North Carolina Newspapers

    Editorial and Opinion Page I
Fifth AnnuaI Spiritual and
Traditional Gath
June 13, 14, 15, 1997
Sponsored by the Lumbee Comtcil of Elders
North Carolina Indian Cultural Center
There will be dancing, drumming, singing, storytelling and
demonstrations occurring day and night. No schedule of
events. All time is "Indian time."
Traders (Bartering Only)
v ) >
: ? n
^No Admission
*No Prizes
*No Competition
v. y
Anyone can barter for any item
displayed. Anyone wishing to trade
Native made crafts etc. bring Blanket
and set up FREE.
Lodges of any style have preference at the site.
Primitive camping preferred.
Seperatc area for trailers, motorhomes
Drums, tfoncers, singers,
storytellers, craftpeople,
artists, riders, middleage
and the yeung people are
more weltome and much
nder.'-rl fr6?lon*a1
Gf?? rio^"*
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One item of non-perishable food will entitle one
meal ticket.
ALL food and clothes gathered will be donated tp
The Robeson County Church and Community
. Center.
7 ^SpoaMrvdln p*rtbyTiUc V. lEAProjtram. Lumbec Council ofElderi?\
' Ihe Cirolmt Inditn Voice end Lumbee Repcml Development Anooi- I
^boo. Inc., end the North CerolU Indian Cultural Center J
^a^T)lVr* jl J U Dr Director? I
rOsW^FT3^ g v -? I'NCP Native American Resource Center J
(Author's Note: With this segment we
return to the series on storytelling.)
We have taken Abenaki
storyteller Joseph Bruchac's first two
steps on the road to good storytelling:
listening and observing (from his book
Tell Me A Tale: A Book About
Storytelling). This week we move on
to his third step ? remembering.
Memory may be the most
important, and yet the most taken-forgranted,
function of the brain. If the
ancient human beings had not bad
memory, they would not have been
able to develop diverse and adaptive
cultures, systems of social
organization^and kinship, ways of
looking at things, beliefs and values
and most of the rest of what makes us ,
distinctly "human." Very little would
be possible without memory. As i
Bruchacsays: "Withoutmcmory, there ;
would be no history." ]
But most of the time we don't I
even think about memory. Memory is i
like culture, in the sense that most of i
the time we don't think about it, we 1
just live if Both memory and culture j
are so "built-in" to our everyday lives I
that we don't need to think about them ?.
on a conscious level. As long as they <
are there in our heads and working <
properly, everything goes along in an ;
ordinary fashion. They are usually <
only conspicuous in their absence. If I
something is missing from our culture <
or from our memory, we may be upset <
or we may not know what to do.
Bruchac says: "Theonly time weseem j
to remember memory is when we
actually do forgef" 1
But memory is not just about the <
past. It is also tied to the present and <
the future. Bruchac writes: j
"Knowing the past can protect the i
future. And story is one of the best l
ways to make thos: memories of the I
past come alive. Memorizing names ]
i*J It # fit" ?'
and dales can be boring and difficult.
Remembering the stories associated
with those names and dates, however,
can be exciting and interesting. If
names and dates are the bones of the
past, stories are the flesh and breath
that make those dry bones come alive
Bruchac and others have argued
that human memory works best when
it is the form of a story. The brain is
capable of storing so much
information that it are like a very
powerful computer. Often when we
can't remember something, it is not
because that thing is no longer in our
heads but rather that we are not using
the right pathway or access code to get
at it:
"As with a computer, wcjust need
to know how to access the right file.
Storytelling is like a powerful
password.... Information in our mind
that we shape into the form of a story
is much easier to remember.... One
memory device is to think of the story
like a joke. After all, most jokes are
just very short stories that are intended
to make people laugh! So... look at the
structure of the joke. A joke can be
iivided into three parts: the setup, the
ievclopment, and the punch line.... If
^ou have ever known anyone who
:an't tell a joke, it is probably because
le or she either forgets one of the three
dements... or tells them in the wrong
Here is Bruchac's example of a
good three-part joke:
The Setup: "A man was driving
lis brand-new car down the road. No
me else was on the highway, and so be
iecided to see how fast the car could
50. fie pushed the accelerator all the
way to the floor, and before he knew it
that car was doing over 120 miles an
tiour. All of a sudden, something
passed his car as if it were standing
still. It was a chicken with three legs!"
The Development: . "The man ,'.
had never seen anything like that
before. I Ic followed the chicken as " best
he could, even though it was
getting farther and farther ahead.
Suddenly it turned off onto a dirt
road that led up to a farm. The man
followed. When he reached the
farmyard and stopped his car, he got
another surprise. That farmyard was
full of chickens and everyone of
them had three legs. He saw a
farmer sitting up on the porch and
decided to go up and ask him about
those chickens. But before be could
say a word to the fanner, the farmer
said to him, 'I bet you want to know
about those three-legged chickens.'
'That's right,' said the man. 'Well,"
said the farmer, 'my wife and my
son and me, we love to eat chickens. .
The problem is that all three of us . I
love drumsticks. Now most '
chickens have only two legs, so
we bred these chickens to have three.
That way, whenever we have chicken,
we can each have a drumstick.'"
The Punchline: "'Well,' said the
man to the farmer, 'that is really
something. But tell me, bow do those ''
threfe-legged chicken taste?' The
farmer shook his head. 'I don't
rightly knovfc We've never been ->
able to catch one.'"
