Last month, Oklahoma designated with the honor of having the 49th best workforce in the United States. As a result, our action and results oriented leader has stepped up and re-named September as “Workforce Development Month.”
Via The Oklahoman:
“Tequila always leads to terrible decisions.”
This is what I remember the first time I ever drank tequila at a friend’s apartment. What I last remember was finding that the front lawn grass in October felt comfortable on my face. I’m not sure what type of tequila it was; all I know was that it was cheap and tasted of regret. Since that time, I’ve always been curious if expensive tequila would taste better.
As for two ladies in Midwest City, they no longer have to wonder.
With schools across the metro starting back up this week, I find myself reminiscing about my days as an Oklahoma public school student. Though the textbooks probably haven’t changed much since my time, I’m sure a lot else has. So, here are 11 things I remember from my time as an Oklahoma public school kid.
1. Borderline unsafe playground equipment
As if our playground equipment wasn’t dangerous enough being primarily made of splintering wood, rusted screws, and metal bars that sizzled to the touch thanks to the Oklahoma sun, schools graciously dumped and scattered a few tons of gravel and rocks across the playground to break our fall if we got a little too wild on the monkey bars or swing set.
2. Riding the bus home to no adult supervision
I remember as a 12-year-old being dropped off about a block away from my home with 6-8 other children, who also walked home to empty houses. The best part was that as the eldest neighborhood kid on the bus route, all the other parents made me the point-of-contact if their kids needed help or supervision of any kind. But don’t worry. We may have had a few head injuries due to helmets not being a thing or scorched mouths from Totino’s pizza rolls, but nobody actually died.
3. NRA Eddie the Eagle videos
When dining in the small farming community of Rush Springs, you’re kind of limited on what there is to eat around there. Not too far from the Watermelon Festival, on Blakely Street, you’ve basically got two options: Redskin’s Diner that, judging from the banners, was now proud to be serving Hunt Brothers Pizza and, of course, Smokin’ Joes Rib Ranch.
It was no contest.
At first glaring glance, Smokin’ Joe’s, 306 W. Blakely St., looks very much like a heavily decorated chain restaurant, full of corny signs and a neon glow; it was actually started, however, by Joe Wells in Davis, Oklahoma, some years back, out of his fledging gas station. People apparently liked his meats so much that he eventually went right ahead and opened up a full-fledged eatery (and RV park, natch), with this Rush Springs franchise launching sometime later.
Back in July, Governor Stitt announced that he – along with Lt. Governor Matt Pinnell and Marketing Expert Renzi Stone – would be tapping into the state’s best and brightest creative minds, for free, to build and develop a new Top Ten brand for our Not-So-Top Ten State. They called it OklaX.
In case you forgot, here were the details:
Pinnell is working with Renzi Stone, CEO of the Oklahoma City public relations and marketing firm Saxum, to gather the state’s top advertising, graphic design and branding experts at an August summit devoted to rebranding the state. Pinnell likened the process to building an advertising agency — dubbed OklaX — from the bottom up.
The experts, recruited from both the public and private sectors, will work on a volunteer basis through the end of the year to craft the new brand in the hopes that it can be unveiled early next year, Pinnell said.
We lampooned the news after it was announced, but after seeing this Oklahoma Top Ten logo that Kevin Stitt is now using at meetings across the state, the re-brand can’t come soon enough!
It looks like our state’s re-brand is getting off to a terrifying start… pic.twitter.com/cjii4fo9sY
— The Lost Ogle (@TheLostOgle) August 10, 2019
Yikes. I’m all for cheap hack logos designed by private prison inmates, but this may take things too far. First of all, why does the logo look like it was designed for someone in Ohio? Second, what’s with the random arrow under the deformed “K?” Third, why are they using South African currency for a background image?
We’ll try our best to answer those questions in the upcoming weeks, in the meantime, let’s talk more about OklaX.
After combing through local Chamber of Commerce newsletters, ADDY Awards Programs, and 40 Under 40 back issues in search of Oklahoma advertising and PR “experts” to participate in the program, Lt. Governor Matt Pinnell started emailing experts to gauge interest in late July.
Here’s an email we acquired via the Ogle Mole Network:
If you’re an Oklahoman, chances are at least once in your life you’ve made the short jaunt to the town of Rush Springs for their world-famous Watermelon Festival; it’s an Okie rite-of-passage that I finally decided to take upon myself this past Saturday, conveniently as they celebrate their 75th year of seed-spitting wantonness.
Even in the 104-degree heat, hundreds (thousands?) of people made it out to not only sinfully covet some of the best, biggest, and ripest melons in the biz, but to also enjoy the wicked carnival atmosphere that I and my festival-loving pal Jodie walked right into; like a small section of the State Fair transplanted to Jeff Davis Park, the Music Express, the Sizzler and the Zipper—all real ride names, mind you—were in full swing, literally, for only a few tickets.
Not so long ago, the Oklahoma City food scene consisted of major chain restaurants along high traffic thoroughfares, Okie-Mex dives that were almost indistinguishable from the last, and a few mom & pop spots and oil overlord-backed steakhouses.
Nowadays, it’s easy to eat at a new local restaurant every single week. If you follow any local food bloggers, influencers, are our social media addicted mayor, your feed is no doubt clogged with the hottest and hippest new spots. But even with a growing population and younger diners who want to see and be seen at soft openings, we gotta wonder how large this bubble is going to get.
Our favorite curmudgeon Steve Lackmeyer broke the news in the Oklahoman last week that Banquet Cinema is closing after only 6 months:
Thank whatever is out there in the universe that this weekend wasn’t as heart-wrenching as the last. Good Monday morning, ya filthy animals and welcome to your locally-sourced weekend recap. No, it’s not organic, stop asking. While the rest of the world went mad per usual, our neck of the woods most likely saw Hamilton or nothing special.
Here’s what you missed: