Welcome to TruckPunk; a freight train of stress, insomnia, and filth on the hot rails of Hell!  TruckPunk!  A high voltage race against time across the battle scarred highways of America!  TruckPunk!  A blow by blow account of fun and terror on the open road!  TruckPunk!  Ride along with the Stuarts and witness first hand the horrors of long haul trucking...!

Do you dare enter a world which moves at 62 miles per hour?!  A reality that refuses to stop, even when it means life and death and holding your pee?!  Can your heart stand a reality beyond the realms of hygiene…?!


Smell!   The creeping stench of cattle trucks!

Illiterate idiots on the CB!

SEE!   William Shatner in two roles!

09/09 Wednesday

Monee, Illinois

The Rockford Files


I was going to do energy drink reviews since we have indulged in every kind of stimulating fluid available on the open market.  Then I changed my mind.  At first it seemed like a great idea, but the Andy Rooney-esque anecdotes like "You know that smell when you hop into a Datsun B210 on the way to pick up some Dorals at the 7-Eleven?  You know, that indistinguishable berry smell of car freshener?  Somewhat cherry, maybe strawberry, but definitely neither?  Yeah, that's what it tasted like" were becoming a bit repetitive.


The Peterbilt grease monkeys decide to work on 4541 at one in the morning our time, so we pull into an open bay and they fire up the acetylene torches like a symphony of safe crackers.  This is our cue to crawl back into the sleeper berth, zip the curtains, and drift into slumber land.  Lucky for us, the repair shop echoes with soothing, 1970s lullabies courtesy of Van Halen and Bob Seger.  Somewhere in my head is a "Cradle Will Rock" joke which never materializes, but nevertheless manages to keep me awake.


"The Eagle! 96.7 (echo 7, 7, 7, 7)!  Putting the classic rock in Rockfurrrrrd!!"


Patched and bandaged, we're free to lift the hood and roam about the engine compartment.  No longer does anything drag or rattle, and we are now compliant with the laws and regulations associated with interstate commerce.  But the cosmetic repairs are scrapped for now.  We'll get that new fender somewhere down the road.  Driving humor.  We leave the Peterbilt garage and begin brewing a much needed pot of my famous java which resulted in the unfortunate death of Pot Number Two.  Mr. Coffee takes a swan dive into the abyss.  We chalk it up to the super fine, microscopically-ground-into-oblivion bag of coffee given to us by David the Trainer.  It was my reward for completing training with flying colors.  Sort of a parting gift.  And now our maker is dearly departed.  I really reach for it sometimes, don't I?  Anyway, a jaunt to Wal-Mart is now refigured in our trip planning on-account-a we NEED our hot, caffeinated options.


Shop smart!  Shop Wal-Mart!


After acquiring an economically priced coffee maker, we tear out onto the highway and the Qualcomm immediately gets us lost.  We decide to try and enjoy the scenic tour of greater Rockford as 4541 travels in circles over the Illinois roadways for a full hour and a half.  The Stuarts finally end up at a large Shell truck stop at Exit 115 on I-39.  The place is hoppin' with activity and offers more than the usual food mart with fuel.  This 'un boasts an onsite church, even!  Shucks.  Too bad it isn't Sunday.  I'd be all over that!


Grabbing our Bubba Kegs, Jen and I wander into the food store where we discover the most wonderful ice!  It's that slushie kind of ice, the kind of ice that's almost like a snow-cone and DEMANDS the delicious infusion of Coca-Cola.  Then, without warning, the tiny deli-mart is flooded with God's personal soccer team!  All around us, youths in athletic regalia emblazoned with holy symbols swarm the condiment bar and cash register!  Where the hell did they all come from?!  In a violent reaction to their presence, Jen's skull spun 180 degrees, her eyes rolled into her head, and she began to vomit split pea all over the teenagers!  I quickly ushered her back outside and across the piss soaked parking lot to 4541…


And now that we're on the subject, "piss soaked parking lot" isn't a knock against this particular truck stop.  All truck stops reek of urine.  It's one of the charming amenities of driving truck.  You come back to your rig with a gas station chili cheese dog in one hand, your limp, hot-light wedge fries in the other, and the stale parking lot air kisses you with pee pee scented lip gloss.  Thank you, come again.


Gonna spend the night here in Monee, Illinois.  Why did Tommy James and the Shondells just pop into my head?  Anyhow, we arrived in Monee and had to maneuver through some of the tightest, labyrinthine-like road construction known in the Western World.  Our consolation prize for manipulating the mazes of traffic cones was being forced to pay a ten dollar parking fee.  DAMN!  Then we find out the parking fee's accompanied by a ten dollar voucher for goods and services over at the Petro, yonder.  YES!  FORCED to break even!  We made the wise purchase of KC Masterpiece beef jerky, Jay's Sour 'N Dill chips (an explosion of dilly goodness!), and one DVD copy of White Comanche.


