Today the children are studying The Outsiders, a novel written by prominent Oklahoma author S.E. Hinton. In chapter 5 the main characters hop a train, and the young imaginations around the room ponder the possible destinations as if they themselves were fleeing authority on a ride into the unknown.
A bit bored by the hour after hour repetition, my own mind begins a bit of independent wandering. I am thinking about my bad luck with people.
I would drive my truck all around the country then return home; sadly, my journeys were always more about the people and less about the places.
Bitterly jealous relatives without any understanding of human decency, busily judging my life, like squawking vultures perched upon my shoulder sharing my view of the highway constantly pick, pick, picking away.
I grew so tired of their ridiculous questions, unfloundering ignorance, and snide suspicions. Most of them possessing no knowledge at all of where their food and clothes hail from, the endless ports of call around the continent, our massive transportation hubs, distribution centers, or the miracles performed each day by hardworking truckers.
Our transportation system, the finest in the world, and completely misunderstood by the general public, is the only industry preventing us from slipping into third-world status.
I think about the parade of former supervisors. The one with the pistol in his desk, the dopey, the cheap fraud, the guy with the wall behind his desk covered with continuing education certificates for trivial things like air brake safety and log book training, several cowards, and especially the men who encouraged me, and now applaud my achievements. As I stand on the brink of success or failure, the people who care about me are merely amused by the two-faced liars clinging to their misguided beliefs.
Whatever becomes of me, my child, my home, my image—the dishonest collection of thieving, petty, jealous relatives, and meaningless acquaintances, will surely fade into the tracks of proverbial nothingness, forgotten by the world, like snow simply drifting from the road.
But I have done something first—not once, but twice. And later, after all of this, I will find something else. And, once again, I will do it first, and I will not be forgotten. For this, I will suffer the vitriol, for, it is basically worth it.