Category Archives: America

Of Grain Elevators, Courthouses, and Bars


I was in the tiny little town of Flandreau, South Dakota. Flandreau, like lots of other small towns across the Midwest USA has grain elevators. They look simultaneously timeless and recently unused. They seem to be the tallest structures in town.


The grounds are neat and tidy though. Everything in the upper midwest seems neat and tidy.


Near the grain elevators is one of the largest quonset huts I’ve ever seen. It also didn’t look to be used but the grass is neatly mowed. The morning that I took all these pics the sky was as gray as the metal on the structures.


This is the Moody County Courthouse. Moody County had its few days in the national news early in 2004 when a jury sitting in this courthouse sent South Dakota’s Governor Bill Janklow to jail for manslaughter for killing a motorcyclist while speeding and running a stoplight. They are still talking about it in town. You don’t want to mess around with the citizens of the rural midwest. If you do they’ll send you somewhere where you can reflect on your actions, for a good long while.


Bars in South Dakota are serious business. You go there to drink. If you want to eat you go to you a restaurant. And no, your kids are definitely not welcome here. Here in Oklahoma if you want to have a bar you have to serve food also. The Bar-X Lounge in Flandreau is a bar’s bar. If you want to buy decent beer in Flandreau (no, Bud Light is NOT decent beer) you go the Bar-X Lounge and stand in a little alcove and get your beer. No unmasculine browsing or looking at a lists or anything, you stand up like a man and see if they got what you want. If you have a problem with that I think it best you don’t say anything about it. Not that I’m trying to tell you what to do or anything.

The best part of the Bar-X is that my Dad and his brother are friends with the owner (or one of the owners or a former owner, I’m not really sure.) Eddie is his name and he is a heck of a guy. I’ve been hearing stories about him all my life and finally got to meet him for a few minutes.



Hey, have you ever wandered around a small town early on a Sunday morning?

Check out the action in Flandreau here.

Happy Birthday America

#flag #sky #chickasha #oklahoma

It’s July 4th and I spent some time looking for an appropriate poem, song, prayer, quote, blessing and all that   expressed how I felt about today. I couldn’t find quite the right thing.  I’m just hoping that just for this one day all Americans can come together and celebrate our country.

Happy Birthday America.

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A Homeless Guy, Leviticus 23:22, and my Lunch

One day early this week I went over to my Subway on Cheyenne in downtown Tulsa and got my usual: 6″ roasted chicken on wheat, no cheese, pickles, onions, olives, with apple chips as a side and a Diet Doctor Pepper. It being a nice day I ventured east to our new park to eat and watch the goings on.

On my way there I was accosted by an old black man. Oh no, I said to myself here we go.

“Sir”, he said. That is how they all start out.

“Yes,” I said as I kept on walking.

“Could I talk with you just a second?”

“What about?”

“I noticed you just came out of the Subway.”

“Yep,” I’m still walking. Stopping is a no no.

“I was wondering if you had any spare change?”

“No, actually all I want to do is eat my lunch.”

“Sir, I need to get to Oklahoma City, because I want to go to Phoenix to see my sister and the ticket is $23.” and I’m thinking why do they all have to go somewhere to get somewhere else to see their sister? I’ve quit asking them.

“Like I said, I just want to eat my lunch.”

“You can look at my ID, if you want.” That’s another common statement. What would that prove?

“No, I just want to eat my lunch in peace.”

“I just need some money sir. I need to get something to eat.”

“I’ll give you my lunch, but I’m not giving you a penny.”

“I don’t want your lunch sir.”

“If you are hungry, you can have my lunch.”

“Uh, ok,” so I hand him my lunch, and then I said, “Here take the drink too.”  and he gives me the best line ever.,

“You didn’t drank from it did you?”

(I didn’t, I wouldn’t have offered it to him if I had.)

Now, I’ve done similar things before, not too often. A hungry man will not exactly snatch a bag of food out of your hand but you can tell somehow by the way they they put a grip on it when you hand it to them. This guy just stood there as I walked off.

I got clear of him on the other side of the park and turned to watch him. He walked over to the campaign office of one of our mayoral candidates and walked in. “What the heck?” I don’t even want to speculate.

The whole experience left me out of sorts and irritated. I bought another lunch somewhere else and managed to eat in peace.

I’ve always liked the scripture Leviticus 23:22:  ” ‘When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and the alien. I am the LORD your God.'”  (NIV)

I’m not a farmer of course but I like the idea that you are to leave a little bit for others. I can afford to donate a lunch every third year or so is how it turns out.

The homeless situation really puzzles me. I don’t want to make light of the situation. It looks totally miserable and dangerous to me. I can tell you that I cannot stand to be hungry and hate that some people especially children go to bed hungry at ngiht. It just seems to me sometimes that maybe the homeless are enabled by the enterprises that support them.

I mean just in one area north of downtown Tulsa we have a homeless ghetto” The Day Center for the Homeless, the Salvation Army Shelter,  John 3:16 Mission we also have the Iron Gate Ministry at Trinity Episcopal Church and of course the City County Jail.

I don’t mean that these organizations are explointing the homeless or are not genuine. I am just wondering if we are supporting the lifestyle a little too much? Should we be trying to get them employed and in an apartment rather than just feeding them and kicking them out for the night? I was trying to do some research for this post and I found it almost impossible to get unbiased hard information about how many homeless there are. Their are widely differing statistics out there most of them by homeless advocacy organizations.

I don’t know what do you think?

