On The Bricks

June 24, 2014

One evening recently I had to make a decision as to whether to go to my grandson’s baseball game, attend the fun looking art evening at the Urban Bru, or attend a concert in Texhoma. As I drove to the concert I thought about the less than adventurous folks that say there is nothing to do here. Fact is, I think there just isn’t anything that THEY want to do … because they don’t much like doing anything. And they certainly aren’t out putting an activity together themselves that they would like to go to.

Del Shields sang at the concert and it was good country and western music. Some were oldies, some were new, and some he wrote himself. I think I shocked my daughter when I told her one song was by “Song James and the Southern Gentlemen. Sort of shocked me that I knew, too. There wasn’t a large number at this concert, but those that attended had a good time. Kudos to the Texhoma Chamber for putting it on. You can’t do anything but try.

Maybe those that didn’t attend were off on their cell phone talking about how there wasn’t anything to do around here …..

Speaking of cell phones, I recently attended a meeting where there were about ten people from the Oklahoma Department of Health asking our opinions on how the Health Department can better serve us and help us to be healthier. If you have some suggestions, an opinion, or such, there is an online survey you can take. I thought the questions they asked were a little lame, so I just said what I wanted regardless of the question. You do what you have to do.

The funny part about the online survey is that they gave a website while at the meeting for the survey and I couldn’t find the survey with the address they gave. Had to contact Kayla McCarter about where to REALLY find it. They need to have making your website workable as a suggestion! Or giving out good information.

Well, back to the cell phone story.

Teri Mora and her Upward Bound students saved us from embarrassment. They sent a large group to the health meeting and those darn kids were awesome. They sat still and listened. They participated in the discussion. They were interested. And they never took out a cell phone and texted during the meeting. I later found out that they had their cell phone confiscated by TeriMora. Good job. During one little bit of boring information, I reached down to get my phone and then stopped. If teenagers could be polite the entire time, I figured I should be able to, too.

Thanks to those who attended the meeting. Guymon looked great. I only attended because Kayla McCarter cared whether people were there … and she attends meetings and activities I have. She is what I call a great working partner. She understands about giving so you receive. I just shake my head and roll my eyes when I’m invited to things by people who never attend any Main Street activities. Really? I’m going to break my neck to help them? Yeah, it doesn’t happen all that often. There are too many people who do help that I’m much more interested in.

Anyway, here is the address to go on the web and give your statements about the Health Department … Look at the top of the page and click “Take the online survey.”

Those Upward Bound students have been working doing more than going to health meetings. They work hard twice a week and spend just over an hour on community service. They’ve done alley clean up, planting flowers, pulling weeds, working at Loaves and Fisches, and so much more. There are also some of them job shadowing. I thoroughly enjoy them. TeriMora is doing a good job of teaching them about being better citizens.

Lots to do on the bricks! See you there.

On The Bricks

June 23, 2014

Dale Carnegie is well known for his classes that teach you to be a better something. Not sure what, but better. He has a great quote to start this day, “Today is life – the only life you are sure of. Make the most of today. Get interested in something. Shake yourself awake. Develop a hobby. Let the winds of enthusiasm sweep through you. Live today with gusto.”

Makes sense to me.

And if you’re busy doing things then you’ll have a more interesting conversation. I am flat tired of hearing people tell me how wonderful (or awful) their kids are, how they aren’t feeling well (too much time on your hands if you’re wallowing in pity), and how you don’t like politicians / umpires / coaches / your kid’s teachers / what is happening on your television show. *yawn* Can you see me looking for the door? See the twitch going at the side of my eye? That is brought on by boorish people. I feel I must fight to not be pulled down into that rut.

This week alone there are these activities going on:

  • Christian Concert by Aura, June 25 at the Guymon Junior High Auditorium at 6:30 pm, free admission.
  • Healthy Moment at the YMCA (for everyone) from 5 – 6 pm and you have a chance to win $100 … and several other things! That’s on June. 26.
  • Art Camp for 4 – 18 year olds (different times for different ages) is June 26 and 27 at Wild Horse Art Gallery. Then on the 28th are for those 17 years old and up. Yvonne Sangster is the instructor. Call 338-4278 for more information and prices.
  • PTCI’s Summer Jam on June 28 from 8 am to 3 pm at 2222 NW Hwy 64 with free food, prizes, live music, drinks, bounce house, and much more!
  • Taco Dinner and Bingo Evening fundraiser for Main Street Guymon, at Sr. Citizens Center, June 30 starting at 5:30 pm.

