Friday, November 14, 2014

Is excersise overated?

I have been doing a lot of thinking on this subject lately as I have had some weight return (about 45 lbs). Being a truck driver I dont get much in the way of excersise, then when I get home its a flurry of movment to get chores done and I am sore for the next two or three days.

Ever since basic training I have hated the very word excersise so I decided I would do a little research into it.

It takes burning 3500 calories to loose one pound of body fat.  Okay, so how much excersise would I have to do to do that?

The answear is, a lot!!!
Check out the chart on this web site:

Not very engouraging.

But, its not just the burning of callories thats important.

I learned that excersise strengthens the heart, incresses blood flow, reduces bad cholesterol, uses excess sugar, improves resperation and incresse the basel metabolic rate wich in turn incresses the amount of calories you burn while sitting on your behind.

I have also found a web site that has exercise that are specific to truck drivers:

Now the real question is will I do it?

So far the answer is No!

I want to change that but how does one overcome a lifetime of hatred towards a healthy accctivity?

I' ll get have to get back to you when I get it figured out. Till then keep the rubbber side down.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Is trucking "Fun"?

I was asked recently by a young cashier at a truck stop, " Is trucking fun?" I told her it depends on what you mean by fun.

She countered with, "... you get to see a lot of the country".

I said, "yes that true, whatever is on the side of the road".

I think that is a comman misconception of our profession by the general public. They really belive somehow that we are professional tourist. Nothing could be fruther from the truth.

They just don't get it that in order for them to have all the great goodies they can get at Wallmart someone had to bring it from somewhere and in a timely manner.

They just don't get it that we don't have time to go see Mt. Rushmore (even if we could get the truck there). The job is drive from poinnt A to poinnt B as fast as possiable so we can wait while the reciver or shipper takes thier sweet time to take the product off or put it on.

Yep, drive, sleep,drive, sleep and drive some more. Who has time for fun?

And home time is for many of us a mad rush to get all the chores done that had been neglected while we were away.

Fun? who has the time?

But the human machine doesn't  work well without some kind of "fun". We have to relax and release the tensions of the day. For me I read or play computer games or write, but every once in awhile the bordom and stress builds up and I just have to stop and 'veg out'.

So driver, what do you do for fun? I would like to know. Leave your comment. Thanks.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Manageable bits and pieces

Out with the old and in with the new. A term usually reserved for New Years, but today I am going to use it to describe the beginning of our Kitchen remodel.

If you have ever thought that home time for a trucker is the same as for the rest of the world, you would be most mistaken. I had been out for three weeks, got home friday afternoon, mowed about 1/4 acre, and began the project pictured on the left the next morning.

Finished this counter top Sunday night and started packing for another two week run. I have an 10 hour drive ahead of me today to get my load unloaded tomorrow bright and early. I had asked for today off because today is my 14th wedding anniversary to the most patient, loving , tolerant woman, I have ever known.

What makes truckers home time different than the rest of the worlds is that we have to live our lives in bits and pieces. There is still one more counter to resurface but I cannot start a project over the weekend and continue it through the week should it take longer than I estimated so, manageable bits and pieces.

The same is true for our relationships with family and friends. Relationships take time to develop so as you might guess truckers have few real friends. I have been living were I currently reside for over eight years now and I know few people and have no friends. Family takes all of my time when I am not caring for the home they live in.

Home time is dictated by the freight, and your ability to tolerate the long hours, boredom and your need for money. Every time I go home it costs about two to three hundred dollars on the next paycheck so, as I have said in my book, "So You Want To Be A Truck Driver" this job is not a job but a lifestyle. Not all are cut out for it, buy my book before you ever invest a single dime in this way of life, many are fooled by the clever advertising of the truck schools and driver teaching companies.

 Anyway will be late if I don't put it in gear so, till next time keep the rubber side down.


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Coffee VS. Cola

Hi all, I have caught a lot of flak over the years for my serious coffee addiction. I am embarrassed to tell you how much coffee I drink, so, I won't.

I have noticed over the past five or so years that soda is quickly becoming the beverage of choice for truckers. I know neither drink is good for our bodies but really which one is worse? 

Just off the top of my head I would have to say soda is.


Because soda contains sugar as well as caffeine. Sugar is a drug much like heroin and contains a good deal more calories than coffee, empty calories that contain no nutritional value. An 8 ounces serving of soda pop averages about 120 calories, 8 ounces of coffee averages 1 calorie, big difference. It's no wonder I know people who say all they had to do was quit soda pop to loose 25 pounds.

