Bob "Cowpoke" Martin
Actually, being leased to Trailer Transit was anything but another day at the office. It was more like a new adventure every day. My favorite bragging rights story with Transit is when we helped move the Dallas Cowboys.
I had a trailer load of movie props going to Burbank, CA, dropping on a Friday morning. I was to pick up a trailer for the Cowboys at their training camp late Saturday night in Oxnard and take it to their facility in Irving, TX.
I got the Burbank trailer set down early Friday morning and called my contact at the Cowboys. His name was Red, and I found out later he was the owner of Dallas Moving and Storage. He was out there ramrodding this deal himself. They had several of their own trucks and called Transit in for extra power.
First thing Red said was "your trailer won't be ready till late Saturday night."
I said, "I know that, but I'm in the neighborhood and have to hang out somewhere; might as well be there."
As he was giving me directions, he mentioned something about the Marriott. I interrupted like a smart aleck and asked if he had me a room. Red said, "Yeah, I can fix you up." I said, "You got to be kidding me."
He told me that as the next day was the last day of camp, they had cut some players – plus the media was starting to move out.
I was planning to have breakfast but changed my mind and dashed right out there. Red met me on a golf cart where all the trucks and trailers were parked and told me to grab my stuff and he would give me a little tour and fix me up with a room.
I never carried a suitcase in the truck, but I wasn't going into this joint with my stuff in a Walmart bag. I told him I'd come back for it later; let's go.
Red gave me an all-access pass. I guess I could have gone into the locker room if I wanted. He told me where the dining room was and got me a room.
Well, it wasn't actually a "room"; it was a three-room suite. It had a balcony with a view, a leather recliner and couch, big TV and three pints of Häagen-Dazs in the freezer. Either the maids missed them or they were complimentary. Who cares?
The first time I went to the dining room, Bill Parcells and Jerry Jones were sitting at a table drinking coffee. Mr. Jones caught me staring and waved me over to their table and wanted to know why I was in there. I showed him the credential Red gave me. He said, "I told Red to give you guys those other badges. Anyway, as long as you are not a spy for the Redskins (what's a Redskin?), you are welcome here. Have a good time."
Before I left their table, Bill Parcells asked me not to bother the players about photos or autographs. I said, "Coach, I know you and Mr. Jones from all your face time on TV, but if you gave me a million dollars I couldn't call the name of one player."
I'll say this, Mr. Jones lays out a fine spread. One thing I didn't understand. Here was all this gourmet food, fine dinnerware, people to serve you, and here were some of these millionaire players loading their food in those plastic doggie boxes and carrying it to their rooms. I don't get it.
I suppose I spent a half hour watching scrimmage. The rest of the time I spent in my suite watching the Little League World Series – that is, in between trips to the dining room.
I couldn't care less about football but that didn't stop me from wearing out my cell phone calling everyone and saying, "Go ahead, ask me where I'm at!"
Another day at the office? Not hardly. LL
Bob Martin is an OOIDA life member from Lafayette, IN, and frequent contributor to Land Line. He's been a trucker for 45 years. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.