table of contents OKC’s Newest Source of Energy Sports
Beach Babes Fashion
Meet Scott Vendor
Food Truck Guide
Editor: Ranya Forgotson Executive Director: Whitley O’Connor Director of Fundraising: Kelly Nugent
Four More For Mick Community
A Monumental Debate
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By nearly all accounts – both nationally and locally – Oklahoma City is on the move. In April, Oklahoma City will take the next step in continuing its momentum by welcoming yet another professional sports organization. This time it will be the newly formed Oklahoma City Energy FC bringing soccer to our city. “It was a great opportunity to have the option to build up a team from scratch. There are not a lot of coaches that get that opportunity,” said Head Coach Jimmy Nielsen. During a preseason team event, The Curbside Chronicle had the opportunity to sit down with the head coach and
ask about the upcoming season for the new franchise. Starting a team from scratch is a daunting task, but both the organization and the coach seem to be more than prepared for the challenge and have amassed a talented group of young players. “I’m trying to bring in a good group of guys who are hungry. Who wants to be a better player? Who is hungry to be a part of this organization? Who is hungry to give back to the community?” Nielsen continued, “Humble and hungry, who want to come here and bring and give everything they have. I think that so far we have hit that spot on.”
According to FIFA, the international governing body for the sport, soccer is the most popular sport in the world with more than 265 million soccer players worldwide. In addition, the sport features regular international competitions, including the FIFA World Cup, which is being held in Brazil this summer. The Oklahoma City Energy FC roster displays the international flavor of the sport. “It is kind of funny. Spread all over the world and we meet right here in Oklahoma. I think it is making the guys come together a little faster and a little bit more. None of them have families here. After practice they don’t go home to a family, they only have each other,” Coach Nielsen explained. The Oklahoma City Energy will be playing in the United Soccer League (USL) and will face teams from across the United States. Additionally, they have announced an affiliation with Sporting Kansas City, the defending champion in the MLS. This affiliation and diligent recruiting efforts have afforded the Energy the opportunity to showcase top-notch talent.
“We have signed players who have been a part of Manchester United’s roster. We have players that have been in the MLS. We signed a player directly from the academy. We have signed players who have played in the USL for a couple years and even some with European experience. I think we got it all.” The Oklahoma City Energy has 19 players currently on its roster with new signings being announced regularly. Included in this mixture of international talent is an Edmond, OK native and graduate of Bishop McGuinness High School, Steven Perry. Additionally, the Oklahoma City Energy FC extended an opportunity to players from across Oklahoma at an open tryout in Oklahoma City. “We have two players in training with the team from the open tryouts here in Oklahoma City. Right now there is no contract offer out, and I haven’t decided if there will be contract offers to those players yet.”
Peabo Doue strikes a pose at the Oklahoma City St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
This will be the first year of coaching for Head Coach Jimmy Nielsen, who played last season for Sporting Kansas City. He admits that he may miss actually being on the field but enjoys the challenge of his new role. Nielsen also said that his experience with Sporting Kansas City will influence his coaching. “I came from a successful organization that played a 4-3-3. I’m a big fan of that system and we are working with the players to make them comfortable in that system.” In the eyes of those in soccer circles, the selection of Jimmy Nielsen as Coach for the Energy brings immediate legitimacy to the club. Last year, Nielsen, nicknamed the “White Puma” as a player, ended his 19-year professional career by hoisting the MLS Cup trophy after the game ended in a 10-round shootout. As a former MLS All-Star and Goalkeeper of the Year, Nielsen has seen ample interest from players looking to follow him to OKC and play under his tutelage. “I’m not kidding, I’ve probably had 100 goalkeepers reach out to me wanting to be a part of this team,“ Nielsen laughed.
“We need the community’s support but we are going to earn that support.”
Kyle Miller in action during a preseason friendly against Midwestern State
Growing up, Coach Nielsen’s family regularly attended soccer games. He said he looks forward to seeing families, first dates, and avid fans in attendance. He also recognizes that American fans have to adjust to soccer scores and that many will be seeing a professional soccer game for the first time. In hopes of helping those who are not used to soccer adjust, Coach Nielsen offers an analogy.
“I always put it this way: If you take a football game and the score is 21-14, you have to remember that is only 3 and 2 goals. A lot of soccer games it is a score like 3-2 and if you translate that into a football score, it is 21-14 as well.” The Oklahoma City Energy FC season starts on the road on April 5th against the Orange County Blues. The first home game will be on April 26th against the Orlando City Soccer Club
at 7 P.M. at Bishop McGuinness High School’s Pribil Stadium. The Energy helped renovate Pribil Stadium as their temporary home as they look to construct a permanent stadium for the team. Coach Nielsen is visibly excited about the season. While he appreciates the community support so far, he does not take it for granted. “We need the community’s support but we are going to earn that support.”
