Category Archives: Our World Tuesday

2020 Tulsa Saint Patrick’s Day 5K Race

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I ran in Tulsa’s Saint Patrick’s Day 5K race Saturday. I was tempted not to run it because it was cold (about 42F at race time) and raining. But I had the right tech gear and decided to go ahead.

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Heck of a shot of me here right? This isn’t going in the family album I’ll tell you. I do like my $7.49 cent top from Walmart a lot though. I am very visible. I was also very wet.

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I decided to actually run this race a little bit especially at first and it worked pretty well. I got warmed up in a hurry for one thing. I would run a block and walk a block. Sometimes I’d run two blocks if we were going downhill. I was just going with the flow.

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Here come the two leaders. They actually look like they are running. Me and these two guys swept the top two spots!! Aren’t you proud of me?

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After a pretty good interval, here came the third place guy.

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Here are my peeps in the back of the pack crowd.

So I was pretty pleased with my 43:50 time. I think that time is when I got to the starting line. my “gun time” which is official is more like 45 minutes or so.

So I finished 16th out of 18 in my age group. I was pleased that that I was able to run about half the race. It’s been about three years since I actually ran a race. It took about a year and half for my knees to quit hurting them so I baby them pretty good. I rarely run, I walk a lot, and do lots of the elliptical machine, bicycling, resistance training and yoga. I am going to continue babying my knees.

Kudos to the race sponsor, Special Olympics, Runners World Tulsa who always puts on a great race, the race director, the other sponsors, and the army of volunteers who make it all happen. It was cold and rainy but it was a great race.

I am linking with Our World Tuesday

Our World – Hiking at Oklahoma’s Keystone State Park

Sunday morning I headed out to Keystone State Park to help with some trail maintenance organized by the Tulsa Urban Wilderness Coalition and the US Army Corps of Engineers. The rough and tough go getters were busy moving big rocks around, me, I always bring my loppers so I walk on the trails picking up litter and lopping off the limbs that might intrude on the hikers, runners, and bikers on the trail. That’s not a very manly job but hey I do what I can do.

Keystone Tree Fur and Feathers

The park is in the cross timbers region of Oklahoma which is dominated by rocks, lots of rocks and thin flinty soil so the trees don’t get very big. They can be very old but just not big. Many of the trees are post oaks and it is amazing the contortions they go through to get enough sunlight.

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The rocks are amazing as well. Many of them are layers of soft sandstone and harder shales. A gazillion years ago all these rocks were at the bottom of the ocean. Since then through uplift and faulting the rocks are all this way and that way. Luckily the land is very poor for farming and ranching so the animals and plants that live on it are undisturbed for the most part.

Keystone Rock Fur and Feathers

Another one of the dancing trees that seem to sprout right of the rocks.

Keystone creek rocks

The area has small intermittent creeks running through it.

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The trails were in great shape. I didn’t have a whole lot of lopping to do or really much of any litter to pick up. Most of the litter I picked up was near the parking lot.

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I love the lichen that grows on trees. Despite what you may hear, in the more shady parts the stuff is on all sides of the trees. Northeast Oklahoma is so wet and humid you can’t count on telling north by lichens.

So I finished up after a few hours as did the more studly men. Many of them brought their mountain bikes and did a turn or two on the trails cuz that is what you do if you are a manly man. I went to go find a geocache.

I am linking with Our World Tuesday

Our World – Turkey Mountain Run

The other day I went for a run on Turkey Mountain. I pretty much had the place to myself.

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I always try and see things I have not noticed before. This well worn birdhouse is totally out in the open and close to a trail I have traversed many times before and I swear I have never seen it before in my life.

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The Arkansas River far below was running full and the trees seem kind of excited about it.

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Late winter is the last chance for these rocks to be seen.

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The most photographed wagon wheel in Oklahoma, maybe even the world!!

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Two trees dancing!!

2.96 miles, I’m calling it three!! I’m also linking with Our World Tuesday

Our World -Daryl Starbird Car Show, 2020

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I paid the big bucks and went to the 2020 Daryl Starbirds National Rod and Custom Show at the Tulsa Fairgrounds. I say big bucks because it is $25 to get in and many people grumble and gripe about it on facebook every year.

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I have the perfect antidote. If it is too expensive for you, then don’t go!! Hey problem solved. From the bustling crowds I would say that it is not overpriced yet. Kind of reminds me when the the CEO of the company I work for asked me if our customers were happy. Hell no! I replied, a happy customer is one who is not paying enough. I am not sure he liked that answer but here I am. Not in commercial any longer.

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Anyhow, I am way off topic. The reason I like the Starbid show is that it features custom cars. Not like the regular car show in March where all the manufacturers drag in their Honda clones. It’s a lot cheaper, but the cars are boring.

