Walter Scott


What is your attitude? I find that many people are their own worst enemies. Is it time to examine where you fall in the numbers of things, like bad attitude?

A friend of mine who happens to be originally from California by way of Arizona was having a conversation with a local resident. And of course the same tired comment was made, HOW DID YOU GET TO KANSAS FROM ARIZONA? Like the person was condemned to a life of black and white like we are portrayed in the Wizard of Oz.

The Wizard has been as much a curse as a blessing to our state.

And the attitude is perpetuated on and on. Really people?. If Kansas is so bad why are you still here? It is not a death sentence! If you are so unhappy it is your fault for not going to some happy place like Detroit. Or maybe Chicago, it sounds so wonderful up there.

I have always admired the Texas attitude and have said so on many occasion. So what is sooooo bad about Kansas? In my travels around the state I have found that the most positive and most effective directors of Chambers of Commerce’s, Convention and Tourism Bureaus, and Economic Development offices are former Kansans who came back or people who came to Kansas and see what a great place we are. I wish there was a vaccine that could be given to drop the scales from peoples eyes.

The Kansas Sampler Foundation has been working hard for many years to show Kansans, and others, how great a state we actually are. I wrote my book on exceptional Kansas Stories that have been forgotten. Kansas is a state of innovation and thinkers. Thinkers who do more than set at the coffee shop and talk about how things should be. They get up and go out and do something.

In one organization that I am a part of the leaders look to us and say “Kansas lead the way”. This is because we act on our ideas. There are so many firsts from Kansas that it is hard to keep track of everything.

When I was young and dumb I have said the same thing but I was not blinded by the bright lights of the big cities. I was longing for the even more open Wyoming. I do like peace and quiet.

People have a habit of saying that we are in the middle of everything. “500 miles in each direction”. Well people come to Kansas and see past the attitude. That is why I am so irritated when someone who has lived here all of their lives ask the question, “How did you end up in Kansas”? All the while having either a pitying look or a look of horror on their face.

Really people! If it is so bad here leave! I would hate to see you sentenced to a life of four seasons, an area that people come from every state in the union to hunt. I would hate to have you bored by the Flint Hills, Gypsum Hills, Smokey Hills, or the Chautauqua Hills.

I would hate to see you bored by Kansas Basketball. Or golf courses that are nationally ranked. I would hate to see you attend symphonies and operas that rival anything that the Coasts have to offer. I would hate to have you deal with clean air.

Attitude. I love the attitude of Casey’s Cow Town Steak House in Dodge City. On the menu when you order the Dodge City Strip Steak they explain “that it is the Dodge City Strip, we raise it, process it, and cook it for you. Why would we call it a Kansas City or New York Strip?” That is attitude! (it is a great steak also)

We feed the world. We fly the world. When there is a problem in space they call “those farm boys in Kansas” to figure out the solution. When you are slipping on ice we are the ones that dig the salt to put on the road so you can get home from the daily commute.

The other night there was a gala in New York. The honoree lived in New Jersey, (that is just across the river). It took him five hours to get to the place where he was to be honored. If you had to drive five hours to get to anyplace in Kansas for the same thing you should definitely be coming from out of state.

It is naturally curious to find out what attracted a new resident to Kansas. But attitude that it is a great horror story is plain silly. If it is such a horror why do you stay? It is a mystery to me.

But then I have a Kansas attitude.

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