It is easy to see why Bruchac
believes that memory is an essential
element in storytelling. Not only would
there be no history without memory,
there would be no funny stories either. '
Next week we will look at the fourth ;
and final step on Bruchac's path to
good storytelling. For more ,.
information, visit the Native
American Resource Center in historic
Old Main Building, on the campus of
The University of North Carolina at
Pembroke. . (j
f Say You Read it ill the Carolina Indian J ..
Voice. To subscribe call 521-2826 I "i
Dollar Hill Oxendine, son oj lithe late Hirtir Oxen dine, is
shown pumping pas when he was a teen aper.
Employee! of Oxendine'i Ttrv Center left to right: Jeff erg
Oxendine, DoUar BUI Oxendine, Birtir Oxendine and Jimmy
Ray Oxrndine.
In Loving Memory of Birtir Oxendine pi
April 19,1930-May 3, 1995 P
In memory of Birtir Oxendine. We miss your presence,
but in our hearts you will never be forgotten.
Happy Father's Day
Wife, family and friends, also your customers at OXENDINE TIRE I qj
(Oxendine Tire is beinf> operated by Jeff Oxendine, son of llirtir Oxendine, in the same location.
SPOTLIGHT ONoxendlne's Tire Center If
by Barbara Brayboy-bockUar
Hie Birtir Oxendine family has taken its ahare of life's
hardknocks. Bui with determination, the members always
sprang back.
In 1968, Oxendine laid down his farm equipment Mother
Nature had caused one too many crop failures for the tenant
farmer, Ms wife and five children. His wife took a job in a
textile plant and he rented a service station in Pembroke.
, Tilings went rather well in the business until the gasoline
shortage came in the early '70's. Independent gas station
operators suffered most when it came time to receive fuel from
suppjjera. Hie hope of hanging on to his business began to
fade obfjrjg that time for Oxendine.
Oxendine's school-age sons helped at the station, and when
things got real tight, he'd allow them to take stock items such
as cigarettes, gum, crackers and soft drinks to sell outside the
business. This enabled the businessman to move the items
while giving his sons an opportunity to earn money.
One son, Billy Ray "Dollar Bill" drew on the opportunity and
earned enough money to help support his high school
education. He even paid forhis senior class ring. "I* d lake the
items to school and hide them in my locker." says Dollar Bill.
"TTien during break. I'd sell them to iny classmates."
The eleventh-grader fully understood he was breaking school
rules, but he needed money. "I did it to take a financial
burden off my parents who were trying to hold on to a failing
business," he adds.
Hie smart enterprising practices and involvement In school
activities caused hia classmates to start calling (he popular
twelfth-grader "Dollar Bill." The name stuck.
Meanwhile, the father figured since he couldn't get enough
gas to draw customers, he'd try adding something else
customers needed tires. Demand for them was strong. A
keen business sense convinced him to re-invest his profits.
In 1976, the rati red farmer gambled and planted an acre of
cucumbers. Hoping, for a good crop, he set sights on
establishing a business in his own building on property he
owned outside Pembroke. It was a bumper crop. From it was
born Oxandine's Hre Center. Over the past decade, the
family-owned and operated business has flourished.
Hie building, as was the business, was built from the ground
I "**
I s
up by family members. "My daddy la a jack of-all-trades," * ?
says Dollar Bill. Hie facility boasts six work bays and can H s
accommodate 12 automobiles. H "4
During the first couple of years the business offered only H "4
recapped tires and limited service. Today with four full-time H ^
employees, it offers a full line of tires, new, used and H ^
recapped. The operators can fit tires on industrial, passenger, H ^
truck and farm vehicles. H ^
The business specializes in front end alignment and brake H >
service. It also offers computer balancing and 24-hour road H >
service. "We decided to offer those services because they go H s
hand-in-hand with tires," says Dollar Bill who is office H %
manager for the business. H *4
He says his father, who founded the business, is the "top H >
boss" and makes sure things are run right. And that H I
customers' satisfaction is never to be compromised. "Industry
surveys prove that consumers want quality and service at a
competitive price and in that order," he comments. "They
want to buy from an informed source they can trust" H ?!
Serving customers and other people comes easily for Dollar ?|
Bill. He loves people and they respond to him. The Lumbee
Indian was bom with deformed lega. Nine surgical operations H
snd years of encouragement from his parents have enabled
him to walk right alongside other, people with a high
After eight hours on the job at Southeastern General Hospital H
as housekeeping supervisor, he returns to thf family business H jj
to help out until closing time. He doesn't leave.jtfter everyone
else does. Instead, he busies himself doing the bookkeeping in
an adjoining office. Once that's finished, the bachelor usually
has dinner at a local restaurant and returns to sleep overnight H !
on a bed in the business office.
He is devoted to his beloved h^t. Airy Baptist Church And
would be interested in marriage if the right Christian woman
came along. Until she comes along, the 31-yearold will
continue to take his meals away from home and donate his H
time to church, civic organizations, helping to cheer sick H?;
people, and to running the family business.
Oxendine's Tire Center is located in the Whispering Pines
Subdivision oft State Road 1010 in Pembroke. Business hours
are Mon-FVi. 8 0 p.m. Saturday 8 8 p.m. Telephone:
621 3346 or 621 4590. ?

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