First of all, I would like to thank all of you. My wife and I just spent nearly two months biking through the western and central parts of the continent in both Canada and the U.S. For the most part you and your fellow truckers were tremendously courteous to us. You gave us space on the road, you slowed down a bit, and you didn’t honk your horns angrily. One of you even pulled up beside us to encourage us on our journey. Thanks to all of you for keeping us safe.
We do have a bone to pick with you though. It has to do with litter. We understand that you really don’t have a lot of control over the thousands of tarp straps along the road, or the tire shreds with all their little wires sticking out, or the pieces of tie down strap, or even the odd chain binder or chuck of chain. Things break, they wear out, they come loose in the wind you create. For these you can be forgiven.
You cannot, however, be forgiven, as easily, for the hundreds of bottles of p*ss that litter all of the major, and many of the minor, roads we traveled. We’ve mentioned this before and actually had people come to your defense for not stopping your trucks to deal with bodily functions. I do understand that many of you are paid by the mile and that a stop would cut into your hourly pay. Travelling the roads, we do understand that rest areas can be far apart, maybe further than your bladder reach and that stopping on the shoulder would be a dangerous thing to do. We know many of you are on tight schedules, harassed by demanding dispatchers, and driven by wives who would really like to see you get home to spend time with them and the kids. We get all of that.
We really have no problem with you driving at 90 or 100 kilometers per hour while manipulating your clothing and body parts to aim a steaming stream into an empty Gatorade bottle. You are professionals and I’m sure you know what you are doing and can do it safely.
Our problem comes when you screw the cap back on the bottle, roll down your window and hurl the bottle toward the ditch where it will lie holding its yellow cargo for the next millennium unless some highway worker with a strong stomach comes along to gather it up.
Tossing these half filled bottles along our roads is a disgusting habit. Surely, after putting the cap back on the bottle you could just return it to the cup holder it was in when it was empty. Big trucks do have cup holders don’t they? If you don’t want to look at it, toss it into the foot well of the passenger seat, most of the time the seat is empty anyway. Then, when you get to that rest stop, or your destination, clean out the cab and put the bottle in a proper garbage can. If you must throw it out when you are driving, at least leave the lid off the bottle so that nature, over time, can wash the bottle out.
You’re doing a great job moving things from place to place, and we realize that if it were not for truck traffic many of the roads we traveled would likely not be built to the standard they are. We also realize almost all or you would never throw a half filled bottle of yellow liquid out of your window, but unfortunately, the few who do are staining the reputation of all of you. Sorry if it seems like we are yelling at all of you for the sake of a few, but in this the few are acting for all of you.