By Greg Grisolano, staff writer
OOIDA Executive Vice President Todd Spencer recalls his first impression when he first saw the iconic slogan “Kwityerbitchin Join OOIDA” emblazoned on the back of a dry van trailer in 1992.
“It said a lot in just a few words,” he said.
Much like the man who coined the phrase, OOIDA Life Member Sam Hupman.
“Sam appeared to me to pretty much have his stuff together as a trucker,” Spencer said. “He went about his business in a professional manner, and had his head on straight.”
Hupman, 61, of Shelbyville, Ky., said he was inspired by other bumper stickers on the road with a similar message to stop complaining. Hupman added the part about joining OOIDA, and changed the spelling to something more “hillbilly” in his words.
“It got people to talking,” Hupman said. “I tried to tell (other truckers) for what they spend on one soft drink a day, they could be a member of OOIDA. A soft drink wasn’t but 50 cents back then. I tried to tell them if everybody would get together, we’d be able to change some things. I’ve had some good conversations with people because of it.”
Several of those conversations occurred over the CB.
“I probably should have made it bigger,” he said, noting it would have been easier to read. “One guy thought my name was ‘John Ooida.’”
Spencer said the Association saw the message clearly, and recognized its ability to be a rallying cry for truckers everywhere.
“We copied that slogan,” he said. “It says a lot. If there are things that need to be addressed, address them and do it in a manner that’s effective. Don’t just complain. Do something about it. And Sam had that quality in him. I recognized that and admired it. And I thought others would feel the same way.”
Hupman sold that particular truck and trailer combo in 1995, but has continued trucking. He currently works as a company driver hauling cars. He said he hopes to retire in December to raise beef cattle. LL