnificent potato.

They took a while to catch on, however.

The following info comes from Nancy Qian, an economics professor at Northwestern University, via the Washington Post ...

“When [Sir Walter] Raleigh brought potatoes to the Elizabethan court, they tried to smoke the leaves,” Qian said.

Eventually, starting with a group of monks on Spain's Canary Islands in the 1600s, Europeans figured out how to cultivate potatoes, which form a nutritionally complete — albeit monotonous — diet when combined with milk to provide vitamins A and D.

The effects were dramatic, boosting populations in Ireland, Scandinavia, Ukraine and other cold-weather regions by up to 30 percent, according to Qian's research.

“Let the sky rain potatoes,” Shakespeare wrote in The Merry Wives of Windsor.

Hold on, now.

That's a little much, even for Idaho.


ITEM: Looking for a job?

Yowza, the Idaho Department of Labor has a super event just for you.

And it's today, kids, so pay attention.

This huge job fair will be held at Real Life Ministries, 1866 N. Cecil Road in Post Falls, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Yes, today, so spiff up and get going.

More than 55 employers — with at least 1,500 available jobs — are attending the event.

Some jobs are available for immediate hire, and the event is free to attend.

Job applicants are encouraged to bring a resume, dress to meet potential employers, and be prepared to speak directly with company recruiters and HR personnel.

You can find interviewing and resumé tips on the Department of Labor website:

For more information, contact Stacey Hanlon at 208-457-8789, ext. 3947.

How's that for some help, job-seekers?

I've gotta run, but if you're waiting for Celine Dion, she's out with laryngitis this week.

She's on the mend, so be sure and hang around for next week's show.


Steve Cameron is a columnist for The Press. A Brand New Day appears from Wednesday through Saturday each week. Steve's sports column runs on Tuesday. Email: Facebook: Steve Cameron. Twitter: @BrandNewDayCDA.


What's your favorite Halloween treat? Put another way: When you're, um, “checking” your kids' candy, what are you most likely to pull out of the bag and sample yourself? Email Steve at:

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