Category Archives: Oklahoma

Issue 357 – We Enjoy Our Visitors

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The Paregien Journal   –   Issue 357   –   July 13, 2017

We Really Enjoy Our Visitors

During our marriage of 55+ years, Peggy and I have lived in several states and cities. I can safely say that none of them, except for our current home in Florida, has been known as a “tourist destination city.”  The region from Tampa, down through Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Bradenton, Sarasota, and Venice contains beautiful cities, beaches, museums and scores of other attractions. So hundreds of thousands of visitors flock here from all over the United States, Canada and Europe–especially during “the season” (November through April). 

Naturally, that old capitalism rule of “supply and demand” kicks in, with hotels raising their rates and still running at or near capacity, and restaurants hike their prices and still have waiting lines (even at . . . or maybe especially at . . . the “Early Bird Special” time of 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.). And then there is the additional traffic, . . . but don’t get me started on that.

So we are fortunate and happy to have a few more friends and relatives who come to visit us for a day several days. We are always glad host them and get caught up on their lives and the lives of our mutual friends. And we try to guide them to the best attractions in the area.

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Martha and Darrell Russell are very special friends of ours and have been for many years. We all met when Peggy and Martha each worked in the Southwest Airlines Reservation Center north of the airport in Oklahoma City. For several years, Peggy and Martha shared rides back and forth to work from our respective homes about 25 miles from the airport (in Edmond, Okla.). Then when we decided to move to Florida in June of 2013, these two generous souls volunteered to make the trip with us. In fact, Darrell had driven business-sized trucks for years and he accepted the role of chief driver of our rental truck. Martha and Peggy drove our van. 

Then a couple of years later they retired, sold their house, bought a Recreational Vehicle and started roaming all over the U.S. Then their daughter and son-in-law got transferred to Jupiter (over on Florida’s east coast; also where the aging movie star Burt Reynolds still lives) and they started living with there when not RV-ing. And just a few weeks ago, the whole crew moved to new digs up in Social Circle, Georgia. Google that town and scroll out and look at how the town is platted — in a doggone circle. Pretty strange.

Anyway, I think you catch my drift that we very much appreciate and love these two wonderful folks.

And, speaking of wonderful folks, . . . that leads us to James and Glenda Cotton of Edmond, Okla. 

2017--03--05 01A Palmetto, FL - James and Glenda Cotton - by S Paregien

We first met James and Glenda Cotton (of Marshall, Okla.) in a congregation in Oklahoma City where we were all attending. Since then, they have moved from her family farm to just on the far north side of Oklahoma City. We all four laugh all the time about how we were mismatched somewhere back in time, as Peggy and James share a great passion for searching for seashells and tinkering with stuff while Glenda and I are happy to watch the sunsets and read books. Last year Peggy and I rode with them from Edmond all the way through Texas and New Mexico up to Westcliffe, Colorado . . . to a friend’s cabin . . . and then took the long way home. Quite an adventure. And quite fantastic friends.

2017--03--26 02 Brian, Ruth, Muriel, Peg - Venice, FL - by Stan Paregien

Two of our newer retired friends who live in Venice are Dr. Brian and Ruth Smith, R.N. Before they were married, they each independently went to separate medical missions in Africa. A series of twists and turns took place, finally causing them to meet and to get married. They spent the last 20 years of their careers working in McAllen, Texas, moving to Venice in late 2015 or so for his health.

The photo above shows them with my cousin/brother Jerry Paregien (blue shirt) and his wife Muriel and with Peggy.  Both Jerry and I grew up a few miles apart in the wilds of Ventura County (just north of Malibu, etc.). He graduated (as did Peggy) from Ventura High School, while I graduated from Fillmore High School.  I had one sister, Roberta (“Berta”), but nary a single brother. Jerry has certainly filled that slot for me over the years, so I love him as my substitute physical brother and as my brother in Christ. It just doesn’t get much closer than that. 

Muriel and Peggy just seemed to hit it off from the first time they met. For one thing, they are both “P.K.’s.” Now those of you insiders in church circles know what that means. Each of them was a “preacher’s kid.” Muriel’s father, Dale Knowles, preached for ultra-conservative independent Christian Churches (and her brother, Victor Knowles, is a preacher and the long-time editor of ONE BODY, a magazine advocating Christian unity).  Peggy’s father, W.W. (“Woody”) Allen, preached for ultra-conservative Churches of Christ, mainly in Nebraska and in Ventura, Calif. But Muriel and Peggy share so many other interests that their relationship is very similar to that which Jerry and I have. 

2017--06--01 02 - Woody, Lisa, Ella King - Bradenton, FL - by Stan Paregien

Woody King is a son of Paula King and the late Bill King, making him a nephew to Peggy and to me. Woody’s parents farmed in Arizona and Texas, then moved to California and soon to Oklahoma’s oil patch(s), and in his adult life out to Portland, Oregon. Lisa’s parents live in Sarasota and it was Woody and Lisa’s wedding on beautiful Siesta Beach — attended by Peggy — that was a major influence in our moving to Florida. They have the one daughter, cute and smart little Ella. They work together as independent entrepreneurs.

Hey, here is a “blast from the past.”  This photo of Woody and others was taken at our little 10-acre “farm” northwest of Stroud, Okla., in 1981. I added the captions, of course.

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That is my mom and step-father in back, and Woody’s younger brother Jeff at right.

2017--06--15 12 - Sarasota, FL - luncheon cruises - by Stan Paregien

Luncheon cruise on Sarasota Bay in mid-June, 2017

This photo is of Stan and Peggy Paregien with their one and only daughter, Mrs. John (Stacy Evelyn Paregien) Magness. Stacy (cook in a nursing home) and John (foreman for a company in the oil field service business) and their adult daughter Christal live in tiny Snook, Texas just west of Bryan/College Station (think “Texas A&M”).  They have lived in Texas all of their married lives. This was Stacy’s first trip to Florida. We hope someday, since her husband John refuses to fly at all, to hog-tie him and load him on a plane and get him here, too. Stacy, by the way, is our greatly loved “chosen child,” as we adopted her in Oklahoma when she was two years old. Their older child, Dylan, works with his father and lives in College Station with his girlfriend. Their first baby is a beautiful girl named Presleigh.

That is Stacy’s picture on the left, at about the same age as Presleigh.

The note in my newspaper for July 7th’s “Birthdays” included the one and only . . . Doc Sevrinsen. Okay, if you’re under 40 years of age you have probably never heard of him. But ol’ Doc, whose real name was Carl, turned 90 this year. He was the band leader during most of the years that Johnny Carson hosted “The Tonight Show” on TV. At one time he owned a horse ranch in Purcell, Oklahoma (which likes to call itself “The Quarter Horse Capital of the World”). He lives up in Webbed Foot Country (i.e., Oregon), and he still performs once in a while. He was especially noted for his wacky stage outfits and for his kinda “wacked out” stage persona, which I don’t know was for real or just an act. He was different, though.

Severinsen, Doc -- about 2016 -- trumpet player and band leader on NBC

Oh, and on July 7, 1954, that nobody truck driver from Tupelo, Mississippi actually conned some D.J. at WHBQ in Memphis to play his first record, “That’s All Right,” for the very first time. And the song was a heck of a lot more than “All Right.” Neither Sun Records nor the world of music would be the same for very long after that. I remember that this “rock ‘n roller” (or hillbilly rocker) in about 1955, when I was a student at Roosevelt Junior High School in Tulsa, came to town for a show. The place was mobbed. And the newspaper the next day on their front page had a photo of two or three of my female classmates trying to climb into Elvis Presley’s dressing room from a window on the outside wall. Ah, yes, the good ol’ days.

Presley, Elvis -- with his guitar in about 1955 - it is a 1955 Martin D-28 guitar

We had been giving some serious thought and discussion about flying to Japan to see that nation and to spent some time with our daughter-in-law Becky Paregien’s brother and sister-in-law, Mike and Tomoko McClain in the Hitachi coastal area north-east of Tokyo. . . .  . . Then, one of our Rwandan friends invited us to his wedding in September there in Rwanda, Africa. So we (mainly Peggy) shifted gears and started researching that trip, instead. The Rwanda trip was just too cost-prohibitive. So we (mainly Peggy) turned our attention back to that possible trip to Japan. After visiting with a travel agent, we decided the possible Japan trip was impossible for us. And for the same reasons:  $$$$$

So we have regrouped and are thinking of going two places instead of one: Paris and Rome.

Doesn’t that sound just wonderful?

Well, don’t get too excited. We’re talking (mostly joking) about driving to both Paris, Tennessee and Rome, Georgia. It would give us some bragging rights, if we just left off the state names. Then on second thought, . . . naw. Back to the drawing board.

Hey, we have a heck of a lot of fun with all of the folks here in our 55+ gated MHP, including such folks as long-time resident Pat Goeller. Read the sign on her shirt.

 

2017--04--11 01 Bradenton, FL - Pat Goeller - by S Paregien

Well, friends and neighbors, that’s it for this time. Thanks for stopping by and “Y’all come, ya hear?”

— Stan Paregien

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Issue 348 – This Land Is Your Land

 

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Issue 348     –    February 6, 2017

This Land Is Your Land

I did not watch the Super Bowl football game on Feb. 5, 2017. Half-time entertainer Lady Gaga seems to have gotten favorable reviews from lots of folks. I did catch a news clip of her singing a portion of Woody Guthrie’s popular song, “This Land Is Your Land.” It is a populist, kind of get-together-and-sing-Kumbaya song. 