In an article on WebMD sugar, "...not only makes us fat, it also wreaks havoc on our liver, mucks up our metabolism, impairs brain function, and may leave us susceptible to heart disease, diabetes, even cancer."

A lot of drivers have told me that they switched to soda because it seems to work better at waking them up, this doesn't surprise me, even when considering the fact that soda contains less caffeine than coffee, an average of 95 to 200 milligrams for 8 ounces of coffee, and 23 to 50 milligrams for a 12 ounce soda. What makes the difference is the sugar, it's all those calories being dumped into your system.

Caffeine of course is also a drug, it affects our nervous system and gives a feeling of wakefulness, it increases our heart rate and blood pressure and may even cause the heart to beat irregularly and can interfere with a good nights sleep. It is also a diuretic which explains why you have to pea more. It also has the added effect of becoming tolerated in your system meaning that you must drink more to get the same effect and it is addictive just like sugar. The FDA had put together an informative brochure on caffeine, you can get it at:

So bottom line here. Neither drug is good for you. Soda Pop will put pounds on and coffee will mess with your nervous system. Both are addictive. Best choice, drink water.

What will I do? What do all addicts do...

Keep the rubber side down. Till next time.


Friday, August 1, 2014

Make it Hot... To Go!

I do love my  Road Pro Portable Oven.

The Picture shows a lentil chili I made for dinner. Half a cup of dry lentils, half a package of chili seasoning, half an onion, a can of diced tomatoes and about 4 ounces of shredded roast beef plus about half a cup of water. I put all of that in the bread tray the put it into the oven, plugged it in, and headed down the road. About an hour later I had to pull over and eat it cause the smell was making me hungry!

I don't get paid for endorsements like this one and if you would like to encourage me to keep writing then buy my book, "So, You Want To Be A Truck Driver". or my other one "Ten Commandments a Guide to Holiness".
At the very least like my Face Book Author page, please.

Enough advertisement!

The company I currently work for doesn't allow inverters installed since they think their little 1500 watt inverter will run a microwave and the environmental air, so the portable oven has been a Godsend for me.

Pictured on the right is my average breakfast (when I don't oversleep). It is made of 3/4 cup rolled oats with about a cup of almond milk made overnight by adding the liquid and letting it sit. I did make my eggs in the portable oven by lining the bread pan with foil then adding two eggs whipped with about a quarter cup of water, poured onto onion and bell pepper, plugged it in for about 20 minuets and presto, scrambled eggs. I did find that adding about half a cup of water into the oven under the bread pan does speed up the cooking of any item, but be careful when you open it that you don't get a steam burn.

I have cooked potatoes by wrapping them like I would for a conventional oven and putting them directly into the portable oven. I have had better results by adding water to the bottom half of the oven and then putting in the bread pan and the potatoes in the pan. It take about an hour to hour and a half and the way I deal with the time issue is to put them in at one of my stops then plug the oven in about and hour or so before I stop for that meal.

I have steamed broccoli in the same way I cook potatoes, takes about 20 to 30 minuets.

I like hot meals and with this cool little item I get to eat fresh and hot while on the go.

Keep the rubber side down.


Friday, July 25, 2014


"I Don't have the time to eat healthy",I can't tell you how many times I have used and heard this truly lame excuse for not eating healthy while on the road! That excuse is especially lame now, since we must take the mandatory 30 minute break we are all complaining about.

Let's get honest guys, the fact is you do have time you just don't want to do it.

Look at the meal in the picture at the right. I guarantee it took less time to fix than standing in line at Mcdonalds. I can guarantee it because I made it. Half a 12 oz. bag of salad mix a few slices of onion and tomato, as well as a few slices of cucumber from our garden, a can of tuna and a can of green beans, all under 8 minuets, heck, took me longer to eat it than to make it. So don't give me that lame old excuse,"I don't have time to fix healthy meals while on the road". I have two words for you B.S..

Let's consider the long term situation.

Keep eating at Micky D's or getting those footlongs at Subway and the oversized sodapops and the bags of chips, cookies etc. at the truck stops and I guarantee you your body will rebel. Diabetes, sleep apnea, heart and vascular diseases are all from poor nutrition and a lack of exercise. Lets face it, our way of life is a formula for physical disaster. We aren't just sedentary we are Super Sedentary. Of course there are exceptions and if your one of them please pass this article on to a fellow trucker.