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Here is the Red Baron. Complete with machine guns. I don’t think they work but it is not boring either.

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Here’s a custom car on a budget. A rat rod, which means hot rods going back to basics. The rust and patina is done on purpose.

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Here is a tough minded overlander VW bug.

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Ah, now we are back to sleek and colorful

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Another rat rod. My advice to you if you have a daughter and her beau shows up to take her out in this? Tell her, it’s family game night, Monopoly, Farkle, Chinese Checkers.

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I think rat rods are cool though. I also think that the fact I don’t have a daughter who is dating a guy with a rat rod is even cooler.

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What do you think?

I am linking with Our World Tuesday, come join us!

Our World – Shannon Springs Park – Chickasha, Oklahoma

Sunday we ventured down to the south central Oklahoma town of Chickasha to visit our son who is in college there. It was a nice day so after eating we decided to check out Shannon Springs Park in the town.

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It was a nice park and I found out that there were originally artisian springs there and that it was a stop on the Chisolm Trail for herds to stop and water on their way along the trail from Texas to Kansas. History in Oklahoma is worn kind of lightly because it wasn’t that long ago. Jesse Chisolm developed the trails. I found his grave out in the middle of nowhere a few years ago. People still really believe in the old west here.

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So later on a park was started and in the 1930’s the WPA built an amphitheater and other improvements to the park that still around today.

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I loved this caretaker’s cottage at the park. I don’t think anybody lives there any longer. I love the concept of a caretaker. A designated person who is paid to care.

I am linking to Our World Tuesday, come check it out.

Our World – A Stroll at Philbrook

I was feeling a little bit of the weight of the world on me the other day so I went to Philbrook Museum of Art to get my head on straight. Thanks to Nana, the world’s greatest MIL we have a membership to Philbrook so I can whenever I want. If they are open, I mean I have been going there for years but they still haven’t given me a key. Perhaps I should ask?

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They have a special exhibit by Anila Quayyum Agha called “Shadow of Time.” Instead of paintings and sculpture she has this steel structure with a powerful light inside that fills the whole room with light and shadows and it is mesmerizing. A single piece that fills the entire exhibit space. I’ve never seen anything like this before. One reason I like museums is that I want to see things I’ve never seen before.

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Speaking of that kind of thing, there is another exhibit upstairs showing paintings by Eric Saall. So I am like, okay, I feel inadequate on abstract paintings but some of these are are pretty cool in that he painted them on stage during a ballet. And on a platform that was being moved around. Sounds kind of gimicky? Maybe, but cool idea I think. Cool ideas are another reason to go to museums.

Here’s a “test video” of the process.

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Another painting upstairs is this one “Victory for the Water Protectors” by Kent Monkman. It is about the vicious DAPL protests in North Dakota a couple years ago over the Dakota Access Pipeline construction. Lots of high emotions on both sides. Lots of finger pointing on both sides. With the passage of time I’ve come to see that many Native American’s viewed the dispute in terms of their overall history of relations with European descended Americans where they continually got screwed out of their land and rights. So I have made my peace with the painting.

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And then I ventured outside to the Philbrook Gardens on a cold day. I checked out the cabin they built there.

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And I checked the signature Tempietto in the gardens. And then it was time to go, all done in an hour and a half, getting my head back in the game.

I’m linking with Our World Tuesday

Our World – Rainman in Oklahoma

Cogar, Oklahoma Rainman

Last week while traveling to south central Oklahoma to pick up the kid from college for a three day weekend I took a little detour to the town of Cogar. Cogar is nothing now, just a crossroads. It probably never was much of anything.

Cogar, Oklahoma Rainman

Back in the late 1980’s though (30 to 40 years ago!!) Hollywood came to Cogar to shoot a brief scene from the movie Rainman, the major Oscar winning movie that year starring Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman. Hoffman won an Oscar, the movie was Best Movie, and it got several other Oscars as well. It was the top grossing movie of 1988.

Cogar, Oklahoma Rainman

In the scene at Cogar, Cruise’s and Hoffman’s character stop and both step into a phone booth so that Cruise could make a business call. It’s kind of funny. Cruise and Hoffman play brothers who didn’t know each other existed until their dad dies and leaves it all to Hoffman, who has autism. All Cruise gets is a nice classic car and some rose bushes. For some reason they have to go on a cross country trip together and it makes for some funny scenes.

Cogar, Oklahoma Rainman

These days, there is no phone booth at the station in Cogar and the paint is a little more peeled. Other than that, not much has happened.

When I worked in the natural gas field of western Oklahoma I must have passed this place a thousand times without recognizing it from the movie. Now, I think was the last instagrammed in Oklahoma to venture to Cogar to capture the gas station.