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However, as the late radio broadcaster Paul Harvey used to say, . . . here is the rest of the story.

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I made the following statements about the history of the song, “This Land Is Your Land.” in my 2012 eBook, WOODY GUTHRIE: HIS LIFE, MUSIC AND MYTH (Chapter 5):  

“On Feb. 23, 1940, Woody wrote ‘This Land Is Your Land’ while living with friend and fellow folksinger Burl Ives at the Hanover House in New York City. He wrote it to counteract what he considered the mindless sentimentality of ‘God Bless America,’ penned by the great Irving Berlin. That song just really irritated him something awful.

“Slowly but surely he worked out the words of his own song and, as usual, simply matched the lyrics up with an existing song. In this case it was the melody of a gospel song, ‘Oh, My Loving Brother,’ a melody that was also borrowed by the Carter Family for their song, ‘Little Darling, Pal of Mine’. Woody titled his song, ‘This Land Is Your Land’ and pretty much forgot about it until April of 1944.

“When the song finally surfaced and was recorded, it only included the first four verses (see below). And it quickly gained traction. Today the first few verses are sung by people all over the world, sometimes with a few adaptations to fit the Canadian or Japanese or Irish or whatever culture. It has been recorded by virtually everyone under the sun, from Bing Crosby to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. In the 1960s President Lyndon Baines Johnson was one of the first to wonder if maybe it should replace our national anthem. And various big-name corporations, including United Airlines and the Ford Motor Company, have used bits of it for their sales pitches on TV and radio.

“Here is how those first four verses read:

1   This land is your land, This land is my land
From California to the New York island;
From the red wood forest to the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and Me.

 2  As I was walking that ribbon of highway,
I saw above me that endless skyway:
I saw below me that golden valley:
This land was made for you and me.

 3  I’ve roamed and rambled and I followed my footsteps
To the sparkling sands of her diamond deserts;
And all around me a voice was sounding:
This land was made for you and me.

 4  When the sun came shining, and I was strolling,
And the wheat fields waving and the dust clouds rolling,
As the fog was lifting a voice was chanting:
This land was made for you and me.

“The problem with most of the admiration for this song is that the four-verses-only version hides or at least ignores the whole point of the complete song. With all of its verses intact, ‘This Land is Your Land’ stands as a Marxist chant for communal property. Here is how those last three verses read:

5   As I went walking I saw a sign there
And on the sign it said “No Trespassing.”
But on the other side it didn’t say nothing,
That side was made for you and me.

6   In the shadow of the steeple I saw my people,
By the relief office I seen my people;
As they stood there hungry, I stood there asking
Is this land made for you and me?

7  Nobody living can ever stop me,
As I go walking that freedom highway;
Nobody living can ever make me turn back
This land was made for you and me.

“Now, go back and read the first line of the first verse. Doesn’t it take on a much darker meaning? It should because this song is, in fact, radical leftist Guthrie’s most clear challenge to life as most American’s know it.

“He understood that private property rights were, more often than not in the United States, used by land-owning corporations to put down the workers. They and their henchmen, the courts and law enforcement, constantly trampled on workers’ constitutional-granted rights of freedom of speech and freedom to assemble.

“So he was calling on people to join the fight against the concept of private ownership of property which, historically, has been the lynchpin of American politics and economics. Woody reasoned that he was taking the high moral ground in advocating that all Americans should share equally in America’s wealth and property.

“Keep in mind, too, that one of the reasons Guthrie wrote this song was to protest the idealism of the big hit song of 1939-1940, ‘God Bless America.’ And it is in verse 6 that he makes the point that the America he saw, from sea to shining sea, was filled with poor and unemployed people standing in welfare lines. And he felt that capitalism and its innate greed were responsible for the awful situation in which there was a great gulf between the bankers and the guys digging ditches or even those who just wish they had a job of any kind. So nothing would change—the poor will continue to be with us en mass—until we change capitalism to communism. And, though not stated in the song, it was his belief that the labor movement—and unions, in particular—could accomplish that goal.

 “Was Woody a Communist Party Member?

 “Was Woody Guthrie a member of the official Communist Party or was he just a sympathizer on the outside looking in or was he just a guy who sympathized and identified with poor, hard-hit people and sought help from any source?

“Guy Logsdon expressed his point of view when I interviewed him in 2006: ‘Woody loved the United States of America. He loved Oklahoma. And he loved Okemah. He never wrote anything bad against them. He wrote against greed and anything having to do with the suppression of innocent people. If that makes him a Communist, then Jesus was a Communist. Woody was the poet philosopher of the people, the voice of the ordinary person.

“’However, Woody was not radical enough to be a communist. The Almanac Singers, some of whom later became stars as a group called The Weavers, wrote and performed pro-labor and anti-war songs. You know Franklin Roosevelt had a program to rebuild the economy and get production and prices stabilized. It involved killing every fourth cow and plowing under every fourth acre. So the Almanac Singers recorded a song called, ‘Plow Under Every Fourth Soldier’ in protest to the war. That offended a lot of people.

“’And the public sentiment changed radically when Germany waged war against Russia. So the Almanac Singers dropped that song from their programs very quickly. And they started writing and performing anti-Hitler songs.

“’When Woody went to New York City, he was in awe of what they were doing. And he sometimes attended meetings of the Communist Party but, as Pete Seeger has often said, ‘Woody was not a Communist. The Communist Party was a tightly structured organization. And Woody Guthrie wouldn’t join anything like that, because his nature was too independent and unstructured.’”

“Perhaps so. But as we have quoted previously, Woody made that admission or assertion of membership himself. And he did it in what my dear ol’ English teacher at Fillmore (California) High School—Mrs. Percy—would call a simple declarative sentence: “The best thing I did in 1936 [he got the actual date wrong; it was 1939] was to sign up with the Communist Party . . . ” (see Chapter 4.)

“When all views are heard, it seems clear that Woody Guthrie was at the least a solid sympathizer and supporter of the Communist Party. He was a man of his times, and those times were very hard for the working class. So whether he was a card-carrying member of the Party seems immaterial today. And it seems to me that, in the final analysis, Guthrie really had more faith in the unions than he did in Communism. In 1944 he said, ‘I live union. I eat union. I think union. I see union. I walk it and I talk it. I sing it and I preach it’ (Quoted by Ed Cray, Ramblin’ Man: The Life and Times of Woody Guthrie [2011], page 283).

 “Well, as I said, he filed the song away and pretty much forgot about it for several years. But it would finally end up as his signature song and in its four-verse form one of the most sung songs in the world.”

One more thing. The big news right now is about our immigration and deportation policies (or lack thereof). It is old news, really.

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Woody Guthrie had a big place in his heart for the frequently abused immigrant workers and their families. He spent a great deal of time traveling around to make-shift worker’s camps to listen to their problems and to encourage them with his songs. 

In 1948, an event happened that triggered a great deal of anger in Woody.  The U.S. Immigration & Naturalization Department had chartered a DC-3 airplane to deport back to Mexico both illegal immigrants and those Mexicans whose work permits had expired. They left Oakland, Calif., on Jan. 28th with 28 such deportees on board, plus the pilot, a co-pilot, a guard and a stewardess. The plane crashed in a ball of fire near Los Gatos, California.The news reports mentioned the staff members by name and said 28 deportees were also killed. No mention of their names, leaving the impression they were of no importance.

Guthrie took that as a personal insult and an outrage. He went into a writing frenzy, pouring his heart and soul in a song he titled, “Deportees” (also known as “Plane Wreck at Los Gatos”):

Plane Wreck at Los Gatos

(also known as “Deportees”)
by Woody Guthrie

The crops are all in and the peaches are rott’ning,
The oranges piled in their creosote dumps;
They’re flying ’em back to the Mexican border
To pay all their money to wade back again

Goodbye to my Juan, goodbye, Rosalita,
Adios mis amigos, Jesus y Maria;
You won’t have your names when you ride the big airplane,
All they will call you will be “deportees”

My father’s own father, he waded that river,
They took all the money he made in his life;
My brothers and sisters come working the fruit trees,
And they rode the truck till they took down and died.

Some of us are illegal, and some are not wanted,
Our work contract’s out and we have to move on;
Six hundred miles to that Mexican border,
They chase us like outlaws, like rustlers, like thieves.

We died in your hills, we died in your deserts,
We died in your valleys and died on your plains.
We died ‘neath your trees and we died in your bushes,
Both sides of the river, we died just the same.

The sky plane caught fire over Los Gatos Canyon,
A fireball of lightning, and shook all our hills,
Who are all these friends, all scattered like dry leaves?
The radio says, “They are just deportees”

Is this the best way we can grow our big orchards?
Is this the best way we can grow our good fruit?
To fall like dry leaves to rot on my topsoil
And be called by no name except “deportees”?

Sad to say that the practice of devaluing other people is still alive and well. We often find fault with those who are different from ourselves — morally, culturally, racially, religiously and politically. The list goes on.

Now, friends, if you look at this thing strictly logically and scientifically (not morally or religiously) the woes and injustices to the poor, the weak and sickly and the disenfranchised should be of no concern to those of us who are winners in the lottery of life. After all, scientist Charles Darwin preached the survival of the fittest as being in the best interest of the world. So why should one glob of atoms (a human) give a flip about another glob (another human)? You know the routine: (1) Look out for Number 1; (2) What’s mine is mine and I’m after yours; (3) The real “Golden Rule” is that whoever has the gold rules; (4) Greed is good; and (5) Don’t get involved.