Those are upcoming events that could be a lot of fun.

How about doing something that improves your skills and talents?

  • Free Spanish and English classes are offered at the Church of Latter Day Saints, 5402 N. Memorial Drive (north of the cemetery) on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7 pm.
  • The Ready Group’s primary goal is to provide education and social time for those who have lost a spouse or find themselves single. They have an educational program each month on the 2nd Saturday of the month at 9:30 am. The meeting and brunch take place at the First Christian Church, 8th and Quinn (enter through the glass door on the north). All are welcome.
  • Improve your speaking skills (isn’t anyone that won’t benefit from this) by attending a Toastmasters group. There are two and they meet Thursday mornings at 6:30 at Ambassador Inn Restaurant or the other group that meets Tuesday evenings at Main Street Guymon office at 7 pm. You’ll be a better salesperson, teacher, administrator / manager when your presentations skills improve.
  • Learn how to play the wonderful card game of Bridge every Thursday night in the First Christian Church, 802 N Quinn, at 7 pm. All welcome!

We are all better humans when we continue to improve in some way.

Find something that fills you with enthusiasm. Volunteer. Be a Pink Lady or Pink Fellow at the hospital. Work out at the YMCA. Plant some flowers and take care of them. Clean a closet and give some things away to people that will use them. Make a scrapbook of your favorite trip with the scrapbookers. Play cards or board games with friends or neighbors or kids who need a little attention.

“Enthusiasm is the yeast that makes your hopes shine to the stars,” said Henry Ford. “Enthusiasm is the sparkle in your eyes, the wring in your gait. The grip of your hand, the irresistible surge of will and energy to execute your ideas.”

Join one of the Lions Clubs or Rotary. They need you. If you act decent, or almost decent, they want you. Step out! Get moving.

Take a walk. Go buy a gift for someone who isn’t expecting it.

See you on the bricks with enthusiasm!

On The Bricks

June 16, 2014

An eventful weekend has passed. So many fun things to participate in …

Liz McCullough had a birthday. Lisa Johnson threw a birthday party in her back yard for Liz that was a Prom. Sort of a Prom for Old People. A prom where everyone had fun. A prom where there was little angst about what others thought of you and more enjoyment in who all was there. Many found old prom dresses from years and years ago to wear. The most common accessory in the photos were smiles.

Lisa worked hard to get it done. She cleaned (before and after), decorated (and many friends helped some), and planned and organized and a wonderful evening ensued. But the fact of the matter is, it happened because Lisa worked her hind end off.

Maya Angelou is Lisa’s favorite poet and Angelou once said, “Nothing will work unless you do.” Lisa works and we all benefit.

“Every man’s work,” said Samuel Butler, “whether it be literature, or music or pictures or architecture or anything else, is always a portrait of himself.” Lisa’s portrait is one that shows energy and fun and love.

What is our portrait?

Think along the lines of Sam Ewing (whomever he might be), “Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don’t turn up at all.” Which describes you? Me?

Also on Saturday my friends Mark and Vicki Freeman had a barbecue wedding shower for Pete Dahl and his intended, Brandi. That’s where I was, rather than at the Prom. Here again is someone that cleans and plans and makes ready to have a large number of people disrupt their home … for another person. Although Vicki and Lisa don’t really seem much alike (Lisa is loud, Vicki isn’t; Lisa is opinionated, Vicki keeps her opinions to herself), they both have a ready smile and an open heart to do nice things for people.

It was a great shower. Lots of people brought food and lots of happiness was around. Happy is contagious, have you noticed?

“Enthusiasm is excitement with inspiration, motivation, and a pinch of creativity,” according to Bo Bennett. He must have known someone like Vicki.

Greta Garbo once commented, “Anyone who has a continuous smile on his face conceals a toughness that is almost frightening.”

