Tuesday, March 29, 2016


Alone in the dark I play with my imagination. 
I wander alone and feed my nightmare.
Just another beast of my own creation. 
I make sure she's well kept and treated with care. 
I even sometimes let her loose in my field of screams. 
She runs and plays among amber waves of pain. 
Then I saddle up and together we wreck my wildest dreams.
As we race, her hooves beat the ground like a terror train. 
Picking up speed as we chase down every Happily Never After 
Moving ever faster I brace for the leap over the Damned Canyon
The screams of agony are to us nothing but musical laughter
As we ride through my memories and torment with reckless abandon

Saturday, March 26, 2016

"Playing Chopsticks"

So I'm back in the dating game. That means I've gotta figure out how to dress myself and stuff; try to make a good impression. Good news is that I dress my kids so that they look presentable. So I figured I'd just dress myself the same way. Only I made sure my socks matched. I thought that might be important. Not that I was planning on walking around with my shoes off and stuff. 
Try on an outfit, see if it works, try on another one. Repeat until I find the right combination. At first it was harder than I thought. Until I realized it was the neon green socks with the brown wingtip Florsheims that was the problem. After much deliberation I decided maybe a different colored sock was in order. Polka dots won. Hey, one can't be totally conformist. 

She'd suggested Thai or sushi. Two things I'd never had. Me, I was going to make reservations at Taco Bell but I figured I'd stick with the options she'd preferred. Probably the wiser choice, right? 
Sushi it was. Maybe I could convince myself it was some kind of burrito. 
Being who I am I showed up as close to right on time as I could. Can't seem too eager but didn't want to be late and seem rude. Of course, I pretty much always show up 5-10 minutes early because I leave early in case I can't find the place. However, I don't care if she shows up an hour late...my response is always "I just got here a few minutes ago." No matter if she's on time or late, whenever she gets there you're to respond that she's "right on time". 
I'd gotten there and secured us a table. Then I started grilling the waitress on the different types of dishes so I didn't seem completely foolish when it came time to order. "Do you have a type of sushi that tastes like brisket?Are there specialty chopsticks that have like rakes at the end? What if I just used 2 forks like a robot hand?" Turns out the answer was "no" to all of those but I did come up with an idea for training chopsticks that I'll have to explore later. 
Fortunately, Rhiannon, my date was right on time. And she looked radiant so, had she been late, it would've been worth any wait. Unlike me. I totally didn't wear a fancy dress or put on any makeup. Which was apparently the right call this time. 

Per Rhiannon's recommendation I got a nice salmon roll that was tempura battered. Then I watched in horror as she took her chopsticks in hand like she'd been using them her whole life. Great. I'm barely coordinated enough to use a fork properly. And there's not even one anywhere in sight. I could already see that I was going to essentially just poke my food in true caveman fashion as I looked at it thinking "my food is raw. Grog need make fire to cook it. Maybe that's why the sticks are here. Do I rub them together to start fire and cook food?" Way to not impress anyone, Grog. 

In about 30 seconds Rhiannon had explained the general mechanics of using 2 tiny pieces of wood to lift food to my facehole. Within minutes I'm picking up cucumber slices with these elven branches and I'm hoping I'm not channeling some Mandarin spirit. Speaking in tongues on a first date probably isn't the way to go. 
Of course, I'm kinda unorthodox so after we ate at the sushi place guess what we did. That's right, we walked next door to Olive Garden. Why not, right? No, I didn't order more food though I would normally be tempted to. I haven't been eating a lot lately so the homemade cat chow I'd had next door was more than enough. 

Cappuccino. That's what they had at Olive Garden that we were in desperate need of. For 3 hours we sat there and took up a table while we talked. (Don't worry, I warned the waitress of our intent ahead of time and I tipped her very well afterward). She has a degree in psychology and studied sociology so we had stuff to talk about. Well, that and politics and religion. And, of course, literature. We are both writers. 
The waitress was patient and even joined in the joking around. Grog came out to play a little but I mostly kept him reined in. I'd say a good time was had by all for the next several hours. 