Well, . . . if you buy that premise, then it is kinda irrational to do otherwise, don’t you think? Maybe that’s why you’re never seen anywhere a hospital founded and funded by the American Association of Atheists. That’s why there are no major philanthropic foundations operated by the American Humanist Association. That’s what the Society for Humanistic Judaism sits around gazing at their navels. 

Thankfully, however, there are people of goodwill and generous acts of kindness in every group and country. Concern for others, whether a friend or a neighbor or an enemy, is still alive and well.

For example, loving concern is a fundamental theme in the sacred Jewish texts. Here is a sampling from Exodus 23:1-9: “(1) Don’t spread rumors. Don’t plot with evil people to act as a lying witness. (2) Don’t take sides with important people to do wrong. When you act as a witness, don’t stretch the truth to favor important people. (3) But don’t privilege unimportant people in their lawsuits either. (4) When you happen to come upon your enemy’s ox or donkey that has wandered off, you should bring it back to them. (5) When you see a donkey that belongs to someone who hates you and it’s lying down under its load and you are included not to help set it free, you must help set it free. (6) Don’t undermine the justice that your poor deserve in their lawsuits. (7) Stay away from making a false charge. Don’t put an innocent person who is in the right to death, because I will not consider innocent those who do such evil. (8) Don’t take a bribe, because a bribe blinds the clear-sighted and subverts the cause of those who are in the right. (9) Don’t oppress an immigrant. You know what it’s like to be an immigrant, because you were immigrants in the land of Egypt.” — from the COMMON ENGLISH BIBLE (used with permission)

Christians, too, recognize their duty and honor to serve others who have hit hard times. John the Baptist, who was in prison at the time, sent word to this new teacher named Jesus and asked him for some proof that the was the longed-for Messiah. Jesus did not cite as evidence that he had formed a large anti-Roman army, nor that he had a large political campaign war chest, nor that the Who’s Who of Israel were his backers. Amazingly, Jesus told the messengers, “Go, report to John what you hear and see. Those who were blind are able to see. Those who are crippled are walking. People with skin diseases are cleansed. Those who were deaf now hear. Those who were dead are raised up. The poor have good news proclaimed to them.” (Matthew 11:4-5, CEB)

A lawyer with the Pharisee sect of Judaism tried to trap Jesus one time by asking him what the greatest commandment was in the Law of Moses. Jesus said, ” (37) You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your being, and with all your mind. (38) This is the first and greatest commandment. (39) And the second is like it: You must love your neighbor as you love yourself. All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.” (Matthew 22:37-39, CEB)

It is clear in both Judaism and in Christianity that love for others–not just a good feeling but positive, practical help–is fundamental to religious faith.

The apostle James chided his peers by saying, “(2) Imagine two people coming into your meeting. One has a gold ring and fine clothes, while the other is poor, dressed in filthy rags. (3) Then suppose that you were to take special notice of the one wearing fine clothes, saying, ‘Here’s an excellent place. Sit here.’ But to the poor person you say, ‘Stand over there’; or, ‘Here, sit at my feet.’ (4) Wouldn’t you have shown favoritism among yourselves and become evil-minded judges?

“(5) My dear brothers and sisters, listen! Hasn’t God chosen those who are poor by worldly standards to be rich in terms of faith? Hasn’t God chosen the poor as heirs of the kingdom he has promised to those who love him? (6) But you have dishonored the poor. Don’t the wealthy make life difficult for you? Aren’t they the ones who drag you into court? (7) Aren’t they the ones who insult the good name spoken over you at your baptism?

“(8) You do well when you really fulfill the royal law found in scripture, Love your neighbor as yourself.” (James 2:2-8, CEB)

That, my friends, is why you see hundreds of hospitals and universities and homes for the needy founded by and funded by the faith community. Highly respected Jewish hospitals and Christian hospitals are found across America, as are homes for the homeless and abused. Back in my old stomping ground, Oklahoma City, we had the Baptist Hospital, Deaconess Hospital (Methodist), and Mercy Hospital (Catholic), each of them a fine facility caring for anyone who walked through the door. Other religious organizations work every day to help migrants with legal work or with learning English, or helping pregnant women save their babies from abortions, or rescuing young men and women from sex traffickers and drug dealers. And the list of good works goes on and on.

“This Land is Your Land” is a nice song title and sorta give us a warm, fuzzy feeling. In fact, I have personally adapted it to create songs for the people of Rwanda (“Rwandans, This Land Is Our Land”), for the people of Honduras (“Hondurans, This Land Is Your Land”), and for the people of Ireland (“Ireland Is Your Land).  View videos of those songs and 50 others on my “Stan Paregien’s Studio” on YouTube at:https://www.youtube.com/user/CowboyStan/videos

My point is this: it takes that “good feeling” and $5.00 to get you a cup of java at Starbucks. Fact is, it is up to you and to me to look for opportunities to honor God by doing good wherever we go and by teaching others to do the same.  

So if you are looking for hope and purpose in your life, please take a serious look around you. Observe how your neighbors are living. Is it the Believers who are more happy and fulfilled . . . and busy helping others . . . or is it the Non-Believers? There are exceptions, of course, for no one is perfect in practicing their philosophy of life. But my 75+ years of experience has shown me that people of faith actually believe that history is headed somewhere and they are not just sitting hopelessly on a spinning earth.

Just sayin’.

[NOTE: My eBook, WOODY GUTHRIE: HIS LIFE, MUSIC AND MYTH, is available in seven popular formats at:  https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/StanParegien . You’ll find over a dozen more of my eBooks there as well. And before long there will be another one on the list, right now tentatively titled MANATEE COUNTY, FLORIDA: FACTS, FOLKS AND PHOTOS. Stay tuned.]

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Issue 347 – Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman

Issue 347     –     January 30, 2017

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Ree Drummond: “The Pioneer Woman”

 by Stan Paregien

Copyrighted Jan. 30, 2017

The lady now known as “The Pioneer Woman” was born Ann Marie Smith and nicknamed “Ree.” She grew up as a privileged kid, living with her parents in an upscale house in Bartlesville, Okla., near the 7th tee of an exclusive country club. In 1987 she graduated from Bartlesville High School. In 1991 she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in gerontology from the University of Southern California.

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So Ree Smith’s life was progressing right along a desirable path for a upper class lifestyle. Then Cupid forced her into a left turn up a country dirt road. That’s when she married a good ol’ boy, a hands-on rancher in nearby Pawhuska, Oklahoma by the name of Ladd Drummond. The result was that she became as comfortable in cowboy boots as she had been in high heels. She learned how to help deliver calves, how shovel manure out of stalls, how to rope a horse and how to cook meals cowboy style.

Ah, yes, that cooking thing.

Ree Smith Drummond had a natural talent for cooking and she began to share her recipes and experiences on her blog titled, “The Pioneer Woman: From Heels to Tractor Wheels.” Remember that degree of hers in gerontology? Initially she was a journalism major and she apparently took really good notes. Hundreds and then thousands of people—mostly ladies—sat up and paid attention. And it snowballed. By 2009, she was logging 13 million hits per month. Two years later her blog was receiving 23 million hits per month, with about 4 million being unique individuals. Amazing.

Also in 2009, Drummond saw the publication of her very first cookbook. It was titled, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl.

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Of all things, in 2011 Ree switched to writing a children’s book featuring their own dog, Charlie. I don’t know, but the idea for writing about the family’s flop-earred companion may have come from the highly successful “Hank the Cowdog” series of books in which author John Erickson describes ranch life through the eyes of Hank. In any event, Charlie the Ranch Dog was a hit. And she has published several more since then.

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Also in 2011, her publisheR sorted through her blogs going back to 2007 and compiled them into a book titled, The Pioneer Woman: From Black Heels to Tractor Wheels. It talked about food, of course, but it was mainly a lively revelation of how a city gal fell in love with a cowboy. And it jumped to Number 2 on the NY Times hardcover non-fiction list.

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Now, keep in mind that this jeans-clad cowboy was part of a well-to-do Drummond clan. He wasn’t exactly sleeping out in the bunkhouse with the hired hands when he met the redhead from Bartlesville. So when Rees and Ladd Drummond  honeymooned, they did it in style. They went to Australia.

Ladd Drummond’s ancestor, Frederick Drummond, immigrated from Scotland to the United States in 1884 at the age of 20. He promptly invested in a Texas cattle operation and, knowing nothing about the business, even more promptly lost his money. About 1886 young Fred, now a bit wiser, went to work as a trader (licensed by the U.S. Government). He got a job with the Osage Mercantile Company way out in the village of Pawhuska in the Indian Territory (now Oklahoma), right on the Osage tribe’s reservation. He sold or traded hundreds of Pendleton-brand blanets and other merchandise to the Osage.

Then love came calling and he married Ms. Adeline Gentner in 1890. They were frugal and saved enough money for Fred to puchase a partnership in the OMC. By 1904, he had stockpiled enough cash to starting his own outfil, The Hominy Trading Company, in the village of Hominy. In time he diversified into real estate, ranching and banking investments. And in 1905, Frederick Drummond built his dream home in Hominy, a Victorian style mansion that still stands today. It is now a museum operated by the Oklahoma Historical Society. It is located at 305 North Price Avenue in Hominy.

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Mrs. and Mrs. Fred Drummond had four children: R. C. (Cecil), F. G. (Gentner), Blanche, and A. A. (Jack). When the patriarch of the family died in 1913, the three Drummond sons went together and founded the Drummond Cattle Company.

