Enlightening Conversation Overheard At A Truck Stop About Owning A Truck

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Old School's Comment
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Recently, while eating breakfast at the "Queen City" truck stop in Meridian, MS, I overheard this conversation between a waitress and a driver who appeared to be friends.

After the driver walks in the door and selects his table, this scenario began to unfold.

Waitress: "How ya doing Billy?"

Driver: "Oh, I reckon I'm doing just fine."

Waitress: "Are you still working for old Fred?"

Driver: "Nope, I bought myself a truck, and I'm running loads out of the mill."

At this point the waitress makes a loud thwack as she slaps him on the head with the stack of menus in her hand, and puts her hands on her hips staring at him with a look of dismay.

Driver (sheepishly): "Well, wha'd ya do that for?"

Waitress (emphatically): "Biiiiillllly! Every person we know who has tried that has gone broke! What makes you think you're so much smarter than everyone else? I can't believe you went and did that! I ought to just whip your butt right here in front of everybody."

Driver: "Well, you dang near already did that anyway with those menus. Anything worse than what you just did and I'd need to call the law for assault and battery."

Waitress: "Oh that was nothing compared to what you deserve. I'll tell you who you need to call. You need to call a bankruptcy lawyer, cause that's what you're gonna need."

The waitress stomped back to the kitchen area as the driver was rubbing his head. She ignored his question as she was walking away... "Ain't ya gonna bring me no coffee?"

I was finishing off my breakfast as this all transpired. I tipped the waitress, paid my bill, and left out of there with a grin on my face. For once I got to witness somebody with some common sense trying to share it with a hard headed truck driver.

Disclaimer: If you're an owner/operator, I'm not trying to offend you or dismiss your business acumen. I happen to think there's very little benefit to being the owner in this business. The above conversation amused me because I find very few people willing to admit to the well known difficulties of being an owner/operator. The waitress seemed genuinely concerned and frustrated for her friend. I shared this for both the educational and entertaining aspects of it.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Robert D. (Raptor)'s Comment
member avatar

Old School

l could understand what drivers would want to subject themselves to being an O/O. The cost of maintenance, Tires, say a turbo, and the list goes on and on. This trucking business is hard enough without those issues. Now as you said, Not trying to P*** O/O's off. I just think that working for a company that keeps you rolling where you are making money and in return they are making money, a win-win situation.

But it was a very amusing story. And who says waitresses are smart?

rofl-1.gif

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

Good thing you ordered the correct menu item. you never know where she might next, or a weapon other tgan menues. A hot spatula would hurt.

PJ's Comment
member avatar

That is very funny.... OS no offense taken. I’m the definite odd ball anyway.. Trucking as a hobby.... What can I say, I’ve always been a bit different

Parrothead66's Comment
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How was your food there? I ate there about a month ago and wasn’t very satisfied with it.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

rofl-3.gif

That's awesome. That's what we do to people in here when they talk about buying a truck and it really makes em mad. I wish we could parade out all of the people over the years who chastised us for recommending against buying or leasing a truck and see where they are today and how they're doing. You can call us any name in the book as long as you're willing to come back in 2 years with proof of how things went for you.

Imagine the wall of shame we'd have by now!

Ernie S. (AKA Old Salty D's Comment
member avatar

rofl-3.gif

That's awesome. That's what we do to people in here when they talk about buying a truck and it really makes em mad. I wish we could parade out all of the people over the years who chastised us for recommending against buying or leasing a truck and see where they are today and how they're doing. You can call us any name in the book as long as you're willing to come back in 2 years with proof of how things went for you.

Imagine the wall of shame we'd have by now!

Brett,

I guess that makes me the odd ball. But I just keep rolling down the highway, making this work for me....

Ernie

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
But I just keep rolling down the highway, making this work for me....

That's what we hear, but we really wouldn't know. What I do know is if you're doing better than everyone else we'd sure love to know your secrets. What have you figured out that no one else is doing?

We also have a guy in our diaries section that paid $10,000 to go to school for 6 months, instead of getting paid to attend a Paid CDL Training Program for a few weeks. If he would have gone the paid route, by the end of his first year in trucking he would have made about $30,000 more, spent $10,000 less, and had 6 more months of experience on the road. He would have made way more money, spent way less on schooling, had double the real world driving experience, and far more knowledge and better skills. But if you ask him he'll tell you that he's very happy with his decision and it's working for him. It makes no Earthly sense to me, but I'm a very logical person and most people are not. As Dale Carnegie said in one of my very favorite quotes:

“When dealing with people, let us remember we are not dealing with creatures of logic. We are dealing with creatures of emotion, creatures bristling with prejudices and motivated by pride and vanity.”

― Dale Carnegie, How to Win Friends and Influence People

So what any given person may consider a success, or publicly declare as a success, may depend a lot on that person's logic and perspective, or lack thereof. I prefer to use objective, quantifiable measures to determine whether a business decision was a success or not. I haven't found too many other people who are willing to look at it that way though.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Ernie S. (AKA Old Salty D's Comment
member avatar

Brett,

I have said this before, and I'll say it again, I do just a little better pay wise than I would as a company driver. But the reasons I am out here and my situation is different than most, so I am satisfied with the outcome.

Just so the folks that don't know, yes I run a lease truck with Prime. I guess what sets me apart is that I don't come on here and make crazy statements about how much more money I'm making without having facts to back those statements.

Ernie

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Mujaahida D.'s Comment
member avatar

Brett,

I have said this before, and I'll say it again, I do just a little better pay wise than I would as a company driver. But the reasons I am out here and my situation is different than most, so I am satisfied with the outcome.

Just so the folks that don't know, yes I run a lease truck with Prime. I guess what sets me apart is that I don't come on here and make crazy statements about how much more money I'm making without having facts to back those statements.

Ernie

I think it is great that independants operate and succeed. Company or independant is not a right or wrong choice, it is a choice you make and learn from it.... hopefully. Recently my farm dump truck a cherry of a topkick 1997 decided it needed new front tires, 700 dollars later , I can say the tires look really great, but darn my wallet is very empty.

cheers

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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