What's the next stage in a date? A movie. Of course. What's a perfect "first date" movie? Deadpool. A nice romantic comedy. 
You know what's even better? We were the only two people in the theater. Of course I took full credit and told her I'd rented the whole theater so that we wouldn't be disturbed. I don't think she bought that story though. 
Hey, good news though...every seat in the theater was available and she still chose to sit next to me. So that's a plus. It might've had something to do with how cold it was in there. We had to huddle together like penguins for warmth. The movie was pretty awesome though. I reckon maybe I'll keep you guys posted now that I'm loose in the world again. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

"Broken Halo"

I want to be perfect, I want to be exactly like you. 
I'm working on it but I may not have what it takes
I'm still trying to learn how to steal, cheat and lie too. 
Trying to figure out how to only point out mistakes
It's harder than you make it look, I'll say that much
I tried to lie yesterday but it came out all wrong 
I ended up being honest again, accidentally nice and such 
Don't worry, I'll catch on, it shouldn't take long
As I held up your halo and taped the broken pieces you'd smile
But I'm that demon that says what others only think 
Pursuing perfection as you ignore your flaws all the while
Elevating yourself on the backs of those on the brink
Your cracks not visible to those you keep at a distance
Your hypocrisy shines through when you spread your broken wings
Pushing your own agenda and mocking resistance
You push reality away to avoid the truth it brings
Behind the curtain you reveal your second face 
Forever contradicting your own claimed belief
Disappearing into your own condescension without a trace

Your perfection is nothing more than a hollow shell
Yet we weak would swoon on your every word
Believing in all those lies that you tell so well
You believe them yourself no matter how absurd

But I'll no longer take part in your masquerade
My knee won't bend to give you any more praise
I'll not continue to play along in this endless charade
Nor am I impressed anymore by your operatic displays
So sit in judgement of me if you will
I'm not worried about your crooked finger pointing
Your double talk or your laughter so shrill
The words from your forked tongue are silent
And I'm immune to your empty charm
As I look back on your actions I'm filled with regret 
Knowing you've done far less good than harm

I watch as you adjust your halo before walking out
Back into the world you go to mock them again
You turn before I have a chance to scream and shout
That you're a "Saint" dripping with sin
No one's savior not even your own
You ignore my words and your shattered halo
You refuse to see the truth that you've been shown
But I can see past the mask to the monster below
Some day I'll finally get through to you and you'll see
But for now I'm nothing more than another mistake 
The one you once bared your soul and heart to
Just someone else whose love you could forsake
I'm just wreckage in the wake that was love for you. 

Monday, March 21, 2016

"The Nut of Health"

I'm totally of ashamed myself right now. I'm frugal. "Thrifty" is what I call it. Yes, I will wait for a cashier to bust open a roll of coins and sort them all into her tray so I can get my change. Hey, rich people don't get rich by giving their money away and someday I hope to be rich. So I'm practicing now. 
Anyway, what's upset me is that I just ate $13.00 worth of snacks in one sitting. Now, before I continue, I'd appreciate you quit looking at me like that. It was an accident; I didn't mean to. In fact, it was with the best of intentions. Until I got carried away. 

See, I gave up smoking. I quit drinking soda. I've switched from whole milk to skim milk. I've even nearly abolished sweet tea from my diet. Nearly. All in an effort to be healthier. I occasionally get a can of Pringles but I don't get bags of chips to snack on while driving anymore. I even quit eating fried pig skins. Ok, they gave me heartburn so that was an easy loss. 
I rarely ever ate candy bars because I'm not overly fond of chocolate. I don't feel like I'm losing out there. Mountain Dew was tough to give up though. I think they put an addictive chemical in it. It's like bottled crack. 
Certain things I simply refuse to give up though. Like coffee. That's just not gonna happen. Or real sugar for my coffee. I'm not switching to some artificial sweetener. I don't want it artificially sweet, I want it tasty sweet. With real creamer. Just the way nature intended. 

But it's not easy eating healthy. Or cheap. In fact, it's cheaper to eat junk. McDonald's has a dollar menu. Five bucks can get you five burgers. Burger King has the same thing. I'm anti-McDonald's and pro Burger King but I could eat burgers like Wimpy from the old Popeye cartoons. 
I even measure my money in food terms. "Well, I could get this new pair of gloves but they're $12.  That's 2 footlongs from Subway. Nah. I'll just wash my hands more." Yes, I have these debates out loud in the truck stop. "Should I spend $10 on a haircut? Dude, that's a 6 inch sub, half gallon of milk and 2 cookies. Put a hat on, stupid." Ever see a picture of me without a hat? Me neither. But I always look like I'm chewing something in my pics. Coincidence? Don't bet on it. 

