To see, and be seen...
There are these people. These folks here…..
We’ve known each other going on 15 years now. We grew up together in a little restaurant called Hideaway Pizza. Yes, that Hideaway Pizza, the Stillwater original….The Big Country, Fried Mushrooms, Pente, Tie Dyes, Rock N Roll, Picture Collages and VW Bugs. Only, not the original. Confused yet?! Let me tell you a little story.
Back in the 80’s some Stillwater college kids were slinging pizza, and drinking beer, and doing everything else college kids are supposed to do. Only some of the kids weren’t really kids, some were real life grownups. Grownups who loved the place they worked at soooo much, the real world was a place they didn’t run back to with diplomas in their back pockets and their arms wide open. They had their own fraternity, a family of like minded individuals if you will. Cause that’s what it was, a family. Richard and Marty Dermer created a home away from home for a slew of young kids coming to school at Oklahoma State University. They fed them, they counseled them, and they even gave them shelter to live in occasionally. The Dermers gave these kids a place to find themselves and excel at it, and a tidy little paycheck at the end of the week didn’t hurt either. If you’ve ever been fortunate enough to work here you know what I’m talking about, you are my brothers and sisters.
So a few of these college kids and grownups came together and said….one day….one day we will have a place like this for other kids. A place to work, and grow, and learn, and earn, and have fun. But we’re also gonna make a boat load of money. And thus was born the Hideaway on Cherry Street. And then the Hideaway on Harvard. And then the world. Kinda. It’s still only an Oklahoma Tradition, but the concept is there, the food is great, and the future is bright. They now have locations all over the Tulsa and Oklahoma City metro areas. So, if you’ve lived here all your life and haven’t had some Hideaway Pizza, then shame on you. If your new to Oklahoma and haven’t had some Hideaway Pizza, then what are you waiting for?!
And….back to these people. These folks here…..
These are my brothers and sisters, a strong crew of about 6 to 8 people that after all these years still love and care about each other. And it all started in a restaurant. We have loved, and lost. We have laughed and cried. We are experiencing the human connection in a way some people never achieve. We can be independent. We can be incestuous. We love each other. A lot. Not all of us had the traditional college experiences, some of us never graduated, some of us are still learning, some of us have chosen the school of life. But our experience is shared, even after all these years.
Last night a few of us got together for baseball and beer. I’m not sure it gets anymore All-American than that. The new Tulsa Drillers Stadium, an outstanding little venue if you haven’t been there yet. The food smells and the atmosphere drew me in immediately. There’s a little something for everyone at the ballpark, even Vegans like my friend Mark. Although the taco salad kiosk was calling my name, I went for the tried and true Dipping Dots ice cream. Holly found a pretzel with cheese. Mark had some yummy french fries, but the Boca Burger and vegetarian sausage we’re calling his name. All in all, I found the concession choices to be pretty affordable for a stadium venue. I have surely seen worse in other places. Rather than a $5 pretzel and an extra $1.50 for a side of cheese, at a Drillers game both can be had for the low low low price of $3. Impressive!
The Drillers are having an outstanding year, or so I’ve heard. To be honest, and don’t get me wrong because I LOVE live baseball, but I didn’t watch much of the game. When I get around this group of friends we can’t stop talking and laughing and apparently drinking. The picture above is what the ground before us looked like towards the end of the 7th inning. I had to add some color to help you get an idea of the abundance of beer we had, only I took the picture after we drank most of the beer stockpile. But you get the idea. Funny thing about Thursday night at Drillers games, Thirsty Thursdays as they’re called, $1 beers. One. Dollar. Beers. Seriously, does it get much better than that?! A $5 ticket for a lawn seat, and $1 beers. Hello mama! And if you show up after the 8th inning like our hardworking massage therapist friend Julie, you can get into the stadium for free. Not sure if that’s actually standard operating procedure for the stadium, but Julie is really cute and sweet and friendly, so it would be hard for a hardworking doorman to not let her in to meet her friends. Holly and I agreed, it was a place to see and to be seen.
Now after the game you could easily walk across the train tracks and have a beer at McNellies, or El Guapo’s, or Joe Mama’s Pizza. Cause the Blue Dome District is also a place to see and be seen. There is a bevy of fun and interesting restaurants and bars all over downtown. But this crew went home, well, to one home. Zack’s home. Where we drank a few more beers. Danced in our bare feet. Snuggled on couches. Folded a mountain of laundry, not a pile mind you, but a mountain. Yes Zack, you’re welcome. But most of all, we reconnected. As only old and true friends can do.