This machine blows down the river. In this issue, we explore the history of oil, the city that care forgot, and football’s warrior code of manliness. Here’s a peek:
THE GREAT CHAIN OF BEING: In Oklahoma, football is a given. Locker-room law dictates that powerful males must bully weaker ones. That’s why Russell Cobb quit the sport—twice.
THE STATE THAT OIL BUILT: Tulsa is a city built on oil, its buildings totems to the oceans of hydrocarbon bubbling beneath the prairie. James McGirk traces petroleum’s influence in the city and in Oklahoma.
VOODOO CITY: Nightmares, Voodoo curses, poisonous caterpillars, and a con-artist lover—how Oklahoman Mark Chandler barely survived the sovereign nation-state of New Orleans.
THE EASE OF TROUT: Jeffrey Skemp’s boyhood self plays in the darkness of the woods and his imagination.
ORIGINAL OKIE: Tami Teeters saved three things before her Mannford home was engulfed by a wildfire in August of last year: a pair of praying hands, her citizenship papers, and her bathing suit. Photo by Matt Leach.