For years I said I didn't have time to eat right while working, I was lying. First came sleep apnea, the mandatory yearly sleep studies are expensive and require an overnight stay at a sleep lab. There is the nap study which takes just an afternoon but what a pain.

Then came diabetes. I then had to learn something about nutrition and controlled it for a few years with diet but the day came when the good old excuse was once again employed and I soon lost control again and couldn't get motivated to regain control, that in time lead to being put on insulin.

Truckers if you are put on insulin work is done until you get a waiver from the FMCSA.It took me 10 months to get that waiver, thats a whole bunch of time. The waiver procedure requires that you have an endocrinologist and optometrist and see them every three months, not cheap without insurance or an income. And, unemployment in most states will not cover you during this time. Disability, forget it if you can work doing something else like cashier at Micky D's or greeter at Wall Mart.

So for every dollar you spend at one of the fast food restaurants or the junk food isles at the truck stops you better save two dollars for you future medical needs or you can take the time to eat right now and avoid the future health problems of wasted time and loss of income.

Your choice, spend a few minuets now making a healthy choice or spend months or years paying for it.

Keep the rubber side down.


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Cooking on the road

Hi all. I know its been awhile since I posted last,I was on medical leave again. This time for emergency eye surgery.

I want to tell you all about this awesome fathers day gift I received from one of my daughters. Its the Road Pro portable oven 

I am sure you all have seen them in the truck stops. They sell for around 30 dollars and so far I am most pleased with it. 

The company I currently work for will not install my invertor so I have been without a microwave and hot meals the Road Pro portable oven has solved that problem.

So far I have cooked the stew you see in the photo,  poached eggs, hot dogs and baked potatoes. It does take a little time to heat up but once started it cooks!!

The stew took about an hour, the baked potato about an hour and a half and about 15 minuets for hot dogs.

You do want to use the trays or buy throw away bread pans to make clean up easier. For my eggs I line the inside with foil and put in about 1/2 cup water, some onions, eggs on top, plug it in and about 20 minuets Am ready to eat.

One draw back is you must be carful opening the lid as you can get a steam burn.

Enough for now. Keep the rubber side down.


Thursday, June 5, 2014

Life of a Truck Driver

Hi all. I have been home nearly a month recovering from emergency eye surgery. Kinda sucks but am enjoying being home.

The attached photo is from Meritor on Twitter and is a accurate representation of our work life.

As accurate as that graphic is there is a whole lot not said, such as the crappy work conditions, the crappy truck stop food, the isolation, bad attitudes, poor relations with significant others due to the long periods of separation. Then there is the other drivers, even other commercial drivers can sometimes be real jerks.

Also, there is the health issues. Long hours sitting, little to no exercise, inconsistent sleep patterns and poor quality foods leading to hypertension, diabetes,and heart disease.

I read recently that the average lifespan of a truck driver is 56.

So why in the world would you want to be a truck driver?

Truth is, if I had known it was going to be like this I would not have singed up, but, now I am trapped unless I am willing to give up all I have and start over, too old for that now.

You might be able to save some one from this horrible and way underpaid lifestyle if you buy a copy of "So, You Want To Be A Truck Driver" and give it to them. 

Keep the rubber side down


Saturday, May 10, 2014


Just sitting waiting on another driver to do a trailer swap. Nearly as bad as sitting at a receiver waiting to be unloaded hours after your appointment that you were early for. Nearly as bad, but not quite, easier because he is a fellow trucker.

Just got the call from him so will be out of here and headed home in about an hour.

Life in a big truck gives one a lot of time for thinking and reading, but not a lot of time for family and freinds. I don't get lonely but often feel the emptiness of not having close freinds. And honestly even though I have been married now for 13 years to the same woman I don't feel like I realy know her. When I am at home it's a whirlwind of chores so we just don't really have time to be together. It's no wonder so many truckers are divorced.

I am just kind of rambling today so guess I'll call it quits and get off here.

Keep the rubber side down.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Trucking in Springtime

Just a quick post since I hadn't put anything up for a few weeks again.

I do love this time of year, the flowers along the road give color and contrast to our other wise drab existence.

I have been noticing some realy unprofessional driving out here these last few weeks. Come on guys and gals you hate the hours of service regs but don't you realize it has been our unprofessional behavior that brought it on. Tailgating is stupid yet I see you all doing it every day, so is passing when you can only go 1 mi per hr. faster than the guy in front of you.

Oh and to the flatbed guy that doesn't like refers parking next to him in Little Rock, Ak., Petro, easy to solve don't park at a truck stop, park at your yard and stay there. You like to eat, reefers get it to your store without spoilege.