Larry Carter and associates held a Cookout Benefit for Sophia Rose and her family. Talk about a smile! That Sophia Rose has the biggest smiles you’ve ever seen. Well, except when she saw me. She cried then. For only being alive for six months, this little girl who didn’t have a very good chance for life, has turned the world inside out. When you see her you realize that your problems are not problems, they are momentary challenges. When you watch her family with her you realize that the things most important are right there with us and we should not lose that focus … our friends and family. She puts a proper perspective, in a really happy way, on life.

In between goals is a thing called life that is to be lived and enjoyed.

At church on Sunday we had a pot luck dinner. I have to admit, those folks in Oslo are such great cooks. The church service wraps me up in a hug, the people I get to see all smile and make my world a better place, and then to follow that with the delicious pot luck is beyond wonderful. If you aren’t going to church, find one that makes your life better. If none of them makes you happy, then I’m thinking the common denominator is you that is not happy. Work on that. That being yourself.

Start with a smile for others.

Then follow with doing something for others … like a Prom birthday party for a friend or a barbecue shower or just a nice lunch, maybe. Work on making yourself a happier person, one that is more enjoyable to be around … one that happiness rubs off on other people by being around you.

Sometime I need to tell you about the Mentoring Workshop that Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence held here in Guymon last week. Great ideas for helping. Great ideas that make us better people.

Remember “if you have zest and enthusiasm you attract zest and enthusiasm. Life does give back in kind.” That’s according to Norman Vincent Peale.

See you on the bricks with zest and enthusiasm.

On The Bricks

June 9, 2014

Sitting in a meeting while a very nice older talks on and on … and on. Does he really think I care where they were when they had the conversation he is telling about? Does he really feel we want to hear his analysis on why they chose these specific books? *sigh*

But since the man is so nice everyone sits here as politely as possible. One person even looks interested. Actually we would all like to be leaving the meeting. It is 3 pm and we’ve been here since 9 am.

My nice button has stalled. My eyes want to roll. My foot is tapping. Rude is just around the corner. I should try for a nap and I won’t embarrass myself so badly.

Possibly, with intense focus, I can take my mind elsewhere.

First, I think about my business neighbors. Julie Perkins and Roger McKinnon knew we were having company and brought plants and planted them in the Main Street planters. They’re nice. Then Roger came by last week and told me that I would need to water my plants sufficiently because he was going on vacation. Roger keeps an eye out and when my plants start coughing dust, he waters them.

Good neighbors. That is something nice to think about.

Vonda Wilkins is another neighbor. Sometimes she walks in my office, sees the trash is overflowing and hauls it out to the dumpster. How good is that?

Dave Davis is out in the early mornings weed eating the plants that have grown up around. Another great neighbor.

How lucky am I? Lucky enough to have great neighbors, but not lucky enough to be finished with this meeting.

I am beginning to feel my hemorrhoids growing. It’s been a long time in this chair. And I’m pretty sure listening to boring people makes them worse.

Ah, time to recall a card I recently purchased, “Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.”

Hmmm, I obviously didn’t read that card often enough.

Here’s another one I got, “Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is. (Mary Anne Radmacher).” Listen hard.

There are times we just aren’t ready to be inspired. Or is it just me?

The happy ending to the story is that soon the man stopped talking. I wasn’t rude to him. We can still be friends if the occasion arises. The meeting actually got out early and even though it lasted a long time, I did learn from it. But there are those of us that know so little that it is not difficult for us to learn something from almost anyone.

And my hemorrhoids are fine.

Knew you were worried.

See you on the bricks!

On The Bricks

June 3, 2014

John Board is not retired. But I wrote such a thing in a press release that the newspaper was kind enough to run on the front page. And the press release was about John Board being kind enough to be the first speaker in our Wit and Wisdom Evening Series, a Main Street fund raiser. So, if all these people hadn’t been so nice, there wouldn’t be a problem. Or if I had been smarter there wouldn’t be a problem.

It is not a good thing to have on the front page of the paper that you’ve retired when you’re still working and enjoy having clients walk in your door. Shees. Sometimes I think I just need to smack myself right over the head. Often times I do.

Thank goodness John Board is nice and not hateful and thank goodness the newspaper is so willing to be helpful for my error.

Now, would you be nice enough to spread the word … John Board is not retired. In fact, you should come to the Wit and Wisdom Evening Series and just hear him! That is happening on June 30th starting at 5:30 pm and the evening meal is catered by Virgil Gibson.

Thank goodness I hadn’t said in the press release that Virgil had gone off and was now in a soap opera.

