May 2009 Letters

No rest in Virginia 
Two weeks ago another driver and I pulled into a Virginia rest area. It was 3 a.m. Our rest was about three minutes and a trooper was pounding at the door, telling us and almost 20 other trucks to get back on the road.

Are they kidding? I thought they were supposed to keep people safe. This officer was so rude. He acted like we were criminals, not average hard-working people trying to help keep the economy moving. After all, we deliver a lot of the goods that supply the nation’s needs.

The state officials wrote us tickets for window tint and stopped us for hours to see our health cards. (There’s another funny story: The health card official was weighing in at well over 280 and couldn’t get off his chair without assistance).

They’re always looking to take money out of our pockets instead of supporting the work we are doing.

Conchetta Cometa 
Venice, FL

Ridiculous sleep apnea regulations 
I would like to thank Land Line, Jim Park, Mark Reddig, Tom Weakley and Joe Rajkovacz for the excellent series on sleep apnea on Land Line Now on Sirius XM. You are right on the money on the intent of the regulation. First of all, the testing is flawed and the treatment is all about money.

Five years ago I went in to my doctor for a physical. Everything was fine until he asked how I’d been feeling. I said OK, but I think I’m more tired than I should be. He said he would like me to take a sleep test. I agreed because he also said it was going to be required for CDLs in the future.

Now I have to get a physical every year. The CPAP has a card that records the usage. I have to have six hours average every night or the doctor will not sign that I’m properly treated. At one point Indiana disqualified me because they needed six to nine weeks to clear their medical board. Several months ago the state said they need one year of records of CPAP usage for compliance or I will be disqualified.

I am old enough to retire but I still enjoy driving and want to work a few more years. Thanks for exposing the ridiculous reg on sleep apnea.

Anonymous

Letter to Dave Sweetman 
I have seen your truck a couple of times over the years, but never had the pleasure of meeting you. I was reading your comments on trucking before you came to Land Line – also those of Pete Rigney, another friend I never had the honor to meet.

Even so, I have felt you guys were every trucker’s friend. I am Bill Boyd, and you may have read a little by/about me in Land Line. I started as an owner-operator in ’72, joined OOIDA in ’78, and am now a life member. For years, I have been honored to serve on the OOIDA Board of Directors.

The comments you recently made about losing your wife and friend prompted this e-mail. It hurt to read it. I cannot imagine how it must have hurt to write it. Thanks.

And thanks for being a good friend all these years, along all those miles. May there be many more for us all. See you down the road.

Bill Boyd
Mount Pleasant, SC

Pork Chop Diaries brought MATS home
I am not a big blog reader, but that changed when I started reading the “Pork Chop Diaries” that covered the MATS. Being unable to attend Louisville this year was tough. Thankfully, the Land Line writers gave me enough detail that I had a “loud and clear” picture of the show! The PCD was a personal conversation, instead of just reading a news story.

Thank you, Land Line – you brought the show to me, one sentence at a time.

Danny R. Schnautz
Pasadena, TX

Pork Chop Diaries: best of the best 
It’s the Monday after the Mid-America Trucking Show. Thanks so much for the Pork Chop Diaries 2009 blog during the past week. Those blogs really made my day. You are the best of the best.

Uncle Darrell Hicks
Tulare, CA

After MATS 
Good seeing you OOIDA folks at Louisville. Shortly after we saw you in the show lot Saturday afternoon we decided to dash down to Nashville and do the Grand Ole Opry that night. I was tired from walking around the show for a couple of days, but not to worry. My wife Geri drove all the way; all I had to do was hold the steering wheel.

Every country music fan should go to the new Country Music Hall of Fame. I was alone in the rotunda with all the plaques – and it occurred to me that here are all these famous people and I’m just about the only one I’ve never heard of.

We did learn something: the difference between a fiddle and a violin. The violin has strings, the fiddle has strangs. Good stuff to know.

Bob Martin
Lafayette, IN