Wednesday, June 22, 2016

My "Love-Hate" Relationship with Oklahoma

Being a craddle Okie, first generation son of a German immigrant, and second generation descendant of Pennsylvanian Irish Catholics, I've always felt a bit out of place surrounded by Evangelical Native Americans.  If "American" is the Genus, "Okie" is most decisively its own Species.  Indian-American Bible-believers devoted to a Protestant Work Ethic during the week and Epicurean good times on the weekend.  Its a rather unique place.

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My life as a Non-Okie Okie has taught me a few valuable life lessons.  Everywhere and always there is Good, and there is Evil.  There are forms of Christian culture, and there are forms of liberal, modernist, Protestant culture.  Such is the perpetual state of the City of God vs. the City of Man.

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(From The City of God, by St. Augustine)

I hate (yes hate) the love for formlessness and disorder that seems to dominate currents in Oklahoma.  Flipflops in Olive Garden, pajamas at Walmart, unembarrased farts and burps in the pew.  Its all cool.

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I hate (yes hate) Oklahoma Crassness.  There is a special bitter taste when you experience a raw blend of Pride and Stupidity in one singular event with an oddly cantankerous Okie.  Someone accidentally driving on the wrong side of the road barking at you for glancing at them.  It can be perplexing.

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BUT, Mea culpa for my own inordinate concerns for these aspects of Okie-life.  It probably goes back to my youthful pride returning to Oklahoma after a year in Wisconsin as a young man.

The truth is, I do love Oklahoma, or rather I am learning to better love Oklahoma, i.e. Okies.  I suppose its an innate patriotism for the Land and People of your birth and upbringing.  For better or worse, I am an Okie.  God put me here, so I'm resigned to being an Okie Traditionalist Catholic, German-Irish-American (without a drop of Indian blood in me) for as long as I live here.

Just scratch the rough, wild surface of your average Okie and you'll see tenderness, sincerity, friendliness, and country humility.  Case in point, an experience I had in a Quicktrip (a ubiquitous monopoly on the sale of gasoline here in Oklahoma).  After a bit of confusion between the cashier and one customer over the correct change, quickly a heated argument ensued.  It was intense and perplexing.  BUT, a moment later they were laughing and saying "See ya later man."  Such is daily life here.

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Again, I choose to love Oklahoma.  My last case in point, Mrs. Wanda, owner of Blue Hole Springs swimming hole.  There is a humility and charm about her personality that is truely characteristic of many Okies.

See time 0:37 seconds, and the down-to-earth quality of other Okies in this video.

Now ya-ll better start commentin' in there comment box below gosh-durnit, heck fire, don't ya know it.  :)


  1. Ok, I will bite. I enjoy your blog and I look forward to reading more.. I attend the TLM at the Society in WI. Have attended with FSSP in NE and also Divine Liturgy with the Eastern Rite.

  2. Hi Tradmom, thanks for the comment.

    Wisconsin is interesting to me for having a lot traditionalist Catholics of different groups. Definitely seems a hot-spot in the traditional movement in the USA.

    If you'd like to read more of my blog, please subscribe in the upper right hand corner up there. Feel free to comment again.