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by Inlander Staff & r & & r & Plugged-In Indian & r & At the June 8 Native American Music Awards ceremony in Hollywood, Fla., Jim Boyd won 2005 Songwriter of the Year honors for Them Old Guitars, a tribute to the late Jerry Stensgar. It was Boyd's fifth Nammy -- a surprise, since Boyd has been busy of late with his new clothing line and Monday afternoon radio show. Visit,,, -- oh, just face it: Jim Boyd, a multimedia machine, is all over the Web.

Near Rain Cloud, Near Lawn Mower? & r & All the rain of recent weeks has painted the Inland Northwest more lush and verdant than we've ever seen it. A couple of Binsters trekked to Wenatchee this weekend, and even the sagebrush of the Columbia Basin looks thick and happy. Sure, all that vegetation may be fuel for late summer wildfires; and yes, we've seen more mosquitoes around than usual; and yeah, the folks in Bonners Ferry have had some problems with excess water; but isn't it kinda nice to see Spokane and environs looking all green and garden-like? Helps us plan for those post-global warming days when polar ice sheets melt and turn Spokane into the new West Coast.

Tri, Tri Again & r & You could tell there were a lot of rookies at the YMCA-sponsored Plunge Pedal Plod triathlon that started at Mission Pool on Saturday morning: bikes with fenders and kickstands, swimmers with huge goggles and baggy swim trunks, lots of murmured questions like "How far do we have to run, again?" (For the record: 3.5 miles, after a 500-meter swim and an 11-mile bike ride along Upriver Drive on a beautiful morning.) But the reason so many first-timer triathlons and women-only triathlons have sprung up is because too many rail-thin, hyper-competitive titanium cranks get their Spandex all in a twist while loudly describing how last week's training went.

And so, all you riders of heavy steel bikes with upright handlebars, you who don't fret about being in the aero position or hydrating properly -- you who were literally miles and miles behind the leaders -- we salute you. Because you're a long way down the road from watching hours of TV while munching potato chips.

Frankfurter Frenzy & r & Even though the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes spewed a 10-3 lava gusher all over the Indians' home-opener parade, Spokane's entry in short-season Class A ball attracted a 10-year-high crowd of 7,413 on Monday night (with fireworks!) to Avista Stadium.

No word yet on whether the crowd size resulted in the selling of 14,826 hot dogs.

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