Monday, January 30, 2006

American by Birth -- Texan by the Grace of God

I was invited to do a walk thru for the new North Texas Rock Rally grounds. For an urban girl, I was surprised - at least for today it appeared much better than the facility they were at last year - you know it's bad when it's referred to as the Dust Bowl. The location for this year is north of Dallas - last year it was north of Fort Worth. You may not think that 40 miles east would make much of a difference, but it does.

If you ever look at a map of Texas that shows the variations, you'll notice that the green tapers off between Dallas & Fort Worth. There's a reason for that -- because FW sucks - it's dusty and has bad roads and with the exception of Sundance Square, everything is just old. Not historic old -- just old & run down.

Now I know that Texans are known for being pompous and thinking we're better than anyone else - but let's be realistic - where else could pull off a t-shirt with a slogan like "Fuck You We're From Texas".

There's this person in my life that was raised in Oklahoma and it was kind of sad that he didn't have that edge - he was born here and spent the first couple years of his life here but for about 27 years he was in Oklahoma. When we first met, at times I actually left his speechless or truly shocked at some of my comments & thoughts. He seemed very stoic at times and so serious. You kind of knew that if you just scratched the surface at bit, you'd find someone different beneath.

In true Texan form I persevered and held out. Now, God love him, he is almost as politically incorrect as someone raised here their entire life. I am so proud of him. It makes conversation between us much easier.

So how did he get off this notorious path? Oklahoma. I mean honestly, the state has "Oklahoma is OK" as the motto on their license plate. All day long for years, Okies drove around being reminded that they are "ok" which is truly nothing more than being synonomous with "adequate" and/or "mediocre" at best.

Texas - wow, the difference a letter can make - started off life as Tejas (tay-hos) which was a word used by one of the Native American tribes for "friendship". Somewhere along the way, the J was replaced with X and things were just never the same.

I remember when it was announced that the state motto, "The Friendship State" was going to be placed on the license plates. The powers that be in Austin said they had more feedback over that one thing than anything else they had ever done. In a nutshell, Texans said the hell with the state motto. Driving around with "The Friendship State" on their license plates would make us look like sissies. No self respecting Texan with a big ass pick up truck, huge tires and a gun rack in the back window could drive around like that. Suffice to say that the plates say "The Lone Star State" on them.

There is a mentality to being Texan - it can't be explained or learned quickly. It just seeps into your pores and becomes part of you. It has it's pros and cons. The positive thing is that no matter where you go in the world, people have something to talk to you about immediately. This really holds true if you are from Dallas which, thankfully, I am. The down side is that you have a different thought process which can sometimes make people look at you weird. But that is easily rectified - I just say, "I'm a Texan - we are known for being half a bubble off." I've yet to meet anyone that didn't instantly accept that reasoning.