Truck Drivers or: how I learned that everyone, or no one, hates them all

trucks

I recently saw a semi with a sign on the back that said ‘Don’t like trucks? Stop buying stuff. Problem solved.’ My first thought was, who the fuck is that sign for? Is there a contingent of people constantly complaining about semi trucks out there? Like anyone that drives a car, I occasionally get annoyed with trucks that will try to pass another truck going uphill on the highway because it usually takes three miles for them to actually be able to make the pass. And there are times when a truck will veer into my lane and freak me the fuck out because they are huge, but I’ve never thought of trucks as unnecessary or something in general not to like.

I suppose we all need an enemy of sorts. I’m sure truck drivers see people do some of the dumbest shit imaginable because, lets face it, most people at one time or another are bad at driving. We often make bad decisions and then back them up with even worse decisions and while behind the wheel that can make things dangerous. There are people that will fly down the highway and zig in and out of traffic. Unless you are in the midst of explosive diarrhea or there’s a family emergency, if you drive like that you’re a fucking asshole. And seriously, even if there is a family emergency, try to not drive like a maniac. It doesn’t do your family any good if you wreck on the way to an emergency.

But back to the point, where does the idea that everyone hates trucks come from? Of course I want trucks on the road. I want my local grocery store to have fresh fruits and veggies, I want my mail to make it to wherever it needs to go, I want to be able to buy a 36 pack of toilet paper from Target. For all that to happen we need trucks, at least until drones becomes sentient and take over the world, but that’s another issue for another day.

There seems to be a defiant attitude for a lot of the country much like Cartman on South Park;

cartman

which is coooool, maybe, I think, actually, maybe not. A society of Cartmans sounds terrible. He’s the character you love to cheer against, a lot like our president. A constantly defiant society accomplishes nothing but arguing. And that’s why we have a congress. And boy do they do a great job of accomplishing virtually nothing.

While it can be a good thing to be proud and defiant, if you’re fighting an evil force that may not even be there, what are you really defying? So truck drivers, I can’t speak for everyone else, but I don’t look at you as a nuisance on the road, or even a necessary evil, I look at you with some understanding that you see the worst in people, have to log a lot of hours on the road and sometimes have to put up with people’s bullshit. Well, so do the rest of us. I think that’s the Merriam-Webster definition of work. Please don’t be quick to judge that those of us in normal sized vehicles on the road wish anything bad upon you, or even don’t understand your value to our society, but if you take three miles to pass another truck going two miles per hour slower than you, you might see me singing “get the fuck out of the way” from my driver’s seat. It’s nothing personal, it might be low key road rage, but at least it will be from the heart because I love you trucks. And we sometimes hate the ones we love, but please, put the fucking signs away. There’s enough defiant bullshit in our world as it is.

Pucker and Breathe

fence

I see it all in a three second glance through the ivy covered fence. Locked knees and stiff bodies around the picnic table lead to tales of too much confused testosterone and words that can’t hide it. There is a card game being played and no one is saying too much, not that they ever do…

Where is Tony with the bottle of Fireball? He never shows up at the right time. Maybe that’s his super power; the inability to recognize a situation and act accordingly. 2 A.M. is a terrible time for Fireball. Or the perfect time. Damnit Tony.

God my ass hurts from this seat. And I can’t fart or I’m never getting laid from anyone at this party. I’ve taken that risk before and there’s no fucking way I’m doing that again. I’ll suck it up. Pucker and breathe, that’s the key, pucker and breathe.

Damn Julie looks fine. I wonder if she likes me. I wish it was easier to figure that out. I need to slow down, I’m getting too drunk. Drunk is okay, but I can’t get sloppy. Nothing kills a night like a guy falling into everybody and nodding off mid-sentence.

What’s the right thing to say and when is the right time to say it? I always think of it too late. Maybe that makes me seem more thoughtful and wise. Or maybe they think I’m stupid. Maybe I am since I never have the right thing to say. Maybe I…

The scene fades as it often does through the rear view. Our not-so-saintly hero may escape his neurosis long enough to pick up a girl, or pull a number, or he may end up passed out in a corner getting permanent marker penises drawn all over him. All from three seconds through a fence hole, voices battling a car stereo for prominence. All waiting to tell their own story in short bursts among the confusion.

An Open Letter to General Motors About my 2006 Chevy Cobalt

GM

Dearest General Motors,

I bought my 2006 Chevy Cobalt in the winter of 2007 with roughly 25,000 miles on it. It now has approximately 117,000 miles on it and, let me say, it’s amazing that it’s still allowed on the road. The engine has performed amazingly well and kept me driving for the past ten years, but the rest of the car has caused me so much frustration that I have fantasized about driving it off a cliff, like in an action movie, watching it explode as it hits the ground.

Over the past ten years Chevy has sent me recall notices for seven different recalls. Seven! That’s an impressive number of recalls. Chevy has to fix these problems at no cost to the owner because they built things so poorly that it is unsafe to drive and they could or have been sued for a lot of money. At one point they attempted to fix one problem by using the exact same parts, leading to, you guessed it, another recall. What leadership! It’s not unusual for cars to have recalls, it is unusual for a car to lose money on the entire line because of recalls. Notice, Chevy no longer makes Cobalts.

To go with this impressive list of recalls, I have my own list of cosmetic and functional problems with my car. As cars age, they usually need work as some things will naturally break down over time. With that in mind, these are the things that have gone wrong with my car: the door actuator broke, meaning the lock slips off its track if the door is opened while locked. You would be amazed how many times you try to open the door without paying attention if it’s locked. This led to my key faub burning out because the only way to get it to work after that is to hit unlock over and over until it catches the sweet spot and unlocks. And the only way to program a new key faub is to take it to a dealership and pay them a lot of money. What a great company strategy! If this wasn’t enough, it is impossible for me to lock or unlock either my driver’s side of passenger side doors with my key. I have no idea why, it just does not work. So I no longer lock my car.

Over the last few years the rear defrost went out because I clean my car occasionally, the spring in my turn signal broke so I have to turn it off by hand each time, the driver’s side window track bent randomly and completely slips off it’s track if the window is rolled all the way down, the physical lock on the driver’s side snapped off at the top, the horn only works when pressed in exactly the right spot, the cruise control works when it decides it wants to, turning the air conditioning on makes the car idle to a point where it almost stalls and the overhead lamp only works with a jiggle to make sure it’s in the right spot.

As I said already, there is a natural amount of wear and tear that happens to cars and none of these things on their own are all that outrageous. It’s the combination of everything that makes me call my car things I would never call a human. The crazy thing is that the car still runs pretty well. The engine is likely the only part of the car that will still work in the next year or so. So, for that I say thank you Chevy. For everything else that is wrong with the car I want to applaud Chevy and General Motors for making one of the worst cars in American history. For all the frustration I have experienced on your behalf I would like to present a trophy of a big, bronze middle finger, because that is what you gave to the country when you released the Chevy Cobalt to the masses.middle finger

Sincerely,

Adam Simers