Sunday, May 8, 2011

Time to face the music

We got to our destination in Houston just before lunch time.  I never paid too much attention before (because I’m usually the one doing it), but drivers (in cars) are very inconsiderate of truck drivers.  Aboy had to back 70 + feet of vehicle into a gate big enough for a car to get through – across 4 lanes of traffic.  I mean, don’t get me wrong – Aboy showed his ass (he is after all, a NY’er), and blew his horn, flipped the bird and called some individuals out their name, but you’d think people would give him a break – he’s just trying to earn a living. A fellow trucker (that’s what we call each other), helped hold up traffic, so some dumbass didn’t creep up on the side of Aboy when he had to pull up to straighten out the trailer, to finish backing in. Aboy returned the favor when it was the other trucker’s turn to back in.

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I texted Aboy’s cousin and told her we had arrived. She texted me back to let me know her husband was getting dressed and she would text me when they were leaving their house. We were in downtown Houston – at the place where they had the NCAA Men’s Final Four. She said she lived about 20 minutes away.

Aboy had got the truck situated. I was on my laptop uploading all the pictures from Aboy’s fabulous skills getting his big ass truck in the small ass entrance.

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I was pretty impressed. This is, after all - the same man that is not allowed to touch things that can cause sparks or fire and has broken all the lug nuts off my tire – trying to change it  (another flaw – action & consequence).

As I finished uploading – Aboy was trying to lay down in the bunk. I announced “I have to use the bathroom”. Aboy said, “it’s inside to the right”. Now you know, he’s not getting off that easy.  I am not walking inside, by myself. I am a female getting out of a tractor trailer…. I need a male escort. So, begrudgingly, he got his shoes on.  I asked “where’s the toothpaste?”.  The time has come – I might as well get it over with.

I drove a cab for Tommy’s Taxi on and off for 19 years.  I wasn’t your typical cab driver.  I took a shower every day.  I wore make-up, perfume, I tanned, had acrylic nails and I used hair styling products. My shirts were pressed (we wore uniforms in the summer). I would make frequent trips home during the day to refresh myself. My cab was spotless, inside and out. Like I’ve said – I know that the visual perception people have is how they judge you and it was very important that I present myself in a way I felt about myself. I mean – I was driving a cab for cripes sake, I wasn’t digging cesspools for a living.

It used to amaze me the types of shit people will do in front of complete strangers.  I’d have customers get in the cab stinkin’, belching, farting, and I even had 1 guy throw up out of my window. Some people just don’t give a fuck, I guess. I try to hold myself to a higher standard.  Maybe it falls in line with the “high maintenance” thing, but farting or throwing up in front of a stranger is a real stretch for me. I guess that’s why I battle with this idea of brushing my teeth in public.

Aboy walked with me into the convention center.  He directed me to the ladies room, which was immaculate. The part of the convention center that we were in – was more for special events and staging equipment and there’s not a lot of women that work in that area. This public restroom obviously didn’t see a lot of traffic.

I brought my essentials – including the toothbrush.

After I used the bathroom, I washed my hands.  I gave myself a mental pep talk. I put the toothpaste on my toothbrush, closed my eyes, said an “Our Father” and put it in my mouth. Not so bad.  Not so good either. I think I’m more thankful no one walked in while I was brushing.  I mean it could be worse and I guess after a few times, it won’t be as bad. I don’t think it will ever be something I’m completely comfortable with, though.

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