THIS COUNTRY WAS BUILT ON TWO BUCKS. ONE IS CREATIVITY, THE OTHER IS COURAGE. PUT ANOTHER WAY, A DREAMER’S VISION AND A DOER’S ABILITY TO SEE IT THROUGH. MARRIED, THEY MAKE OPPORTUNITY – THE VERY THING THAT’S BORN EVERY TIME TWO BUCKS COME TOGETHER FOR AN ISSUE OF THE CURBSIDE CHRONICLE IN OKC. WE’RE PROUD TO CALL OURSELVES A PARTNER: YET ANOTHER DOLLAR IN THE EQUATION THAT’S HELPING REVITALIZE OUR CITY AND THE PEOPLE THAT CALL IT HOME.
WI CHI TA
T UL SA
By Emily Irvin | Phot ographer Quit Nguyen
Beach Babes 10
With summer just around the corner,
the dog days are not over. In fact, for the OKC Humane Society, they have just begun. The OKC Humane Society is a non-profit whose mission is to eliminate the euthanasia of animals in Oklahoma City. Since their beginning in 2007, they have been able to save and serve 70,000 animals in the Oklahoma City area. They have a spay and neuter clinic, a foster care system, and adoption centers. They allowed us to photograph some of their darling dogs and we couldn’t help but prep these pooches for summer. All of these dogs are available for adoption! But with these looks, they won’t be for long. Be sure to check out the OKC Humane Society today and find a new best friend for summer.
Selma may be afraid of beach balls but she doesn’t shy away from bold fashion statements. Sporting a floral bikini, Selma is a year old Chinese Crested. Her unique coat (or lack there of) means she’s never in need of a bikini wax to get her sun and fun on!
Mellow and laid back, Trey has a true surfer spirit.
His chill attitude makes him the perfect summer companion. Whether heâ€™s floating in the pool, enjoying the surf, or lounging in the sand, this three-year-old German Shepherd mix is low maintenance and no drama 100% of the time.
Selmaâ€™s go-to-guy and partner in crime, Steve, is also a Chinese Crested. Steve spends his time on the beach frolicking in the sand and applying sun block to his sensitive skin. Even though he has three legs, he never slows down. Steve is three years old and pulls Selma out of her shell with his spunk and spice.
Only five months old, Whitey Ford
is a sweet and gentle sun pup. Sweet and lovable, he is content to cuddle up on beach blankets and build sand castles this summer.
Energetic and ready for that five mile run
along the beach, Lincoln is not content to lounge in the sand all day. With his trunks on and his shades keeping the sun out of his eyes, heâ€™s ready for adventure and exploration this summer. Lincoln is a year old Pit Bull Mix.
by Ashley Dekat
Oh-Kay-See is rolling right along with the food truck trend. New trucks are emerging weekly and creative cooks are pushing the envelope on what can be prepared on wheels. All the trucks in our guide have meals to purchase for less than $10. So whether you are looking for lunch, dinner, dessert, or a late night snack, you are sure to find delicious treats at a local food truck near you. The daily location for all of these trucks can be found on their social media sites. Get truckinâ€™!
Award winning BBQ is hitting the streets. Kosmo’s BBQ is hanging up its competition apron during the week and serving top notch Oklahoma BBQ out of a truck window. Meats are rubbed, injected, beautifully smoked, and served on sandwiches. Twitter: @kosmosbbq
Klemm’s Smokehaus, as they say, is serving a whole lot of BBQ with a little bit of German. They specialize in smoked sausage, turkey, ribs served on platters, and yummy sammies. Homemade sides include creamed corn, Texas Caviar, broccoli salad, and more traditional BBQ sides. Twitter: @klemmssmokehaus
Specializing in all things seafood, they cook up perfectly seasoned fried catfish and fried shrimp. They also serve some unique treats like fried frog legs, crawfish, and Kool-Aid pickles. Give them a try. Their food is, uh, off the hook! Twitter:@offthehookokc
One of OKC’s newest trucks, G’s Chili is ladling up their homemade chili, which has been a secret family recipe since 1963. In addition to serving bowls of chili, their signature dishes include spaghetti or a hot dog topped with their prized chili, onions, and cheese. Twitter: @gschilicompany
Serving comfort food out the side of their food truck, Chick N Wangs specializes in fried chicken wings. They also have fried chicken tenders, fried fish, and Italian sausage. For sides, get a bowl of the Red Beans N Rice or the fried okra. With their truck roaming OKC, lunch and dinner ain’t no thang but a chicken wang. Twitter: @chicknwangs
Cupcakes are everyone’s favorite culinary trend and The Cupcake Queen certainly delivers. Freshly baked cupcake flavors vary daily and with the season, but favorites include Salted Carmel Almond, Red Velvet, and the namesake Queenie (vanilla). Twitter: @cupcakequeenokc
Known for their BBQ specials, Smokin Okies serves up classic Oklahoma fare from their mobile truck. Found at events and available for private catering, Smokin Okies’ homemade sides and smoked meats are sure to please young and old alike. Twitter: @smokinokies