Have you ever been to a site that was made part of a movie?

I am linking with Our World Tuesday

Our World – Walking in Memphis

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I’m in Memphis this week, Sunday I went for a short walk. Memphis seems to have walking-biking-running-whatever trails everywhere. Nice ones with trees, and not very many hills.

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A beautiful sunny Sunday afternoon.

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Despite the signs warning not too, I kind of veered off the trails and bushwhacked for a short while.

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I was hunting a geocache and I found it. It was actually laying on the ground and I put it up where I thought it was supposed to be.

My thirty minute walk was nice. And I found a song for you. Memphis is a music city.

I’m linking with Our World Tuesday – come join in!

Day of the Dead Altars

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I bet this person was either a farmer or John Deere Mechanic, and enjoyed drinking Coors and eating snacks. Note also the Mexican blanket, and marigolds. The different levels often symbolize heaven, earth, and purgatory.

I missed Tulsa’s Day of the Dead celebration at Living Arts Tulsa this year but luckily for me Living Arts keeps the Altars or Ofrendas on display almost up through Thanksgiving.

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Somebody after my own heart, Tanqueray Gin and Tonic is my favorite mixed drink (“tank and tonic”).

The Day of the Dead, known in Mexico as Día de los Muertos. Is on November first and second every year and is the days where deceased family members make their way home to spend with the living. The altars or Ofrandas are how the dead make their way home.

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A baseball and Budweiser fan.

The ofrendas follow a general pattern. Photographs, foods, flowers, religious items, all play a role. Check this link out for more information.

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Some people took great pride in their jobs.

The ofrendas at Living Arts are beautiful and they have meaning. They honor actual people who died and are put together by friends and family members.

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A fellow Dallas Cowboys fan. If somebody make an ofrenda for me in the future and they don’t include my photo of myself with a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader in each arm, I’m going to be doing some haunting!

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It’s not just long lived grandfathers and grandmothers who have ofrendas. Many of the honored deceased were heartbreakingly young.

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I find the Day of the Dead very comforting. I love the idea of honoring deceased family members.

I am linking with Our World Tuesday

Our World – Hike to Yellowstone’s Fairy Falls and Grand Prismatic Spring Overlook

On our trip to Jackson Hole, Wyoming a couple weeks ago Heather and I decided to make a quick run up to Yellowstone because a storm was coming and we feared that the roads we closed.

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So we made our “quick run” to just past the Old Faithful Geyser to the trail head of the Fairy Falls trail. It took us about three hours on this quick run. Lots to look at so we were okay but ready to hit the trail. It was very cold and the wind was a gale.

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So, on the way, we took the little bypass to the overlook for the Grand Prismatic Spring. It’s a wonder of nature and no photographs I have took or edited shows it quite like it looks. So you get this unedited version of the Spring along with my wife Heather. She doesn’t need any editing in my opinion.

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The gale winds quit once we got in the woods. We saw this guy, the second of the Bison we encountered. We gave them wide berth. They seem benign but they can close on you in a hurry if they are riled up. We had our bear spray which is supposed to work on Bison but I didn’t want to have to worry about it. Especially if it is windy. The theory is that you create a cloud of spray for them to run through. No clouds though when the wind is blowing!!

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There is a definite boundary between the dead zone caused by the hot springs and the forests.

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Lots of old dead wood laying around from an older forest fire, I think back in the 80’s. My sister Ellen took me on this same hike in August 2018. She knew all about it, but I forgot.

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And here is Fairy Falls. They falls are 220 feet tall and are the highest “front country falls” in the park. Heather and I had the Falls to ourselves for quite a while. That is the thing about hiking this time of year. There is not near the crowds that you get in the summer.

Fairy Falls and log jumble October 2019

Here’s another view, obviously you can tell I edited it.

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And a closeup. A very nice and peaceful place.

I don’t have many photos of our return hike to the trailhead. It had gotten colder and the wind increased and we faced it heading back so we just hiked out with our heads on a swivel looking for bears and bison.

We had planned to see other sites during out time in Yellowstone but we got off to a late start leaving Jackson so we plugged and abandoned the other plans and just headed back. On the side of the road we saw mule deer (with tracking collars), a herd of elk, and another bison. The smartest bison in the world who stopped on the side of the road and looked both ways, waited for traffic to come to a stop and then walked across, with a brief stop in the middle. Heather saw a momma bear and two cubs crossing a gravelly stream and we violated all the rules, stopped the car and walked back to the bridge to see them and they were gone.

We got back to our condo very tired but happy. The storm came in that night and although we had a little bit in Jackson, they had enough in Yellowstone to where almost all the roads were closed.

I am linking with Our World Tuesday.