SuperSonic fans desperate

February 27th, 2007

I normally don’t sympathize much with folks that hate Okies, but in this case I’ll make an exception.

Like I needed another reason to hate Oklahoma.

It appears that at least one sleaze-ball sportscaster in Okie-town is referring to our team as the “Oklahoma/Seattle Sonics”.

Some comments to that post:

– That’s just flat-out classless…
– It also speaks for the people of Oklahoma…
– why do they all look so beaver-ish?
– Yes, they do all look beaverish.

Sonic fan Slick Watts is in the minority:

Can’t fault the guy for speaking the truth. Time to get our heads out of the sand, folks.

Actually, the time for that was a year ago.

I understand the feeling of loss by Seattle basketball fans and why they would diss Oklahoma, yet, that doesn’t mean they should act so naive. For one thing, it’s not Oklahoma’s fault that Seattle taxpayers are fed up with subsidizing pro basketball. The writing’s been on the wall since last spring.

“They are not interested in having the NBA there,” [NBA Commissioner David] Stern said on a conference call before the playoffs in April. “And we understand that there are competing issues, and the mayor is free to make whatever decisions he needs to make.”

I’m just glad to be a lowly blogger and not a sportscaster. I’ve been calling them the Oklahoma SuperSonics since July. Not to mention that I’ll be able to rag on team owner Clay Bennett, and other owners, as needed.

One more thing … everyone thinks beavers are kind of cute, right?

You don’t know Oklahoma like I do

February 26th, 2007

I’ve been noting some places to visit in Oklahoma this year using my free copy of the 2007 Oklahoma Travel Guide, OKLA GLORY – Centennial Edition. The guide really is an excellent tool for scheduling short trips to unique destinations statewide.

The wife and I (and sometimes the kids) have done a lot of traveling through the state since our arrival in 1979. We’ve explored Oklahoma’s highs (Black Mesa) and lows (Idabel). We’ve watched buffalo in the tallgrass prairie of the north and prairie dogs in the mixed grass lands of the southwest. We’ve dug crystals in the Great Salt Plains and hunted rocks along Winding Stairs Mountain. Here’s some more:

Santa Fe Trail
Lake Broken Bow
Beavers Bend Resort Park
Talimena Scenic Drive
McCurtain County Wilderness Area
Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge
Roman Nose State Park
Fort Sill Museum
Eskimo Joe’s
Chickasaw National Recreation Area
Turner Falls Park
Oklahoma’s Bed and Breakfast capital (Guthrie)
Ft. Gibson Lake
Honey Springs Battlefield
Five Civilized Tribes Museum
Honor Heights Park – Azalea Festival
Grand Lake O’ The Cherokees
Illinois River – canoeing
Tenkiller State Park
Lake Eufaula State Park
Lake Wister State Park
Robert S. Kerr Lake
Arrowhead State Park
McGee Creek State Park
Ouachita National Forest
Kiamichi Mountains
Little River Wildlife Refuge
And numerous locations in the Tulsa and OKC metro areas.

Places on my short list to see:

Oklahoma Aquarium
Philbrook Museum of Art
Price Tower
Alabaster Caverns
Natural Falls State Park
Crappy’s Bar

After that, I guess I will have seen everything in Oklahoma worth seeing.

Okie round-up

February 24th, 2007

Hearth and Home captures Extreme Home Makeover in Oklahoma.
Oklahoma Rock Newsblog is wired about college radio in Norman.
Flow of Consciousness tells the tale of Saint Haralambos.
Paddle Tales is swimming in poultry waste. plants a jungle of Okie books.
Two-Headed Blog doesn’t blame the executioner.
meeciteewurkor tunes up the Voice of Tulsa.
Roemerman on Record watches over Tulsa sales taxes.
PaddleTales snorts it’s not your grandpa’s pig farm anymore.
PRACTiCAL CHiCK gets crabby at Petsmart.
111 Brad Street bids goodbye, farewell, and Amen.
Fancy and Fun cares for Jim’s Jack Russell.

Vince Orza plays one on TV

February 22nd, 2007

Orza fans won’t want to miss this.

Via dustbury.

Enid firefighter too hot for department

February 22nd, 2007

Rookie firefighter Ashlei Wilson was stripped of her job for being out of uniform – way out. Ms. Wilson admits to performing a strip-tease at Crappy’s Warehouse Bar in downtown Enid.

“The actions of a firefighter should inspire trust and confidence with the public, and the chief as well as the commission determined that her actions did not inspire those qualities,” said Enid Assistant Fire Chief Joe Jackson.

Stripping at a crappy bar sounds bad enough, but even worse, two innocent off-duty police officers in the bar were forced to enjoy observe her scandalous deed.

“The department, as well as the chief, interpreted the actions — even though they may not be crimes — (to be) detrimental to the public image of the department,” Jackson said.

I’m inclined to agree with the chief. Imagine the increases of arson and false alarms if people had such an image of firefighters.

Will this count as jobs for Oklahomans?

February 21st, 2007

Encouraging commercial development in rural Oklahoma is an important subject at the state Legislature every year. Small towns like Hooker are all but dying.

People started giving up on this place years ago.

The drugstore and five-and-dime closed. The Ford and Chevrolet dealerships left, too, along with the tractor-parts retailers.

