Ah, Edmond. It’s a nice, quiet city, the sort of place you want to raise your kids. Unless you were raised there, that is. If you grew up there, you know the ambivalence I’m talking about. Edmond may be home, but you sure as hell don’t tell anyone that when you grow up and go to college. I always thought I wanted to leave Oklahoma, but when I moved out of Edmond, I didn’t feel the urge to do so anymore.
Edmond is the Plano to Oklahoma City’s Dallas–suburban sprawl and mini malls to cater to the most discerning of upper middle class taste. My feelings about Edmond are why I started writing for TLO. And today, I’m going to share with you 9 reasons why I hold a grudge against Edmond.
UCO knocked down my great-grandparents’ house
So, little known Marisa fun fact: my family was from Edmond before Edmond was Edmond, by which I mean before white flight made Edmond the Edmond it is today. My great grandparents owned a house on property that was bought out by Central State University, later UCO. Now, I know that they bought the land from my great-grandparents, and then demolished the house. But as a little kid, I always imagined my pappy and my granny (yeah, that’s what we called them) fleeing for their lives as a wrecking ball swung toward them. To this day, I still cast a wary eye at UCO, lest they come for me.
$100 senior prom
For my senior prom, I spent right around $100 for my dress, shoes and hair combined. I was promptly made to feel inferior when I showed up to the dance and was surrounded by girls in $2,000 dresses. Oh, and our dance was at the Oak Tree Country Club too. That was the first and last time I ever went there.
The “Honda Civic”
In high school, I knew a girl whose parents told her she was going to get a Honda Civic for her sixteenth birthday. She was mortified by this. As a carless 16-year-old, I was jealous as hell. However, when her sixteenth birthday rolled around, she walked out of her house to find a brand new Lexus RX 300 waiting for her in the driveway. Her parents were totally kidding about that Honda Civic, because ew gross.
Kickingbird Theater sucks
The only thing Kickingbird Theater has going for it is the urban legend that it’s haunted. Other than that, it’s a sad, sad place. How that is the only theater for a city of roughly 87,000 is beyond me.
The Lord does what now?
Once while leaving the Cafe 501 on Boulevard, I walked by a woman in a power suit who was getting into her Porsche. She was saying goodbye to her friend, and ended her conversation about how great she was doing in life by saying “It’s amazing how the Lord provides.” Though, judging from her fancy lifestyle, it was probably more amazing how the Lord apportioned.
People make assumptions about me
Yes, I’m from Edmond. No, I’m not rich.
The Pills are Scary
Think Edmond Schools are great? Just so you know, cheerleaders at my high school got caught taking Valium and drinking vodka in the restroom during a basketball game. Even the peppiest, most upstanding blonde girls were straight up on chemicals. Sure, there were a lot of people who didn’t do drugs. But they were always around. Always. And not just a dime bag of weed. We’re talking the expensive stuff.
Traffic on Santa Fe
Have you ever driven on Santa Fe Avenue? I would rather drive on Northwest Expressway when the power is out and the stoplights don’t work.
The Edmond “Ghetto”
People referenced the Edmond Ghetto a lot while I was in high school, and generally directed that phrase at neighborhoods containing 3-bedroom homes. From my own personal research, I have gathered that the Edmond Ghetto is where people who only pay $150,000 for a house live.
All in all, Edmond isn’t such a bad place. It was a pretty safe place and I always had everything I ever needed. I got a really amazing education for free thanks to the tax dollars of the kinds of people who buy Lexuses for 16-year-olds. But it was definitely a weird, insular place to grow up. I can’t think of another place in Oklahoma that fosters such weird thinking. Except for maybe Deer Creek.