I took this picture last weekend on my way to the tiny town of Maple Hill, Kansas. What’s in this town? The best steakhouse I’ve ever been too. It’s called Puffy’s but that’s for a different post.
This post is about home. Have you ever noticed how many movies reference Kansas? Sometimes it’s a punch line but it’s still mentioned. I blame Dorothy and her little dog.
I am the product of a railway family. It is because of this that I have lived in so many states. California is where my family is from but I was so little I only remember visiting and not so much living there. Then we were off to Illinois where I picked up a fun accent for a while. Next stop was Kansas till the last two years of high school. I finished high school in Texas and started college. But it just didn’t feel right. I missed the laid back friendly atmosphere of the sunflower state. So I left my family and moved back to Topeka.
Now I find myself in the large metro of Kansas City (Kansas not Missouri). One large city with a state line in the middle. I love it here. I’m close enough to all of the open country space that I crave but I’ve also got the cultural fun of the city equally as close. And since my family has left Texas to come back to Kansas it’s just about perfect.
So remember this the next time you hear about my little state in a movie. We have the city that produces more of the world’s airplanes than any other city in the world, we claim home to Brown vs. Board of Education, we were the heart of the wild west, Amelia Earhart and President Eisenhower were Kansans, and the Geodetic Center of North America is in Kansas. It is the beginning point of reference for land surveying in North America meaning when a surveyor checks a property line, he is checking the position of property in relation to Meade’s Ranch in northwest Kansas.
Before the tragic 9/11 attacks 10 years ago September 11th was just another day. Sure, it was the day that Cold War leader Khrushchev died (1971) . It was also the day that a Texas commuter plane crashed (1991). Not to mention the endless birthdays and anniversaries that fall on September 11th. And of course there’s a special event that is near and dear to my heart that happens to land on this date as well.
What is this great event of which I hint?
My birthday? Nope.
My anniversary? Nope.
The date that I won the lottery? It’s better than that!
It’s my divorciversary! Eight years ago I went into a Shawnee County courtroom with a knot in my stomach, my head down low, and my lawyer on my arm. A little while later I walked out of that courtroom with my head up, shoulders back, spring in my step, and divorce decree in my hand (not to mention a different last name). You see that’s what happens when you lose 300 pounds in just a few short minutes. It was great! Easily one of the top three greatest things I’ve ever done.
With that being said part of me feels bad that on this day of remembering our great nation’s loss I’m out happy as a clam. So if you see me please forgive my happiness.
I found an AP article about a guy on death row down in Texas. Apparently in 2004 he killed his two young children and his estranged wife by cutting out their hearts, putting them in his pocket, and then stabbed himself before he walked into the police station. Needless to say he was found guilty. A few months before his sentence was handed down he “plucked out his right eye”… only to be found competent to stand trial.
Fast forward five years. He’s now decided that he needed to remove is other eye… this time he ate it. Now, apparently they are finding him insane and shipping him off to a psychiatric facility.
So, the lesson here would be that if you remove one of your eyes your completely sane but if you remove them both and consume them that makes you crazy. Leave it to Texas.