Confessions of aging eyes

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“Did you guys see the size of those chickens?”“Did you guys see the size of those chickens?”

You know, I feel like I can pretty much tell y’all anything. There’s really not much mystery left, especially if you’ve been following along for the entirety of this blog, which will reach five years in a couple of months. I still have a hard time thinking many more people than my cousins and momma read this, but I’m humbled time and again by folks we meet along the way on the road who have commiserated in our daily life for a long time, so I feel like we’re friends here. I’ve been pretty honest about my flaws and filthy lies, and I’ve been kind of hard on the truckers for theirs.

Let’s suffice it to say that life in general is a learning experience, but being on the road is a mega-dose of real life in the outer fringes of society, where you learn to improvise and make do with the tools and resources you have.

I’d like to say this is the reason I have a ten-year-old laptop computer with Microsoft Word installed on it, and have never bothered to plug in the product code so I can fully access Word. The sad truth is I didn’t do it because I didn’t know it was on a sticker on the bottom of my computer until I dropped it for the fifty millionth time and noticed the Microsoft sticker on the bottom of it.

I do two things with my computer, I write stuff in Open Office and I upload it to Overdrive. That’s pretty much it. I’ve never needed to make a .doc file, because Overdrive never required me to, and I was perfectly happy cruising along with the super-easy and free Open Office.

Long story short, I write things other than trucking-related lifestyle and general gubmint baiting, and I have recently become interested in placing some of these things in real life non-trucking magazines. Consequently, I’ve realized really quick-like how nice it is to have Todd Dills and the forgiving editors I’ve been spoiled with. Turns out some of the paid submissions want an actual .doc file in a format, and they won’t even look at you without following the rules. No prima donna crap allowed.

In an effort to conform and submit, I sequestered myself in the office with my raggedy old computer and tried to decipher the product code from the ten year old sticker on a computer that has traveled at least a 100,000 miles in a truck with me, so I could convert some of the things I wished to submit to the nontrucking world to actual .doc files.

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I really can’t tell you how embarrassing it is to have someone walk in on you when you’re wearing a pair of prescription glasses, with a pair of cheater glasses on top of them and are holding a magnifying glass, trying to read teeny, tiny, scratched-off numbers and letters. I’m certain my son feels equally as violated by having to see his mother with hugely magnified and alarmed eyes that could start a forest fire in yellow flag conditions.

I never deciphered the Microsoft hieroglyphics on the bottom of my ancient computer. I scared my son, I pitched 40 fits, I input every numerical and alphabetical combination I could think of, and I finally took it as a sign to just give in to the fact that I have a hard time conforming. Also, I am old and blind.