A New York style hot dog cart has set up in the heart of Bricktown. They are open Fridays and Saturdays 7p-2:30a. They feature Nathan’s all beef hot dogs, so you know their wieners are good! Their regular spot: 202 East Sheridan, Bricktown Twitter: @hotdogokc
OKC’s only egg roll truck featuring hand-rolled, fresh egg rolls and chicken fried rice. What do you order? Egg rolls! They make eggs rolls for breakfast, lunch, and dessert. Perfect for any time of day. Twitter: @eggrollicious
Who doesn’t love a good burger? Mini’s is grilling some not-so-mini burgers on wheels. Gourmet burgers include a classic burger, a roasted garlic burger, and a blue cheese burger. They also have a crispy chicken sandwich and a Southern BBQ sandwich with pulled pork and coleslaw piled on top. Twitter: @okc_mini
Conscientious comfort food out of a truck! They feature food that is free of GMOs, cholesterol, and animal products. A perfect place for vegetarians, vegans, and anyone who loves a deliciously healthy meal. Go for The Garfield: homemade lasagna loaded with organic marinara, chashew cheese, organic tofu ricotta, freshly baked herbed bread, and garlic greens. Twitter: @loadedbowltruck
Mama Mia, OKC’s first Italian food truck! They proudly serve homemade family favorites like meatball subs, a chicken parmesan sandwich, spaghetti (regular and gluten free), and pasta salad with homemade Italian dressing. Don’t forget the Cannoli! Twitter: @2brothersbistro
A family run food truck serving Cajun and Puerto Rican favorites. One of the best things to order is their namesake gumbo, as well as Po’boys. Be sure to finish with freshly fried beignets! Twitter: @lagumboyaya
Frank’s seems like your basic mobile hot dog stand, but their array of sauces and toppings for your all-beef-hot-dog or bratwurst lets you get creative. Sauces include Curry Ketchup, Bacon Smoke Honey, and Cream Cheese Habanero to name a few. Toppings like KimChi Slaw and Pork Rinds will guarantee that you won’t ever forget Frank’s Wurst. Twitter: @Frankswurst
Though their menu changes daily, you will find a delicious smorgasbord of offerings at Wild Al’s. Whatever they are serving, you are guaranteed perfectly seasoned meat will be the highlight. With offerings like their much loved brisket, cheesesteak sandwiches, and frito chili pie, you know your meal will be wild good. Twitter: @wildals
Bobo’s has been on the OKC food scene since long before the food truck trend began. They are known for their signature smoked then fried chicken wings, fried biscuits, and french fries. All covered in honey. They are open every Friday and Saturday evening and stay open until the wee hours of the morning. Their regular spot: 1812 NE 23rd Street, OKC
OKCâ€™s first ramen truck featuring traditional Japanese ingredients with a modern, gourmet twist. Sure, try the ramen but also get the fried brussel sprouts or spicy fried chicken wings for a flavor explosion in your mouth. Twitter: @Kaitekiramen
You scream, I scream, we all scream for Roxyâ€™s Ice Cream! A hand-dipped ice cream truck featuring homemade ice creams in a variety of creative flavors, such as the beloved salted caramel, peach, and rum raisin. Ice cream can be served on a cone or as a sandwich in between two freshly baked cookies. Perfect for an Oklahoma summer day. www.roxysicecream.com Twitter: @roxysokc
A wood fired oven on wheels? Yes, please! Family owned and operated, they use fresh, local ingredients for creatively named individual gourmet pizzas. Fresh salads and vegetarian pizza options make this a great option for the health-conscious or vegetarians. Twitter: @thehallspizza
Traditional Asian flavors with a twist, they aim for Asian fusion. With dishes like Vietnamese and Korean Tacos, Japanese Hot Dogs, Banh Mi, and Ka-Bobs, you are sure to find something that will take your taste buds on a culinary adventure. Twitter: @heoskitchen
Making their debut to the OKC food truck scene this season, Mexi Dog features Mexico’s Sonoran Dog. What could be better than a hot dog wrapped in bacon? Get it plain or topped with beans, cheese, and pico. They also make “Mexi Pups”, which are homemade flour tortilla chips served plain, as nachos, or sprinkled in cinnamon sugar. Twitter: @mexidog
A daily chalkboard menu featuring gourmet recipes created from local ingredients. Five-star dishes coming from a food truck! The menu changes daily but favorites include gourmet burgers, soups, sandwiches, and my personal favorite-the smoked salmon corn dog. Twitter: @moto_chef_
Freshly made savory and sweet crepes served out of a food truck or catered. There are few things in life better than a hot crepe. The menu changes daily but be assured that there is always something that will delight your taste buds. From savory options to decadent desserts, you can’t go wrong. Twitter: @crepebrewers