"No more fried foods, less milk, etc. etc. Basically nothing that tastes good or you enjoy. Except fish and skinless chicken." Blah blah blah. Who the hell wants to live like that? Who can afford to? 

There's the problem. It gets costly to eat healthy. Especially on the road. Next to the coffee you'll often see a sign reading something like "2 tollhouse for .50 with purchase of coffee." But it's nearly a dollar a piece for a banana. One granola bar costs more than 2 King Size Snickers. 
You can get 6 wings and a large slice of pizza for $5. Or 5 hard boiled eggs for $3. Which do you choose, right? Next to those eggs is a fairly basic salad for $5. Don't worry, they have dressing for an additional dollar. 
See? Healthier gets costly. Plus, I can't eat a salad while I'm driving. But I could eat hot wings and pizza in my sleep. I'm pretty sure I have before. While driving it's even easier. 

Look, let's be honest here, I may get a few extra years if I do everything "by the book". I may get to see my youngest graduate. That'd be good enough for me, I'm not greedy. Either way, I'm not going to live forever. Nor would I want to. 

But today I thought I'd splurge. I got pistachios. $13.00 for a one pound bag. It amazes me. Don't these things grow in nature for free? Maybe there's more to it, though. Maybe they're an endangered species or something. 
I like almonds and peanuts too. Peanuts is cheating, though, because they aren't really a nut. On the few occasions I've driven through California I saw almond trees. I guess that was like a preserve or something because they must be endangered too. That's why I didn't go grab any. I was afraid I'd get caught poaching on a preserve. Since I'm not a rich doctor or politician I don't think I could get away with it. 

You know, everyone these days is pushing for healthier. Sure, healthier is a good thing in a country overrun with obesity. I get that people are pushing to eat healthier but they tend to forget you've gotta exercise too. 
Sure, you could spend tons of money every week on what you're told is "healthier" food. But you're just wasting your money on "top of the line" granola that's made from the same oats as my "regular" granola. Wasting money on overpriced food doesn't make us better people and it damn sure doesn't make you smarter. 

So I'm a bit irritated with myself for binge eating a bag of overpriced pistachios. They were good though. And I've gotta be lots healthy now because I was steadily washing them down with skim milk. 

Saturday, March 19, 2016

"The Adventure Begins"

So I started therapy yesterday. I saw a real live head shrinker. I'll be honest, I didn't really expect to like her but I tried to go in with an open mind. 
At first Grog was a little nervous. Needlessly. Did you know that it's not like on tv? I didn't lie back on a couch while she doodled in a notepad. 
So I went walking in there, drinking my coffee because coffee is a vital part of my day (but only in the hours between waking up and going to sleep). I filled out the seemingly 40 page long questionnaire wherein I wouldn't have been surprised if they'd asked for a copy of my genealogy records. And I wait. And wait. And wait a little more. By now I was thinking that people need therapy just to get over the torture of waiting to see the doctor. 
I go up to the little sliding window and listen to it creak open as the receptionist asks if she can help me. 
"Yes, I'm sorry but I was wondering how long until I see the doctor?" Well, turns out only five minutes has passed. Oh. Oops. Sure seemed a lot longer, I swear. 

Sweat is already starting to build on my forehead as I wait for this lady to transpose all my info into the computer. On the outside I tried to seem cool but on the inside I was thinking "what happens when I walk through that door? What if I find out I'm crazy?" 
Even worse, what if I end up with tear ducts? I've always been good with not being a sensitive guy. What if they break that and I start liking romantic comedies and stuff? Next thing you know I'll be complimenting people on their shoes or something. What if they therapy the Grog out of me? 

Well, as it turns out, it's pretty painless. In fact, I was free to pace around the room as I talked. The words just flowed. It really was like talking to a friend. I mean, we didn't sit around talking about movies or anything but we got along pretty well. 
I'm a naturally honest person and try to look at things objectively so that helped, I think. I was willing to look at things from her perspective and from the perspectives she suggested. I wasn't real happy about having to fully admit that I may have been wrong about a couple things but, hey, I can't always be right. 