He really did that, you know? He played a doctor on a soap opera at some point in his life. But not recently.

Anyway, there are only 36 tickets for sale for John Boards evening, so be sure and come and get yours for $20. It will be fun. If I can just quit making stupid errors. I promise I’ll work on it.

After having the morning where this mistake came to light, I took an early lunch with my book and hibernated at the restaurant Vallarta. Great food. Great book. Quiet. And as I was walking out, someone made some very nice comments to me about me. There are so many nice people around.

And it because quite apparent to me … even though we make irritating mistakes, we just have to keep doing the best we can. My host father told me one time the only people who don’t make mistakes are those who don’t do anything. I am sure of that. But I also think that there are times that I am much more prone to the idiot mode.

But life is life. And we can’t let these things tighten our colon. Some people have real problems.

Oh, and there are also some other great things. The book I was reading today at lunch (and finished) is Sweet Dreams by Carla Stewart. I loved the book. The author grew up around here. That makes the book even better. And it is a book that doesn’t even have parts in it that would embarrass you if your mother read it. Or a cover that is tacky enough it makes you not want to take it in to the doctors office while you sit for four hours.

Carla has a new book out and I believe she’s coming to Guymon soon for a book signing on that book. You can look it all up on Be sure to go. It’s just plain fun. And it is a good thing to tell someone they did a good job.

The Oklahoma City Thunder NBA team (that’s professional basketball for those who are unaware) season is over. They made it to the finals of the Western Conference, but then they lost in overtime. Their season is not one to be ashamed of or to speak badly of, if you have half a brain. Only four teams made it that far and they aren’t one of the two teams to make it to the finals. But I’m still proud of them. They’re winners in my books.

And now I shall take my Thunder Up pride and cheer on the San Antonio Spurs. We can do that, you know. We can just enjoy the whole darn season, if we want to. I want to.

The last Thunder game, I actually go to attend. Now that’s cool. Well, I was pretty hot from screaming and standing and clapping and all that … but the BEST part of the game? That’s the fact that I got to sit by a college basketball player (yes, one who actually knows and loves the game through and through) who was attending his first NBA game. It is like when you take a kid to the zoo for the first time, or when a kid rides their bike for the first time … it’s great. Wow. Life has some real gems there for us if we are brave enough to step out, share our life, and enjoy.

This is a good week to step out and share. Let’s do it.

S you on the bricks!

On The Bricks

May 29, 2014

I have been slammed at work recently. Either I have become less efficient, more important, or I’ve recently traveled from my happy little fantasy land to reality. My bet is on the last option.

There are some excellent projects we’ve been working on here at the Main Street Guymon office. Fund raising efforts are at an all – time high.

Mark June 30 for the Main Street Taco Dinner and Bingo Evening at the No Man’s Land Center at 5:30 pm. The tacos are served at 5:30 and Bingo begins at 6:30. The cost for a taco plate (that includes homemade salsa) is $7 and the cost for a bingo card is $1 per game. The prizes for the bingo winners is half of the pot collected. Sometimes that is paid in cash and sometimes it is paid in Main Bucks, which can be spent at 30 different Main Street Guymon member businesses.

We’re asking for hamburger, homemade salsa, and dessert donations. Feeling helpful?

On July 21 is Main Streets first Wit and Wisdom Talk Series, another fund raiser for our Main Street programs. John Board is going to give the talk and the dinner is catered by Virgil Gibson. It is $20 a person and it all happens at Pioneer Hall (next to St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church) at 1803 N Lelia. This begins at 5:30 pm.

Working on these makes me recall, “The light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off due to budget cuts.” How sad. Support our Main Street fund raisers so our light isn’t turned off!

In OKC next week there are a couple of us attending a meeting about the Museum on Main project that we applied and were chosen for. This is a project headed up by the Guymon Public Library and is going to be a blast. I’m hoping these meetings don’t follow the saying, “A meeting is an event at which the minutes are kept and the hours are lost.”

If you work with youth in any way, you might consider attending the free Magical Mentoring Luncheon on June 12th in Guymon. Once again it is being held at Pioneer Hall, 1803 N Lelia, from 10:30 am to 2:30 pm. There are some great mentors coming in to mentor us mentors. To register, give a call to Melyn Johnson at 338-6246. It’s a start for some of us … those of us that come to mind when you read “She should go far. The sooner she starts, the better.”