Ladd Drummond attended Arizona State University, but he has made his living the hard way. Working the cattle and the land day after day, come rain, shine or snow. Here’s a photo of Ladd Drummond from back in 2011 when he competed in the Amarillo (TX) Range Rodeo with a team of cowboys from the Drummond Land & Cattle Company. They competed in several events, including Wild Cow Milking and Team Branding. Their team was the winner for the sixth consecutive year. And Ladd was chosen as “The Tough Hand” of the rodeo. Heck, no surprise there.

2017-01-27-18m-pawhuska-ok-ladd-drummond-in-2011

Well, back to the Pioneer Woman.

Along came the year of 2012. In March of that year Ree published her second cookbook, The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from My Frontier. While her first book was well-received, this one rang the bell so loudly no one could ignore it. That book hit Number 1 on the Non-Fiction list and stayed there, not just for a week or two but for months. Ca-ching, ca-ching, ca-ching.

2017-01-27-18b1-pawhuska-ok-frontier-book-cover

In 2016, Ladd and Ree Drummond proudly opened the doors to The Pioneer Woman Mercantile (and restaurant, and bakery) on the main drag in Pawhuska. They bought the delapidated two-story building in 2011 and worked on remodeling it on a pay-as-you-go basis. Finally, after several years of starts and pauses they got ‘er done. And they did a magnificent job of turning an eye sore into a beautiful, modern place of business. Lots of business, believe me.

My wife Peggy and I went there with James and Glenda Cotton on Friday, January 27, 2017. We all spent quite a bit of time in the Mercantile, then we each had a cup of coffee and a cinnamon roll at the bakery on the second floor of the building. Peggy and I got to meet Ladd Drummond and I took a photo of her with him. A few minutes later I was able to take several photos of Ree Drummond after she came out from an office to sign her book and was swamped by dozens of enthusiastic fans. 

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It has become the major tourist draw in that small town. People—yes, mostly ladies—flock there in droves. And on the mercantile floor they eagerly go elbow-to-elbow to select fairly high-end dishes, coffee cups, ball caps, books, sewing material and related items, aprons, rolling pins, and novelty items like Bison Lip Balm. Then they stand in a long line to pay out. And, what with all that hard work, they get in another line to eat at either the full-service restaurant or the bakery upstairs.

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So, there you have it. Ree Drummond zig-zagged to a career she never imagined. She is an award-winning blogger, a nationally recognized force in the book publishing industry, a host of her own wildly popular TV cooking show on the FoodNetwork, the owner of her own retail store and much more. Add to that the role of mother to four teenagers and wife of a hard-working rancher.

Ree, as they like to say in Oklahoma, “Ya done good. Real good.”

NOTE: Her web site is at: http://www.thepioneerwoman.com, and that’s where you’ll find her blogs. 

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Issue 332 – Stan Paregien’s 15 eBooks Online

The Paregien Journal  –  Issue 332  –  May 4, 2016  –  Stan Paregien Sr., Editor

Periodically I need to stop and introduce my newer internet friends to some of the other things I have written over the years. So what follows here are thumbnail descriptions of the fifteen (15) eBooks of mine which are currently for sale online in a variety of popular formats.

I hope to have another eBook finished by the end of the summer, this one a non-fiction book with loads of photos and information about places and people in our recently adopted state, Florida. When that one is complete, I plan to start the most challenging non-fiction book of my entire career. Can’t tell you much about it, except that it will probably take a year or two for me to complete it. And I hope it will be my best and most-widely received.

After those two very serious projects end, I’ll ease off the keyboard and chip away at my “bucket list” of over 15 more writing projects. Do you know the story of Mrs. Winchester of the famed, odd-ball “Winchester House” in San Jose, California? Well, her hubby invented the Winchester brand rifle. He made a king-sized fortune on the manufacture of his guns and ammunition. After his death, Mrs. Winchester began listening way too much to a gypsy fortuneteller who convinced her that she would not die as long as there were carpenters at work on her house. So this dear lady with deep pockets kept crews of carpenters busy 24-hours of every day for years. So her house had doors and stairways that led nowhere and rooms that had been remodeled dozens of times. But, bless this mislead lady, her heart stopped way before the hammers and saws would have.

Unlike Mrs. Winchester, I really am not working away at my eBooks under some similar delusion that as long as I’m working on a manuscript I will not die. I’m a realist in the awareness that I may not even finish this page, let alone another manuscript, before the Good Lord calls me  to that Writers Retirement Home in the Sky. God knows I’m ready when He is, but I just don’t want to get on the Gospel Train today if it can be helped. So I keep writing.

In the meantime, please read through this information about what I have already done.

 

2016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 01 of 13

2016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 02 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 03 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 04 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 05 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 06 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 07 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 08 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 09 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 10 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 11 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 12 of 132016--05--03   Stan Paregien's Online eBooks  --- list of 15 -- page 13 of 13

There you have it, friends. My blog for today. I really do appreciate you stopping by once in a while to catch up on what is going on in my corner of the world. I am absolutely amazed at the fact we get visits from people in so many countries around the world. Even a few that I’m gonna have to look on a map and find out where they’re located.

From January 1 to May4, 2016, we had visitors from an amazing 64 countries in the world. Here is the list in order of frequency, with the visitors from the United States being 20 times as many as the next country:

(1) United States, (2) France, (3) German, (4) United Kingdom, (5) Columbia, (6) Brazil, (7) Spain, (8) Netherlands, (9) India, (10) South Africa, (11) Hungary, (12) (13) Australia, (14) Jamaica, (15) Norway, (16) Italy, (17) Ghana, (18) Switzerland, (19) Finland, and (20) Sweden.

Also:  Ireland, Poland, European Union, Thailand, Philippines, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Chech Republic, Venezuala, New Zealand, Austria, Portugal, Trinidad & Tobago, Belgium, Israel, Chile, Mexico, Twaiwon, Serbia, Argentina, Puerto Rico, Slovenia, Jordan, Ukraine, Russia, Costa Rica, United Arab Emirates, Iceland, Lebanon, Peru, Mayotte, Turkey, Kuwait, Greece, Sri Lanka, Georgia (Russia), Morocco, British Virgin Islands, Ecuador, Romania, and Vatican City.

What? Vatican City. Yep, Vatican City. Hmmm. Wonder if one of them was the Pope?

That wide and semi-permanent exposure of my thoughts to others in other cultures is another reason I keep on writing. 

See ya next time.  

 — Stan                Stan Paregien, Storyteller -- 01--D   300 dpi

P.S. The above logo was designed for me by my late sister, Roberta Paregien Fournier, who died in 2015. I miss my littl’ sister a whole bunch almost every day.

Bar  -- 03   Blue with tan and maroon border - created by Stan Paregien - 2015-11-10

 

 

 

Issue 330 – Stacy’s 45th Birthday

The Paregien Journal  —  Issue 330  —  April 20, 2016  — Stan Paregien, Sr.

Well, well, well. It finally happened. Our youngest child has turned, . . . gulp, . . . 45 years of age. Where, oh where, did all the years go? Peggy and I sometimes look back to when we were dating, 1961-1962, and recall how we thought both sets of our parents were pretty ancient people. They were not much older than 45. Now our own daughter is 45 . . . and Peggy and I are . . . , well, just a wee bit older than that ourselves.

It is time to wish our dear daughter, Stacy Evelyn Paregien Magness, a very happy birthday. We love you very much, sweetie. 

Poem 439   A Poem for All Adopted Children   -  by Stan Paregien Sr - Copyrighted April 6, 2016

And now, . . . a few “blasts from the past.”

1973-090--A   Piru, CA  --  Stan and Peggy Paregien with son Gene and daughter Stacy at Harold Paregien's house

Peggy & Stan Paregien with children Stacy and Gene (ak Stan Jr.) at the Harold & Evelyn Paregien home on the Edwards Ranch, just 1 mile west of Piru, Calif., in 1983.

1974--014--StanParegien--poem--PortraitOfMyDaughter

1974--054  Stacy Paregien- -LakeTexhoma - near Durant, OK

1975-006  --  CouncilBluffs, IA  --  Stan Paregien Family - Peggy, Gene, Stacy

The Stan Paregien family in 1975 in Council Bluffs, Iowa

1977-002--A  Stroud, OK -- Stan Paregien Family -- Peggy, Gene and Stacy

1977-042  LakeCharles, LA - Stacy Paregien and Gene playing in a rain storm - by Stan Paregien

1977-054  -  Stroud, OK  -  Stacy Paregien on Shag

Stacy and her horse “Shag” in Stroud, Oklahoma

1978--059--A   Ventura,  CA --  School photo of  Stacy Paregien

1979--026  Stroud, OK -- Stacy Paregien's  8th Birthday in April

1979--031--A  -  -StroudOK---Gene and Stacy Paregien drag a Christmas tree up from our neighbor's pasture

Oh, hey, did I mention that the aggressively spreading Red Cedar tree is not only a great nuisance to farmers and ranchers . . . but it is a major cause of allergy problems in Oklahoma. But there we were with that doggone big tree in the middle of our living room for at least two weeks prior to Christmas. It also dried out very fast, despite a watering hole under the base, so it became a ball of fire just waiting to happen. Guess we were just dumb, ignorant . . . and happy way back then.

1980--011  ---  Stroud, OK  --  Stacy Paregien

Ain’t she just plum cute?

