Canuck CDL Journal: Balls To The Wall

Topic 21914 | Page 3

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mikemotorbike's Comment
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So now that I am known as a character at skool, I must move on to phase two of my plan: rescuing victory from defeat.

I have softened the hearts of my opponents(the teachers) with repeated blows to their preconceived assessments by presenting myself in the guise of of a mentally challenged, but eager student. The meet me and think, “Hey here’s a great guy”, but after while think, “what a jerk.’

——————

My instructor asked, “Why do you want to be a trucker?

I answered,” to improve my driving, to learn to grab the wheel of life, to be real, blah blah blah“ and later.

“To teach Instructors.”

He Laughed. So, that was the right answer.

———————-

Now I must shape their perception in an all or nothing gambit to resuscitate their goodwill toward the miscreant student. To accomplish this will require ruthlessness, cunning, patience, and sweetness. For I am not really a trucking student , although I am one; I am an agent from a three letter agency on a secret mission to Instruct the Instructors. I could never be a trucker.

Who in their right mind would want to be a trucker? Getting laid at truck stops with always different partners, eating foreign food, random adventures, risking your soul to save lives... I think what will save me is that I don’t want to be a trucker; It’s a job. However, Trucking has chosen me.

...I will begin by getting a perfect score on my air brake knowledge tests, to win back their goodwill, by demonstrating to them I am eager and capable.

Check!

I stayed up all night for two nights, further exacerbating my already precarious mental state through sleep deprivation, but managed the pull off the elegant maneuver of killing two birds with one stone by solidifying my reputation as a Character, and achieving perfect scores on two exams.

Two, too much!

Now the hard part.

I have to learn to drive.

I’m on the highway now, with a trailer, or ‘van’.

Learn to read traffic: ahead, behind and around, and far ahead, looking at mirrors and gauges every 8 seconds. Shifting, shifting, shifting.

See cars arriving perpendicular to distant intersections. Determine the timing of lights to select gears to slow down or stop. Many lights are pressure activated.

Read highway signs. and there's the wise thing the instructor said which I can't remember, darn it.

I stalled at an intersection, to back up at an intersection, and got a disapproving feel from an overtaking trucker when I was going 50 in a 90, which the instructor had just said was bad, and he was right. I tightened up after that so it's not all bad. I'm getting better at gearing, learning to use the splitter, and shifting in the upper ranges, which requires a larger progressive shifting spread.

I’ll be attracting girls from A&W in no time.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

DWI:

Driving While Intoxicated

EPU:

Electric Auxiliary Power Units

Electric APUs have started gaining acceptance. These electric APUs use battery packs instead of the diesel engine on traditional APUs as a source of power. The APU's battery pack is charged when the truck is in motion. When the truck is idle, the stored energy in the battery pack is then used to power an air conditioner, heater, and other devices

mikemotorbike's Comment
member avatar

I discovered the subtlety between confidence and arrogance. It is the difference between believing in oneself, arrogance is acting like I know it. I know nothing.

————————

I was taking a sh*tload of weight training supplements to improve my memory and decision making abilities when I wrote the first pages of my diary. I am watching that now. It made me impossible. I thought the supplements would do the work, for me I guess. Now I realize it is my commitment and hard work that does it.

—————————

Tonights chat with a trucker friend of 25 years:

Me: I just went out for a smoke and cried.  Its been a sressfull three days, week, and the last threee nights have been without sleep.  I am going to lay down for a nap. be safe.

Trucker:Try melatonin. You'll be fine. It's a new adventure for you!

Me: its like army basic training. They push you till you crack, and then they pick up the good pieces worth salvaging and make a truck driver

Me: so I had a nap, and a smoke, and laughed.  Now, let’s turn this truck around!

mikemotorbike's Comment
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Wed Mar 7. 2018

A beautiful stranger in distress appears to the boy-now-a-man across the hill. He makes a calculated gambit. He has to have confidence in himself that he has correctly assessed his own character and delivered the appropriate lessons to his charge. He swallows his own fears of inadequacy and boldly trusts the younger man to his own devices, as he once again gives of his life to help meet the needs of a stranger in greater peril.

mikemotorbike's Comment
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I feel like Chicken Tonight!

Facing off with the well-meaning, well-seasoned Biker I mean Instructor, I threw my hat down, cursing passionately at the illogic of following his backing directions, when I can’t even see the parking spot for the snow.

The men next lot over, casually pretending to do work, clandestinely sauntered over to to investigate the drama unfolding.

He rolls his eyes, “I don’t see what the problem is, I could do it with my eyes shut!,” laying down his frustration with my going AWOL.

“If I had 50 years experience like you, maybe I could do it! But its an articulating hitch, going backwards, through mirrors, with the pylons buried in snow! Let me get a feel for backing, I have to learn it for myself! I am not a Don Juan like you, I am a student Romeo”. Let me play!”

Slamming the door after hailing ass my back into the cab, I aced the back up. I loudly celebrated, hi fiving, “Hot stuff! I am getting laid tonight! heck, I’m sampling to the whole seafood buffet!”

I happily went around the truck and enthusiastically pulled the handle decoupling the fifth wheel jaws, happy thoughts of good times dancing in my head.

meanwhile…

Across the lot, a student honks his horn twice prior to backing. Unexpected, a person appears in his mirror. Forced to abort his maneuver, he waits idling. The person finishes his task and departs.

The others student’s Instructor comes over. “Mike! You didn’t see my truck backing up! Didn’t you hear the horn?”

