Rural Life

On this edition of ST Medical Monday, we chat once again with Katie Plohocky, the founder and director of Tulsa's Healthy Community Store Initiative. This initiative is an umbrella for several programs that Plohocky runs, all of them focused on healthy eating, healthy living, and healthy communities -- these programs include R&G Grocers (Tulsa's mobile grocery store), Cooking for Health (a program that brings farm-fresh food and nutrition to at-risk populations), and a farm-to-table catering operation.

(Note: This program originally aired back in August.) On this edition of ST, we speak with the author and historian Nancy Isenberg, who is the T. Harry Williams Professor of American History at LSU, writes regularly for Salon.com, and was formerly on the History faculty here at The University of Tulsa.

On this installment of ST, we are discussing State Question 777, the so-called "Right to Farm" proposal, which voters statewide will decide on come November. As was noted recently in a Tulsa World editorial: "Both sides in the debate over State Question 777...have been guilty of excesses in their arguments. The proponents have suggested that only a state constitutional measure could shield cherished rural values of decent working farmers from the meddling hands of bureaucrats and lunatic eco-extremists.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we speak with Alton Carter, an Oklahoma Book Award-winning author whose memoir, "The Boy Who Carried Bricks," was originally published in 2015. It's a painful-to-read yet ultimately uplifting autobiography that details Carter's growing up in smalltown Oklahoma. Carter will be participating in the upcoming "Chapters" event at the TCCL's Hardesty Regional Library, on September 8th at 6:30pm; this event is a fundraiser in support of adult literacy programs, and the deadline to register for it is September 1st.

On this edition of ST, we speak with the author and historian Nancy Isenberg, who is the T. Harry Williams Professor of American History at LSU, writes regularly for Salon.com, and was formerly on the History faculty here at The University of Tulsa.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, we speak with Mark Darrah, a writer and attorney based here in T-Town who's also one of our program's longtime commentators. The son of a Methodist minister who grew up all over the Sooner State, Mark has a terrific new book out; it's a collection of personal essays called "A Catalogue of Common People," and many of the pieces in this volume were originally aired on ST. In the words of another Tulsa-based author, Michael Wallis: "Do not let the title fool you -- 'A Catalogue of Common People' is an uncommonly good book.

(Note: This program originally aired back in April.) Late one night in 2011, a large animal collided with an SUV on a Connecticut parkway. This animal was not a deer -- as is, sadly, so often the case. It was a 140-pound mountain lion...and it had been born in the Black Hills of South Dakota...in 2009!

On this edition of ST, we are joined by Craig Jones, who is President of the Oklahoma Hospital Association. Given the recent cuts in both Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement, large cuts in federal reimbursement costs for uninsured patients, as well as ongoing transformations in standards of care, medical technology, and qualitative outcomes, times are tough these days for hospitals, especially rural hospitals. Nationwide, 673 rural hospitals are considered "on the edge" -- and here in Oklahoma, it's estimated that more than three dozen rural hospitals are facing a troubled future.

On this edition of StudioTulsa on Health, we speak with reporter Laura Ungar of USA TODAY, who's the co-author of an excellent and far-reaching series of articles -- entitled "Rural Hospitals in Critical Condition," and decidedly multi-media in both its execution and presentation -- that have appeared recently in the online and print versions of that newspaper.

On this presentation of ST, we speak with Marja Mills, a former reporter and feature writer with The Chicago Tribune. Mills is also the author of a bestselling memoir, "The Mockingbird Next Door," which details the time she spent getting to know novelist Harper Lee -- the author, of course, of the immortal "To Kill a Mockingbird" -- as well as Lee's older sister, Alice. Mills will discuss this recently published book (its origins, its development, its major findings, and so on) tonight, Monday the 8th, at 6:30pm at a Book Smart Tulsa event at the Circle Cinema.

On this edition of our show, we welcome back Catherine Whitney, the Chief Curator and Curator of American Art at the Philbrook Museum of Art here in Tulsa, who tells us all about a small but impressive photography show currently on view at the museum. "Hard Times, Oklahoma, 1939-40: The Documentary Photography of Russell Lee" will run through October 26th. Beginning in 1936, Lee worked alongside Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, and others as part of the government-sponsored Farm Security Administration, which was a New Deal program created by FDR.

On this edition of ST, we listen back to a fine interview that first aired in March of this year with H. Alan Day, who's the younger brother of former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. Day tells us about his then-recent memoir, "The Horse Lover," which is a moving and perceptive account of how he established a sanctuary for unadoptable wild horses previously warehoused by the Bureau of Land Management. Mustang Meadows Ranch, as the facility was called, began in the late 1980s; it was the first-ever government-sponsored wild horse sanctuary established in the United States.

On this installment of ST, we speak by phone with Donis Casey, a mystery author and former librarian who is originally from Oklahoma and has been based in Arizona for many years. "Hell with the Lid Blown Off" -- the seventh title in Casey's popular Alafair Tucker series -- is newly available, and (as with the rest of Casey's fiction) this novel draws heavily upon her Oklahoma roots...as well as the roots of her Sooner State relatives.

On this edition of ST, we speak by phone with H. Alan Day, who's the younger brother of former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, and who co-wrote with her the bestselling "Lazy B" memoir of a dozen years ago. Alan Day has a new book out called "The Horse Lover," which he tells us about on today's program. This moving and perceptive autobiography mainly describes how he was able to establish a sanctuary for unadoptable wild horses previously warehoused by the Bureau of Land Management.

Farming, as a way of life, has of course been on the decline in this country for a long time now --- and one way in which we can actually see this dwindling livelihood is by noting the disappearing or decaying farm structures throughout America's rural landscape: the houses, barns, and out-buildings that made such a landscape habitable in the first place. Our guest is a photographer whose work tells the stories of these once-loved-but-now-abandoned buildings. Nancy Warner joins us by phone; she's a fine-art and portrait photographer based in San Francisco.

Tomorrow, Saturday the 19th, the annual Nimrod Conference for Readers and Writers will happen here on the TU campus; it's a day-long writing-and-editing symposium presented by Nimrod International Journal, running from 9:30am to 4:30pm and offering workshops in fiction, poetry, memoir, YA fantasy, writing queries and synopses for literary agents, and more.