I now have weekly sessions scheduled. For the next 6 months, (maybe longer, depends on when I can sell my truck), I'll be doing many of them over the phone. That should make it easier because then I can eat during class. I'll be able to hide in my mobile cave as I tell the good doctor my feelings. Maybe it'll help make things better because feelings don't belong in my cave. 
Am I going to be the perfect person after this? No. That'll never happen. But hopefully I'll be able to re-establish my self-worth like my therapist wants me to do. As frugal as I am I was worried about wasting hundreds of dollars every week on a therapist. Now I'm looking forward to my weekly sessions and see it as an investment. And that Doctor lady? She doesn't scare Grog at all. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

"Demons At Play"

I calmly sit there and nurture and care
Until I finally get to lay my fears to rest
Then I quietly tiptoe up that twisted stair 
From the darkest parts of my mind
Being cautious not to wake them again
Lest they strangle my dreams once more
I tried to silence the madness but then
I heard them clawing and opening the door

They won't leave me be until I'm scared
To sleep at night or fear the dark
It causes my thinking to become impaired
As my fears wake up and leave their mark
For they feed the others and make them strong
The ones who can haunt me during the day
They blur the lines between right and wrong
When my demons awake and come out to play

Those demons don't live in black and white
To them all the rules are simply grey
They torment in the day as much as night 
For they don't fear the light of day
They torture my soul and twist my mind
As I become nothing but a puppet to them
I grow weaker from each horror they find
And my soul becomes their kingdom 

It's just another sleepless night for me
Now that the demons are at play again
For a few brief months I thought I was free
But now I know they'll never let me win
So it seems I have no choice but embrace 
The darkness that consumes each thought 
As my nightmares become my happy place
I give over to the insanity my demons sought. 

Sunday, March 13, 2016

"Time For a Little Change"

I should've seen this coming. People have been warning me about it for a while but I've been ignoring them. "Nah, nothing will change; everything will be just fine." Then BLAMMO! out of nowhere it happens. 
I feel like such a fool. So many plans have to be altered now. Sure, on the surface may seem the same but they aren't. I committed myself too fully to how things were. 

Now, today, I wake up at 8 in the morning and everything has changed. Every clock in my house is wrong. Time has stood still for an hour somewhere along the way. The very fabric of reality has torn somewhere, of that I'm certain. 
Life as I know it has changed. I'm the first one up and I've already nearly missed breakfast. Lunch will need to be postponed. Dinner will have to be rescheduled by an hour. Everything is in turmoil now. 

So now I'm stuck admitting I was wrong and things do change. I'm not happy about this change though. Who authorized it? Did the cosmos make some sort of shift? 
How was everyone else able to see this coming?! 
Listen here, you clairvoyants, I apologize for doubting you. Maybe next time you predict the future like this you could work on finding ways to prevent it. 
Do you have any idea how much this is going to screw up my life?! I've already got enough to deal with trying to keep my posts scheduled. Then someone goes and screws up the schedule for the whole darn country. How rude. 

Friday, March 11, 2016

"Lights, Camera... Auction!"

 I'm about to share with you guys a true story. Not that the others I tell aren't true; I just usually try to add a funny or snarky element to them so you'll read past the first paragraph. I can't do that this time because I'm just too mad to even try.Plus, there's nothing humorous about the situation. 
Why am I so angry? Simple. An injustice was done. I'm sure this happens around the country and it needs to be addressed. People need to be made aware of what goes on behind the scenes at some of your favorite shows. 

One show, in particular, comes to mind. "Storage Wars" or whatever it's called. I'm sure a bunch of you have seen this. A group of individuals get together, a storage unit is briefly opened up and then these people bid on its contents. It's "great fun" listening to them address the camera about what they're hoping to find in there. 
"A treasure trove of rare coins maybe? Ancient artifacts and relics that'll fetch a handsome price in the bidders' antique stores and shit? What could possibly be hidden in these storage units that'll turn a profit?" 

Everyone thinks this as they sit back at home, popcorn in hand, on the edge of their seats in anticipation. Such excitement as you think "one man's trash is another man's treasure." Except no one ever considers that the contents of that storage unit are ALREADY someone's treasure. That's why they rented the space to begin with. 
Ever watch that show and wonder to yourself, "how'd this storage unit end up going to auction anyway? I mean, clearly this stuff was important enough to someone that they took the time and effort to move it all in there." Maybe their house burned down and they're waiting for a new one to be built. Maybe they took a job as a truck driver and don't have a house or see the need to rent an apartment. Maybe everything in this storage unit is their whole life. 

