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Let’s turn Edmond into Oklahoma’s official retirement community

An Edmond woman, Alice M. Scott, turned 100-years old back on October 30. This got me to thinking. I’m from Edmond. Can I, too, expect such a long and glorious life? Is there something in that Hafer Park pond water that functions as a fountain of youth? Is driving on Danforth between Kelly and Fretz really the slow-moving time warp that it feels like  and can cause the relative speed of your life to decrease? Have I seen every movie and read every book on time travel and still don’t understand the science behind it?

Since making it out of Edmond to the glorious haven that is Norman, where cops don’t even bother to pull you over for speeding because they have bigger DUI fish to fry and you can smoke weed on Main Street and no one seems to get caught, I’ve long thought that I would never go back. Sure, my family lives there now and lived there before it even became a city (fact: My great grandparents owned land that was bought by CSU, now UCO), but I like to go out at night, and, well, I believe I covered my feelings about Edmond’s night life back before I officially wrote for this blog.

But Alice has got me to thinking: What if we turned Edmond into a safe haven for old folks? It seems to have granted Alice unnaturally long life, like the one ring of power did to Bilbo Baggins. Perhaps, Edmond is the precious that will ensure our forebearers are able to serve old Werther’s Originals in a fancy candy dish, watch The Price is Right, and lose hearing aid batteries under their recliners for years to come. Check out these ten reasons why Edmond should be the official retirement home city of Oklahoma after the jump!

Delta Café
I had a friend who used to wait tables here in high school. She said she was busiest around 4:00 PM, traditionally a dead time at restaurants that don’t have a happy hour. When I asked her why, she said because that’s when all the old people come to have dinner. And what does an old person want to eat other than the home cooking of their youth and all the terrible for you foods that those dadgum nutritionists and new-fangled diet books tell you not to eat?

Safe city
The FBI ranks Edmond as one of the safest cities in the nation. This is probably because no one wants to break into a wealthy woman’s home and steal her shitty zebra print curtains with pink feather trim. (Seriously, rich women. You have enough money to look expensive. Why are you trying to look like stripper from Piedmont?) Regardless of why, don’t you want peace of mind to know that your older loved ones are safe while they read a physical copy of the newspaper and get worked up about irrelevant things they heard on the news?

The Rodkey Flour tower
I’ve heard the history of the Rodkey Flour company, and let me just tell you what! That is some true American business. None of this “dot com” or “social media” jibber jabber. That was a company that made something tangible and got rich with hard work! For this reason alone, that Rodkey Flour tower thingy on Third Street is like a shining beacon of Americana that only someone who remembers real American industry can appreciate.

The Multi-purpose Activity Center at Mitch Park houses the Edmond Senior Center. I’m willing to bet this is one of the newest senior centers in the state. It was completed in 2005, and the whole facility cost $5,360,586.00. Couple this with the fact that the YMCA has partnered with the City of Edmond to put in an indoor pool and you have yourself a city that spends big bucks on old people. And a great place for water aerobics!

The Territorial School House
Old people love old crap. I don’t know why. While my generation will be known for standing in line for a new Apple product roughly every six months, past generations are known for clinging to tradition and preserving an outdated way of life. If Edmond became a retirement community, grandparents could bring their flippant grandchildren here and show them how rough life used to be. And then, kids could explain how rough life is when the WYSIWYG editor on WordPress doesn’t work with a certain version of Flash or the dread that is brought on by a new version of Facebook.

Around the Corner Café
I have never been here, but it’s been around forever. If you’re cagey enough to find parking in downtown Edmond, you could probably get a decent bite to eat. But I’m scared to, because it strikes me as the sort of place that Merle and Clem have been going to for the past 50 years and I may accidentally sit in their booth. I feel like this is just the sort of place that you have to let the old people have to themselves.

Creepy children statues
If you’ve ever experienced the three blocks that make up Edmond’s downtown area, then you’ve seen those bronzed demon kids frolicking around the shops. I used to babysit a kid I nicknamed Satan because she would roll her eyes back in her head and talk about wanting to kill her baby brother, but these statues scare me more. But, I guess, since they look like kids having fun in the good old days all barefoot in the yard, they can remind older folks of the youth they once had, and perhaps inspire some impromptu frolicking as well.

Lincoln Town Car-friendly speed limits
If you’ve ever tried to get anywhere in the heart of Edmond in a timely fashion, you know that you can’t. The speed limits are crazy stupid slow until you reach the outer perimeter of the city. This would be great for a retirement community that likes to drive at speeds lower than your car idles at.

The Second Street Nudist Colony
I cannot confirm nor deny if that fenced in residence on Second Street just west of Kelly is a nudist colony, but that was the urban legend while I was growing up, so I take it as gospel. And if there’s one thing I learned from Cocoon, it’s that old folks are feisty. So why not give them the only city in the metro with a nudist colony? That fenced in house is for sale right now too! It's like it's meant to be.

If there’s one thing old people love, it’s to tell you all about how things used to be great. America really was a great place when schools were segregated, women died from at-home abortions like in Revolutionary Road, and men were single-faceted individuals that had no outlet to express emotions. I mean, Mad Men makes the old days look really great. (Full disclosure: I would kill to have the wardrobe of a Mad Men secretary.) So why not put these old people in one of the most conservative places in the state? Sure, the property taxes are high because of that dag nab big government. But at least the Edmond Sun knows what conservative buzz words to print and there are still sundown laws on the books.

If these reasons don’t convince you, I don’t know what will. I’ll be drafting up some potential legislation today about officially converting Edmond into oldsville.

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