Why I Do What I Do

I have been driving a tractor trailer for over 34 years. It is amazing to me how over the years the attitudes of the professional drivers have deteriorated to a point that all they are concerned about is themselves. Back when I began driving, there was somewhat of a kinship or brotherhood that we felt were a member of.

If on driver had problems while making a trip, then there were usually a number of fellow drivers to lend a hand or at least an opinion as to what the problem is. But not any more, nope your avoided like the plague if your broke down and stranded today! 

I began this little journey I refer to as my sanity savior in 1978 with McCormick Food Service. I worked with 3 other awesome drivers. I mean, today if someone wanted a career in this field, he would go to driver training school. My traffic manager 

must have seen some promise in me because he sent me out with the other three drivers for 2 weeks each to learn and work along side of them and then he turned me loose.That job at McCormick was by far the best one I ever had and had it lasted, it would have been awesome. The pay was fantastic and the benefits were also. But it was not to be and the closed up in Indianapolis in 1982 and moved up to South Bend!My next stop on my career road was Overnite Transportation Company. That was in 1982, September 21st to be exact. I started off there as a night shift part-time dock worker. About 6 months later I was certified as a driver and began my 12 years there as a city pick up and delivery driver. My day was usually from 8:30 am til around 6 pm. They often had extra work but I usually declined because they didn’t pay overtime! My first truck there was what was called an MB Mack. Those cabs were popular for garbage trucks back in those days!

I worked there for 12 years and resigned to move on to a company that paid overtime. I never claimed to be the brightest crayon in the box and it took me that long to get tired of being screwed! And besides that, my health insurance was going up each year as well so it was time to move on!

Next stop on the employment ladder was Conway Central Express, a good job…management sucked because they were only out for themselves

I spent 8 years at Conway Central Express, CCX for short and I was an exemplary employee. I started on what they called the “flex” board, nothing flexible about it if you ask me. Your on call, day and night. I started on days on Monday and by Thursday i was running night-time over the road. This was a two-year sentence, the first bid was evening dock worker. 2 more years of that until I finally got a city driving bid. There were a lot of instances when we took road runs on the weekends to keep the freight moving. I did the same thing when I was employed by Overnite Transportation Company. I won safe driving awards each year I there except the last one. I had a had a batch of bad luck the last year I worked there plus my father passed away that December. The short of it l was let go in February of 2002.
I bought a semi in the fall of 2003 and leased on with CSX railroad and began pulling containers, but that will be an entry for another blog at a later date!
The next company and I certainly hope will be my last as an employee was PittOhio Express out of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania!I hired in there in April of 2007 was a long local pedal driver for them. Sometime putting in a full 14 hours a day and all at straight pay…no overtime until you reach top scale which takes 3 years. Never made it, missed it by 4 months. Couldn’t stand working for the man any longer and had to do my own thing. I have always been an independent entrepreneur all my life with various part-time entities, but I always had to have it safe with a secure job…. until CCX terminated me. That just told me that I could make it on my own with out the security of a company and so far I have!

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