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Day 18: An Ode To My Home State‏

I live in Oklahoma and today it looks like the Dust Bowl outside. We are in a major drought right now and high winds have caused conditions that make me think about what it must have been like back in the days of the Grapes of Wrath. I love being an Oklahoman. I am at least third generation Oklahoman, my lineage may be Okie even further back than that, I'm not sure. When people thought of the Oklahoma in the past, they thought of cowboys and indians or the musical. Now I think people remember us for the bombing of the Murrah building in Oklahoma City. I lovingly call my state the weather arm pit of the world. We have blazing hot summers and frigid winters. We have tornadoes and ice storms. We also have a beautiful spring and a colorful fall so it isn't all bad.

My hometown used to be known as the Oil Capital of the World, before many of the oil companies moved their headquarters to Houston. As a testament to the importance oil played in the history of the city, we have a 76-foot-tall statue of an oil worker in the middle of town. The skyline with its art deco skyscrapers displays the architecture of the time of the oil boom. We are known for our awesome collection of art deco wonders and for being on the Mother Road, Route 66. Both draw international visitors to my hometown every year.

Oklahoma shapes who I am. I'm proud that my state was established by hard working people who rushed onto an empty landscape looking for the chance at a better life. My ancestors all worked that land, farming on it, then moving to the big city to work with their hands as skilled tradesmen. There's a pioneering spirit here and we may be a little behind in certain things, but we're getting there and you can bet we are going to get there in our own way. I am an Oklahoman through and through.

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