1980--016  --  Stroud, OK  --  Stacy Paregien's horse

1980--021   Stacy Paregien's birthday --  with Gene

1980--030--H  Stroud, OK  --  Stacy Paregien on a raft

1980--054--OK--Lake Tenkiller--Stacy Paregien diving into a pool

1981--033--A  Stroud, OK  Stan Paregien, Stacy and Gene - cowboys on the farm

1981--047--B  --  Stroud, OK  --  Peggy Paregien -Stacy - Gene - Stan

1982--029  -- Stroud, OK  --  Stacy Paregien's birthday party

That is their cousin, Connie King (now Williams), at the far right. Daughter of Bill and Paula King. 

1982--044  --  Stroud, OK  -- Stacy Paregien -- horse Dolly

 

1983--055  --  Stroud, OK  --  Stan Paregien baptizing daughter Stacy on Dec 25th at the Church of Christ

 

1983--063 -- Stroud, OK -  Stacy Peggy on her 12th birthday - April 20

1983--080 -- Stroud, OK  -  Stacy Paregien with Kathy Lynnh Beckmann on Stacy's horse

 

1984--042--StroudOK--StacyParegien--on-Paula

1984--059--OK--Stroud--Stacy Paregien -- fall

1985--047--LaverneOK--StacyParegien--rattlesnake

1985--088--OK--Stroud--Stacy Paregien -- 14th birthday -- April 20

1985--098--OK--Stroud--Peggy and Stan Paregien Sr with Stan Jr and Stacy--April

1985--099--OK--Stroud--Stacy Paregien

1986--007--LaverneOK--StacyParegien-Bucky--xmas--1

Oops. That label, above, should have read “1986.”

1986--046--LaverneOK---JohnErickson-BradLoffswold-StacyParegien

Since then, good ol’ John has added some 60 books to his “Hank the Cowdog” series and countless CDs of “Hank the Cowdog’s Favorite Songs” (most of which feature John’s singing voice and musical expertise, plus his songwriting skills). Quite a home-grown success. He lives on his ranch outside of Perryton, Texas.

1987--001--D--Xmas--Stan-Stacy-Peg---LaverneOK--1

1987--015--StacyParegien--GaryCreed--LavernOK

1987--017-- Stacy Paregien -- Sr Photo -- Snyder, TX

1987--042--SD--MtRushmore--BelindaBond-StacyParegien-Stan-----byPP

1987--055-- Laverne, OK  Stacy Paregien with her mom, Peggy

1987--062-- Laverne, OK   -  Stan and Peggy Paregien with Stacy

1987--063-- Laverne, OK   -  Stacy Paregien in Sept

1988--012-- Snyder, TX  --  Stacy Paregien and date on  Halloween

Stacy Paregien with DeWayne Clinkenbeard in about 1988 in Snyder, TX

1988--018--StacyParegien--SnyderTX

1988--020--F  --  San Diego, CA  --  WWA Convention  --actor Iron Eyes Cody with Stacy Paregien

Stacy Paregien with movie actor Iron Eyes Cody at the Western Writers of America conference in the summer of 1988 in San Diego, Calif.

1988--040--SnyderTX--StacyParegien-DuaneClinkenbeard--Halloween

1989-006--D--SnyderTX--StacyParegien---May

1989-006--E--SnyderTX--StacyParegien---StanSr-Peg--StanJr

Here is what a group of female, Oklahoma domestic engineers can accomplish:

1989-008--xmas-EdmondOK

1989-0181989-031  --  Snyder, TX  --  Stacy Paregien -- sch photo - senior year

1989-053B--StacyParegien-graduation--SnyderTX

1989-056--StacyParegien-graduation--SnyderTX

1989-142--TX--Snyder-- Stacy Paregien - Dwain Clinkenbeard - prom

1990--0003--Wedding--John Magness - Stacy Paregien - Snyder, Texas

1990--0021--SnyderTX--PeggyParegien--Stacy--19thBirthday--April20

1991--006--LongviewTX--StacyMagness-John-Dylan--Nov7

1994--011-John-Stacy-Dylan--xmas--1

1995--005--TX--Kilgore--Stacy-Dylan-Christal-JohnMagness

Stacy & John Magness with their growing family: Dylan and little sister Christal. Kilgore, Texas – 1995

1998--057 -- Beckville, TX - Stacy Paregien Magness

1999-040-- John Magness - Stacy - Dylan - Christal

1999-081-- Edmond, OK -- xmas -- Paregien - Magness families

1999-138

2014--09--11   02  Bastrop, TX  --  Christal and Stacy Magness -- by Peggy Paregien

2014--09--11   04  Bastrop, TX  --  Christal Magness - Stacy Magness - Peggy Paregien

2015--12--10   2696    Snook, Texas  --  Family of John and Stacy P Magness

2015--12--10   2698    Snook, Texas  --  John and Stacy Magness with Dylan and Christal _edited-1

2040  --  2015--09--24  Snook, TX - Stacy Paregien Magness and hubby John - 25th Anniv

We are so proud of you, Stacy. You will always have a special place in our hearts.

— Love, Mom and Dad

End.

__________

NEXT TIME:  “Music: Merle Haggard & More.” That issue on April 25th will contain my personal essay on the life and career of country music star Merle Haggard (who died just recently). Lots of photos and probably lots of tidbits of information about him that you never knew. Also, some information about the resurgence of “house concerts” across the country. And a handful of songs with guitar chords for your use or to pass along to others. It is a good ‘un.

 

 

Issue 317 – Family & Friends in 2015

The Paregien Journal   –   Issue 317    –    Dec. 18, 2015

Stan Paregien, Editor

FAMILY AND FRIENDS IN 2015

In the course of a year, a person who travels even a little bit will meet a lot of interesting folks. Some are witting and charming, others are self-centered and obnoxious, while most are somewhere in between.

The fact is, though, that the really important people in our lives are a fairly small number of family members and friends. And it is to those precious few that I dedicate this page.

NOTE: Please know that those who fit into one or both of those categories of “family” and “friends”  are not necessarily in the photos below. I did not have recent photos of many of you, nor did I have space enough to include all. Kind of a nice problem to have, really. 

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Becky & Stan Paregien Jr in Waterloo, Illinois – March, 2015

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0465   2015-03--28   -- Little Gasparilla Island  - Jean Pendergrass - Shirley Cook  -- by Peggy Paregien

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0045   2015--02--12   - Bradenton,  FL - Don Betts' 83rd birthday - by Jim Parker

This is a group of Christian men who meet in Bradenton each Thursday morning for a “show and tell” brunch. The man at left is a visitor, then (clockwise) are Jim Waid, Clay Landes, Mike Cook (sunglasses), Stan Paregien, Don Betts, Mike Sirus and Rom “Hollywood” Colella. 

 

0041   2015--01--31 - Abe Guillermo and Jean Pendergrass, friends since 1953 - he died Feb 10, 2015

Abe was a native of Hawaii. As a 9-year-old boy, he watched from his family’s farm as the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. Abe graduated to heaven this year.

Guillermo, Abraham M  -- Memorial Service -- 2015--03--17  Page 1 of 5Guillermo, Abraham M  -- Memorial Service -- 2015--03--17  Page 2 of 5

2015--04--05--A10    Bradenton, FL - Easter Sunrise on the Riverwalk -- Bonnie Hamill and P Paregien by S Paregien2015--04--05--B1 -- Washington, DC -- Major Stan Paregien Jr - USAFR2015--04--22   02   Bradenton, FL -- Al Good turned 90 -- by Virgina Corbin

Geri Mack watches as husband Al Mack cuts the cake on his 90th birthday. Bradenton, FL – 2015 –  Photo by Stan Paregien

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2015--04--18   B05  Sheridan, AR --  Dominic, Jodi, Peg, Bailee -  by Stan Paregien2015--04--21   D-04  Tulsa, Ok - Peg Paregien, Maynard and Sue Hammans - by S Paregien2015--04--22  A01B  Cleveland, OK -- Verdonn and Sharron Blevins2015--04--23  A05  Edmond, OK - Paregiens and Arringtons and Sengs

2015--04--24  A28  Edmond, OK -   -- Jean Ndayisaba with relatives and P and S Paregien

2015--04--27   2   Stratford, OK  -- David and Patsy Bryan - by Peggy Paregien2015--04--27   3   Stratford, OK  -- David and Patsy Bryan - by Peggy Paregien2015--04--28   A01B  Snook, TX  -- Stacy P Magness - by Stan Paregien2015--04--28   A02  Snook, TX  -- Christal - Peg - Dylan - Stan - by Stacy Magness

2015--05--08   B03   Bradenton, FL -- Clay Landes and others at a jam -- by Peggy Paregien2015--05--08   B06   Bradenton, FL -- Rod Myers at a jam -- by Peggy Paregien

2015--05--17    A01   Bradenton, FL  --  Ronnie and Carole Colella2015--05--18  B1   Joplin, MO -- Victor and Evelyn Knowles

Victor and Evelyn Knowles – Joplin, MO – 2015

V2015--05--07   03   Rwanda, Africa  -- Bryan and Holly Hixson - 24 Anniversary2015--05--25   B05 -- Bradenton, FL  --  Virginia Corbin, P Paregien and dogs  -- by S Paregien

Our dear neighbor, Virginia Corbin with her dog Buddy, and Peggy Paregien with her dog Allie. 2015 – Bradenton, FL – by Stan Paregien

2015--05--08   A01-2   Anna Maria Island, FL -- Martha and Darrell Russell -- by Peggy Paregien

2015--05--23   A07   Stroud, OK - 30th Reunion of the Class of 1985  - Stan JR - Joe Bob Cornett

