The following account contain facts of my best recollection regarding our search for McKiddeyville, Oklahoma:
We had just completed our discussion with Ray Newton on his small porch in Lexington and were packing up for our next stop. Destination: McKiddeyville.
Unfortunately, our GPS system kept telling us McKiddeyville was about one block off the downtown Lexington proper. We got out our map and realized McKiddeyville didn’t even exist on the official EPOTM map, but it had been specially requested by a donor. So, we forged onward.
My frequent solution to glean information about a wide variety of small town topics is to visit the local police or fire departments, the court, or some other community institution. And, we spied the police department first, located in an old street-front office that could have been a drug store or barbershop 100 years earlier.
As I entered their domain, four sets of police officer eyes locked with mine.
I’m bound by the parameters of this project to be as straight with you as possible, so I think it’s probably important for you to understand that I’ve never seen four more hefty men, uniform buttons straining at all possible junctures, occupy such a small area in my life. Their kindness and willingness to help, however, matched the size of their girth. I received no less than ten minutes of detailed instructions on how to get to McKiddeyville. And, for purposes of this narrative I’m going to share exactly what they said:
- Go south six miles until you see the helicopter;
- Turn west and go two miles;
- When you get to that intersection, or thereabouts, you’re in the area they understand to be McKiddeyville.
Now I’m going to share the flaw with these instructions: there was no helicopter.
We traveled south eight miles just to be sure. Then we traveled back north again thinking that perhaps we could have missed the HELICOPTER that was supposed to be parked by the highway in broad daylight. All three of us agreed after the third pass that this helicopter didn’t exist. So, we began counting the mile markers on our GPS until we found what we identified as the appropriate “six mile turn,” helicopter or no, then headed west.
Note: The following was posted from our EveryPointOK Twitter feed about the time all this was happening…
The first man we found looked to be a local who had lived on a small farm his whole life…mowing his yard, dog trotting at his side. However, he knew nothing about the area. He had just retired and purchased “this hobby farm to keep him busy.”
The next person we found can only be described because I happen to be a licensed therapist. Approximately two miles northwest from Hobby Farm Man, we pulled into her driveway. The clan of dogs seemed friendly enough and she looked busy doing something in the yard, so I approached with a friendly wave.
As I got closer, the property occupant appeared to to be a middle-aged female, approximately 40-55, with red hair braided into pigtails. The pigtail on her left almost reached her waist; the one on the right dangled just below her chin line.
Although engaging, her behavior was what can only be described as hyper-paranoid and occasionally schizophernic. She wasn’t interested in being on camera, but as the conversation developed, I learned that she had “been celibate 18 years because she was writing a novel.”
Her book, she said, was about “your inner deity” and she “receives messages through the internet from celebrities who are aware of her project, but are too timid to admit publicly that they believe in her topic.” Rather, she explained, they send her photographs, most of the time on Facebook, with small encoded messages in the lower corners.
This is where the story began to get interesting. Evidently, each celebrity – she mentioned that she talks frequently with Russell Crowe and 24 other movie stars – has a small signature code. When she spies these encryptions, she clicks on the images, and then is taken to a location on the web where she picks up the next clues as to what she should be writing in her book. She is sworn to secrecy by this celebrity panel of advisors, but when her novel is finished, she will be vindicated because it will transform so many lives.
She also mentioned that the last time her son visited her, he thought she was a little crazy.
Because she wasn’t interested in being our McKiddeyville participant, she suggested we visit a friend of hers down the road in “Kidderville.” His name was “Kim Kidder, and he and his brothers all live in the same area…that’s why it’s called ‘Kidderville.'”
I thanked her, backed away from the red-haired author, and we went on our way.
Kim Kidder’s home was exactly where she had described it…which made me wonder if someday, a “transformative novel” will also be published, ghost written by Tom Cruise among others, and quash any doubt I had about the two-lengthen braided wonder.
I knocked on Kim Kidder’s door twice before he answered by cracking the door ever-so-slightly and asking who had come calling; he “couldn’t open the door because he wasn’t wearing any clothes.”
So, I explained our project. He then said his hair didn’t look very good.
So, I then told him that the person who sent us there assured he was so entertaining I doubted his hair was that big of a deal.
That last plea seemed to seal the deal. The door closed, I heard him moving around in the house, and within a couple of minutes out walks Kim Kidder, wearing a hat to hide his hair, with beer, wine and coffee in tow. Evidently “the French had taught him to drink all three together in order to stay balanced.”
At that point, I knew our red-headed wonder was also right about Kim Kidder. I’m going to buy multiple copies of her book.
We hope you enjoy this small video glimpse (below) of Kidder and our discussion with him.
Peace out ~ Red Dirt Kelly