Well my regular readers already know who Molly is. So that'll save us some of the introduction. For you new readers, she's my dear friend. You new readers should go read "So Pretty It Hurts", that'll explain a few things. You see, she started driving a truck about 4 years ago and had nowhere else to put her belongings at the time. There's simply not enough room in a truck for all of your keepsakes. So a storage facility seemed the perfect solution. That's the whole point, right? To store your stuff. 
For nearly 3 1/2 years this has seemed an ideal solution. The storage facility, Meridian Self Storage (remember that name) in Meridian Mississippi, has Molly's phone number in case of emergency. They have Molly's address as backup. The address on file is for an immediate family member. If there's a problem they can contact her brother or her. 
Everything is set up and running smoothly. Meridian Self Storage has permission on file to automatically bill the bank. It's the perfect solution. The cost is ideal at $60 a month. Heck, I pay over $4,000 a year in property tax alone on MY storage facility. Of course, I also store my kids there and stuff so it's worth the cost to me but my house is essentially just a storage facility for me to keep my stuff at when I'm working. 

So, back in May of last year, Meridian Self Storage inexplicably quit billing the bank. No reason, no questions, no contact. They just stopped. After nearly 4 years. The money was always there. Payment wasn't declined; they just quit billing. 
Molly never thought to deliberately look for that billing. Who would? The first year, maybe, but after that it seems a "well oiled machine" so constant maintenance isn't required. Until just recently. Going over her bills, Molly notices there's significantly more in her account than there should be. Several hundreds of dollars. "Well, that doesn't match my calculations. Let me look at my account history", she thinks, since it's possible she had switched it at some point to a credit card or something. So she checks her bank account and credit card statements. Nope, no transactions for them. "Aha! Meridian Self Storage hasn't taken a payment in a while. I should call them and sort this out." 

"Too late", she's told, "we've already auctioned off your storage unit. It's gone. We tried calling. We sent certified letters. So we sold your stuff to the highest bidder."

No remorse. No apology. Also, no receipt showing ANY certified letters were ever sent and phone records indicate no calls were ever made. The response from Meridian Self Storage? "Well the girl was supposed to call you. I guess she forgot." Again, not even a hint of compassion, apology or regret. It's just business. 
After some prodding they finally gave the name of the people it was sold to. Contact was made and the response was "well, we bought 10 units from that facility that day. (Yes, on that day alone! Look up Meridian online and you'll see it's not exactly a metropolis) We try to see if there's anything in them so we can contact people. Whatever didn't sell we would've just discarded." I'm paraphrasing here but that's pretty close to the way it went. 

So Molly had her passport, DD 214, and other articles in there with her name on it. Brochures and cards for the trucking company for whom she drives, her brother's graduation picture from the police academy, including his name and his position with the LOCAL sheriff's office. But they couldn't find a way to contact anyone?! More like they simply didn't care. It wasn't their stuff, why would they care, right?

Family pictures going back generations in hand-made, engraved frames. Family artifacts going back generations. Baby memorabilia from and for her daughter. Memories, keepsakes, items far beyond value to Molly. Her books (what kind of monster takes your books?!). A flight jacket given to her by her father from his fighter pilot days. All gone, needlessly and irreplaceably. Seemingly without recourse. 

It's rare that I hear Molly cry. She's very good at guarding her emotions like that, keeping a tight rein on things like tears. To hear and see her break down the way she did when she told me what had happened...it broke my heart. Maybe it's my caveman side but I really wanted to be able to lay hands on these people (and not in the healing way) for hurting her like that. Here we were on opposite coasts and I wanted nothing more at that moment than to be able to hold her and tell everything would be alright. But it won't be. I can't fix this and it shouldn't have happened. 

Can you put a price on your past? Your memories, history and part of your heart and soul? Neither can I. But these people that run storage units can. "The highest bidder". That's what they value you as. 
I'm not a litigious person at all but even I feel a suit should be brought against them. Will it restore priceless and precious memories? No. It's not intended to. It's intended to be punitive. To somehow FORCE Meridian Self Storage to feel remorse. To teach them that these are PEOPLE'S LIVES. 

So I ask you, again, do you ever wonder how those units end up at auction? Do you ever wonder if the people whose whole lives are inside those walls even know that their past is being stolen from them? Why do we care more about money than we do people? This is someone I love and care about. To me her past, her life is far beyond any monetary value. And someone else carelessly, unremorsefully, cast it aside to the highest bidder who sorted through it, sold what they could and threw away the rest. Are you as outraged as I am? I hope so. Hopefully the judge will be as well. 