2015--06--05   A02-A  -- Roberta Fournier's obituary, 1943 to 20152015--06--05   A02-B  -- Roberta Fournier's obituary, 1943 to 2015

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2015--07--04   A02   Bradenton, FL  -- PG MHP luncheon -- Jean and Bob L'Hullier  -- by Stan Paregien

1876  --  2015--06   Bradenton, FL -- DJ and Ray Multer  -- by Peggy Paregien

1822 -- 2015--08--04  A04  Bradenton, FL -  neighbor Ray Multer died at age 75

1933  2015-08-13 --  Bradenton, FL -- Rom Colella, Don Betts -- by S Paregien

1966  --  St Petersburg, FL - Ft Desoto Park -- Sept 2, 2015 -- Lynne and Ed Hutchinson with Peggy Paregien  - by Stan Paregien1992  --  2015--09--05  Sarasota, FL - Rod Myers presiding at Clay and Pat Landes' 50th Anniversary --  by Stan Paregien2002  --  2015--09--05  Sarasota, FL - Clay and Pat Landes' 50th Anniversary --  by Stan Paregien2011  --  2015--09--05  Sarasota, FL - Clay and Pat Landes' 50th Anniversary --  by Stan Paregien2012  --  2015--09--05  Sarasota, FL - Clay Landes with Peggy Paregien --  by Stan Paregien2031  --  2015--09--06   Waterloo, IL  - Stan Paregien and new toy, a Delorean

Our Number One Son with a new toy: a DeLorean

2035  --  2015--09--23   Bradenton, FL - Smiths - Karin - Jean Pendergrass2037  --  2015--09--22  Jennifer B Morton, Carol B Tiger and Jami B McDonald2037  --  2015--09--22D  Carol Bond Tiger and her children2046  --  2015 - Marilyn and Kent Abel on a cruise2047  --  2015 - Oregon -- Paula King and sons Kevin, Karsen, Woody and Jeff

2015--10--12   2086  Sedona, AZ -- Judy and Don Betts  - by Stan Paregient2015--10--12   2135--C  Sedona, AZ  -  Courthouse Butte   -  copyrighted by Stan Paregien2015--10--13   2167--N   Sedona, AZ  -   Stan Paregien and Don Betts -  copyrighted by Peg Paregien2015--10--14   2209   Sedona, AZ  -   Slide Rock Park  -  copyrighted by Stan Paregien2015--10--16   2442--F    Cottonwood, AZ  - Blazin' M Ranch - Stan Paregien, Don Betts - by Peg Paregien

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2015--12--12   2726    Bradenton, FL --  Christmas Dinner

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End.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Issue 272 – My Two Western Novels

Issue 272    —    The Paregien Journal    —    March 26, 2014

My Two Western Novels

by Stan Paregien Sr.

Image

I spent many long hours, days and years researching, writing and re-writing these manuscripts. Now, thanks to the wonderful world of eBook publishing they are seeing the light of day. Here are the details:

The Austin Chronicles, Book 1: Boggy Depot Shootout

(Approximately 187 pages and 71,340 words. Adult situations & language)

This is the first in a series of novels about the Austin family. Long-time residents of Tennessee, the Austins had to cope with the unique challenges of living in the wild West just after the end of America’s Civil War in 1865.

 The main character in this novel is young Daniel Austin. Both he and his father Henry had served in the Army of the Confederacy for just over a year when the war ended. As war-weary veterans, they returned home to Tennessee only to find their way of life destroyed by a renegade band of ex-Union soldiers. The clan head, Henry Austin, decided to move on to western Arkansas and start over. So Daniel, his father and mother (Veda) and younger siblings (Amanda and David) headed west with little money but a lot of Christian faith and solid determination.

 Daniel Austin’s uncle, Benjamin Franklin Austin, had acquired a large tract of pine tree-covered land near Gravely Hills, Arkansas. Crusty ol’ Frank offered to give his brother, Henry, part of that land in exchange for helping Frank work his cattle and farm land on occasion. And so their new life began.

 Soon, however, their joy was tested by the severe realities of frontier life. Then late one night their lives changed forever as intruders forced their way inside and committed unspeakably brutal acts. And when they left, the lawless men took young siblings Amanda and David with them.

 Thus began a desperate search to find and rescue Amanda and David, as well as to see that the guilty were punished. Daniel Austin, his uncle Frank Austin and their neighbor Shorty Russell tracked the men deep into the Indian Territory. And it all came to a dramatic and violent climax at the small village of Boggy Depot.

The Austin Chronicles, Book 2: The Abilene Trail

(Approximately 185 pages and 73,880 words; adult situations and language.)

This the second in a series of novels about the Austin family and how they coped with the unique challenges of living in the West just after the end of America’s Civil War in 1865. The main characters in this book are young Daniel Austin, his younger brother David and his grouchy but tough-as-steel uncle named Frank Austin. This book marks the start of their adventure traveling from Arkansas west to Oregon.

 While crossing the Indian Territory in present-day Oklahoma, the trio is robbed by a Frenchman and his men. The leader, “Father” Marius Thibodaux, quotes the Bible while robbing them. The thieves take their money, horses and clothes and leave them to die on the merciless prairie under a scorching sky. They barely survive the ordeal. And, by necessity, they hire on as drovers on a cattle drive to Abilene. The drive is plagued by bad weather, rustlers, nesters, quicksand, a raging river and the deaths of four good cowmen.

 They finally arrive at the new cattle shipping yards beside a railroad in Abilene, Texas. The three, like the other trail hands, have pockets full of money. So they go to town and by morning, Daniel has lost his virginity and ol’ Frank has lost all of the Austin family money.

 Then young David spots the three horses they had stolen from them by the Frenchman, “Father” Marius Thibodaux. And in an attempt to recover their stolen horses and money, they wind up getting into a fight at a cafe with the men who have the horses. And the Austins are thrown in jail and beaten.

 They manage to escape from jail and ride miles to the east and south, hoping to elude the dishonest sheriff and his posse. Late that night they spot a fancy house and barns, so they sneak up to check it out before asking for a place to spend the night. But they are discovered, only to find out that the Frenchman and his gang have joined up with the owner of this ranch. And the situation results in a knife fight to the death between Daniel and the much larger “Father” Marius Thibodaux.

_________________________

Each of these exciting Western novels is now available at  http:www.smashwords.com

Each eBook is just $3.99. Simply search for the title or Stan Paregien’s name and select from any of these download formats:

epub   –   This is the format Smashwords distributes to the Apple iBookstore, Sony, Kobo, B&N, Aldiko, and others. EPUB is an open industry format. Kindle (.mobi)   –   Mobipocket is an eBook format supported on the Kindle, as well as Windows PCs and many handheld devices.

PDF    –    Portable Document Format, or PDF, is a file format readable by most devices, including handheld e-readers, PDAs, and computers.

Palm Doc (PDB)   –   PalmDoc is a format primarily used on Palm Pilot devices, but readers are available for PalmOS, Symbian OS, Windows Mobile Pocket PC/Smartphone, desktop Windows, and Macintosh.
Sony Reader (LRF)    –    LRF is the format used on older Sony Reader eBook devices. The newer Sony Readers use EPUB. RTF   –   Rich Text Format, or RTF, is a cross-platform document format supported by many word processors and devices.

Plain Text   –   Plain text is the most widely supported file format, working on nearly all readers and devices.

Soon each of the novels will also be available through Amazon.com, Apple iBookstore, Barnes and Noble.com, plus many other online outlets.

If you’re a fan of Western novels, I sure hope you’ll consider forwarding this flyer to your friends who share that same interest.

 Marketing is always the hardest part of any self-published book. Each of us only has so many friends and acquaintances . . . and no money to spend on a big advertising campaign.

 So, as many other writers have done, I am respectfully asking you to do these things: (1) Go online and read for FREE about the first twenty pages of each of these novels. (2) If you like what you read, please purchase and read each book. And (3) tell others about them.

 My aim for the Austin Chronicles collection is to follow the adventures of Daniel, David and Uncle Frank Austin as they travel all the way to Oregon. They will return to Arkansas through California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas with exciting challenges each step of the way. However, the continuation of the series will depend upon the response to the first two books. So, yes, your own response is very important. That, neighbors, is the pure-dee ol’ truth (as Uncle Frank often says).

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 Thanks for your interest in my Western novels. 

  –Stan        March 27, 2014

Issue 267 — What We Did in 2012

Issue 267    —    The Paregien Journal    —  Stan Paregien, Sr., Editor

What We Did in 2012

by Stan Paregien Sr.

The full body of Issue 220 will be found at: http://www.issuu.com/cowboystan/docs

Cover
Cover

There you will be able to read Issue 220 and previous ones right there online for free.

In addition, if you register for free you will be able to download any and all postings from me for free. Otherwise, you do not have to register at all.

Thanks,
Stan Paregien Sr

Issue 264 – Made in the USA

Issue 264    —    The Paregien Journal    —    November 3, 2012

Made in the USA

by Stan Paregien Sr.

Tell me something, have you ever seen ol’ money-bags Donald Trump at a complete loss of words? I did, once.

It happened just a few days ago when Mr. Trump (the bird-nest-on-the-head guy) appeared on the David Letterman late night TV show. He was berating President Obama for being too submissive to the government of China. China, you know, the country to whom we and our grandchildren owe stacks of money, give or take a trillion or so in loans. And ol’ Donald waxed eloquent about the Chinese government has tilted the economic playing field in their favor and are still underpricing merchandise and, thereby, taking jobs from American workers.

