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Today I learned that our inverter is extremely important. I also discovered that owning a truck requires approximately the same financial commitment as supporting Keith Richard’s heroin habit from 1974 to 1982. As a matter of fact, I’d venture to say it’s actually a higher number of green American dollars, with a much lower chance of rehabilitation. It’s a sickness, and I’m suing someone for disability, as soon as I can figure out how to make a case for the supreme stupidity of wanting to own your own business.

OK, it’s really not that bad, but some days, it seems like we bang our heads against the same wall and never learn to turn around and run from the wall instead of continuing to slam ourselves into it like rabid lemmings.

The joys of trucking.

So George was doing the pre-trip today. You know, that magic 15 minutes in which he roams around the truck hitting things, checking wires and tires, and mumbling to himself. He seemed to be grumbling a little more than usual, and mentioned that the voltage on the truck was a little low. He got out the voltmeter – a tool that I had a bad experience with when I was a child, so it instills a great deal of trepidation in me when I see him get it out.

“What’s going on?”

“Just checking the alternator – seems fine. We’ve got something draining the voltage.”

As I watched him checking things, my anxiety grew. I tend to get a little edgy when I think of him using a little machine that can arc a current with the ability to catch a sun-dress on fire. Not that he wears sun-dresses, but I do, and I definitely caught one on fire screwing around with my dad’s voltmeter one day when I was a little kid. Let me pause here and say that “stop, drop, and roll” are the last three things that come to mind when your cotton sun-dress is on fire and your hair is next. It’s more along the lines of, “holy shit, my dad is going to kill me, and OH MY GOD I’M ON FIRE!”

Just saying.

Anyway, he decided we had enough juice to make it to Missoula, and he put the fire starter away. We left out and enjoyed our ride – as much as you can while being absolutely certain the truck will lose all power and careen off the side of a mountain. I have no doubt that our truck looks around and says to itself, “Hmmm, if I broke down here, the humans would be either eaten by bears or fall off the side of a cliff when they exit me. Looks like a great place to refuse to move!” [Insert evil truck laugh.]

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Needless to say, we made it to Missoula without being murdered by the truck, and found that our beloved hardwired inverter is flooding the system with current that doesn’t belong, making everything go juju nuts – kind of like my Facebook feed this week. Electricity is magic to me, and I have a deep and abiding respect for anything that can zap a solid object into a puff of smoke, so I am eternally grateful that the problem was found before I was accidentally eliminated while plugging my computer into the truck outlet to write this lovely ditty.

Trucking is an adventure, albeit an expensive one, and even though I’m certain she wants to kill us, every time I hear that deep, bubbly Detroit Diesel percolating and popping I’m in love with this truck all over again. Maybe I can get Keith Richards to recommend a good rehab center…