Take a gander to the YMCA at 1602 N Oklahoma on June 26th from 5:00 – 6:00 pm and register for a chance to win $100 in Main Bucks. That’s $100 you can spend at any of 30 different Main Street Guymon member businesses. You might find yourself taking home some other goodies that encourage you to have a healthier lifestyle. I think I would be healthier with $100 in Main Bucks!

At a recent drawing by the OPSU Business Club, Mary Blagg won a basket of Main Street member items (gift cards, items, etc.) and $440 in Main Bucks. And Mary hadn’t even bought a ticket! I’ll tell you the secret. Sometimes if you really want to feel good, buy tickets for some drawing and write down names of people who help you out, who are there when you need a helping hand, a smile, or an encouraging word. I’m here to tell you, it feels great and you’re the only who knows you did it so it doesn’t even inflate your ego any, which goes to making you insufferable. THEN if one of them wins, it is like a warm and fuzzy all over. But sometimes you have to explain because the winner doesn’t see how they can win a drawing they didn’t buy a ticket for. And sometimes you tell about it in the newspaper and that inflates your ego. Am I insufferable yet? If not, I’ll just work on it a little more and we’ll be there.

We need to value other people’s efforts more.

We want to be valued and that doesn’t start until we do the same for others.

Send a card to someone that is deserving. Take some flowers by someone that makes you grin. Share your appreciation of something someone has done. Make the world a happier place.

Speaking of a happier place, I recently read some comments that would be great to use when you’re being asked to give a reference for someone you aren’t particularly impressed with. Try some of these on for size:

“She works well when under constant supervision and corned like a rat in a trap.”

“She slipped into the gene pool when the lifeguard wasn’t looking.”

“He hit rock bottom and started to dig.”


Go forth and be someone who gets a good reference.

See you on the bricks!

On The Bricks

May 17, 2014

A little rain. It settles the dust. Reminds us that we need get a new windshield wiper. Cleans everything. Smells so good. And it will bring our spring wild flowers to bloom. What a wonderful gift for this Holy Week.

Holy Week. You know, some of our churches make up for not meeting on Wednesday all during the year with Lent and Holy Week. We tend to have something every day. But it is like the rain and reminds us of a wonderful gift that clean and settles. Hope you all have a Happy Easter. And if you don’t believe in Easter, I hope you enjoy the egg salad sandwiches.

Here’s a thought for those Easter Egg hunts with plastic eggs. Put a nickel or a penny in those eggs. It’s cheaper than candy! And they don’t usually rot the teeth.

So Easter is the new year for the church. It can be a new start for us too. What do we need to work on? What should we do differently?

I hope you’re thinking of ways you should prefer to work on, rather than ways you think I should work on. If you are … that’s the first think you need to work on. Quit judging. Look at yourself rather than others.

And we really should start treating others the way we want to be treated. Not the way you think they deserve. Just time to be respectful. I read one time that if we would treat our spouse and children like we do company, then there would be a lot fewer problems today. Ouch. That hits home, doesn’t it?

Betty Smith who wrote “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn” said “Look at everything as though you were seeing it either for the first time or the last time. Then your time on earth will be filled with glory.”

It is a fact that not all of us can accomplish great things, but we can all accomplish small things that make a great difference. Kindness matters. Empathy matters. Patience matters. Being there matters.

Every day I have the chance to see someone who is making a great difference in some way. Last Tuesday was stellar in that department. Met with a group of ladies who are starting a mentor program for young girls. Their goal is to help these youngsters realize their self – worth. Remember, that we are all worth something. All of us. This is just beginning and it is going to be wonderful. I can’t help but know that each of these young mentors that gives two evenings a month to mentor is going to learn and be blessed even more than the girls they’re there for.

That’s how it works. When we give much, we are given much.

Then Tuesday evening I attended the meeting on the potential Community Health Center. For a fact, I know that Monica Ronne and Dianna Brown are seriously concerned about the entire community. They have those who do not have insurance at heart and want them to have a better life. Those who are on Medicare and Medicaid who have a hard time getting a primary care doctor or in to see the doctor are at their heart, too. They’re stepping out and helping others who need help. Whether you agree or disagree, they are giving of themselves and working hard for what they see as the better good.

