So anyways, I was in Oklahoma City this past week. Quite an experience.
Stayed at the hotel connected to the convention centre which is right next to Bricktown. Bricktown is a pretty nice place - reminds me a bit of LEAFS SUCK's own Distillery District. And if you stayed in Bricktown, you might get the feeling that Forbes was right back in ought eight. In fact, I ended up walking past the massive construction zone for the new Devon Energy skyscraper to take a look at the Arts District and Film Row.
That's when the mask fell off. I went out along Sheridan (after wandering through the parking garage to get past the cranes) and back along Main. That part of the city is dead. It's just one empty building after another. Commercial real estate utilization might have been as high as 10%. It was surreal, like an episode of the Twilight Zone or that weird 80s New Zealand movie.
And then I noticed that a whole generation of folks was missing. Everyone I saw was either a grey haired senior or some youngster whom I'm glad was a thousand miles away from mah lawn. Creepy. I guess everyone between 25 and 60 was at home raising their families.
It was distrubing, to say the least, to see a city of half a million people pretending that nothing's wrong. Telling themselves that everything's fine and look at that new construction! when it's really all gone off the rails. And it's really depressing to see how others are looking at it. I mean, either ignoring the problem is working - or Oklahoma City really is one of the bright spots in the US economy.