The name says it all: freshly fried chicken with soft pillowy waffles. When ordering, keep it simple and get the fried chicken and waffle sandwich. It is very filling and a great value for the price. Twitter: @waffleleg
Regular Food Truck Spots Film Row: Food trucks make an appearance every H & 8th Night Market: A monthly, family-and-pet-friendly Wednesday for lunch and on the third Friday street festival with over 20 food trucks on Hudson, dowtown of every month for Premier on Film Row. between N.W. 7th and N.W. 8th streets. Events take place on the last Twitter: @Filmrowokc Friday of each month, March through September. Twitter: @h_n_8th
The Plaza District: You can find a truck almost daily parked in Automobile Alley: Trucks can often be found the Plaza. Several also serve on the second Friday of every month serving lunch in front of the businesses lining OKCâ€™s at Live on the Plaza, which is a street celebration of local historic Automobile Alley. Several trucks are also featured music, art, food, and shops. at Shop Hop on the third Thursday of each month. Twitter: @plazadistrict Twitter: @autoalleyokc
Western Avenue: Find trucks parked around historic Myriad Botanical Gardens: During the Spring and Western Avenue for lunch and dinner. They also host Summer, the Myriad Gardens hosts food trucks during special a third Thursday shopping event, which features events, such as their Mid-Week Market, Summer Movie Nights, several trucks. Summer Concert Series, Thunder Games, etc. Twitter: @westernavenue Twitter: @myriadgardens
by Giancarlo Gonzalez
On March 4, 2014, Oklahoma City re-elected Mayor Mick Cornett to an unprecedented fourth term. The Curbside Chronicle had a sneak peek into the final days of Mayor Cornett’s re-election campaign. I stopped in at their headquarters on the Friday afternoon before the election. A giant sign announcing “Mick for Mayor Vote Mar. 4” hung over the campaign entrance, which was located in a section of a strip mall off of North May Avenue just south of Northwest Expressway. Several posters of the mayor at different stages of his personal and professional life hung on the walls. One image showed the mayor inside Chesapeake Energy Arena, standing on the OKC Thunder’s logo with then-NBA commissioner David Stern looking on in the background. Another poster was a family snapshot taken when the mayor was a boy with his mother, who was a schoolteacher. Several lawn signs proclaiming “Mick for Mayor Vote Mar. 4” were neatly stacked and placed against the wall underneath the posters. Promotional materials, such as t-shirts, magnets, and stickers, lay arranged on a table for volunteers to wear and pass out in the last hours of the campaign. Other tables held pamphlets, computers, boxes, and backpacks, giving the place a transient, “calm before the storm” feeling. It was a balmy 66 degrees outside, weather more suited for a picnic than staying indoors and working the phones, but that’s where I found State Senator David Holt, who was also Cornett’s campaign manager. The mood was relaxed but focused on the next four days. The strategy was to “make a lot of noise” through mass mediums for that final push. The polls showed Cornett winning decisively.
“Mick is extremely popular,” Holt said. “He entered the campaign with approval ratings over 70 percent and he well appears to be elected with campaign approval ratings over 70 percent, so that’s the bottom line. I suspect that his opponent just didn’t think that he was going to run or just had a flawed view of how this works. But typically you don’t expect success when you run against an incredibly popular incumbent.” The weather forecast called for freezing temperatures and mixed snow and ice on the weekend before the election. The bright spot was that the temperature would climb back to the 40’s for Election Day. Holt smiled at the campaign’s luck but also noted that severe weather would affect a potential 5 percent of eligible voters, not enough to determine the outcome. As I left the office that day, I grabbed a magnet, a sticker, and a pamphlet, little keepsakes from my first Oklahoma election. The next day, I arrived in the afternoon again, missing Mayor Cornett, who had showed up early, as well as the throng of volunteers and staff members buzzing with activity. Tyler Roberts, a staff member for the campaign, was one of the last to leave. He likes the direction the city has taken since Cornett became mayor. “Even when you’re in northwest Oklahoma or in Norman, you still experience Oklahoma City,” Roberts said. “You’re constantly traveling here, especially since there aren’t a lot of big cities around northwest Oklahoma. When you’re in Norman, you’re visiting OKC, and I see the progress that’s been occurring.” Taylor Cain, a volunteer, also sees the progress the city has made under Cornett.