Oh, the movie?  Well, it's only a 1968 Will Shatner flick with our star hammin' it up in not one, but TWO roles!  One of which he plays his OWN INDIAN TWIN BROTHER, NOTAH!!  Fuck yeah, baby!!


I found the Monee Petro a strange place to dig up a crappy little gem like White Comanche, ESPECIALLY for $2.99!  You'd be a fool NOT to make the purchase.  But Jen and I have excavated and/or purchased many a jewel in the jumble of discount DVD bins at various fuel stops since we hit the road.  Masterpieces such as The Brain that Wouldn't Die, the Mad Max Aussie edition, the Hercules box set (??!!), and many other curiosities.  Oh yeah, and Convoy, Convoy, CONVOY.  You'd think that fuckin' movie was a new release out here!  No shortage of this trucker staple in America's roadside marketplaces!

Come!  Walk the urine soaked floors of the truck stops and sleep in the unwashed motel rooms of the damned!  TruckPunk!  The unmasked underworld of truck driving, where chili dawgs are the rule…not the exception!  TruckPunk!  Ride along and experience the ups and downs and ins and outs of driving back and forth! 

Sleep deprivation'S STRANGLEHOLD!…

HEAR!  Iowa 80 smoke alarms!


10/05 Monday

Spokane, Washington




Clear blue skies and dry, flat asphalt paves the way for Shane!  The man who doesn't have to drive through the Rockies!  In a blizzard.  In the middle of the night.  Y'know, Rod Stewart was 100% correct; some guys DO have all the luck!


It was a live unload this morning with policies that kept us off the dock and out of the trailer.  This led to an impromptu brunch at the neighboring International House of Pancakes, where we passed the time until the lumpers finished up.  Afterward, we made the short jaunt to a Petro on the outskirts of Spokane.  Time to grab ourselves a much needed shower…


So you may ask yourself, "Why is it truck drivers smell like a bucket of diced onions?"  Well, that's an excellent question and one worth exploring.  We can laugh at them, call them hillbillies, poke fun at their toothless asses, but fact are facts; truckers smell like a sack full of recently functioning sphincters.  If cleanliness is next to godliness, then I'LL SEE ALL OF YOU FUCKERS IN HELL!!


But cleanliness on the road is no easy task, especially for a team who is running non-stop.  If you want a shower, you gotta work for it!  Not every truck stop has showering facilities, so you gotta find 'em!  You also have to find parking which is not always available.  Midday is your best bet.  Then you gotta pack up all your bathing gear, including floor mats and flip-flops, toothbrushes, soaps, deodorants, and a change of clothes.  Oh, and you gotta pay for your shower!  S'right, Jack!  Ten bucks a pop, and that ain't cheap!  Then there's the whole awkward showering experience where you don't want to touch anything, like any tile or grout or faucet or anything.  And you gotta try to avoid having your soap bottles or toothpaste or clothes or anything touch anything.  Anything could have some form of trucker goo on it, y'know?  And hell yeah, baby!  Couples can shower too-geth-aaaaah!  Yeah, totally as unsexy as it gets.  Although showering with someone adds another set of hands as to not let anything touch anything.  The whole process takes a minimum of an hour, and that's an hour where the wheels ain't turnin' and you ain't gettin' paid.  Which is why you're exposed to hairy-shouldered truckers washing their balls in the sink.  Because really, ten bucks for a shower?!  Why, that's like four jumbo dogs with free chili and cheese pumps!


For us though, it's often easy just to space it.  Day and night is like chicken and egg; is the sun going down or is it night that is falling?  Time is a slippery substance on the road, a thing which loses meaning in our tiny reality.  The horizon taunts us, it is a destination we never seem to reach as we beat day across the curvature of the earth.  It's a race against the clock, a race we'll never win, where finish lines are nothing more than starting gates.  And that's why we forget to shower.


Ah, but not today!  For today, we are clean!  Nothing like a hot shower to recharge those batteries!  Like the recharge our batteries need.  And by "recharge" I mean jumpstart.  We decided to gamble on the rig holding enough juice to restart after a quick shower, but that just wasn't the case.  I don't know, it seemed like a better idea to take the keys with us so's 4541 wouldn't be hi-jack bait.  But we'll know better next time.  The Petro mechanics jump us back to life just as we receive instruction to deadhead to Ontario for another french fry load.  But only after we enjoy this idle time with a much needed cat nap.  Meow.


P.S.  If you buy your Christmas presents at a Pilot, you might be a redneck.

TruckPunk will take you into a world which passes through the realm of the living; a world that rumbles and growls at eight miles to the gallon.  TruckPunk!  Join the harrowing travels of Shane and Jen Stuart and find out why the name TruckPunk spells A-C-T-I-O-N!

The Amish in their natural habitat!

DON’T SEE!  On-account-a all the dead bugs!
TASTE!  The blood of Dracula!

paying tolls and burning bridges.

Due to the horrifying nature of TruckPunk, no one will be seated during the last 5 pages.

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