That was a grand and glorious speech, full of truth and presented with vigor.

The topic of discussion, though, quickly turned to Mr. Trump’s new line of men’s clothing. He got all excited about his new creations and how innovative and beautiful they are and how well made they are.

Well, TV host Letterman picked up another rich-looking, colorful tie and showed it to the camera and the TV audience. Very nice. But he also asked this question as he searched for the label. “Donald, where are your new line of clothes made?”

Trump flippantly tossed back, “Oh, I don’t know. Out there somewhere.”

About that time Letterman found the label and said, “Donald, . . . the label says this tie was made in China!” and stared at Trump in disbelief.

Trump, like the fox caught in the chicken house, did not say a word. He rolled his eyes, shrugged his shoulders and changed the subject.

Sadly, the rest of us really aren’t a whole lot different from Donald Trump, are we? I mean, other than fact he has fame and fortune and every luxury known to man. Other than those items, we also talk a good game about doing business in America so we can grow jobs in America and we and our friends can have secure jobs for the future. Aw, yes, those are grand and glorious principles.

The truth is, when we “common” Americans actually go shopping we want a decent product at the cheapest price and hang the place it made.

What brought all this home to me, after Trump’s flop in front of Letterman, was when I began looking for a replacement for the nifty, colorful University of Oklahoma calendar book which I keep right on my desk. I needed one for 2013, but I couldn’t remember where I bought this one and haven’t seen any in the stores I usually frequent. So, being the logical type (sometimes), I decided the . . . uh, . . . logical thing was to look for the manufacturer’s name on the book so I could write or call them about the 2013 version.

OU Calendar page 1
My 2012 University of Oklahoma Calendar Book

You see, I am a big OU fan. Right now I’m over 200 pounds. But what really I mean is that I spent about three years working on my PhD at the University of Oklahoma in Norman. I like their football team and Coach Bob Stoops, though all of ’em–like your’s truly–have warts and faults. Yes siree, I am a BIG OU fan. Well, let me be honest, I am a big OU fan from a distance. I’ve been to three, maybe four, of their football games in my life. Period. But I am the BIGGEST OU long-distant fan on my block, . . . or at least specifically here at 1304 Pepperdine in Edmond, Oklahoma. Why, get a load of this devotion: I often sport an OU ball cap and an OU sweatshirt. You can’t be too supportive, you know. I’ve said all that to simply point out I like their merchandise, too.

So I really wanted another OU calendar book, . . . yeah, because I am a B-I-G fan. So I turned over my beloved OU calendar book and saw impressive product was officially licensed by the University of Oklahoma. That’s so cool. And the company that distributes it operates out of Waukesha, Wisconsin. Heck, it’s not out of Wapanucka, Oklahoma (where I was born), but Wisconsin is pretty good, too. But, sports fans, I was soon gasping for my breath as I read those damned blasphemous words, “MADE IN CHINA.”

OU calendar page 2

Holy moly!!

My heart kept pounding out, “Say it isn’t so! The University of Oklahoma certainly could not be in cahoots with the Bandits of Beijing! But they are. For they are not limiting the production of this book with their really big and beautiful logo to companies based in our own United States. Shame on them.Of course, maybe like Donald Trump they didn’t realize what they were doing. Well, folks, if you believe that one I would like to see you the bridge spanning gigantic Lake Wapanucka (sorry, the Brooklyn Bridge is under contract).

So I dropped the idea of buying that OU calendar book ever again. It may put some 8-year-old Chinese kid out of work, but so be it. And I went out looking for one made in America.

Well, do you remember Walmart’s famous promotion some 20 or 25 years ago about how every time they could do so they chose products made in American. Yes, MADE IN THE USA.

However, that was then and this is now. I did go to my local Walmart and went through their entire selection of business-type address books. Not a “MADE IN THE USA” calendar book in the bunch. Hey, as the late comedian Jerry Clower (whom I got to interview one time years ago) used to say, “If I’m lying, I’m dying!” Sad, but true.

So I wandered through another store or two and still came up empty-handed.

That’s when I went inside my local Staples store (business supplies, computers, etc., etc.). You may recall that Mitt Romney and his associates established this highly successful chain way back before he created Obamacare in Massachusetts.

Anyhow, I began looking at the calendar books at Staples. And, again, waded through several “MADE IN CHINA” books before it happened. Gosh, there before my very eyes was an honest-to-God “MADE IN THE USA” calendar book. The first one I saw was actually made in the United States specifically for Staples and carried their name and logo. Yahoo, success!!

Except that it wasn’t quite what I wanted; it didn’t have the layout that I prefer. So I kept looking and, “Eureka!” I found a nice calendar book in the layout I like. It carried the label of the “DayMinder” brand and it was actually “MADE IN TH USA”. Well, sorta the USA. Them thar Yankees up in some place called Sidney, up in NEW YORK slapped the thing together. Down here in the southwest we know–and are often reminded in commercials–that real chili doesn’t come from N-E-W  Y-O-R-K. But this was a calendar book, not chili, and it was good enough for this ol’ country boy.

DayMinder Calendar page 1DayMinder page 2

Now, as luck would have it, I had an opportunity to announce the point of my purchase. No, they didn’t put me on the store public address system. It just so happened that the manager of this Staples, a nice guy about half-my age (true for most people I meet these days), was temporarily manning the cash register. I placed my lovely new calendar book on the counter. I was proud of my fantastic find. I said to him, “I just want you to know why I chose to buy this particular calendar book. It is MADE IN THE USA and most of the others back there are MADE IN CHINA.”

“Oh, I see,” he said as he hurriedly checked me out and turned to the next customer.

Hmmm. Maybe he personally does not get the concept. Or doesn’t give a flip.

Well, sometimes it just takes more than your voice to make a point. It takes looking for and spending money (even if the price is a little higher) for products MADE IN THE USA.

Okay, end of sermon. Let’s all stand and sing . . . “God Bless America.”

There you have it, the free story of my hunt for a product MADE IN THE USA. Now I’m going to preach the invitation while the ushers pass the collection plates so we can separate the Believers from the Pretenders.

What about you, dear friend? Do you deliberately look for that label or designation “MADE IN THE USA” before you take an item to the cash register. My wife does it a lot in the grocery store, carefully choosing products by the farmers and cattle and sheep producers in the USA rather than those from overseas.

I’ll close with a variation of that famous Wolf brand chili commercial and thought-provoking question: “When’s the last time you really, truly looked for a product MADE IN THE USA? Well, friend, . . . that’s been too long.”

Made in USA logo

Issue 261 — Woody Guthrie: His Life, Music and Myth

Issue 261    —    The Paregien Journal    —    August 8, 2012

Woody Guthrie: His Life, Music and Myth

by Stan Paregien, Sr.

(Click on graphics to enlarge each one)

My 7th Kindle E-book, titled Woody Guthrie: His Life, Music & Myth,  is now online and available for purchase at www.amazon.com .

This one represents more than 1 1/2 years of research on this famous/infamous Oklahoma-born folk singer, songwriter, poet, artist and novelist. It has more than 300 pages of text and some 70 photos and illustrations.

 I have attached a couple of flyers with additional information. Please feel free to pass them on to anyone who loves music . . . or has any interest in the Dust Bowl days . . . or is interested in World War II . . . or may be interested in Guthrie’s losing battle over many years with a dibilitating mental and physical disease we call Huntington’s Disease . . . or would like to read about how music was used to protest poverty and labor conditions . . . or how and why so many entertainers got caught up in the “Red Scare” and blacklisting during the 1940s and 1950s. This e-book touches on those topics and much more.

 Oh, part of that “and much more” includes one poem and five songs that I wrote this year which were directly inspired by Woody Guthrie’s life and music. And it includes an extensive bibliography of reference materials.

 Best wishes,

Stan Paregien Sr

Issue 259 — Tribute to Gen. Revere A. Young, USAF

Issue 259    —    The Paregien Journal    —  July 12, 2012

Tribute to General Revere A. Young, USAF (Retired)

by Stan Paregien Sr.

Peggy and I had the deep pleasure of meeting General Revere A. Young (USAF, Retired) and his lovely wife Mary back in April of 2012. We met them while we were all attending the annual meeting of the Oklahoma History Society, this year at the beautifully restored Coleman Theater in Miami, OK. We had the opportunity to visit with them two or three times during the course of the meeting, and they both were just as delightful and friendly as they could possibly be.

When he found out that I have been performing storytelling and cowboy poetry for over 20 years, he brought up the fact that he is a long-time member of a local “corral” of Westerners International. He wanted me to come perform at one of their meetings in Oklahoma City, but we were preparing for a fairly long over-seas trip and some other obligations, so I begged off until maybe the fall (the organization does not meet during the summer). I’m sorry, now, that I never got to show him my little cowboy dog and pony show.

Gen. Young had been in the military, holding high ranks and doing important jobs, viritually all of his adult life. It was obvious that he loved his military life, and he certainly had completed a distinguished career spanning several decades of service to America. And, of course, they were proud to be known as Oklahomans. And we are proud of them.

As you read of his accomplishments in his obiuary, just pause and say a thank you for his life and service and to remember his wife during this difficult time for her.

[ Click on each graphic to increase the size. ]

Issue 256 — Our Trip to Miami . . . Oklahoma, That Is

Issue 256    —    The Paregien Journal    —    April 18, 2012

Our Trip to Miami . . . , Oklahoma, That Is

by Stan Paregien Sr.