“Our sidewalks just got refinished, which I know is a big part of his campaign. It’s nice to go to other neighborhoods, that are outside the downtown area, and talk about all the things that he’s been doing out there.” As expected, the weekend brought freezing temperatures but by Election Day they were melting and temperatures had risen to the 40’s. Mayor Cornett’s watch party was at Grill on the Hill, where I tasted some delicious nibbles of catfish and fritters. The party was in full swing when we heard the announcement that Mayor Cornett would be the first four-term mayor in Oklahoma City’s history. The crowd erupted in cheers. Governor Mary Fallin was there, looking stylish in her red outfit while supporting the mayor’s campaign. Mayor Cornett felt relieved with the results, giving thanks to his many supporters and beginning with his family. He pledged to continue to work hard for Oklahoma City by adding more police, better roads, more fire stations, and seeing MAPS 3 to completion. After his speech, I asked him if as a child he ever imagined this scenario. “My mother and father created an environment where I believed I could be anything I wanted. I don’t know that I necessarily wanted to be mayor, but I never thought that it was something that was out of reach,” Mayor Cornett said. “They taught me that every kid starts at the same level and this is America and you’ve got just as much opportunity as anyone else. As an adult, I look back and I’m not sure everyone else gets that gift. You know, I think other people see that maybe they have an obstacle in their way or maybe they think it’s a big challenge to try and accomplish something, but I never felt that way and I’m grateful to my mother and father for creating that kind of culture in our house.”
A Monumental Debate The Oklahoma State Capitol building is home to numerous works of art in many forms, including sculptures honoring our Native American heritage and various renderings of prominent figures from our colorful history. A wave of renewed interest in public art is sweeping down the plains, sparked in part by a recent lawsuit and donation offer from a group of benevolent Satanists from New York City.
by T.O. Bowman
A 2,000 lb. granite gorilla in the room
The wrong place at the Ritze time
Inspired by similar statues on public land (that have withstood Supreme Court challenges in both Texas and Utah) and moved by a desire to spread the gospel to coworkers and visitors alike, Republican House Representative Mike Ritze of Broken Arrow authored a piece of legislation in 2009 to allow his family to place a Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the Oklahoma State Capitol (eCapitol, LLC, 2009). House Bill 1330 flew through the House and Senate with only 10 lawmakers voting in opposition, although 16 were absent that day, (McNutt, 2012). In fall of 2012, the Ritze family used private funds to hire a contractor, agreed to pay all maintenance costs, and placed a 6-foot by 3-foot, 2,000 lb. hunk of granite near the north steps of the state capitol, engraved with the text of the Ten Commandments and a note for the people of Oklahoma. According to Michael McNutt of the Oklahoman, the cost of the monument, base, and accompanying walkway totaled $23,000. (McNutt - 1, 2012) Now, had Rep Ritze decided to use the bust of Charlton Heston to commemorate an epic night on Mount Sinai, this story may have played out much differently…and it definitely would have featured more rugged handsomeness. Instead, the Ritze family chose the exact words, er, a slight variation of the words (McNutt, 2012) that were handed down to the Children of Israel, and the variation didn’t exactly reflect Ritze’s ability to remember how to spell ‘the Sabbath,’ much less keep it holy. The word Sabbath was misspelled “Sabbeth” and the word maidservant was misspelled “maidseruant”. McNutt also had a chance to ask how something like this happens to which Ritze replied, “Scrivener’s errors or misspellings are not uncommon with monument manufacturing.” Shucks, shoulda got a tapestry.
The monument’s arrival at the Statehouse wasn’t at all a surprise to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Oklahoma. Remember those 16 legislators who were absent during the 2009 vote to authorize it? One of them was Ryan Kiesel, Executive Director for ACLU of Oklahoma, who was a Democratic member of the House at the time, (McNutt, 2012). Kiesel and the ACLU took issue with the State authorizing the display of the sacred tablets in one of the most visible public spaces in Oklahoma. In August of last year, the ACLU and the ACLU of Oklahoma Foundation filed a lawsuit on behalf of several Oklahomans to challenge the constitutionality of the state’s new Ten Commandments monument, (American Civil Liberties Union, 2013). The Curbside Chronicle caught up with Brady Henderson, Legal Director for ACLU Oklahoma, to better understand why this case garnered such widespread, impassioned attention and what the results of this litigation might mean for religious liberties.
The 11th commandment: Thou shalt useth spellcheck
“If [Rep. Ritze] had placed the monument at DHS headquarters, or the Will Rogers building, we probably wouldn’t be having this conversation,” Henderson explained. Henderson went on to say that the decision to sue wasn’t about protecting one religion, undermining the message of the Ten Commandments, or telling people they shouldn’t believe anything. “No other monuments, religious or otherwise, are on the raised platform around the capitol building,” Henderson said. He argues that the placement of this iconic symbol in such a public forum “sends a very strong message…and alienates anyone, visitor or citizen, who holds different beliefs.” The ACLU is certainly no stranger to high profile lawsuits and, as Henderson pointed out, it’s important to keep this case in perspective. “Yes, we’re talking about symbols that are very important to people, but [this lawsuit] won’t decide whether somebody can eat tonight or if they have a father around,” Henderson stated, “…it’s just such a hot-button because it appeals to the public in emotional and philosophical ways.”