Well loaded and ready to roll so keep the rubber side down till next time.


Monday, April 14, 2014

Dealing with Family Emergencies

Hi all' been a few weeks since I wrote last because I had to deal with a family member emergency and while I did have some time to write I just couldn't get my mind around to it.

Family emergencies are in fact one of the biggest problems truck drivers have on the road. Life is filled with all kinds of surprises but one of the worst is medical situations.

The picture above is of my wife's arm on Sunday morning after the dressing had been removed. She had had an emergency procedure to remove blood clots from a vein after a scheduled procedure to reopen stents in her chest that had closed. I had to schedule some time off for the initial surgery and then the following day we had to return to the hospital for more test as she began to experience coldness in her hand. To make a long story short I went home on the friday before her scheduled surgery and will be returning tomorrow (tuesday) 10 days later. Not a problem says the employer, most are understanding. But, what about when something unplanned happens while you are on the road?

What happens when an accident occurs with your wife or child and you are a thousand miles from home under dispatch? What happens if there is a sudden unexpected death in the family? What happens if you are suddenly taken sick or have a heart attack?

It happens.

I personally, had the experience of my step-daughter die while I was 250 miles away delivering a load. You will have to get and read my book for that story.

Most employers are really great about working with you when there is an emergency at home. I have heard a few horror stories where the employer was a real SOB, but I suspect it had more to do with the lack of professionalism on the drivers part than any truly cavalier attitude on the employers part. Remember, you agreed to do a job, it is assumed you know the difficulties in scheduling and the liabilities involved in doing your job. Sometimes it just isn't possible for the employer to allow you to immediately duck out and go take care of things at home, thats when your professionalism matters most.

Like everything in life emergencies at home must be prioritized. The flooded basement does not take as high a priority as an accident with injuries. The death of Grandma doesn't rate as high as a child being admitted to the hospital with an unknown illness. While setting these kinds of priorities for yourself will help to keep you level headed when the unexpected happens, you may have fall out with your spouse or other family members.My wife still hurts 13 years after the fact, that it took five hours of her dealing with her grief alone after losing her daughter for me to be by her side.

I think it is important that we try to have a discussion with our loved ones about this very real problem and try to have some kind of understanding of what can be done and what expectations are realistic when there is an emergency.

Make sure your family members know who you work for, what truck you're assigned to, who your dispatcher is and any after hours phone numbers they may need in order to get a hold of you in an emergency, don't rely on your cell phone alone, coverage is still spotty in many areas.

And if you really want to be prepared set up an emergency fund that will cover an airplane flight from anywhere in the country as well as enough money to pay your bills for at least three months.

Well, as always, keep the rubber side down and may God bless you

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Dispatchers - Angels or Demons?

Hi all, havn't been writing much lately since with this new company I don't sit very often. I Love it.

I have been thinking about dispatchers since so far the dispatchers I have had with this new outfit have been wonderful. Problems are addressed quickly, dispatches are nearly simultaneous with empty calls, and all have been thoughtful and respectful. Without a doubt this is the best crew I have worked with in my 20 years of driving.

So, why write about dispatchers on a trucker health blog? Answer, it's hard to want to eat right when your pissed off, that chocolate bar is just the thing to take the edge off, right.

Dispatchers can make life heaven or hell for us out here on the road. They can ignore us, leaving us to hang out at the truck stop when we would rather be working. They can want us to work when we have asked for time off. They can wake us from a dead sleep with dumb questions. They can put us on runs that will make sure we can't get home for that ball game or anniversary we told them about last week. Yes, dispatchers can make life Hell.

I have heard and experienced many horror stories regarding dispatchers. I had one dispatcher that would always deadhead me back to the yard after every load knowing full well that I got paid on loaded miles only, his reasoning "You make more money this way", I had one thing to say to that BULL###T! It didn't take long to straighten him out when I got to talk to the owner.

In listening to many of the horror stories I began to see a come thread. Yes, there are bad dispatchers, no doubt, but are you a good driver? Do you take every load that you can do legally? And if you can't take it are you respectful in your response? Do you inform your dispatcher in plenty of time when you want home time? Do you give respectful reminders concerning home time? Are you argumentative or are you respectful at all times? Are you considerate of the dispatchers time or are you chatty, telling war stories instead of business? When there is a problem do you call with an angry or hostile tone? In nearly all the war stories I have heard the driver had not been professional; at some point he had become hostile or belligerent, forgetting his manners and demanding his way.

