RePete Performance

| August 02, 2001

“You okay?” Grumpy asked. He fastened his seat belt.

“Yeah.”

The trailer tires slipped around a tight curve. Adam sucked in his breath and downshifted.


Adam remembered the day he’d met Grumpy. While he waited for a load, he’d spent all afternoon at a truckstop talking with Grumpy and several other drivers over cheap chili and coffee.

“Don’t believe his handle,” a driver told Adam.

“Yeah. It should be Softy,” another agreed.

“Don’t believe ‘em,” Grumpy growled. “They’re just trying to ruin my reputation.”

“Like your reputation for leaving the biggest tips.”

“Or for stopping for every stray or breakdown.”

“What about the time he spent his food allowance and more buying a bus ticket home for that runaway teen?”

“You guys are full of it.” Grumpy tried to glare, but a little grin lifted his mustache.

Grumpy wasn’t hurting for money. He could have retired, but he loved to drive. It wasn’t hard for Adam to convince Grumpy to team up with him when he got the dedicated auto parts run.


Adam downshifted again at the grade sign. A Blazer whizzed past then pulled in, nearly grazing their grill. It fishtailed a couple of times, then sped away.

“I’d do better without turkeys like that on the road,” Adam said.

“If he’s not careful he won’t be gobbling come Thanksgiving.” They stared at the snow-packed road. There were eight miles to Gunnison, then just 12 more miles home.

Adam squinted ahead and asked, “What’s that?”

“I believe that’s your turkey in the ditch.”
Adam groaned. “I don’t want to stop for that jerk. What if Sam’s in trouble?”

“It’s your call,” said Grumpy.

Adam banged his hand on the wheel, then eased onto the shoulder, blinkers flashing. “You’ve been a bad influence,” he muttered.

A young woman in a down parka slid out of the Blazer. Her knit cap barely reached the top of her vehicle.

Grumpy tried the CB while Adam trudged ahead.

“Do you think we could push it out?” she asked. “My phone isn’t working, and I’m in a hurry.”

“I noticed.”

“Sorry.” She wore earrings shaped like big birds. What a turkey!

“My partner’s calling for help on the CB, but it could take awhile. We’ll try.”

She steered while he strained at the back bumper. Grumpy joined him. They pushed, grunted, slipped, fell and tried again.

“No luck with the CB?”

“Nope.”

“We can’t just leave her here.”

“Nope.”

They took big breaths. “One, two, three, push!”

After 20 minutes of pushing, pulling, prying and shoveling, Grumpy was crimson-faced and panting.

“We’ll just have to take you,” Adam said, rolling up a nylon strap. “Where are you going?”

RePete Performance

| August 02, 2001

“You okay?” Grumpy asked. He fastened his seat belt.

“Yeah.”

The trailer tires slipped around a tight curve. Adam sucked in his breath and downshifted.


Adam remembered the day he’d met Grumpy. While he waited for a load, he’d spent all afternoon at a truckstop talking with Grumpy and several other drivers over cheap chili and coffee.

“Don’t believe his handle,” a driver told Adam.

“Yeah. It should be Softy,” another agreed.

“Don’t believe ‘em,” Grumpy growled. “They’re just trying to ruin my reputation.”

“Like your reputation for leaving the biggest tips.”

“Or for stopping for every stray or breakdown.”

“What about the time he spent his food allowance and more buying a bus ticket home for that runaway teen?”

“You guys are full of it.” Grumpy tried to glare, but a little grin lifted his mustache.

Grumpy wasn’t hurting for money. He could have retired, but he loved to drive. It wasn’t hard for Adam to convince Grumpy to team up with him when he got the dedicated auto parts run.


Adam downshifted again at the grade sign. A Blazer whizzed past then pulled in, nearly grazing their grill. It fishtailed a couple of times, then sped away.

“I’d do better without turkeys like that on the road,” Adam said.

“If he’s not careful he won’t be gobbling come Thanksgiving.” They stared at the snow-packed road. There were eight miles to Gunnison, then just 12 more miles home.

Adam squinted ahead and asked, “What’s that?”

“I believe that’s your turkey in the ditch.”
Adam groaned. “I don’t want to stop for that jerk. What if Sam’s in trouble?”

“It’s your call,” said Grumpy.

Adam banged his hand on the wheel, then eased onto the shoulder, blinkers flashing. “You’ve been a bad influence,” he muttered.

A young woman in a down parka slid out of the Blazer. Her knit cap barely reached the top of her vehicle.

Grumpy tried the CB while Adam trudged ahead.

“Do you think we could push it out?” she asked. “My phone isn’t working, and I’m in a hurry.”

“I noticed.”

“Sorry.” She wore earrings shaped like big birds. What a turkey!

“My partner’s calling for help on the CB, but it could take awhile. We’ll try.”

She steered while he strained at the back bumper. Grumpy joined him. They pushed, grunted, slipped, fell and tried again.

“No luck with the CB?”

“Nope.”

“We can’t just leave her here.”

“Nope.”

They took big breaths. “One, two, three, push!”

After 20 minutes of pushing, pulling, prying and shoveling, Grumpy was crimson-faced and panting.

“We’ll just have to take you,” Adam said, rolling up a nylon strap. “Where are you going?”

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