The goat-headed pagan idol in a cloak With a section header that sounds like Stieg Larsson’s take on pigs-ina-blanket, this is where the law of unintended consequences started to kick in. The Satanic Temple, a New York City religious group, full of “benevolence and empathy” and seeking to “embrace practical common sense and justice,” decided to offer a benevolent gift of their own to the people of Oklahoma, (The Satanic Temple). The gift? A 7-foot monument of Baphomet, an occult figure with the head of a goat. Oh, and as a bonus, there will also be smiling children adoring the goat-devil idol. And you can sit on him/them. Bloomberg Businessweek’s Claire Suddath sat down with Doug Mesner (a.k.a. Lucien Greaves), co-founder of The Satanic Temple, to find out why they were being so generous to a state, where Hell is generally just the month of August. According to Suddath, Mesner said, “When the ACLU sued, the state responded by saying it had actually envisioned a monument park and additional monuments could be added. We felt that was an invitation for more statues, so we decided to donate one.” (Suddath, 2014) These particular Satanists are not just a pointy-bearded bunch of blooddrinkers (that’s so Twilight, anyway) sitting around in a basement burning unscented candles and plotting to adopt highways – ok so maybe that last part is true. Seriously, they set up an indiegogo.com campaign last summer and raised $2,244 in a couple of months to try and adopt a stretch of road in NYDOT’s Adopt-A-Highway program. They didn’t get to name the highway, but it was not your traditional approach to spreading the Dark Lord’s message. The burning question: If you aren’t an affluent, baby-delivering, Baptist Deacon/lawmaker from Broken Arrow, how do you go about paying for a 7-foot statue to promote your religious preference to the people of Oklahoma? Re-enter indiegogo.com. The Satanic Temple posted another fundraising campaign and when it ended on January 17, the fund had exceeded the $20,000 goal by $8,180.
With plenty of cash, Mesner said they definitely plan to build the monument. Will it get to sit next to the building where Sally Kern works? That decision will be left to the Oklahoma Capitol Preservation Commission, and potentially the courts. An artist rendering of the Satanic Temple’s Baphoment monument. Displaying the peace sign and with an adoring child to either side, how could you not want to climb up in his lap?
photo courtesy of The Satanic Temple
Country grammarian Like opening a can of Flying Spaghetti Monsters, the Ritze family’s gift to the people of Oklahoma invited an application from the yin to their God’s yang. The Universal Society of Hinduism, led by Activist Rajan Zed, wrote to the Capitol Preservation Commission requesting details on their application and approval process and permission to place a statue of a Hindu deity, Lord Hanuman, on the capitol grounds, (Zed, 2013). According to Zed’s website, Lord Hanuman “was greatly revered and worshipped and known for incredible strength and was a perfect grammarian.” (Zed, 2013) Zed promised to make the statue ‘big, weather-proof,’ because if there’s one thing Oklahomans love, it’s weather-proof stuff: tornado shelters, 4WD vehicles, boots, blue jeans, leathery skin, etc.
It didn’t stop with Hindus and Satanists, either. The activist group, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), showed interest in hanging a banner to discourage eating meat. AND the *completely real* (read: satirical) church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster proposed something that, I’m sure, involves placing an enormous spaghetti strainer upside-down on top of the Capitol dome. If there’s one other thing Oklahomans like, it’s putting a stop to nonsense. The Preservation Commission had seen enough and decided to place a moratorium on any requests for new monuments at the Statehouse until the courts decide the constitutionality of the Ten Commandments monument, (Associated Press, 2013). No god in the fight Those claiming to have no belief in a higher power are edging closer to the euphoria of a religious experience watching this saga from the sidelines.
Hemant Mehta, writer for Friendly Atheist blog, is reveling in the legal and political fiascos that would ensue regardless of the Commission’s decisions. “If the Commission votes yes on the proposal, conservatives will flip out,” Mehta wrote. “If they vote no, they’re just inviting a lawsuit.” Which, in Mehta’s opinion, “is beautiful.” (Mehta, 2013) What’s next? Not sure, but it probably involves lining up all interested deities and anti-deities along Lincoln Blvd at NE 4th Street and racing toward the Capitol in covered wagons to stake their claim on the lawn.
MEET SCOTT q a
Where did you grow up?
I was born in Austin, TX but we moved around a lot. Grew up a lot in Atlanta and Denver, big cities. I came here for a little bit and went to high school in Oklahoma. After high school, I went off and worked for a few years and ended up deciding it was a good idea to join the service. Until about 5 years ago, that’s what I did. I was infantry in the Army.
How was it being in the Army?
q a q a
I liked it a lot. It was a good job. It is one of the only jobs that you get to do things that nobody else is gonna do under normal circumstances, see things that the average person will never see, experience things that the average person will never get to experience. How many people can say that they jumped out of a plane at 35,000 feet or got to ride in the back of an armored vehicle? Training was fun, and it was hard, and you hated it. Every bit of it. You especially hated your senior drill instructor and the drill sergeants. Those are the guys that you will never forget.