Vacant brick storefronts with sheets of yellowed newspaper taped in the windows are reminders of what once was in this town in the Oklahoma Panhandle.

A couple months ago, the lumber store shut down. It was a last gasp.

“It’s a damn shame to see a town like this,” said Earl Meng, a City Council member who has lived here for 60 years.

Obviously, Hooker needs some jobs. And that’s just what they’re going to get.

Specifically, a Smithfield Beef processing plant to be built a few miles east of town, a $200 million project that would create as many as 3,000 jobs and put Hooker back on the map. Construction of the beef plant, the largest built in the United States in two decades, is scheduled to begin by late March.

Hooker residents can probably thank state tax incentives, minimal worker liabilities to employers, and right-to-work for their good fortune.

“It’s a hard and relatively low-paying job, but it’s the only opportunity that exists for many of these workers,” said Cornell University professor Lance Compa, an expert in labor law and international labor rights. “These companies take advantage of these groups; they get super-exploited.”

The good news is that it looks like few Oklahomans will be exploited by Smithfield.

The jobs are dirty, strenuous and sometimes dangerous, and attract a high number of immigrant laborers at plants across the U.S.

Meat operations in nearby towns have attracted thousands of Mexican and Guatemalan laborers to the area in the past decade. Many already have settled in Hooker.

So let me get this straight:

  1. Oklahoma loses good manufacturing jobs to Mexico for years.
  2. Businesses demand, and receive, evermore incentives to create jobs in the state.
  3. Many jobs created are ones done largely by immigrants, often illegal.
  4. Corporate America says we need more immigrant labor to do jobs Americans won’t do.
  5. Those who profit from this scheme extoll the virtues of corporate welfare, cheap immigrant labor, and tax breaks for the wealthy.

I’d say we got what we asked for.

Keating’s best for Oklahoma

February 20th, 2007

I caught former Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating on KFOR-TV’s Flashpoint Sunday. Keating named what he considered his most important accomplishments in his two terms as governor: right-to-work and a dome on the Capitol building.

Right-to-work has done next to nothing for Oklahoma – good or bad. And Oklahoma went into debt over the Capitol dome project, even though Keating assured us that it would be privately funded.

To think he opted out of running for president with a record like that.

Gov. Henry right about dumping lieutenant

February 20th, 2007

I’ve been pondering it for a week now, and Gov. Henry is probably right.

… the lieutenant governor’s office is a waste of taxpayers’ dollars.

Funny thing is Henry said that before this came out.

Lawmakers Question Spending Increase Sought by Lt. Gov. Askins

… seeking a more than 34 percent increase
in her office and staff budget.

Oklahoma safe zones

February 20th, 2007

In its first year, Oklahoma’s new tattoo law is under attack.

Industry officials say Oklahoma’s law is so restrictive that many parlors will have to shut down.

One complaint is that tattoo parlors must be located at least 1,000 feet from schools, churches and playgrounds. Some folks say this isn’t fair. They do have a point. Why do we allow drugs (such as nicotine and alcohol) and gambling (lottery tickets) within 1,000 feet of schools and churches, but equate tattoo artists with strip clubs and adult video stores?

As you might guess, I have a suggestion to square things up. Rather than continuing to add to the long list of legal and illegal activities that are prohibited within 1,000 feet of churches, schools and playgrounds, wouldn’t it be a lot simpler to turn things around by locating all churches, schools, and playgrounds 1,000 feet away from anything else?

Communities could develop fenced enclaves where schools and churches could thrive in isolation. These safe zones could be gated and guarded for efficient and effective security. All persons entering these compounds would be thoroughly scanned for criminal history and stripped of any contraband such as lottery tickets, tattoos, and gay hats.

You may think I’m kidding, but imagine the possibilities. Once inside the safe zone, people would relax and find comfort in knowing they are among society’s chosen few. Folks would never want to leave. Each safe zone could grow to become an oasis free from society’s ills. Hospitals and fire stations would open up inside the safe zones. A zone council could be formed to enact bylaws. Maybe a mayor would come in handy too.

Eventually, all of the pure and innocent would migrate into these safe zones, leaving the less desirable to fend for themselves outside the fence. And it would probably be better if they did so at least 1,000 feet away.

For a rally against the troops

February 19th, 2007

I admit to leading a sheltered life, but I don’t get all the hoorah and hoopla about supporting the troops. It’s ridiculous! Veterans recently rallied at the State Capitol in support of our troops. Oklahoma legislators took a vote to see who among them supported the troops (all did). The presidential candidates from both parties are supporting the troops. Television celebrities support ’em. Hell, I even see anti-war protestors holding signs announcing support for our troops. These peace proponents may not like the situation in Iraq, but they tend to blame the politicians who put us there and not our soldiers.

So, in light of all this, let’s make it easier to see who supports the troops and who doesn’t. Since just about everyone supports the troops, how about holding a rally for everyone who hates our troops and wishes them harm? Makes sense to me. Therefore, I’m announcing Oklahoma’s first annual anti-troops rally.

Saddam Memorial Hate the Troops Rally

Why : To express disdain for the men and women whose duty it is to serve our Commander in Chief
Where : Lexington Wildlife Management Area
When : Deer hunting season
Attire: Coon-skin cap, camouflage shirt and running shoes

See ya there.