Grilling a Trucker

Last week, Tara and I went out to dinner with her boss, Jennifer, and Jennifer’s fiancee, Robert. When I learned that he is a long-haul truck driver, I was thrilled. I am so curious about truck drivers and their lifestyle, I could chat with them for hours!

I’ve long had a love/hate relationship with truckers. More hate than love, if I’m being honest. I didn’t have hours, plural, with Robert…but I did have one, and I decided to make the most of it by asking him the most burning question I had.

“Why is it,” I wondered, “That semis always cut me off, switching lanes to pass another vehicle, just as I’m about to pass them…even when I’m the only other car on the road?” This happens to me all the time and it’s infuriating. I asked Robert point blank whether this is something truckers do just to be assholes.

His answer? “Yeah, sometimes.”


To be fair, there was a lot more to it than just that. Robert talked about forward momentum and what essentially amounted to a physics lesson, how difficult it is for truckers to slow down and let somebody pass them and then having to work their way back up to highway speed while pulling a heavy load. Courtesy goes out the door in those situations, he said, and I can live with that.

I wanted to know so much more. Like whether they still use CBs and speak in that “10-4, good buddy” lingo. Whether C.W. McCall is their rock god. What truck stop food is really like. How often women flash them when they’re passing. Whether kids still pump their arms to get them to honk their horns. What kinds of loads are the best to haul and which are the worst. How fancy their sleeping cabins are. Things like that. But alas, sixty minutes goes by awfully fast. Especially when you’re busy chewing and stuff.

So, today dawned beautiful…

And only got better from there.

I know not all my readers (and worse, family members…don’t get me started) share my political views. Some are more jaded and cynical, others are just bitter. To each their own. I believe in democracy and I believe in Biden. Today, I felt like I could breathe for the first time in four years. What a beautiful feeling. I call for unity, and echo President Biden’s call to “end this uncivil war.” And I’m losing patience with those who don’t.

Politics need not be a raging fire destroying everything in its path. Every disagreement doesn’t have to be a cause for total warm. And, we must reject a culture in which facts themselves are manipulated and even manufactured. My fellow Americans, we have to be different than this. America has to be better than this. And, I believe America is better than this.

President Joe Biden

Better times are ahead. Hell, better times are already here.

26 thoughts on “Grilling a Trucker

  1. I’d agree with almost all of Biden’s speech. But when certain people disagree with reproductive rights for women? Or don’t believe that BIPOC folks have a right to thrive–or even exist–in the USA?

    If you don’t immediately stand against that kind of misogyny and bigotry, you’re complicit. Bring on the war.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It shouldn’t be a topic and yet it is. We’ve had numerous laws passed in the last four years restricting everything from birth control to abortion–while performing nonconsensual hysterectomies on women in ICE internment camps. The 70 million people who voted for that continue are still among us.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. “Black leaders are expected to press Biden for reparations as a payment for voting for him in the 2020 elections.” Interesting. “The total bill to taxpayers in one model could top $6.2 quadrillion.” (Washington Examiner)


      1. Well, okay then….We will know whose doorstep and which state to begin with. Thanks for posting. Now the question is are you in direct line or not…thanks for your honesty.


  3. Interesting about truckers, Mark. We have a main mountain highway here called the Malahat and I was driving on it yesterday, confused by how trucks were maneuvering between lanes. I do understand the logistics, like you say “a physics lesson.” And, then I wonder……what the heck? A very funny post on the questions you have for truckers. Latest trucker news here is difficulty finding bathrooms this past year. Stunning morning photo! My husband and I watched every moment of this morning, tears brimming and feeling hopeful about better times. We all live on this one planet.🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. From one grammar nerd to another… the way you spelled fiancée refers to the woman. For the man it’s only one e. Blame the French for that one! *grin*

    I might have seen that movie before. I definitely have seen Smokey and the Bandit, though. Does that count as a trucker film?

    I’m worried that it will take much, much longer than four years for the country to heal. But, at least it’s a step in the right direction.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I always confuse the two…and to make matters worse, the WP editor doesn’t think the word even exists with a single e (my first choice, ha).

      Smokey & The Bandit is definitely a trucker film, and I almost mentioned it too!


  5. Did I ever tell you my husband drove tractor trailer for 8 months after he got out of the Corps? I went with him for a few runs. It was quite the experience…
    As for yesterday, I’m breathing again. The young poet laureate? Wow. And the simple yet long overdue ceremony honoring those list to Covid the night before? Perfect.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. I smiled as you spoke of your conversation with Robert. My other half drives trucks, although not long haul as he likes to be home nights. But I’ve learned a lot from him about the good and the bad about the industry and those within it. I have admiration for those who do a professional job, while accepting that there are – as you put it – assholes in all ways of life 😀
    Even over here in the UK, yesterday’s ceremony made me smile as at least hope is back on the agenda. We’re still waiting for our turn on that front…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ve been interested in the trucking business since I read The Long Haul a few years back. And then my son’s first job out of college was in business development for DHL. He has lots of stories about the trucking industry and it’s truly fascinating. Your unanswered questions are definitely stuff I need to know!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. The trucker story brought a smile. I live near a major highway that shrinks to two lanes as it climbs the mountains, creeping behind them only to have them pull out before me, and I’ve had that same question come to mind! I’m with you on the election. My anxiety level has calmed considerably now. Looking forward to some sanity and compassion in government.

    Liked by 1 person

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