Of Lovebugs and Pickup Trucks

By the Local Curmudgeon

“I don’t believe this guy.”

“What?” my wife said. She watched me as I looked, bug-eyed, into the rear-view mirror.

“This guy tailgating us. Any closer and the bastard will be in our backseat.”

“Just watch the road. Here’s the turn into Walmart.” She ordered. She orders me a lot, which is fine. Saves me time from having to think.

I maneuvered our little blue Honda Civic into the right-hand turn lane and slowed down. Glancing left, and then upwards, craning my neck, I watched the giant black pickup truck glide past. Completely opaque windows kept the driver hidden. I gotta admit it was kind of intimidating – the intended effect, I’m sure. It was all show-off chrome, the body buffed to an obnoxious, black sheen, and had tires the size of the Budweiser horses. Someone spent a lot of time keeping that thing clean. 

“I see someone can keep their truck clean,” my wife said. 

Feeling it was best to ignore that, I said, “It’s a leftover from Truck Week, two months ago in Daytona.”

“Truck Week?” my wife said.

Truck Week Events have caused Local Uproar in Volusia County

I turned onto the New Smyrna Beach Walmart parking lot access road and said, “Every June all the numbskulls who own large black pickup trucks gather in Daytona to display and prove their poor driving habits.”

“Oh, stop it,” my wife said. 

“It’s true. They all get together like a bunch of large lovebugs to congregate and probably propagate for all I know.”

“What about your black pickup truck?” she said.

“It’s charcoal gray, not black. And it’s a work truck.”

“You retired 10 years ago, and we just got the truck six months ago. That truck has not carried tools. Ever.”

“I carry tools in it. Sometimes.” 

“And it’s filthy.” 

I knew that was coming. I was deciding how to respond to that, and I was deciding what aisle to turn down – one that I would remember, hopefully, when we came back out. And then I saw it, heading our way on the access drive, the giant black pickup truck was coming right at us. It must have turned off the highway at the farther entrance for some reason. My wife saw him at the same time I did.

“Did you flip him off back there?” she yelled.

“Absolutely not,” I yelled back, and turned down an aisle and parked.

The black truck passed our aisle but turned down the next and parked in front of us. The door opened and a young blonde woman climbed out, locked up, and strode towards the store. Never even looked at us cowering there. Her hair was in a ponytail, and she looked like she had just come from a game of tennis, and her nails were a mean-looking bright red.

“I’m getting my nails done today,” my wife said.

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