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December 28, 1999

Consider the following modest but interesting morsels as you take a break from post-Christmas cleanup chores.

The current (January-February) issue of Oklahoma Today, the most worthy official magazine of the state of Oklahoma, contains the usual quota of excellent articles and photographs that illustrate life in this wonderful state. One of the pieces is of special interest locally because it deals with wrestling, a sport that is spoken here. "Legends of the Falls" is mostly about professional wrestling -- see, the title is a play on words -- and of course it would not be complete without reference to Perry's own Dan Hodge. The main body of the story, written by Gordon Grice with photos by Tom Luker, concerns what is now called "sports entertainment" to distinguish it from real athletic competition.

As most of us know, Dan Hodge was a splendid amateur wrestler at Perry high school, then the U.S. Navy, then four years at Oklahoma University, then as a competitor in the Olympics at Helsinki and a medalist at Melbourne. He later won the U.S. Golden Gloves heavyweight boxing championship and had a brief fling at professional boxing before turning to professional wrestling. In that field he also became a champion, one of the good guys, before a succession of mishaps halted his career.

Dan is shown in a full-page picture accompanied by a half-page of text which gives a little profile of his prowess and his career. It also retells the familiar story of how he could snap a pair of pliers by squeezing them in his powerful grip. The writer calls Danny possibly the strongest wrestler in his class. He won't get an argument on that point from me. Buy the magazine and read all of it.

A recent note from Mary Lee Streller, daughter of Milo W. Watson, the late publisher of this newspaper, tells me that her sister, Carolyn Adkins, was spared the pain inflicted on some families by the recent shooting at the Ft. Gibson school. Carolyn and her husband, Richard, live in Ft. Gibson and two of their grandsons attend school there. "Eric, the older of the two, was outside the school when the shooting started," Mary Lee writes. "He ran home as hard as he could." Mary Lee and her husband, John, live at Earlsboro and commute to Tinker Field each day.

To wind this up, here's a story about four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody and Nobody. There was an important job to be done and Everybody was asked to do it. Everybody was sure Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it. Somebody got angry about that, because it was Everybody's job. Everybody thought Anybody could do it but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have done. Sound familiar? (The original author of this bit is unknown.)