Where did you serve? I served in Kandahar, Afghanistan and Baghdad, Iraq.
What was it like being overseas in the Army?
I would say it was different. Everybody’s deployment is different. Some have good and some have bad. I usually don’t get into details about mine. It is like this joke another vet told me one day, “How many Vietnam vets does it take to change a light bulb? Well, you don’t know because you weren’t there.” I will say that if you could imagine the craziest wild-west movie, that was it. It was different and hot. I found out that 145 degrees does exist.
What is it like coming back after serving?
I think one of the hardest things is coming back, and if you have no support it’s hard to get back in the swing of things. Any vet will tell you, once you go into the service and go overseas, you’ll never be a civilian again. You view people differently. You view people complaining a whole lot differently. For me, the hardest thing to come back and deal with is people who complain a lot about something but aren’t doing anything about it. I think that coming back home you just view things differently. No matter what they say or what classes you go to, you will never 100% become a civilian again. You’ve been hardwired differently now.
Why did you join the Army?
q a q a
You get to do things that no other person will really get to do. Everybody’s got their own reason for why they joined. Me, I felt that instead of just talking about our problems, I was going to go out there and actually do something about them. There was an issue that needed to be dealt with, and, in my way, I was out there dealing with it.
Did you enjoy being in the Army? Yes, I will never regret it. I never regret being in the service.
How did you end up in the situation of homelessness? It was partially bad luck, bad timing, and improper planning. I was living in Denver and Denver is really expensive. I heard there were lots of jobs in Oklahoma and that it was cheap. That’s perfect. That’s what I was looking for. So, I got down here and started working. I worked for about 4 months and then they told me it was only a temp job and they didn’t need me anymore. The whole time I thought I had a steady job and then it was temporary. They paid me and I went on my way. I ended up with $300 in my pocket. I probably could have circumvented the situation if I had thought a little bit harder. I’ve been homeless maybe a year now.
What are some of your future goals?
My immediate goal is to find an apartment. That’s all for immediate. Getting my license renewed too would be nice. I know that I have to have goals for the future but these two are first.
What do you value?
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I value honesty. Regardless on the type of relationship, personal or business, you have to have trust. If I can’t trust you, I got nothin’ to do with you. I’ve been through some crazy stuff, so I have appreciation for the simple stuff too. After being overseas and going through all that mess, you realize the small stuff means so much more than you thought it did.
What are some of your interests?
How did you get into ink?
What do you wish people knew about the homeless in OKC?
I am definitely into ink and piercings. I want a whole sleeve one day and a Chinese dragon.
There is a difference between the people who fly signs and the guy who is going to work and just having bad luck getting back on his feet. Realize there is a difference between nonworking homeless and the ones who are working and trying to get on their feet. I work for a construction company Mon- Fri 7am-5pm and sell Curbside on the side.
How do you feel about the issue of homelessness in OKC? This is my opinion on the matter. A person won’t try if everything is handed to them. If they know that every two hours, every day somebody is feeding or handing out clothes. If they know that if they stand out with a sign that somebody will hand them money. If you keep doing that for long enough, you’re just not gonna get back to a normal life. Sometimes I think that we need to make it a little rougher so people will get motivated more.
Inebriation is how I got into ink. I have three tattoos. One is a skull and crossbones and on my forearm it says, “I can’t read Chinese,” in Chinese. That’s what happens when someone gives you a tattoo gun and you’ve been drinking. You wake up thinking, “What did I do?” I used to not make the best decisions.
What else would you like people to know about you? My favorite thing to do is ride. I’ve been riding motorcycles since I was 16. That’s what I grew up around, bike clubs and motorcycles. My interests are still bikes and comics. I like mostly Marvel but I would say my favorite is Iron Man. He is kinda like Batman. While he doesn’t have any real powers, he uses his head and is intelligent. He gets through his situations by thinking about them. I like to write about sci-fi, fantasy, and a little bit of historical fiction. I like horror too. My writing is inspired by my life and what I have experienced. photo by Ranya Forgotson
Anonymous once said, “Impossible only means you haven’t found the solution yet.” Well, Anonymous has obviously never tried to open a brand new pair of scissors that is guarded by indestructible plastic packaging. Obviously, if you’re buying new scissors, you need some sort of device for cutting and opening things. Then why would Scissor Inc. package its scissors in such scissor-intensive wrapping? It’s a never-ending cycle of sadness and pretty much impossible. Like you, Aires, Anonymous really needs to get their stuff together... whoever they are.
