Recently, Cheryl over at The Prairie Maid suggested a new meme called Oklahoma, You’re Doing Fine. On the last Friday of each month, Oklahoma bloggers will write about why it’s great to be an Oklahoman. This month’s topic is Growin Up Okie.
For me, Growin’ up Okie meant:
- Feeling self conscious about my accent, and so I practiced speaking like a news announcer. I’ve quit that. Thank goodness.
- Going to church. My parents didn’t attend, but the church bus picked up my sister and me without fail. I broke bread with the Baptists, the Methodists (where I was baptized), the Presbyterians, and Assembly of God. I finally found my church home after I grew up, but I’m thankful for all the devout folks who ministered to me as a child. I’m Catholic, but I have friends of all faiths. I think it’s the Okie’s love of faith, justice, and forging one’s own path which makes our friendships flourish. In other words, there’s a lot we agree upon. The rest we let go.
- Playing softball. I was the roving shortstop for my team, and we played together from the time I was nine years old until I was fifteen. Although I wasn’t a superstar hitter, I was a pretty good fielder, and we didn’t need to look or act like professionals. Kids do now, and it’s something to ponder.
- Riding in the back of pickup trucks. Don’t let my kids see this one, but riding in the back of my coach’s old pickup truck with the wind blowing through my hair was a true joy.
- Tripping down to the creek and catching crawdads.
- Walking to Shepherd’s Mall; trying on prom dresses at The Jade; shopping at Street’s; and having just enough money to eat at McDonald’s.
- Eating Zotz, Slow Pokes and Blow Pops.
- Being a Madison Magpie in elementary school (they’ve since changed the name. It wasn’t PC. I was a little kid and thought it was only a bird.); a Polk ????? in fifth grade when I was bused across town; a Taft Royal (whatever that is) in middle school; and a Northwest Classen Knight in high school. One of my girlfriends painted her room purple with gold trim. That was a tad bit excessive, but I still love purple and gold. Thirty years? Say it ain’t so!
- Living through busing and The Finger Plan. Good idea to integrate the schools, but busing kids all over town, not so much. Still, we all lived through it, and my, how times have changed. The Diva has a friendship rainbow of beautiful young women. I’m so proud of them all.
- Watching Foreman Scotty. Yes, I got to be on his show, but I didn’t get to ride the pony. The birthday girl did. I was only four, so I didn’t understand.
- Listening to Ronnie Kaye on KOMA radio, requesting song and recording them on our cassette players. I bet we drove him nuts. Sorry Ronnie.
- Watching the vintage, OKC downtown be torn down during “urban renewal.” What a mistake that was, but we learned from it and when on to MAPS, we did it right. I love Bricktown.
- Being one of the editors of my high school yearbook. My teacher, Liz Burdette, inspired me to go to OU, get a journalism degree and become a writer. Thank you Mrs. Burdette. I still have the thesaurus you gave me. It sits in an honored position above my desk.
Thanks for traveling with me down Oklahoma memory lane. I can’t wait to hear what others have posted about their experiences. Visit Cheryl by clicking on the little button below.