A Stick Of Gum

Topic 7453 | Page 1

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Family Man's Comment
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This morning, I passed the road test to receive my Class A CDL. Yesterday morning, I had failed the test on a technicality, so I did a retake today. I felt a little nervous and concerned this morning, and most of all embarrassed that I had failed the day before. The senior instructor of the truck driving school I have been attending met me this morning at DPS at the appointed time (about 2 hours before I actually took the road test). He is a man of few words, but when he does talk he is usually either angry, uncompromising, or ready to belittle any student is still in need of serious improvement (me). In short, he comes across as crabby. However, this morning, I could tell he was willing to give me a few vital pointers. He still spoke with characteristic crabbiness, but he did so with the aim of providing support. Shortly before the test was about to commence, he asked me if I'd like a stick of gum. I realized that what he was offering was communion, if that makes any sense. He was lowering his guard to supply support. As I drove, I was by no means perfect. I made about 4 obvious mistakes, but that didn't matter. I wasn't phased. I kept chewing the gum. Hard, each moment as I attempted to correct an error. All of the errors got corrected. When I returned to the testing center, and was informed that I had passed, I told my instructor. He gave smile as I described one of the errors I had made. Then, he patted me the shoulder and said, "Good job." As I walked away and nobody was looking, I felt my eyes tearing up. Not just because for what I had accomplished but for the support I had received. A tiny stick of gum made all the difference.


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.
Pepper's Comment
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A tiny stick of gum made all the difference.

Isn't it wonderful when someone does something nice for you and it makes you feel like a million bucks?

I am so glad that you got everything solved and everything is going well!


Errol V.'s Comment
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A tiny stick of gum made all the difference.

What a story! I bet now you'll pop some gum into your mouth when the going gets tense, just to remember your "Crabby" instructor & how he helped you.

And, if you ever have a student, you'll have a pack of Juicy Fruit ready.

Mikki 's Comment
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James, amazing. I too find myself touched by the tiniest of things,they can mean so........ much at times! Good for you and congrats!

Family Man's Comment
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As rookie truckers, we're all in it together. And sometimes "it" can be a rewarding place to be.

What I am learning is that trucking is not simply about gaining knowledge and skills, or even proving oneself through performance, but it is also about building meaningful professional relationships. I guess this is one reason each of us is motivated to be here at TruckingTruth's forum. It's a good thing that we're making a mutual effort to tackle this vital social component. I think the effort will serve us well on the road.

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