JEOPARDY! category EVERYTHING’S OK
*This nickname for Oklahomans stems from those who jumped the homesteading starting gun in 1889
*It’s Oklahoma’s leading crop & is especially big in the north, near the Kansas border
*Tahlequah, Oklahoma is the tribal capital of this Native American nation
*This humorist & native son lends his name to Oklahoma City’s main airport
*The National Weather Service’s storm prediction center is in this city, also home to the University of Oklahoma
And here’s a Daily Double I got right when I was on the show:
PUT ‘EM IN ORDER: Oklahoma statehood, California statehood, Nebraska statehood
(Answers at the end)
I’ve long had an almost irrational affection for Oklahoma. Maybe it’s because, when I put together my states of the Union jigsaw puzzle when I was a kid, the piece for the state looked like a deformed sauce pan. Or maybe it’s that odd history of being Indian Territory for a long period which fascinated me.
I have referred to my first wife, who I married in college, as the Okie because she was born in Durant. I had a difficult time connecting with her father until he realized that I was on the OK side when the University of Oklahoma, or Oklahoma State played teams from Texas, and ESPECIALLY the Longhorns of Texas.
I’ve been to Oklahoma only once, in 1995, to speak with the state Small Business Development Center program and explain the reference services NYS SBDC was then providing for other SBDCs.
There was a woman I knew who worked for an SBDC in Oklahoma City. Her building was right across the street from the Murrah Building, which was blown up on April 19, 1995, killing 168 people. She suffered severe injuries from flying glass and other items that acted like shrapnel. She wrote a very moving story about her recovery the following year, which I published in a newsletter; I need to find that again.
The tornadoes in Oklahoma, especially those in 1999 and 2013, saddened me greatly.
Here’s a song about Oklahoma from a British band, the Kinks, Oklahoma U.S.A. [LISTEN] from the Muswell Hillbillies album. Oklahoma USA is a little gem about a lonely spinster who avoids the harsh realities of post-war Britain by losing herself in Hollywood movies like “Oklahoma.” “It namechecks Rita Hayworth or Doris Day, Errol Flynn (‘But in her dreams she is far away/ In Oklahoma U.S.A./ With Shirley Jones and Gordon MacRae’).”
And speaking of Jones and MacRae, here’s the title song to certain Richard Rodgers/Oscar Hammerstein II musical [LISTEN].
Finally, here’s Oklahoma Hills by Jack Guthrie [LISTEN], written by his famous cousin, Woody Guthrie, both Guthries coming from the state.
ANSWERS to JEOPARDY!
Will Rogers (more on him soon)
California statehood, Nebraska statehood, Oklahoma statehood (not until 1907, which I actually knew because of the musical)