And last Friday I had the honor of attending the Leadership Guymon Class of 2014 graduation, a program through the Guymon Chamber of Commerce. The class is made up of people who are taking their time to learn more about their community and they have a class project to do some renovating at the Oaks of Mamre. Go get ‘em, guys. I pray they take what they’ve learned and step out and make this community a better place to be.

Each of these folks has a boss, a business generally, that has ponied up and paid for them to attend and lets them take time off work to do it. I believe those businesses deserve the right to be noticed because those managers and owners are working hard and giving to the community, too. Here’s their list:

  • Bank of the Panhandle;
  • City of Guymon;
  • First Presbyterian Church;
  • High Plains BioEnergy;
  • Lumber Mart;
  • Oklahoma Panhandle Partners;
  • Oklahoma Panhandle State University;
  • PTCI;
  • Seaboard Foods;
  • St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church;
  • Texas County YMCA; and
  • Tri-County Electric.

There are certain businesses that always seem to step up. That actually read emails sent to them and respond back in a timely manner. The ones who seem to care. We have an opportunity to attend a leadership training class this week and the Chamber and Main Street Guymon members were invited to attend. Those who have employees signed up so far, are:

  • Bank of the Panhandle;
  • Main Street and Chamber volunteers;
  • Main Street Guymon Transformers;
  • PTCI; and
  • Seaboard.

There certainly is a pattern, isn’t there? Now, you have to admit, if you have more than one employee it is much easier to take part in such things! So there are some simple logistics that have to be considered. But rather than looking at who isn’t there, take a look at who is there and give them a thumbs up next time you see them!

Don’t forget the Free Dementia Education Seminar by the nationally acclaimed author of “Untangling Alzheimer’s.” It is Tues., April 29, from 9 am to 3 pm at Trinity Lutheran Church, 1212 N. Crumley in Guymon. Please call Dorothy Countryman at 580-651-4645 if you are going and tell her if you want the $10 lunch from Hunny’s. It is going to be a blessed event.

The benefit run for Lynn Schaffer is April 19. Call the Fire Department for more information. Don’t call them on the 911 number, please. Shees.

It’s a good day and there are good people all around us. Try to blend in and be good, too.

Wherever you go and whatever you do, may the luck of the Irish be there with you.

See you on the bricks!

On The Bricks

May 12, 2014

Last weekend the family and I went to the Guymon Community Theater presentation of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.” My mom and stepfather from Boulder, Colo., even got to go with us. They loved it as much as I did. The cast was fabulous. They made me laugh. And I respect each and every one of them for their hard work in making such a thing happen. Way to go, guys!

I did notice in the program that many of the actors were in a production for the first time. I applaud them for stepping out and trying something new. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed watching you all!

Talking about doing something new … have you ever thought about hosting a high school foreign exchange student? Give Mary Ann Shaddy a call if that is something you might consider. My family hosted 18different students and loved most of them! It is certainly a way to travel the world without having to buy a ticket. The number to call is 580-651-1957. They’ll try hard not to get you a student that when you give him a penny for his thoughts, he gives you change.

Here’s something new that I learned when the Governor was here talking: 45% of the students going into college are having to take remedial classes. That is almost half of the students. And if you figure most of the bad students aren’t even enrolled in college, this is a bit frightening. My thought is that it is time for parents to stop making excuses for your kids. They need to do their homework … themselves. They need to go to class and be on time. They need to write their own essays. Hire a tutor if your kid is having trouble because it’s cheaper than paying for a year of remedial classes in college.

If you’re not willing to do their work for them when they get a job, buy their groceries and pay their rent when they get a family, then quit letting them get by when they’re younger. It isn’t helping them. Now, I don’t remember if the Governor was talking about Oklahomans or nationwide, but I don’t think it really matters. Even if the percentage is a bit exaggerated, it is still scary.

Wow. I need to step down off my soap box before I realize that I’m standing up there … I just hate heights! And this whole topic so fits the quote, “There’s an idiot somewhere deprived of a village.”