Yes it's true we are the backbone of this industry, without us trucks don't roll and dispatchers don't have a job, but, they are people too, with feelings and problems just like the rest of us, so bottom line, if you want your life behind the wheel to be a good one, then treat your dispatcher with the dignity and respect that a professional gives. And if they are still A**holes then talk to someone over there head about changing dispatchers if that don't work, then there is always the next job.

Keep the rubber side down

Please check out my website at

Friday, March 21, 2014

Healthy Eating on the Road

Hi all, pictured on the left is my typical lunch. As you can see it's not a small amount of food. Eating this way initially gave me a weight loss of 160 lbs. I got a bit lazy last summer and began adding some foods that weren't on my food plan and put about 60 lbs back on.

The good news is I have gotten back on the plan and have already dropped 15 lbs in about 3 or 4 weeks.

Since I began this journey into healthier eating (Feb. 2011) I have managed to reverse my type 2 diabetes and have not had to take any drugs since July 2011, I still test 2 to 3 times a day and have a A1c test done twice a year. My lowest A1c was last July(2012) at 5.6. This past January even with the weight gain it was 5.8 still well in the normal range. All without any regular exercise, nor have I quit smoking or drinking coffee. If I had perhaps the results would have been better, faster.

I have learned a few new things about eating healthier on the road that I would like to pass on to you.

The first is the importance of eating your meals 4 to 6 hours apart.

I have learned a bit about how our digestive tract works and why this spacing between meals is so important.

Our bodies are much like our trucks in that they require a consistent amount of fuel and raw materials be delivered to the intake manifold, meaning our small intestines. This is done through our stomach where the food is broken down into a slurry and extruded slowly into the small intestines where the different types of fuels are then routed along with minerals, vitamins, and other nutrients to the blood stream. Here they are then sent to where they are needed most.

When the stomach is empty and the fuel requirements are no longer being met, the stomach begins to spasm informing us that we need more fuel. This process keeps our bodies fueled and happy. When we space our meals too close to each other we throw this system into confusion and it doesn't know if it should pull some calories from the warehouse, ie, fat cells or store some. Too far apart and the system thinks we are in a state of famine and therefore when calories are once again present it will delivery some of  them to the fat cells for storage.You can see it's a logistics problem.

Eating on a schedule can be a problem for those of us who make our living driving truck. While the latest HOS rules have made it better, there are still some times when it becomes necessary to flip our schedules, for those times what I do is eat my first meal, breakfast, within the first hour I am up regardless of when my last meal was and start my clock from that point. It's not a great solution and still causes the body some confusion but the impact seems to be minimal. I also use my snacks to fill in those times when it is just not practical to stop and fix a meal, again not a great solution but it does work.

To those people who think "grazing" (eating small bits of food many times a day) is a good solution please hear me, it's not a good solution for many reasons but especially these two. First you really can't keep track of just how many calories you are eating this way. And, second you are short circuiting your bodys normal hungary/full response, hence you never know when you really do need food or when you are full.

There is a third and critical reason, balanced nutrients cannot be obtained when eating like this, therefore some part of your body is always in a state of famine. Eating this way will cause you to fail at any attempt to lose weight.

A practical tip that I learned from my wife and was surprised to find worked so well is that you don't have to have a microwave or stove top to fix wonderfully tasting oatmeal, just put the uncooked oats in a bowel ( I use a closable soup cup) with the proper amount of milk or water, mix and let sit overnight. By morning it will be the same as if you had cooked it, room temperature of course, but still very edible. Also, I now use almond milk in my oatmeal, it adds sweetness without adding as many calories as cow milk and far less than adding sugar or honey.

You can find the food plan I use at this link
I did have a Nutritionist go over it with me and she liked it and thought it to be a great way to meet our bodies needs and lose weight. I received it for free so I am passing it on for free.

'Till next time keep the rubber side down and God bless.


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Who Represents Us???

I made a disturbing discovery this morning.

Correct me if I am wrong, but, it seems that the three million Commercial Drivers or so here in the good ol' USA are being regulated without due representation.

There seems to be only a few players that have been showing up at the public hearings and that are being heard by the FMCSA and non of them have the company drivers intrest at heart.

Those players are the OOIDA, (Owner/Operator Independent Driver Association) and the ATA, (American Trucking Association).

The OOIDA has a membership of approximately 150,000 or about 15% of all drivers and most of those are small company owners. The ATA has 37000 members who are all corporate size truck company owners. I didn't check any of the roll calls on the various regulatory hearings held by the FMCSA but did do a search for truck driver associations and didn't really find any that appeared to represent the company driver. Of course there is the Teamster who have branched out into other industrial divisions and boasts 1.5 million members but who really believes they are interested in the company driver.

