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More from the New Wild West

August 14, 2008

Perhaps Oscar Wilde said it best: “One can live for years without living at all, and then all life comes crowding into one single hour.” This was never more true for an intoxicated man living in the house behind ours in Ada, Oklahoma. Poor fellow came wobbling outside of his house, pulled his shorts down, and urinated toward the crowd of 30 citizens gathered last Saturday August 9. The group were members of the Westside Neighborhood Association. They’d come to talk about the problems in Ada’s west side. The man of the hour wasn’t trying to make a statement, he was just plain drunk.

We organized ourselves after my home was shot with an assault rifle on July 13 by a group of teenagers. In our first survey taken at the meeting, neighbors ranked their number one concern: slum lords renting shanty houses to drug dealers. So just as our second meeting was drawing to a close August 9, just when our group had the attention of Ada’s Mayor, Pontotoc County District Attorney, and the Assistant Police Chief, our wobbling neighbor let loose his artistic point-of-view. Ada’s Assistant Police Chief Carl Allen, (our hero), called for a squad car.

The evening had all the trappings of great theater: a carefully dressed set, actors hitting their marks, compelling dramatic tension. What will happen next? In theater, as in police work, timing is everything. Nothing could have made our point any better than this event, which frankly I think is the least of our problems when compared to bullets flying into our homes.

Concerning the fellow caught urinating, it wouldn’t have been so bad for him except a reporter from K-Ten News caught it all on camera. She aired the story on the 11 o’clock news August 9.

When I was writing Miko Kings, set in 1904, 1907, and 2006 in Ada, I discovered that the West side of town was known as the “Bucket of Blood.” Today, perhaps citizens will want to rename it the “Bucket of Urine.”

Perhaps we should put up signs like this in Ada.

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