under the radar

Yesterday I watched President Trump take a moment to share the podium with America’s Truck Drivers. He put some guys front and center and thanked them for their contribution in this time of National crisis. It was a nice moment, one of many across the country honoring the professions that are on the front line at great personal expense as a unseen enemy ravages our Country. Our President knows that America needs heroes, it sells and makes people feel good.

My Dad would have appreciated it. To a degree.

My Dad drove a truck for 35 years. He was unequivocally the hardest working man I have ever met. I say that without bias. His work ethic was unparalleled. If he was to watch yesterday’s press conference he would have watched with interest for a while, smiled and then turned it off. It wouldn’t have been news to him, he always knew that America moved by truck and that just the slightest disruption in the supply chain would expose just how necessary his profession was. He didn’t consider himself a hero or essential. He just liked being needed.

He didn’t pick his industry by accident. He was a talented guy despite only a High School education. He was skilled at carpentry, electrical and plumbing. He renovated/rebuilt our house as we lived in it. But he chose driving a truck because it was one industry that would never be affected by the economy. I will say it again, America moves by truck. Everything would shut down if not for daily deliveries by trucks. I’ve always known this, many are just now learning.

As we honor the nurses, the grocers, the truck drivers, the mail carriers and other essential workers keep it in the back of your mind that it’s a day late and a dollar short. These are the people that have always kept us in the basics of life. They enable us to eat, to maintain communication, to stay or get healthy, to just function. We don’t urge our kids into these jobs because they don’t make what bankers and stockbrokers do. We want our kids to wear suits.

Sure, the world needs stockbrokers and bankers and other people in suits. But somehow in the push to make everyone go to college we forgot that our great Country was built by men in overalls with calloused hands and nearly destroyed several times over by men in suits.

Sure, celebrate the working man today as if it’s a new thing. But the grocery clerks, Nurses, Mail carriers and truck drivers and every other essential worker have always, and will continue to be the one who are making our lives as we know it possible.

When this is over, please remember to respect the Blue Collar. They are our real heroes. My dad would politely thank you. And then he would go back to work.

28 thoughts on “under the radar”

  1. Your Dad sounds like a great man. Here in the UK we stand outside our houses every Thursday evening at 8pm and applaud all of the unsung heroes. It’s so emotional and a show of immense gratitude 🙏

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good post again Billy. There are a lot of unsung heroes who go about their work every day and no-one thinks about it, or recognises their value. if nothing else, this pandemic has woken a lot of people up to that fact. Here in the UK we stand at the end of our drives or on balconies, or in the street and clap for our NHS (and the other workers who are keeping things going like our refuse collectors, delivery drivers, shop assistants etc). It costs nothing to say ‘Thank you’, and Hubby and I are saying it a lot more lately, and we already did.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. My Dad always told me to look after the little guy, so did my FIL. As a result, we have always seen our workmen or delivery guys OK with offers of cups of tea/coffee and biscuits if I have them.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Amen, Billy! You summed it up perfectly.

    It has always been the Blue Collar portion of our society who has built, maintained, protected, and pushed our country forward. The Harvard MBAs and their ilk have driven our country to the brink of ruination (multiple times), and it is always the blue collar who have always managed to keep the economy and our infrastructure chugging along. And yet, the Blue Collar people are always the first victims of Wall Street’s shenanigans. We would all survive just fine without stock brokers. But we would be utterly destroyed without truck drivers, packers, shippers, makers, doers. In other words, people just like your Dad and my Dad.

    If nothing else comes out of this latest insanity, I hope it gives us all a deeper appreciation for those who keep us fed and clothed and housed.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I am very confident of that. I already see it happening right before my eyes. I have heard many people speaking of their newfound appreciation for the people who make it possible for us to live the lifestyles we do. I believe we have always had this appreciation, but now it is at the fore where it belongs.

        I hope you are staying safe and weathering the craziness well, my friend.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Having known many a trucker (I’m from Nevada) I would agree they don’t think of themselves as heroes. Would have been nice for Trump to acknowledge that railroad engineers and longshoremen as well. They are also hardworking unseen heroes.

    Liked by 1 person

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