You could say that the OOIDA members interest are similar to ours and in many respects you would be right but, it's still all about profit for their members. Of course the ATA is worse. They don't care about us company drivers trying to make a living, I do believe they are the ones promoting the lie that there is a driver shortage, there is actually far more drivers than the market can support which is part of the reason wages have fallen so far behind inflation.

Non of these organizations as far as I know have ever considered trying to get us reclassified by the government into our own labor class, consequently we are still treated as day labors as far as the labor law is concerned.

Meanwhile our wages have not kept up with inflation and now we are being saddled with Government regulations that makes it even harder for us to meet the demands of our jobs and the needs of our families.

I got no answers.

Wish I could retire.

Please visit my site and consider buying my book by clicking HERE

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Minimum Wage? For Who?

Hi all, been thinking and getting a bit pissed, so thought I would vent here.

Ever since I heard that President Obama by Presidential order granted Federal Employees a minimum wage of $10.75 an hour I have been pissed. I am pissed that he and his cronies believe they can pressure the Congress into passing a similar minimum wage bill for private employees by such a stupid move. It's stupid because everyone knows their are so few minimum wage jobs in the Federal Government that it was a nothing action. Its only purpose was to start an outcry by the uneducated masses to put pressure on Congress to act in a way that would be very bad for this country.

Why is a minimum wage of $10.75 an hour bad for this country?

Answer : higher cost equals higher prices, and that's inflation, period. Sorry, money doesn't just fall out of the sky.

And, guess what, truckers are not covered by the minimum wage law.

In fact our wages have been the most depressed wages of any industry. Twenty years ago when I started driving truck I was making 28 cents per mile, today I am making 28 cents per mile plus 7 cents per mile per diem which means I am taking home more actual money but 7 cents per mile of that is subsidized by all of the rest of you tax payers. Now here is the real rub, 20 years ago the average cost of a house was $113,000 today it is $311,400 and that kind of inflation holds true for everything from cigarettes, to food, to cars, to; well you name it, you get the picture.

Last year I made about $40,000. That means I drove 114,285 miles at an average speed of approximately 55 mph. That means I spent 2,077 hours behind the wheel at an average of  $19.25 per hour.

Sounds pretty good to the guy or gal flipping burgers at Mcdonalds right? Twice the wage they are making, but if I got this figured right I spent 259 days on the road. Now that means there was 4144 hours I was not paid for but had to remain at work and because I eat and sleep at my work place and since I am responsible for that load even while not performing my job, meaning driving, that means the real hours at work was 6, 221. Divide that into $40,000 and the real wage is $6.42 per hour. Minimum wage is currently $7.25 an hour, hmmmm.

But it gets even worse; since the FMCSA didn't take the forethought to require resets be done at the driver's home, I spent at least another 15 periods of  34 hours parked somewhere other than home, and was still responsible for my employer's truck and trailer, and still not getting paid. This now gives us a total of 6,731 hours at work for a real wage of  $5.95 per hour.

And I havn't even added up the extra cost of living in a truck and having a wife and kids; it's like having two separate homes. Nor have I deducted the payroll taxes which amount to around 35%.

So you still think you want to be a truck driver and earn those big bucks the school recruiters promise??? Better buy my book and find out about the other drawbacks to this lifestyle, you can get it by clicking HERE.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Death on the road

 A problem occured for a close relative of mine that involed his father dying of natural causes while on the road. 

This problem seems to be fairly common for the family's of truck drivers who die while working. Here is one other example when a driver died working for SRT

My family members father was working for CRST. The problem was made even worse by the company as the Sherifs office who had recoverd the body asked if the company wanted them to notify the family, CRST said no, they would. They did, some 24 + hours later. What's up with that? Then they offered no help in recovering the body or his possesions, and no bereavement funds or death insurance.

So, as you can see you really are valued as nothing but property as long as you can drive their truck. But, develop a disqualifying health problem or God forbide, you should dare to die on their time, well that's your problem.

The good news is not all companies are like this but the bad news is far too many of them are.

So, wannabe truck drivers are you sure you want to join us; better read my book first before deciding, it could save you thousands of wasted dollars and untold amounts of time.
Leslie R Auger

Sunday, February 2, 2014


Last night I had spent just about an hour reading posts on an article about a report submitted to congress concerning updates on the HOS made last July. Congress wanted to know if the changes had any effect in improving safety and reducing drowsy driving. The report congress wanted and the report they got where two different things.