These people were being paid to safeguard her belongings against theft or damage. Then they betrayed that duty by doing the very things they were supposed to prevent. To make it worse, they LIED about it. They said they called. They didn't. They said they sent certified letters. There's no record of this with any postal delivery system. They took it upon themselves to terminate their own payment then just sat back and waited a couple of months and sold it off without a care in the world. Callously. 

Monday, March 7, 2016

"Throwing The Book At You"

Well, for those of you who've been keeping up, I finally did it. When I first started out with this internet stuff I was posting poems. Most of them are a little dark and twisted, much like my mind. Some are a little more..."sugary".
As I mentioned on here, I was asked to submit some to a book that was being published. Well it's that time. The book has officially been listed on Nook. Or Barnes and Noble or something like that. It's one of those "ebooks" I guess they call them. 

I've not read it yet because I can't figure out how to print up a copy. Let's face it, I'm not tech savvy at all. I know it's got about 8 or 9 of my poems in it though. So here I am shamelessly self-promoting because I can't afford a marketing team. I reckon that means I've gotta get you guys to recommend it to friends or whatnot. 
Some of you guys have asked me before about publishing a collection of my work. You guys are twisted like that and I love that about you. So, we will consider this a "trial run". If this little ebook thing does well enough then I'll be publishing my complete collection. (Once I figure out how). That one will include some as yet unreleased writings. 

So I'm including a link below to where you can find this book. The cover photo is mine so no copyrights were infringed upon. I hope you guys enjoy it, review it or whatever else people are supposed to do with ebooks. I welcome your feedback so I know what to do or not do next time. You're also welcome to contact me directly at groglovefire@gmail.com.  It's priced at $3.00 so I've gotta sell like a half million copies (do they call them "copies" for Internet books?) to make enough money to buy some lunch next week. 

Friday, March 4, 2016

"Idiot on Board"

I'm not going to die behind the wheel of this truck. Nor will it be old age that does me in. I've already beaten old age anyway. I'm ageless. 
Nope, what's going to do me in is the electric chair or lethal injection, depending on where I get convicted. What's going to happen is I'm going to end up shaking someone to death while screaming something like "are you seriously that stupid?! Tell me you haven't bred!" 

There's a strong chance the bystanders will be recording the whole incident because that's just what people do these days. The smarter ones will stay quiet though. 
Why am I Dextering people in my mind, though? Well I'm glad you asked because I was about to vent anyway. First, for you newcomers, you'll find I'm less "antisocial" and more "anti society". 

So I'm driving along today going through Columbia, SC and minding my own business. I'm cruising along doing the speed limit because I'm a law abiding citizen and stuff. Or I might've been doing about 5 over because I'm also kinda rebellious. The right hand lane turns into a long line of traffic that's trying to exit so I get over into the middle lane. 
As I do that a tiny car (something like a Yaris, I think) gets over from the far left lane and stays a little bit ahead of me. It was a successful merge. There was applause all around or should've been. For about a mile we are flowing nice and smoothly. Right up until she gets to the point that exit lane veers off. 

That's the point where she throws her turn signal on and comes to a stop, apparently hoping someone will let her in in the exit lane. So this whole time she was just trying to cut in at the front of the line? Fortunately for her, I was trying to leave a cushion of space and I was paying attention. Otherwise she would've gotten a 75 foot long suppository. I laid on the air horn and locked up my brakes to keep from running this twit over. 
Let's be clear about this though. The main reason we don't run you guys over when you do that is because we've got a schedule to keep. Well, that's my reason. I don't feel like wasting a day on the paperwork involved. Plus I don't want to mess up my truck and get idiot all over it. It's bad for the paint job. 

Did she notice that she nearly became mush?  I'm pretty sure she did because she quit texting or facebooking long enough to flip me off. Yeah, she flipped ME off like I was the asshat here when SHE was the one trying to defeat traffic AND stopping in the travel lane. Sure, I'm the bad guy. I can only hope she was making her own funeral arrangements on that phone of hers. 

Hey, you wanna text, Facebook, surf the web, whatever, I'm fine with that. Pick an empty stretch of road and have at. Hell, get on a nice flat straightaway that's empty and pull up your favorite blog if you want. So long as it's mine. Read an ebook if you want. (Again, I recommend the one I co-authored. It's on Nook. Look for "Words From the Heart"). Just don't do that shit in the middle of town. Read your exit signs instead. 

