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You Won’t Believe What Happened

By on May 1, 2019
Out-Windshield

A Collection of Humorous Experiences from the Road 

BY: David A. Kolman, Senior Editor

ANYONE WHO’S SPENT ANY TIME AS AN OVER-THE-ROAD TRUCKER HAS UNDOUBTEDLY HAD SOME “YOU WON’T BELIEVE WHAT HAPPENED TO ME” EXPERIENCES—BOTH GOOD AND BAD. I’VE HAD MY SHARE… MORE GOOD THAN BAD, I’M HAPPY TO SAY. I’D LIKE TO SHARE A FEW, AS WELL AS HEAR FROM YOU.

What’s That? 

For long-haul truckers back in the day, good cooking and delicious food were difficult to find, unless other drivers recommended places. One time, while trucking through Utah, with no referrals for good eats, I stopped at a conveniently-located greasy spoon for dinner. I ordered the soup of the day and a steak.

When the cantankerous waitress brought the soup, I noticed something floating in it. I pointed to the thing in my soup and asked: “What’s that?” She took a long, hard look and replied, “I have no idea. I don’t know one insect from another.”

Not Here 

Many years ago, I made a factory delivery in a very small Tennessee town. While unloading, I overheard a conversation among some dock workers. One was complaining about not being able to get married in the town. 

I walked over, said I’d overheard the conversation and was curious as to why. “No house of worship or a justice of the peace here?” I asked. “We’ve got a minister,” the worker replied, “but he won’t perform weddings.” 

“Because of his morals?” I probed. “Nope,” the worker explained. “The minister’s conscience won’t let him take part in a game of chance.”

Terrible Tessie 

Typically, owner operators are proud of their rigs. I was of mine. Many years ago, while having a cup of coffee at a truckstop out west, a woman trucker struck up conversation with me, and it turned to what kind of tractor we each had. She told me mine was “a piece of s**t” compared to hers, which was nine years older than mine.

We went outside to look at each other’s tractor. Turns out we were both bobtailing. Upon seeing hers—which looked like it should be sidelined—I started laughing. She challenged, “Care to make a $50 wager that my tractor is faster than yours?” Figuring this would be easy money, I said why don’t we make it a $100. Looking back on things, she replied a little too quickly.

I’ll spare the details and just say she “smoked” me. She took off like a bat out of hell. Even with my pedal to the metal, she was soon out of sight. Paying the $100, I asked—in amazement—why her bucket of bolts ran so well. “Good maintenance,” she replied as she walked away grinning with my C-note clutched in her hand. Off I went, dejected and doubtful.

Later that day, I was having dinner at another truckstop and began chatting with a trucker, bemoaning what had happened. He laughed and told me I’d met up with “Terrible Tessie.” He explained that Tessie’s husband is a “super” master truck mechanic. He rebuilt and up-powered the engine in her tractor but left the beat-up old trailer as-is, kind of like today’s rat rods. Seems the couple had a reputation for making extra money, betting with unsuspecting truckers. Learned two lessons that day about betting with a stranger and being too quick to double down.

Fishing 

It was glorious day and I was riding shotgun with another driver, whose name was Lloyd. A state trooper that had been “hiding in the bushes” pulled us over. Asking for Lloyd’s paperwork and running a check on it, the trooper returned to our rig and told Lloyd he was going to cite him for speeding.

A friendly and happy guy, Lloyd made some small talk while the trooper was preparing the citation. “This bright, sunny day is certainly a nice change from all the lousy weather we’ve been having,” he said to the trooper. “Uh huh,” the trooper replied. “I wish I was fishing,” Lloyd went on. Another “uh huh,” response from the trooper. “To be honest, I wish you were also fishing.” Trying not to giggle, the trooper burst out laughing. He did away with the ticket and instead gave Lloyd a warning.

Fire! 

Back in the day of the cabover, a bunch of my trucker buddies played a nasty trick on me. I was parked in a rest area, napping in the sleeper. They put some crumpled newspapers under my windshield wipers and set the papers on fire. Then, they pounded on my door and yelled, “Fire!” Quickly pulling the sleeper curtain aside, I was startled—to say the least—by the flames. I’m sure I set a world record for getting out of a cabover. Scared out of my wits, I heard my buddies laughing hysterically. I’m still trying to figure out how to “properly” pay them back. Any suggestions?

Nicest Looking Rig 

One day I got into a discussion with a bunch of truckers while we were all waiting in the drivers’ room at a cold-storage facility. The conversation turned to what is the nicest looking rig. All but one of us shared our views on what we thought was the nicest looking rig. When we had finished, that one trucker said emphatically that we were all wrong. “The nicest looking rig,” he forcefully stated, “is the one pulling out of a parking space.”

Breaker, Breaker 

Out-Windshield-2To me, the CB radio is a useful tool for trucking and a great source of amusement. Last month, I was trucking along the interstate when traffic slowed to a crawl and then came to a stop. The CB airways came alive with truckers ranting and raving about traffic congestion and all the four-wheelers who don’t know how to drive. 

After a while, a trucker shouted: “How about a break?” 

“Go ahead and break it,” came the acknowledgement. 

“Anybody know how come this eastbound traffic ain’t moving?” asked the trucker. 

The reply: “Mercy sakes, driver; it ain’t movin’ cuz it’s stopped.” 

Another trucker quipped, “This is the safest I’ve felt all week, knowin’ these four-wheelers can’t move.” 

 

 

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