Thursday, June 3, 2010

More Than Just A Dot on the Map

I am from a small town called Gage. It has been around for over 1,500 years.

Actually, that is not true. I don't know how long it has been around, but my family has lived there since the Land Run.

Not familiar with the Land Run?  Well rent Far and Away, insert my family in for Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, minus the super famous, super weird, Hollywood part, and you have my family history. This part is totally true. My great great grandparents came over from Ireland and ran in the land race and somehow ended up in the armpit of Oklahoma. No literally, it is is the armpit. Right next to the panhandle, near the Texas border.

My grandpa was born 1/2 block from where he lives now. He is the youngest of eight children, hence why I have 359,008 cousins. And in all my travels, in all the cities, towns and villages I have been to, this dinky, no-name town of 400 people, is my favorite place earth.

I feel like a super giant kid when I visit. Generations of us all pile on top of each other for annual cookouts, swimming parties, late-night movie marathons and endless hours of chatting and laughing. There is a sense of comfort, safety, familiarity and bliss about this place and I feel it the minute I drive into town.

Side note: Speaking of driving into town, on my way into Gage this past weekend, I happened upon two dead snakes in the road. TWO DEAD SNAKES. The only part of that sentence that makes me happy is that they were dead. I loath snakes and unfortunately, northwest Oklahoma has a reputation for being plagued with them. They are the spawn of Satan. Literally.

Moving on...even though this dot on the map has only 400 people, it also happens to have an airport. I know, I can't believe it either. I don't think it is operational anymore but it still has a weather station. So, when you are watching Oklahoma weather, "Gage" shows up on the map. It is totally famous.

My mom, along with her four siblings, grew up in Gage. She had a graduating class of nine. NINE. And when I was in kindergarten, I was in a class of 16. Apparently Gage was booming around that time. Unfortunately, I moved away so my dreams of being class president, valedictorian, prom queen, spelling bee champion, star athlete and drama queen were dashed to pieces.

Well, I guess I am a bit of a drama queen.

But it's okay, I have recovered. And it's probably a good thing I moved away, it ups my chances of finding a husband who doesn't share my DNA. Kids with eleven toes just don't get much respect these days.

So, if you ever find yourself in northwest Oklahoma, somewhere between Podunk and Slap Out (those are real names, people), be sure to keep your eyes open for a small town called Gage. If you blink, you will indeed miss it. And that would be a crying shame because there are some darn fine people in that town and I guarantee I am related to most of them.


  1. AnonymousJune 03, 2010

    It is a great town. You didn't mention the Gage Beach. I thought that was your favorite place in Gage.


  2. i heart small town oklahoma. SO MUCH!!! :)

  3. AnonymousJune 08, 2010

    what about Higgins?!!