At the recent Dementia Education Seminar that the Main Street Dementia Support Group sponsored, having author Tam Cummings in Guymon to speak, she spoke some words that have really stuck with me. Tam asked the group what Dignity of Life was. The group was quiet and then several people gave their thoughts, but it boiled down to being treated with respect. We should all treat people with dignity, with respect. And we should let them die with dignity. And we should treat those who are left living with dignity. Even children.

Tam said, “If you are old enough to love, you are old enough to grieve.” She was making a point that when someone dies, we shouldn’t sugar coat and wrap up explanations for children in confusing inane remarks. If we say “they went to heaven” the child might want to go there too. If they are “in their favorite garden” the child might wonder why they would rather be there than with them. Be honest. Be frank. And quite confusing everyone because you don’t want to say the word “die.”

I am going to remember this. Everyone deserves to know the truth. And if you handle it well, the children probably will, too.

There’s a quote that kind of fits this new rant of mine. “We have paralysis by analysis.”

Speaking of analysis, we have had such a wonderful good time with our Cash Mob that goes once a month and mob shops at a Main Street Guymon member retail store that we’re starting a Lunch Mob! The Cash Mob promises to spend a minimum of $20 at each mob, but the Lunch Mob just promises to buy lunch at the mobbed member restaurant. At this time we have three restaurants as members. They are Pub on the Bricks, Urban Bru, and Vallarta. Oh, yes, and Dizzy B’s serves a great lunch, too. We hope that it is fun for the mobsters and that it encourages new members! We love giving back to our members and this is such an enjoyable way to do it.

Mitchell Theater came in as a new member, so I think we’re going to have the two mobs mob the theater. Another fun time to be had! Call if you would like to join the Cash Mob and / or the Lunch Mob, 338-6246.

Epic Saturday classes and events coming up on the 17th are Scrapbooking at The Studio from 9 am to 5 pm (call Denise Gebara at 339-4851 for more information); Gaggle of Geeks from 1 – 3 at the Main Street Guymon office; Dementia Support Group from 4 – 5 pm at the Main Street Guymon office; and from 8 – 11 pm is a country and western dance to the band “Calhouns” at No Man’s Land Center, 15th and East. Join any of these that interests you.

You should also mark on your calendar that the Pink Heals Tour is in Guymon on June 21 and there is a Professional Bull Riding Event and Motorcycle Run on July 26.

It’s a great day to be on the bricks.

On The Bricks

May 8, 2014

The evening brought such pride to my heart. Main Street Guymon volunteers won their first Oklahoma Main Street Award. After 650 of us went through the banquet line, heard Governor Mary Fallin speak about how wonderful the program is for our state, we finally got to the announcing of the award winners.

Main Street Guymon was up for five awards. The Premier Partner Award was for PTCI and their wonderful work with Main Street Guymon. The disappointment in not winning was not obvious on my face, I hope.

The Community Education Award for our On the Bricks column in the Guymon Daily Herald and the On the Bricks with Melyn TV Show on PTCI’s Channel 2 came next. Beat again. Dang. I am pretty sure my face showed my thoughts that time.

The third award on screen was the Main Street Volunteer Development Program for our Transformers. Shoot. We didn’t get to bring home that one. Hoping the wrinkles between my eyebrows wasn’t pronounced.

I tried to act like I was happy for the ones who won. But at the time, I really wasn’t. In fact, I didn’t like them at all.

Several more awards were given and then it was time for the Creative New Event. Yes! We won. Beat out two Tulsa Main Street programs. And all those others that didn’t make the final three. And it was even better than just winning.

Seaboard was the presenting sponsor of the Azuma: An African Celebration event. David and Jennie Watkins with Seaboard had brought Fidel Lual, an African refugee who was so instrumental on the Azuma committee. He was overwhelmed. “From the village to this,” he said softly. “It is like a dream.”

The winning took backseat in my love of how Fidel and Seaboard were such fabulous representatives of Guymon, of Texas County, of the Oklahoma Panhandle, and of the state. And I remember reading a letter to the editor who said Seaboard just made burgers. They knew so little when that letter was penned.

So we won. The Azuma committee, sponsors (Seaboard Foods, Bank of the Panhandle, and City National Bank, and several churches and individuals), and volunteers won. Those that attended also won. Without everyone … no award.

Congratulations to you all! We WON!