You’ll really want to put your mind to good use this month, Taurus. Put down the Flappy Bird, Snapchat, and the other mindless activities you like to fill your days with. Instead, spend some time on more thought-provoking activities like playing Risk, Mancala, or perhaps doing a crossword. For the ultimate head-scratcher, analyze the younger generation’s obsession with taking “selfies.” That will keep you thinking for a while.
You’ve been feeling really crafty, haven’t you? No, not like the Hobby Lobby sticker aisle kind of crafty. More like the “I’m going to take this random alley behind the YMCA to avoid downtown traffic” kind of crafty. These little victories will add up throughout the month. By the end of the month, you will have saved at least 36 minutes of your time and $42 of your precious, hard-earned cash. Score! Think of the possibilities. I mean, with all that extra time and money, you could watch exactly 1.3 episodes of syndicated Friends and go on a mini-Target shopping spree. But don’t you dare go through the $1 aisle at Target because that’s the retail equivalent of a black hole. In the blink of an eye it will suck dry the time and money you spent the whole month saving.
This month you’re feeling really unappreciated, Libra. Everywhere you turn someone else is getting love and attention. It feels like that scene in Mean Girls when they’re passing out CandyGrams to the entire class. You wait excitedly for yours while everyone else gets theirs. If Glen Coco got four (you go Glen Coco!), then you should have at least 8 from your friends, right? But that’s it - bag’s empty. None for you, Gretchen Wieners. I know that the sting of feeling like your friends forgot about you can make the entire month seem sour, but don’t do anything drastic like read aloud a passive aggressive book report to your entire English class. Either your friends didn’t mean to leave you out, or they aren’t very good friends and should be hit by a bus.
Do you believe in magic? (Are you singing that song in your head now? Good.) Well, obviously, I believe that all things are possible (except coming out of Target without an impulse buy). Let me fill you in on a magical secret: At 11pm when you get in bed, the comfort level of your bed is just like any old cot, but slowly while you sleep through the night, a magical spell turns your bed into the most comfortable thing you could imagine by morning time. I’m serious. Magic is the only possible reason your bed feels like a cumulous cloud by 7:30am.
We all know that there are three lies we all tell: 1) No, I don’t pick my nose. 2) Who is this? I lost all my contacts. 3) I have read the terms and agreements. Just remember that these are the three universal lies we as humanity accept no more, no less. When the opportunity to lie rears its ugly head this month, just take a deep breath and tell the truth. They need to hear it. (Unless she looks fat in those jeans, because then for the love of the Universe never ever tell the truth).
hoboscope by The Mysterious Maggienificent
CANCER Mars is totally on your side this month. It’s like super red this month, and it’s like doing this thing where it’s orbiting around the Sun, and it’s like reallllly... Mars-y this month. (Quickly Googles astrological facts about Mars.) As it rises in the Eighth House near the 30th, this fiery planet (the Planet of Passion) will truly live up to its name in your life. This planet will command you to get things done and get things done quickly. (Dang, I really should just Google every horoscope. You guys would believe me so much more.)
CAPRICORN Prepare yourself, Capricorn. About three weeks from now you will find out a coworker has their significant other’s voice as their ringtone chirping, “Baby, baby pick up! It’s me! Pick up!” You honestly need to start laughing about it now and every day leading up to this traumatizing event in order to fully contain your composure when you hear this ringtone in real life. Your cool composure in the face of horror will make you look like nothing phases you. But let’s be honest, that would scar anyone.
Keep your head up, Leo. Not everything can go your way all the time. You are extremely talented, extremely attractive, and extremely giving. Everyone loves you and is rooting for you that should be enough. You don’t need that little gold statue to tell you you’re awesome! (Wait, this wasn’t supposed to be a pep talk for Leonardo DiCaprio after the Oscars?)
AQUARIUS Hey, Aquarius, you need to be a team player for these next couple of months. We can’t all be Kevin Durant – aka the Slim Reaper, aka KD, aka Durantula. We can’t all have nicknames based around creepy items. Sometimes we have to be Nick Collison and give the glory to someone else. Around the 15th you’re going to be doing some serious defense for your team, and it’s much appreciated. Maybe pass the ball to someone who’s been keeping the bench warm recently. (Libra’s been havin’ a little friend crisis and might need to tag out and let ‘em shine.)
VIRGO Virgo, when life gives you lemons, squeeze them in water. Not to make lemonade but to make this gross lemony-water mixture that’s supposed to be really good for your digestive health.
You look for meaning in everything, Pisces. I’m all about listening to intuition (I mean, I AM The Mysterious Maggienificent...it’s my job. That and I babysit my neighbor’s kids a lot, but that’s just for extra spending money) but that doesn’t mean every little thing is a sign from above. I agree that that Chick-fil-A nugget did sort of look like a microphone, but that doesn’t mean your singing career is in the near future. Trust me, your performance of “Benny and the Jets” at O’Connells the other night was the peak of your singing career. But hey! Maybe you have a future in acting?