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June 22, 2005

Not many things annoy me for long periods of time. Usually little irritants can be dismissed with a shrug of the shoulders or the realization that nothing really matters that much. So it just goes away. An exception to that good rule is the cavalier way our little city is treated when Oklahoma news is being discussed by the TV weathermen. I'm talking about Channels 4, 5, 9, 12 and any of the others who get into this aspect of what they call "TV News." You hear those prognosticators, including the new ones, pointing out temperature features, rainfall predictions or forecasts for various parts of the state, including Perry, but it seems they usually find a way to avoid verbalizing the name of our home city. The other day, for a bad example, the electronic weatherman kept referring to "Noble County" without ever mentioning the name of the county's capital city Perry. Why? No apparent explanation was forthcoming, so we just had to sit there and endure the ignominy of the consignment to oblivion that the weathermen have tossed our way. Maybe next time they spend big amounts of money for new equipment they will find something that explains Perry is at least the name of Noble County's equivalent of Ponca City (which is not the capital of Kay County but always manages to get mentioned.)

Don Stoddard's inquiry about the Model T, or Model A, Ford automobile that slipped beneath the ice on West Park Lake years ago brought up some local interest. Archie Moore and Irl Henry both remember when George Dufek Jr. drove the old relic when it began sinking under the surface. Irl was ice skating at the time but he says a winch truck salvaged the car and brought it up out of the ice. George was unhurt.

For my part, Robin Johnston and I each owned a half interest in an open top Model T pickup. He was driving it on the surface of the lake when the back end of the vehicle began disappearing under the surface of the water. Robin got out OK, but as I remember it the car just disappeared. Years later, when the lake was drained as an anti-mosquito innovation, remains of the Model T were found in the lake. It was never driven after that. Along about the same time, my brother-in-law, Sid Wade, and Bailey Render operated a Texaco station on 7th street, where the YMCA parking lot is now located. It was about the time the Texaco Fire Chief advertising promotion and the old Ford was painted fire engine red. I don't think Sid or Bailey ever drove it on the ice of West Park Lake, but I don't know what became of their fire truck. They drove it in the September 16 parade and for other promotions, but it stayed on the surface for several years.