At the banquet Guymon’s Main Street program had also made it to the Top 10 Communities list. Laverne won that one. This award is strictly based on points from attending trainings, meetings, Main Street Day at the Capitol, man the Oklahoma State Fair booth, and so forth. We made Top 10. That was a first for us, too. And I have to take the time to say many volunteers did those activities that brought points. Terry Brand attended the Preservation Conference in Perry for Main Street Guymon, Arlene Winfrey and Deb Drees and Terry Brand manned the Oklahoma State Fair booth, Dalia Estrada put together our booth for Main Street Day at the Capitol and she and Juan Estrada set it up and manned it that day.

We have wonderful volunteers. Thank you to you all.

And if you haven’t jumped on the Main Street Band Wagon, it’s not too late! Join the Cash Mob that meets the second Monday at 5:30 and shops a Main Street Guymon retail store. Join the new Lunch Mob that meets once a month and has lunch at a Main Street Guymon member restaurant. Work at the Outback, Fiesta, Azuma, Livin’ Green Race, Oktoberfest, Five State Motorcycle Run, or other events with Main Street volunteers. Be a Shutterbug. Attend the Dementia Support Group. Help with the Community Clean Up (which is going to be monthly this year). Join one of the committees.

Become a member. A business membership is $200 a year and an individual can join as a “Friend of Main Street” for $50 a year. We would love to have you join us. Or be a sponsor of a Main Street program like the Transformers, Cassie’s Project, Lunch and Learns, and the soon to be announced Healthy Moments. You might end up on the TV program or in the column, but you’ll get over it!

See you on the Bricks!

On The Bricks

April 29, 2014

Attending Rotary last week was a lesson in hilarity. Bob Burgess gave the 17th Reading of the Ode to the Barbecue. “It’s not easy being Barbecue Bob,” he said as solemn as can be. “I’m to be commended.” That you are, Bob!

With over 1,800 people served at the annual Rotary Barbecue on the Friday of Pioneer Days (this week), generally in less than an hour and a half, it is a sight to behold. And the organizer of the shindig is Barbecue Bob. And he does it with a straight face and sarcasm that makes us all laugh.

I love being a Guymon Rotarian.

I love Pioneer Days.

There are so many things happening this week … take a look for Thursday:

  • Chicken and Noodle Supper at the Pentecostal Church, 1009 N Ellison; and
  • Meet the Rodeo Queens lunch at Epic Touch, Northridge Shopping Center.

On Friday:

  • Miss Guymon Pioneer Days Rodeo Pageant Breakfast at Ambassador;
  • Kid’s Clown Contest at Big R Standard Supply at 10:30;
  • Spikes and Spurs Golf Tournament at 11:00;
  • Rotary BBQ at 11:30 at Texas County Activity Center;
  • Mutton Bustin’ at 6:45 at the Arena; and
  • Rodeo at 7:30 and it’s Tough Enough to Wear Pink night.

On Saturday:

  • Old Timer’s Breakfast by Seaboard at Fairgrounds, 5:30;
  • 5K Run / Walk behind Activity Center, 7:00 am;
  • Pancake Eating Contest and Entertainment, 7:30 at Commercial Building;
  • Mercantile Arts and Crafts Show at Activity Center, 10 am to 7 pm;
  • Parade at 10:30 am;
  • Lunch for Seniors, Potluck at No Man’s Land Center 15th and East St.;
  • Lunch for Veterans at the American Legion;
  • Mutton Bustin’ at 1:15 at arena;
  • Rodeo at 2 pm;
  • Tractor Pull on south side of fairgrounds, 2:30 – 5 pm;
  • Mutton Bustin’ at 6:45 pm;
  • Pioneer Day Dance at Senior Citizens at 7 pm; and
  • Rodeo at 7:30 pm.

On Sunday:

  • Cowboy Church at the arena, 10 am;
  • Mercantile Arts and Crafts at Activity Center, 11 am – 5 pm;
  • Mutton Bustin’ at 1:15 at rodeo arena;
  • Rodeo at 2 pm; and
  • Boats and Trains at Sunset Lake from 2 pm til dark.

Have a great time celebrating our Pioneer Heritage this week! And when you see one of the hundreds of Pioneer Day and Chamber volunteers that make this happen, you give them a pat on the back. They deserve it. Few communities have such a wonderful celebration as this and those volunteers deserve our thanks.

See you on the bricks!