The Spirit of the American Trucker – March 2021


I just wrote this letter to my Son.  I plan to send it out to him 20 years from now: Dear Konrad, I made you work on our old Peterbilt so you would never be overwhelmed by any machinery.  It’s hard to work on heavy, rusted truck for a grown man, but it’s “mission impossible” for an 11-year-old boy.  But I introduced you to 4-foot-long torque wrench that day to make sure the lug nuts were tight.  We need 475-foot pounds to make sure the wheels don’t walk away when we drive.  475 divided by 4 feet = 118 pounds of weight needed to be applied.  You were like 80 pounds.  I told you to figure it out and watched you with a smile.  You found those missing “extra pounds” by hanging upside down and pushing your feet against the trailer rail.  You made me say “WOW!”  The other day wasn’t as spectacular – I made you grease the entire truck and trailer – another tough task for a first timer, and you were dirty like a pig and tired as a dog, but I’m sure your future wife will never complain about squeaky doors at the house and your car will have fresh oil all the time.  Then, remember when I made you climb over the stacks and reefer unit to the top of the trailer to replace that corner light?  I told you I believed in you, and you never fell and finished the job – again.  I’m sure you will believe in your kids now, too, and realize that if you just give them the proper know-how and never express any doubt, they will get it done, just like you.  They will surprise everyone!  And it’s not just you – all kids are amazing like that.  Use proper tools, maintain everything, and have faith.  I did that and we stayed free when you were growing up.  Now, it’s time for you to do the same!  Love, Dad.

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