The sample of drivers was way to small to indicate anything except what the FMCSA wanted and less than 33% of the sample where over-the-road drivers.

The goverment will never be able to legislate away drowsy driving for the professional as long as they want to deal with only one small part of the whole picture. Here are some more factors for them to legislate if they can:

1. Shippers and Recivers.
This is an area that needs the most legislation. When you arrive for an appointment an hour early and six hours later your finally loaded, that's a problem. It's a problem because you can't rest or sleep during your wait because if you miss your call you won't get loaded until much later, then everyone is pissed at you, so you start your trip tired and angry.

2. Safe and Accessible parking
This is a huge problem and getting worse every year. More and more townships are outlawing truck parking.

3. Drivers Diet
I am not saying they need to legislate what we eat, that would be crossing the line far more than what they already have.

Take a look at the photo that is with this blog, this one shelf is the entire selection of groceries in a popular chain truck stop.

It is a well known fact that a diet rich in fat, sugar and flower adds to poor health and a state of perpetual drowsiness.

The other choices in this truck stop are preprepared foods that are several times reasonable cost and very few of those choices have any nutritional value. Or you could choose from one of the 3 fast food resturants.

We have to eat and the Corperate desire for profit has crossed into the area of greed and is out of control. The truck stops know they have a captive audience and they abuse it.

So, as usual, our wonderful goverment has once again screwed the working man by blaming him and burdening him with more regulation that restricts his income and the choices he can make while ignoring all the other factors that go into the problem they are trying to solve.

If you know some young person considering becoming a truck driver, buy them a copy of my book,"So, You Want To Be A Truck Driver" if I can't scare em off no one can. Get it here:

Friday, January 31, 2014


Boy,am I getting spoiled on this job.

The company that I now work for uses new Volvo Power units and just like the cars Volvo makes, this thing drives like a dream. Its got all kinds of bells and whistles including an automatic 12 speed transmission that really works!

That having been said, the living space, (ie sleeper) sucks. The cabinets are too small and of the wrong size to fit anything. The lighting sucks and even if I was allowed to have my inverter installed there would be no place to put my microwave, so back to cold meals and buying coffee.

Talking about getting back to things, I've had to get back to basics on my food plan. Picked up over 40 lbs in the last 6 months. It really is easy to decive ones self and think "awe this little bit extra won't hurt", and maybe once in a while it doesn't. But, when the once in a while turns into everyday, well that's a problem.

I did see my Doc just before going back to work and was glad to find out that even with the weight gain my diabetes hasn't raised its ugly head but my cholesterol did take a significant jump up to 208, yep back to basics.

So once again I will publish my basic food plan for those that haven't seen it before:

Breakfast :
1/2 cup oatmeal with 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, 6 ounces lean protein and a piece of fruit.

Lunch and Dinner:
6 ounces of lean protein,  2 cups salad mix with Italin dressing, 1 cup green vegtable and a piece of fruit.

2 snacks allowed of 3 oz. of protein or a piece of fruit. Keep meals about 4 to 6 hours apart. And ladies cut the meal protein down to 4 oz. for best results.

Finally if you know someone who thinks they want to join us out here on the highways, and you cant scare them off, then buy them a copy of my book, "So, You Want to Be a Truck Driver"
and maybe I can.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Back to work

First day back to work.

Took a position with another food hauler. Things haven't changed. Its been three years since I have hauled groceries and its still the hurry up and wait scenario. Oh, well it's a job
Somebodys got to do it.

It would be so nice if people would learn to just be honest or at least know how to tell time. Last I looked 1 hour is 60 minuets not the 4 hours I have already been sitting and still not empty.

Then the Feds have to come in and tell us that the second you move the truck you have 14 hours to get the job done. I couldn't park here last night so had to move 3 miles at 9 am is now 4:30th, 7 hrs lost time. Sucks.

At least I have my electronic toys to make it more tolerable.

The Feds need to start focusing on making shippers and receivers more responsible in this regard.

Finally done.

Friday, January 10, 2014


Hi all,

Have you every heard of someone being "Blackballed"? Do you know what that term means? I didn't, but I have been using the term to describe something I have been finding in our industry during this job search. I had also been exposed to something similar earlier in my career.

