Tag Archives: driving

Thursday Morning Ramblings

My vision of hell.

If there is a hell, here’s my vision of it:  Bumper-to-bumper traffic jamming a six-lane highway to a complete standstill, thousands of drunks lining the roadside to gawk at the traffic jam, loud music blaring from every direction, overwhelming fumes of poorly tuned motors, idiots walking out into traffic without bothering to look, and nowhere to escape the madness because I’m delivering pizzas into the middle of the throng.  Unfortunately, this hell exists, and it occurs three times a year.

Yeah, it’s rod run time in Pigeon Forge again, and for the next four days, I plan on staying as far away from it as I possibly can.  The good part is I no longer have to deliver pizza up there to supplement my income, but as a survivor of eight rod runs, I can tell you that the memories and scars have never fully healed.  Just the sight of the first hauler rolling into town takes me back to those nights — the frustrations of sitting in traffic for two hours to deliver one order, only to be stiffed at the room because the people are upset that it took me two hours to get there; the anger at putting in a 14 hour shift and only earning $50 because the rod runners don’t tip; the rage at having drunks block every possible turn-in and parking space so they can watch cars sit still.  If I live to be a thousand, I’ll never willingly go near another Pigeon Forge rod run.

I’m usually a live and let live kind of guy, to each their own if you will.  But I hate the rod runs with every fiber of my being.  To me, it’s like NASCAR without the race, just thousands of people looking for an excuse to drink to excess and act like complete morons.  To me, there is not one single redeeming quality of these weekends, and every year I hope for rain just so those jerks won’t get to have their “fun.”  Why anyone would willingly subjugate themselves to that hell is beyond my comprehension.  How anyone can find joy in sitting for hours on end to watch a traffic jam baffles me.

The forecast for this weekend looks clear, so I guess I’ll have to Tebow harder for the next 72 hours.  Tomorrow, I’ll try to write a more positive and inspirational message, but last night, I saw a couple of haulers coming in, and suddenly I was back in my car on Saturday night, stuck twenty feet from a hotel entrance with a pizza I’d been hauling for two hours with drunken idiots blocking my every move.  Those are memories I wish I could forget or let go of, but I just can’t shake them.  So this weekend, I plan to stay as far away from Pigeon Forge as I can.  If any of you voluntarily venture up there this weekend and get stuck, don’t call me for help until sometime Monday.

Thursday Morning Ramblings


Well, yesterday, I had to trade vehicles.  The Cadillac, which had been a great car up until a month or so ago, started having some issues and was on the verge of becoming unreliable.  I didn’t really want to trade but felt like I had to move while the Cadillac still had decent trade value.  I’m now the proud owner of a 2008 Hyundai Santa Fe.  I was hoping for a Camry for the fuel mileage, but we couldn’t get close enough on numbers to keep me in my comfort zone.

The Santa Fe is my first ever SUV, and after the luxury of the Cadillac, it  will take some getting used to.  This isn’t my first Hyundai, however.  Back in 1990, when I started college, the first car I purchased on my own was an 88 Hyundai Excel, one of their first models.  My friends used to tease me mercilessly about that car (I’m looking at you Ferg), but I got nearly 200,000 miles out of it.  I’m hoping the Santa Fe is just as durable because I don’t want to trade again for a few years.

I also want to thank Heath Tatum at Rusty Wallace Toyota in Morristown for helping me find a decent vehicle that fit into my budget.  He went above and beyond for me, and I appreciate all the work he put into finding the right fit.  Heath’s a good friend and one of my favorite people in this world, even if he is a Kentucky Wildcat.  Thanks, Heath.  I appreciate you, brother.

Kyle Busch Ramblings

Kyle Busch has earned a new distinction among NASCAR drivers, one which solidifies his place in history.  The award was given to him early this morning in the garage area just before the driver’s meeting.

“We’re excited about finally being able to give this award to Kyle,” said Scarlett Neck, a NASCAR spokesperson.  “Michael Waltrip had held the designation for many years, but since he no longer drives, we really needed to find a new person to carry the mantle.  Kyle fits the bill perfectly.”

Then, Ms. Neck unveiled the plaque, which will follow Busch to every track:

Kyle Busch-Wimpiest Driver in NASCAR

“It’s great honor for Kyle,” said fellow driver, Jeff Gordon, who has long been second in the rankings.  “I’m disappointed to still be second.  But after yesterday, I have to say really deserves it more than me.”

The cinching incident to which Gordon refers is the after-race altercation between Busch and 65 year old car owner, Richard Childress.  After Busch damaged Joey Coutler’s truck, owned by Childress, during a cool down lap.

“When a 26 year old gets his ass kicked by a senior citizen, there’s really not much anyone else can do to compete in terms of wimpiness,” said Michael Waltrip, in response to losing his title.  “I had a good run, but really, Kyle is much wimpier than I can ever be.”

In stark contrast, no one has wrested the title of Toughest NASCAR Driver from Dick Trickle.

“The Man in Black sang ‘A Boy Named Sue,'” said Ms. Neck.  “But Dick was the inspiration for that song.  He’s still one tough son of gun.”

“Trickle really left his mark on this sport,” added Gordon.  “He sure was one hard competitor.”

Kyle Busch was unavailable for comment.