Friday, April 20, 2012


Hoss (one of my best friends and fellow truckers) and I were dispatched to Nebraska many moons ago to pick up corn. He was in the Green Machine - a 1981 KW W9. I was in the "Hawaaian tropical red" 1984 IHC 4300. Our destination was at some out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere places and just before we got there, we passed a wide spot in the road occupied by the state weights and measures DOT. They were in an older white van, and had their portable scales all set up and ready to go. It was a hot,humid day in the middle of summer with the sun glaring down on all of us.

We could see them watching us as we loaded - we took several trips between the elevator's loadout and their scales, and axled out our loads to be sure we had all the "i"s dotted and "t"s crossed. Probably three or four times we went back to dump some off, or add some more. At any rate, after about an hour of messing around, we were ready.

When we pulled up, the nice DOT officers motioned us to pull over. They wanted to weigh us. We asked why - hadn't they seen us getting every little thing correct?

Did not matter - they were gonna weigh us, and make us waste an hour or so screwing around with them. Even though they'd seen us get it all correct, they made us weigh each axle or sets of axles, and their gross reading came up pretty much with what our ticket said. More time wasted thanks to them. They were both less than friendly as well, which only added to the bad taste in our mouths.

Of course we were legal, and while we were putting all of our documents back, they were busy loading the portable scales in the back of the van. They were getting ready to blow the joint as well.

All of a sudden, my scanner caught my attention - I could hear these guys calling in to HQ. Their van wouldn't start and they needed the dispatcher to send someone out. I asked Hoss on the CB if he'd heard that, because he had a scanner as well. Yep, he'd heard it.

So, sez I, should we help 'em out? I had jumper cables with me. It was a hot day. We could be nice.

"F*ck 'em" was his answer.

I still laugh just thinking about this story.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Again, I admire your timing.
I am in a middle of similar story; will tell later (maybe) - you and your friend are an inspiration.

Woke up thinking about my problem - and thought: how come in jurisprudence, theoretically, we are all presumed innocent until proved guilty, and the proof lies on our accusers - but dealing with small bureaucracies it is exactly th4e opposite: we are guilty by default and are forced to provide proofs of innocence or compliance with every clerk's whim even if the paper does not requires us so - but god forbid we are judged (by them) to be "difficult".

Powerless people often like to make others powerless.