Dashboard confidential
How lucky are you, Lucky?

By Dave Sweetman, columnist

We used to have a driver here at the company named Lucky. That's what he called himself, but for the life of me I never saw anything lucky about him.

As he was bobtailing in for his first day, a car came in on his rear blind-side merge, collided with Lucky's tandems and crashed into the wall. The car driver wanted $300 for repairs and when Lucky forked over the cash, the car driver ran away, never to be seen again. The car and driver had bad papers and the salvage yard got a new addition. We never heard from the car driver again. Lucky got hired anyway.

Several months later, Lucky was on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills with bumper-to-bumper traffic causing major backups through all of the traffic lights. Lucky was rather short in stature, meaning he had booster blocks on the pedals and extra cushions to see out of the windows. He still had a tough time seeing over the big square hood in city traffic.

On his next green light, he proceeded through the intersection and heard a rough growling noise. Clearing the intersection, he hit the four-way flashers and parking brake and bailed out to investigate. Glued to the front bumper was a sideways little Miata sports car that had been stopped in mid intersection. Lucky had been pushing the car and its ghost-white driver sideways for several hundred feet. After exchanging a few pleasantries, they parted ways, each proclaiming the other to be "Lucky."

Indeed.

Another chapter from the "what not to do list" in the Lucky catalog had our pal in Southern California to pick up a car at a Cadillac dealer. Swinging a bit too wide while pulling into the driveway, the top of his trailer clipped the electric sign on the side of the dealership, causing it to crash to the ground as well as getting the attention of several very excited salesmen.

In another momentary lapse of judgment, without checking behind his trailer friend Lucky backed up in a big hurry. His next set of problems was with the new Cadillac in Lucky's blind spot directly behind his trailer that had tried to follow him in from the street.

The Cadillac was hit so hard by the backing trailer, it knocked out the windshield glass and exploded the air bags. Enter several more excited salesmen, much yelling and screaming. Even better, the Cadillac driver, as it turned out, was the owner of the dealership.

Being a true, ahem, professional and not wanting to block the major street, Lucky drove down the street but found nowhere to park close by. In the meanwhile, the folks at the dealership called our company and the police, figuring it to be a hit and run.

Making his way back to the dealership, Lucky took his lumps and did the right thing. It did take a while to sort out and make amends but it ended well, considering. And, believe it or not, we still transport cars for the dealership. And they may even amaze you with a really wild tale of some wacko truck driver in training for a Smokey and the Bandit remake.

Not long after, Lucky retired from our services and from the road, much to the delight of our insurance company and innocent motorists everywhere.

And I can't help but remember the flyer I once saw:

  • Lost Dog
  • One Eye
  • Three legs
  • Castrated
  • Answers to the name "Lucky" LL