Had I hit her then they'd have automatically come after me. Why? Because I'm a "professional driver". That makes everyone else amateurs by default. So how's that fair? You give me a road to do my professional driving on and an amateur gets in my way and gets hurt and it's MY fault?! 
That's like letting little Johnny take his gocart out on a race track and blaming the other drivers if he gets run over. That's just...dumb. 

On the same token, if you drive a truck and you're riding the bumper of the car in front of you then you're just an asshole. There's no excuse for that. Back off and act right. You wouldn't want a truck in your trunk if you were driving around with your kids in the backseat. There's no way you could react in time to even slow down if they hit the brakes hard. Hell, even if you're in a car, just don't tailgate. It's senseless. 
Conversely, if you're not even doing the speed limit and you're out in that far left lane or middle lane, you're an idiot. Slower traffic keep right. I'm not asking you to build rockets; just have some sense. 

"But they've got handicap plates.." 
So? Stupid isn't a handicap. I mean, it kinda IS but not the kind that gets you the plates. If it were then there'd be tons of them on the road. In fact, stupid is so common these days that having some sense almost qualifies you as an X-man. 

In many places trucks aren't allowed in the left lane. So that middle lane becomes our "fast lane". It's where we go to get around morons who don't know which exit they want. 
Here's the thing...when folks get in that middle lane and just sit there, we've got limited choices. We can either get in the far right lane and play "dodge car" with the folks who can't figure out how to merge at highway speeds (that seems to be just about everyone) or we can get out in that far left lane to pass you. That's the "high dollar lane" for us truckers. It's called that because of the size of the ticket we get for being in it. If you see us coming up behind you in the middle lane then just move to the right. Or you can just stay outta my fast lane unless you're going faster than me! Know where you're going and read the signs. It's not brain surgery. 

Which reminds me. The other day I saw a cargo van from some dog breeder's farm. I think it said "Blasik Labs" or something on the side. The license plate read "Labbie". I found that humorous for some reason. There was a sign on back that read "crated dogs don't tailgate". Now, I took this to mean that the dogs won't tailgate people so long as they're in those crates. 
I was later informed it probably meant don't tailgate the van because there are animals inside. I thought, "how absurd. So it's ok to tailgate if there aren't crated dogs in a vehicle?!" If I understand that correctly then there are circumstances where tailgating is perfectly acceptable? How about we just put bumper stickers on all vehicles that read "back off, asshole!"  

Speaking of which, I appreciate these signs "baby on board". I recently had a conversation in which we discussed the origin of these signs. What most people don't know is that they were created to alert first responders to look for a child in case of emergency. 
Good idea. However, we get carried away with stuff here in America. Yes, it's not bad to put a sign up in the window so emergency personnel know to look past that window. On a full size conversion van or large SUV this could be necessary. If you need this sign in your Honda Fit then you must be expecting a blind firefighter to be coming to your rescue. Your car is only so big, your kid isn't lost in your back seat. 

But then we took it even farther, to the point of ridiculous, as is the American way. "Chihuahua on board", "pug on board", "cat on board", the list goes on. Look, we don't care. Chihuahuas are bitey little assholes. And a cat?! Yeah, I'm gonna reach in to rescue that razor clawed thing while it's freaking out? Not a chance in hell. 
If your precious Siamese is in a cat carrier wearing a straight jacket and a Hannibal Lecter mask...maybe. But that's a weak maybe. 

Here's a better idea. Try not to drive like a moron. Especially if you've got your kids in the car. (Someone else's kids? Well, I guess it depends whether or not you like them). Play with your own life if you must but leave them at home when you do it. In the motoring world size matters and I guarantee you I'll win. 

Look, if you can't figure out what's smart and what isn't before you get on the road then just turn in your license and get an Amish car. You obviously need a horse because it's got more sense than you do. You ever hear about a massive pileup of buggies? No. Why? Because they don't run around driving like morons. How's that for insulting?! People who don't even own cars have better driving skills than the rest of you! 
A group of people who think electricity is a passing fad and think taking their picture will steal their soul or something have more common sense than some yuppy in a Prius. 

"I want to minimize our impact on the planet.." Blah blah blah. 

You stop that go cart in front of me on the highway you're gonna make an impact on my grill. Pay attention or you'll be lucky if you're driving a wheelchair.