We left OKC about 8:00 am, with our ultimate destination being the annual meeting of the Oklahoma Historical Society, being held this year at the Coleman Theater in Miami, Oklahoma. Of course, we don’t pronounce the town name the same way that little village in Florida is pronounced. Oklahoma’s Miami is a name taken from the Miami Indian tribe here and is pronounced “my-am-muh”.

We arrived in Miami, Oklahoma about 12:30 pm. Miami is the hometown of such folks as Steve Owens (star full-back at the University of Oklahoma, Heisman Trophy winner, and player for the Detroit Lions), Charles Banks Wilson (painter), and Carol Littleton (Hollywood film editor and Emmy award-winner).

We stopped and had lunch at the famous Route 66 hamburger joint, “The Ku-Ku,” which features a giant ku-ku bird on the top of the building. The food was okay, but didn’t live up to the hype we had been given.

About 1:30 pm we went to the Coleman Theater at 103 N. Main Street and registered for the Oklahoma History Society meeting which starts at 7:30 pm this evening.

Coleman

Then we went to a couple of antique stores and drove just a few miles north to Commerce, Oklahoma—where there were no signs to direct us to the location of the hometown hero, Mickey Mantle, the all-star player for the New York Yankees several decades ago. We stopped two different people for directions, with one saying he had no idea where it was and the other giving us directions and adding that infamous postscript, “You can’t miss it.” But we did.

Anyway, we did stop and take photos out on the highway of a very nice statue of Mickey Mantle.

We hit a few more antique and thrift stores, then went to the Holiday Inn Express and checked in. We had a big lunch, so we settled for granola bars for supper.

We drove back to the Coleman Theater for the 7:30 pm program. Wow, the inside of the Coleman—built in 1929 and in the 1950s declining to a state of disrepair—was beautifully restored as a community effort in 2004. It is impressive.

The program this evening was moderated by Roger Harris, an old friend of ours who for many years was the director of the oral history department of the Oklahoma Historical Society in Oklahoma City. He is back with the OHS, though in a different capacity, and is the current president of the Oklahoma Folklife Society.

The program was called, “Okie Folkie Coffeehouse Concert.” It featured a bunch of entertainers who got their start performing at coffeehouses in Oklahoma City and Tulsa during the 1950s and 1960s. Those performers included Mason Williams (Grammy for his song, “Classical Gas”; Emmy for writing comedy for the Smothers Brothers TV show; founding member of the Oklahoma-based “Wayfarers Trio” with Baxter Taylor and Billy Cheatwood), Baxter Taylor (founding member of the Oklahoma-based “Wayfarers Trio”; wrote with Shel Silverstein “Marie Laveau,” a smash hit for Bobby Bare), Billy Cheatwood (founding member of the Oklahoma-based “Wayfarers Trio”; banjo and guitar; former constable of Jemez Springs, NM, where he still lives), and Steve Brainard (banjo).

Also, Mike Settle (Born March 20, 1941 in Tulsa, OK; a Creek Indian whose grandfather, Pleasant Porter, was a chief of the tribe; member of the “Kenny Rogers & the First Edition” band; member of the New Christy Minstrel Singers; wrote “But You Know I Love You,” a cross-over hit for Dolly Parton in 1969; currently a journalist and music critic living in Brentwood, Tenn.).

Also, Mike Flynn, Ed (singer & guitarist) & Karen (singer) Petitt, Art Eskridge (blues singer, guitarist), plus additional instrumentalists Richard Sharp (bass), Amber Vallee (concertino), Shanda McDonald (fiddle), and Dr. Kahty Dagg, M.D. (mandolin).

I was able to get nice video clips of Mason Williams playing “Classical Gas,” of Baxter Taylor singing “Marie Laveau,” and one of Art Eskridge singing and playing a blues number. I have posted them on my YouTube page, where my ID is “CowboyStan”.

On Thursday morning, April 19th, we ate a continental breakfast at the Holiday Inn. Then we boarded a bus to take us back to the Coleman Theater. On the bus we met and visited with Brigadier General Revere A. Young (retired) and his wife Mary. They live near Lake Hefner in Oklahoma City. The last few years of his career he was commander of the Oklahoma Air National Guard.

I attended the 8:30 am session in Room A of the Ballroom. The moderator was Dr. Deena K. Fisher, a history professor in Woodward and a member of the executive committee of the OHS. The first speaker was Dr. Michael Hightower on “Bad PR: Oklahoma and the Media, 1889-1923.” He is a consultant on the OHS’s project on a history of banking in Oklahoma. The second speaker was John Wooley, former entertainment editor for the Tulsa World newspaper, and the author of 22 books. His topic was, “Early Cinema in Oklahoma.”

Wooley

Stan Paregien Sr. with John Wooley

At 10:15 am I attended a session moderated by Roger Harris and titled, “The Coffeehouse Era in Oklahoma”. Musicians who participated included “The Wayfarer Trio” members Mason Williams and Baxter Taylor and Billy Cheatwood, plus Mike Settle, Art Eskridge, Mike Flynn, Carol Saunders Young, and Steve Brainard.

Meanwhile, Peggy attended a 10:15 session featuring Dr. Guy Logsdon (folklorist and subject of my latest e-book on Amazon.com) as the moderator. The first speaker was Bobby Weaver, retired archivist from the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, speaking on: “Who Are Those Oilfield Hands and Why Do They Act Like That?” The second speaker Joe Specht of the Grady McWhiney Research Foundation in Abilene, Texas, on the topic of “Boomers and Boomtowns: Oil Patch Songs from Oklahoma.”

Then we were bused from the Coleman Theater to the Student Union banquet hall on the campus of North Eastern Oklahoma University. Mason Williams was the speaker for the luncheon.

After the luncheon, Peggy and I rode the bus over to The Gordon House and toured it. Then the bus took us to the Dobson House & Museum, where we also had refreshments. And then we returned to the motel. We again had granola bars for supper.

We drove to the Coleman Theater for the 7:30 pm. It was a video detailing the restoration of the Coleman Theater. Then we were treated to a tour backstage.

Peggy

Peggy & Stan Paregien Sr inside the Coleman Theater

Friday, April 20
A thunderstorm rolled in during the night and left at least a half-inch of rain. The temperature dropped significantly and the wind came up to about 30 mph. So it was pretty chilly all day.

We drove to the Coleman Theater for the 8:30 am session. I picked up a Miami newspaper and, lo and behold, there was an article about the OHS meeting . . . and they quoted me on page 3, as well as General Revere Young.

The moderator of the session was Emmy Scott Stidham of Checotah, current president of the OHS. George Nigh, former two-time Governor of Oklahoma, gave an entertaining speech on “Oklahomans Who Have Impacted the Popular Culture.”

Nigh

Stan Paregien Sr. (right) with former two-term Oklahoma Governor George Nigh

The second speaker was Miami-native Carol Littleton, Emmy-award winning Hollywood film editor. She spoke on, “From Miami to Hollywood.”

At 10:14 am Peggy and I attended a session moderated by Marty Pennington of Ada, a member of the board of directors of the OHS. The first speakers—Cindy Wallis, Gwen Walker and Traci Walker—presented and narrated a slide show of “48 Hours at Atoka,” dealing with the huge (35,000 to 50,000 attendees) country music show in a pasture near Atoka, Oklahoma. It was Oklahoma’s equivalent of “Woodstock,” with similar craziness.

The second speaker in that session was Jana Jae of Grove, billed as “The First Lady of Country Fiddle”. She spoke on “Roots Music in Green Country: The Grand Lake Festivals.” She brought alone her regular fiddle, plus the miniature fiddle she used as a child (made in about 1780) and the signature blue-colored fiddle she used on the Hee Haw TV show.

Jana Jae

Jana Jae and Stan Paregien Sr

Jana Jae was born August 30, 1942. She started playing when she was two and a half years old. Both of her parents were violin students at the Juilliard School in New York, and her maternal grandfather was a country fiddler. In her youth, Jae won scholarships to Interlochen and the International String Congress. She graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in music and studied abroad at the Vienna Academy of Music.

Jana Jae won the Ladies’ Division National Fiddling Championship. However, she earned a living by teaching some 200 violin students per week. She began to feel as though she might “burn out” doing that, so she inquired around about her chances of playing in a bluegrass or a country band. She interviewed with Buck Owens and was hired to be part of his band, “The Buckeroos”.

Jana Jae gained national fame by appearing on the nationally broadcast “Hee Haw” television show as part of Buck Owens’s band in the 1970s. She married her employer, Buck Owens, in 1977, becoming his fourth wife. In just a few days she had her fill of Mr. Owens and filed for a divorce.

Since the late 70’s, Jae has continued performing internationally, both as the leader of her own band, and with orchestra. Additionally, she has appeared with such country music artists as Chet Atkins, Roy Clark, Ray Stevens, The Oakridge Boys, Mel Tillis, Ricky Skaggs and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.

Today she organizes an annual fiddle camp and fiddle festival in Grove, Oklahoma, where she has lived for several years.

I got a couple of nice video clips of Jana Jae talking and playing her fiddle, and I have posted them on my YouTube page under my ID of “CowboyStan”.

At noon we left the OHS meeting. We ate a block or so away at a Mexican food restaurant. Then we drove back to Edmond, arriving home about 5 pm. It had been a fun-filled, informative three days and one of the best conferences we have attended in years. Dr. Paul Lambert of OHS was the primary organizer of the event, and he just did a bang-up job. And those local folks up in Miami, Oklahoma really made us feel welcomed.