By the way, I think I was totally scammed. I wanted my lunch back as soon as I gave it to him. Know something else, I don’t think he wanted it! I think he threw it away. We were like mutual victims of the conversation and couldn’t take it back.

WWOD? (What would Obama do?)
WWGBD? (What would Glenn Beck do?)

House Party on C Street

What is going on in Washington these days? Used to be, if a congressman got caught conducting an affair their career was over. Done with, gone. Remember Wilbur Mills, Gary Hart, and others. It was over. We have entered a new era. Mark Sanford has an affair with a woman in Argentina. Goes to see here while leading his staff and his wife to believe that he is out hiking and gets caught by a reporter in an airport returning from Argentina. He admits to the affair on TV.

So the next step is that he resigns his office and seeks forgiveness from his wife right? Wrong. He is “trying to fall in love with his wife again” and He compares himself to King David. King David was a cool guy, I mean he wrote the Psalms right? Oh, but he did some bad stuff, he was an adulterer and a murderer. But he accomplished great things. So now Senator Sanborn tells us that he can stay Senator because King David got to stay king. What is going on here? I think he thinks he is a king is what I think.

Now another Senator, John Ensign of Nevada, another admitted adulterer, who has paid (or more accurately his parents paid) almost $100,000 to the wife of David Hampton, his former chief of staff, is also not going to resign. He sees no reason to do so. What is up with that?

Now comes our own Senator Tom Coburn, of Oklahoma. Who apparently urged Senator Ensign to end the affair and “make the family whole.” In an interview with the Las Vegas Sun, David Hampton says that Senator Coburn urged John Ensign to pay $1.2 million to the Hamptons so they could move out of Nevada to Colorado. (Senator Coburn has denied urging any financial payments to the Hamptons.)

Senator Coburn has further said he is not going to say anything because he, as both a physician and a church deacon, at least some of his discussions with Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., can remain off limits, even to the Senate Ethics Committee. He described those discussions as “privileged.”???

So what is the common denominator between these three Senators, besides huge egos? It turns out that they are all associated with a house in Washinton D.C. whose address is 133 C St. SE. Senators Ensign and Coburn live in the house. Senator Sanford has attended bible studies and meetings there. Hillary Clinton, our Secretary of State and former Senator from New York, has attended meetings there.

Who runs the house, including the bible studies? It is an organization called “The Family.” The segment below explains further, better than I can.

Sorry about dragging you through all this. This whole affair shows what happens when powerful individuals forget who they are and what they are and deceive themselves and others as to the true nature of Christ and Christianity. These three conservative Christians (Sanford, Ensign, and Coburn) have provided fodder for those who deride Christianity and I resent it.

I find this whole thing incredible and disturbing.

Amtrak Mooning – 2009 Update

YouTube post on the 2009 Mooning Amtrak Festival which apparently is proceeding today despite the best efforts of Laguna Niguel Mayor Robert Ming and the City Council. Read all about it here.

I see this as an extension of the “Tea Party” movement. Obviously Amtrak symbolizes the coddled and cuddled excesses of big government as exemplified by Barack Obama and his communistic, Godless, cohorts who are now in charge of running the country under the constitutionally flimsy and Biblically wrong excuse that Obama won the last presidential election. The mere 10,000 or so brave, conservative, god fearing, Republican “crack troops” out of the millions of Californians are trying to show their contempt for Obama and the like despite the crackdown by the Peoples Republic of California to eliminate this protest. I stand with the brave martyrs who are exercising the rights to bare their butts despite the pressure of oppression.

Any Okies want to Moon Amtrak?

It is the little surprises in life that make it interesting. The things you don’t expect. I was going through the Wall Street Journal reading all about how ole Obama is ruining the country and the AIG execs are wanting their retention bonuses (Retention!? Darn let’em go I say. I could go to the plasma center and find people who could lose as much money as AIG has just on the execs regular salaries.) Oh, yeah sorry. Anyway I found out that in California there is a sport called “Amtrak Mooning.”
No lie!! It is absolutely true. It even has its own web site. (Note family safe link – there are lots of non family safe links if you want to Google or Bing “Amtrack mooning.”) They have been doing it for 30 years. It is done once a year in Laguna Niguel, California. You show up and when an Amtrak train comes by you moon it. The local tracks have 38 passenger trains a day starting at 7:35 in the morning and ending at 11:22 pm. So there is lots of opportunities. Thousands of people show up. They moon trains, they drink, moon some more.

You better hurry though. This year’s is tomorrow. So better get your tickets and head to the airport. Also, the town is hard to get to. The authorities suggest that you “Take the train.” Wow, moon and get mooned. Same day. A nice rhythmn, “moon in, moon, moon out.” Kind of like “Don’t worry, be happy.”
Be aware though, the local powers to be are threatening to be out in force and try to stop this event. It is a threat to public safety they say! I think Obama is behind the ban. Another attack on our way of life! Our traditional values and sacred rights! Are we Americans going to put up with this?

Note: Photo courtesy of Amtrak.

Independence Day

Lets have fun today. Cookouts and ice cream, swimming, family and fireworks!

Keep in mind all the Men and Women in the Armed Forces, now and in the past and their families who sacrificed in order that we can have the freedom that we take for granted.

Remember that they sacrificed not only so that we can have our opinions and beliefs but so that other citizens can have their opinions and beliefs, even if they are different from mine.

This country doesn’t belong to one party or the other or one religion or the other. It belongs to all who love her.

So, lets celebrate America and Americans. We all love this country. Its not just yours, its not just mine, its ours.