According to Wikapedia, Blackballing describes a voting procedure that was common in Gentleman Clubs of the Victorian Age. It was a procedure used to vote in a new member. It only took one black ball in the ballot box to exclude the initiate. If you sponsored that initiate and they were blackballed, you would then suffer the same fate as the blackballed person. In this procedure fairness and explanations played no part, if you pissed one person off you could be blackballed.

In our industry (trucking) I have found there are two entities who are likely to "cast" you the black ball if you are trying to get a new job. The first is the Safety Dept. of your previous job and the second is (and the most likely) the Insurance Company of the job you want.

If you have been fired from your previous company for anything safety related you will be blackballed from many companies, period. The period of blackballing will last from 3 months to 5 years. And, it doesn't matter what your CSA score is or how much experience you have. With some companies just being fired for any reason is enough to get you blackballed.

I believe, though I can't prove it, I was blackballed from flatbed companies after I had gotten hurt while working for flatbed company in California. After that job, I could not get hired on with a flatbed company for a period of seven years and I am one of those fools who actually like "throwing rags". I began to get suspicious when one employer was all hot to hire me, then after the DAC was pulled, they wouldn't even answer the phone when I called. I pulled my own DAC and saw absolutely NO bad information on my "Consumer Report". After being turned down by a few more flatbed companies for no good reason, I gave up and went to work for JB Hunt for 6 months,(6 months too long).

There is another thing that can get you blackballed, take six months off of work and your blackballed from many companies.

I understand the companies have a great deal to lose if they hire the wrong guy, but when someone such as myself with 20+ years of experience, a clean MVR (Motor Vehicle Record) and a great CSA score knocks on your door at lest take the time to find out what happened and judge it in light of the aforementioned data not the data that some statistical genius in an ivory tower somewhere that's never even seen the inside of a truck has come up with.

Here is one of the things that is really wrong with this system. Dispatchers and Safety Directors know how this system works better than the average driver and will sometimes use the system to "burn" a driver they didn't like. It can be very time consuming and expensive to correct false data on your DAC, (the main tool used for blackballing) and the companies have little to fear in the form of reprisals if they get caught doing it.

Bottom line is, if you like driving truck for a living always be professional and realize it only takes one slip up to get blackballed.

Keep the rubber side down. God bless

Please comment, especially if you have ever been blackballed.

Leslie R Auger has driven truck for more than 20 years. He has written a book for the want-to-be truck driver called, "So, You Want to Be A Truck Driver", You can get it here by clicking on the title or visit his website at So, You Want To Be A Truck Driver? |

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Bluetooth Headsets

 Hi all,  

It's been  two years now since the Hand Free law for commercial drivers went into effect. In those two years, I have gone through two bluetooth headsets. Recently I have noticed more and more drivers NOT using their hands-free devices while driving. 

    Guys and gals, they haven't changed the law. It's still a crime to use your handset and it will cost you dearly if you are cited.

That being said, I will admit there have been times when I too have violated the law. Not because I wanted to, but because the d*#n headset I currently own does not live up to it's billing. 

I currently have a Plantronics Voyager (top photo). I am satisfied with it as far as performance is concerned. The noise canceling works extremely well and I have had no problem with hearing as long as I have it placed in my ear right. Where the problem lies is the amount of time on the battery and the screwy time remaining messages. It is extremely annoying when the message comes on and say's "Four Hours Remaining", then two minuets later you get the message "Charge Headset". Even if you don't make any calls, the 10 hour standby is only good for about 6 hours and the 6 hour talk time is a myth; it's more like 3 hours. One more complaint is the use of the micro USB plug on the charger; it's just too much of a distraction to try to plug it in while driving and the cord is way to short to be plugged in to the charger while in use.

With all that said, it is still far better than the Nokia I had before (middle photo). I got rid of the Nokia within a week of getting it because people I called said it sounded like I was talking down a tube and others complained it sounded like sandpaper in the background. Granted the sand paper sound was probably my beard, but why should I have to cut my beard to use my phone?

As I have not been very happy with either of the two headsets I have used, it is still better than a $1200 fine and the loss of my job, so use them I do.

The last photo is the headset I hope to buy sometime this year. It is the Roadwarrior Bluetooth by Blue Parrott. I have asked many drivers that own one and not one single driver had any complaints. It boasts having the loudest volume and 16 hours of talk time. I am not sure I like the over-the-head design but am willing to give it a try. I do like the long mic boom as mic placement is sometimes a problem with the behind the mouth mic designs. This headset is a bit more pricey than the other two, coming in around $120.00 retail and that is the primary reason I have not bought it already.

Keep the rubber side down. 


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