“Well, I thought I heard a couple of calves mewling in the next county, but not quite the herald of trumpets from God you’re talking about. Perhaps your student could give the horn a manlier punch?

“You could have been run over. You have to be aware of your surroundings.”

“I am learning situational awareness, I’ll admit.” I shoulder checked surreptitiously to ensure privacy, “To be honest,” I intoned conspiratorially with my hand cupped over the side of my mouth, “My Instructor John says he is going to ruin my car driving, and turn me into a truck driver!”

I’m John too. He’s big John, I’m little John, but I rule the lot!

I bent over and had to put glove under my nose evacuating my nose from suddenly laughing out loud.

So, Robin Hood, The Merry Minstrels John, and I are friends.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

mikemotorbike's Comment
member avatar

Thank You

After uncoupling, my Instructor resignedly gets in the cab with me to park across the lot.

Reading his mood, and extending to him an olive branch, I offer, “A Son has a conflicted relationship with his father. He chafes at his Dad's authority, while simultaneously needing his approval."

Across the Lot...

A female student, the Newbie Natural, and I compare notes. The instructors listening nearby are huddling peacefully, facing each other in silence. She observes this remarkable stance, and I advise her on male behaviour, "Men do that."

I follow as she gambles over, to stand opposite, equal and yet in relation to our contrasting roles as student to Instructor. Feeling the peace of the group, I shyly smile.

Thank you.

mikemotorbike's Comment
member avatar

Thank You

After uncoupling, my Instructor glances resignedly at me as he gets in the cab to park across the lot.

Reading his mood, and extending to him an olive branch, I say, “A Son has a conflicted relationship with his father. He chafes at his Dad's authority, while simultaneously needing his approval."

Across the Lot...

A female student, The Young Natural, and I are comparing notes. We are a week old, yet the newer Young Natural has already driven the tractor downtown, something we have yet to learn!

The instructors nearby are huddled peacefully, facing each other in silence. She observes this remarkable stance, so I advise her on male behaviour, "Men do that."

I follow as she gambles over, to stand opposite, equal and yet in relation to our contrasting roles as student to Instructor. Feeling the peace of the group, I shyly smile.

Thank you!

mikemotorbike's Comment
member avatar

If you are ever asked how you did on an air brakes test, never say you made 100%. Say you passed.

Ask me how I know.

We are supposed to make mistakes, and balance our training consistently. The point of an exam is not to make 100% in an all out free for all, no holds barred peak experience, but to learn.

For instance,I was given misleading directions to the Air Brakes knowledge test location. Actually, I couldn’t remember a key piece of info, the street, even tho I confirmed the rest of the directions, twice asking and receiving verbal confirmation on a key intersection. I still got to the wrong place.

Lesson: I should confirm directions with an official map.

I ended up at the ICBC Injury Claims office. I studied for an hour in the parking lot. After being seated for a while, I was politely corrected and graciously offered the correct address.

As I left, I noticed my phone inexplicably engaged in a live call to my buddy back west! Presciently, I looked up, and confirming the glass door was open, answered the phone, and precedded to walk directly into the glass wall!

I was rattled. I was calm before. So, recognizing my bodily anxiety, I calmed myself down. Then I took the test. Be prepared for anything! Its the road, anything can happen! Deal with it! Your brain cannot process information if you are in fight or flight response! Learn to be chill, laid back, unpretentious, amused with your own plans. Look up 'laid back'.

Identifying and dealing effectively with feelings in your body of anxiety and stress is a skill required by truckers, called Stress Management. You will find many opportunities offered in daily life to learn the demanded character attributes which are a precondition for professional driving. I theorize the psychological conditioning of training pts one into state which perceives mundane occurrences as meaningful, to the point of seeming paranormal. A consensus reality manifestation of probabilities, to which our heightened mental state attunes us.

I wondered if my subconscious was sabotaging my goal. Perhaps, it is preparing me for it! I am taking mine, and others, lives in a trust as I accept the responsibility to drive commercially.

You’ve gambled everything on this, and people are gambling their safety with you on the road. They want and demand competence in their truckers.

Humility Assertiveness Confidence Respect Discipline Consideration skill

Wow. Is there a group of strategical pychoanylyst PHDs at work intervening directly in our lives?

ARE YOU A ***** OR A STEER SOLDIER ?!?!

Manifest:

Bill of Lading

An accurate record of everything being shipped on a truck, often times used as a checklist during unloading.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

mikemotorbike's Comment
member avatar

Trampled by Turtles - Midnight on the Interstate 0921336001520575804.jpg

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

mikemotorbike's Comment
member avatar

TBT -Alone 0690951001520576631.jpg

Fm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
mikemotorbike's Comment
member avatar

Wed mar 14 2018

A few days off from the journal to recalibrate. Less hype, mo money.

Study less…except for the pre-trip inspection. Its your mistakes that reveal where you need to focus, not perfect marks. That has almost nothing to do with real life. My deficit is awareness. Using Mirrors, watching and considering Pedestrians. Looking ahead.

Seeing road signs. Its mostly remembering them a moment or minute later. And listening to my instructor.

I am finally slowing down after 2 and a half weeks. I must see what is happening, and learn to think and plan. I cant go faster, its not a contest. I have to think of all the things, and more: plan escape route, if people change their plans.I gotta relax in order to be able to mange shifting focus, to include shifting the gears. And share that focus by distributing my attention around and back and out around again, the mirrors, tach, traffic, conversation. I find when I get flustered, I go faster and race through the gears.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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