Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Trucks and Pickups

Well, now wouldn't you know it, here's another thing I don't have which it seems that every Southern Male has, and that's a truck. Alternately called a "Pickup" or more colloquially a "Pick-em-up Truck" it's a handy thing to have when you need to go get a load of topsoil for the garden, or some chat* for the driveway, or maybe you just need to get a couple of pieces of lumber which don't quite fit in that cute little bug you drive. 

Ok, I don't drive a bug.  I drive a Jeep.  It's a Jeep Grand Cherokee and it can carry just about anything in the back - except for the aforementioned chat or topsoil.  No way is the lovely Mrs. going to let me fill the back of the Jeep with dirt.  But I have always wanted a truck.  A Pick-em-Up Truck to be exact.  Something old and with an oxidized paint job that I don't have to baby, and maybe it's got a lot of rust, but it runs and carries bricks or cement or enough lumber to build a new garage.  Not that the truck needs a garage, no sirree.  Leave that old workhorse out in the rain, it just looks better and better each day.

Pickups are a big deal out west.  Texas is full of them and Colorado (my original home) had more pickups per capita than just about anywhere - except maybe for here in the south.  Pickups are a way of life here.  It doesn't matter how old the pickup, or the style, as there are many MANY old El Caminos floating around out there.  One of my original first blogs noted the use of an El Camino in what I have deemed the "Southern Moment." The El Camino is the perfect vehicle: Part 2 door coupe, part pickup truck.

I see pickups everywhere.  Most of them are right off the brand name lots, nice standard paint jobs and customizations. Many more are several years old, antiques and hybrids of customization. Those trucks that have paint jobs show the owner's southern roots, sporting everything from state flags, to sports teams and that Southern Flag (Confederate Flag.)

But again, it's not the paint job, it's the truck itself. Something in the actual shape, or utilitarian feel of the truck itself is what a good Southern Man wants or needs.  I suppose it's even a requirement of being a Good Ol' Boy.  Neighbor Bubba calls my Jeep a car, but the state considers it a truck.  When I point this out to him he laughs.  He also points out how we ought to put a load of compost in my 'truck' and see how it fares.
Neighbor Bubba can be a pain sometimes.   

*Chat is a term for broken up bedrock.  Originally a byproduct of mining, the broken bedrock pieces are used for packing driveways or walkways.  Its rough and odd shaped nature makes it a better surface for traction as well as not being easily pressed into the topsoil.  

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