Stony Ridge, Ohio (Toledo Area)
I'm stuck out away from home this weekend, a victim of the slow freight situation in the Northeast region, which hasn't changed much at all from last year. In fact, it may be a little worse this year, since it's an election year. I sat for a little over 24 hours last week without a load, in southern Pennsylvania. I lucked out and got home last weekend, but no such luck this week. I'm set to deliver this load in Detroit tomorrow (Monday) morning.
The Powers That Be in my trucking company are bound to know by now that freight is -- and has been -- very soft in the Northeast and I just can't figure out why they keep insisting on sending me there, when there's such a problem with getting me back out of that area. I mean, my company, like all trucking companies, is a little slow on the uptake sometimes, but they're hardly that dumb, either!! Or at least one would think so.
"But we have customers there to service!" That would be their presumptive response to the above query, to which I would reply, "Well what do they expect?? That I'm just gonna move in there, indefinitely??!! How about those fine customers spending a little thought on getting me rolling again, preferably in a southward direction!!" Alas, that's not happening, though, and this week, when the Powers sent me to Brooklyn, New Yawk, with a Thursday delivery, I sensed that any hometime this week was more than likely doomed. Am I a prophet? Hardly. I know from prior experience that there is little freight going south out of the NY/NJ area, even when the volume is normal, so it didn't take the mentality of a rocket scientist to figure out that my goose was more than likely cooked this week. So, here I sit, chatting electronically with all my cyber-friends.
Okay, that's more than enough background info to start a professional editor tearing his/her hair out by the roots, so let's move on the point of this entry (if it can be said to even have one.) I want to impart a little offbeat knowlege to you people today about trucking company names. Actually about silly, stupid trucking company names, such as the ones I've made up in my spare time with which to label companies that essentially have no names at all, along with some all-too-REAL ones.
First, the ones that have no actual name at all. Just a collection of letters. Such as PAM Transport, which is actually denoted as P.A.M. on their trucks and trailers. A female first name, short for "Pamela," in the formal sense. Did the company's founder name it after his wife, or daughter, as the late Dave Thomas did with his Wendy's hamburger chain? That would be a logical assumption, but no. Actually, according to one of their drivers, whom I asked once upon a time, the head honcho of that outfit named it after himself. P.A.M. is his initials, standing for Paul A. Mitchell, who founded the company. Another of my favorites of this variety is an outfit called G.O.D., which actually stands for Guaranteed Overnight Delivery. But what possibilities come to mind there!! Imagine -- somebody asks you what you do for a living and you can tell them, "I work for G.O.D.," and not be lying, nor do you require a divinity degree to back up your claim!! Pretty neat, huh??
But there are plenty of other of those "letter companies" on the road, and they must stand for something, but I'll be damned if I know what!! To that end, I've applied my endless imagination and created names based on the letters, with which to better identify these 18-wheeled entities. If you can think of something better, feel free to name them yourself, but these are mine!!
KLLM -- Kinky Lot Lizard Molesters, or Kan't Leave Lower Misssissippi
SWIFT -- See What I F---ed (up) Today, or Sure Wish I (had a) Fast Truck
CRST -- Caution: Real Slow Truck
ABF --Anything But Fast
DHL -- Definitely (an) Hour Late
CFI -- Cheap Freight, Incorporated
STI -- Stupid Trucker Inside
PTL -- Perpetually Tired (and) Lost
UPS -- Under (the) Posted Speed (limit)
And, of course, the famous ROADWAY, or (on the) ROAD (and in the) WAY!! And my own outfit: STAR -- Slow Truck At Rear.
There was once an outfit called Rude Carriers (it got gobbled up by a larger company). Now, what if Rude drivers really lived up to the company's name?? I can just see it: A Rude driver walking up to a shipping office window somewhere -- "My load ready yet, ASSHOLE??" or maybe something like, "Got my bills, BITCH??" That company name could have given them the credentials to actually say what thousands of drivers wish they could say, after some shipper makes them wait on the lot for five hours!!! I can just hear some office wonks talking to each other: "Oh, it's just that Rude Carriers driver. Don't pay him any mind -- they're all like that. It's why they got that name, y'know?? They're Rude!!"
There are other trucking company names out there that make you scratch your head and wonder where that one came from, too. One of my favorites is Pollywog Trucking, complete with a little Kermit-like frog cartoon on their trailers. What in the exact HELL would prompt someone to give a trucking company a name like that??!!! Did the owner let his three-year-old rugrat name it?? Gotta wonder about that. There's Camel Express, but it's based in North Carolina, for God's sake, not in Saudi Arabia, as one might suspect! And they're not dedicated to cigarette deliveries, either.
Well, those are some of the stranger ones out there and I'm sure there are many more that I haven't encountered, or just haven't noticed. I think some people who started trucking companies just couldn't come up with anything to name them, so they just stuck the first thing that came into their minds on their trucks and trailers. Kinda like I am with baby names, really, if I were ever to become a daddy (a VERY remote possibility now, at my present age). I'd likely name my kid "Peterbilt," or something like that. My old lady would be plotting to kill me and the kid would likely curse me forever, for sticking him/her with that moniker!
"But it seemed like a good idea at the time!!"