Sunday, November 13, 2011

Truck: A Love Story

Prior to leaving on a recent extended road trip, I took my father aside and told him that were I to perish behind the wheel and the Iowa or some other state patrol were to return my belongings, he should know that while I was enjoying the twelve-cassette packet titled No Excuses: Existentialism and the Meaning of Life, I was not completely buying the Meaning of Life bit. The amateur study of philosophy is like taking a few laps with a NASCAR driver. You're not qualified to do it on your own, you have no business behind the wheel, but for a few laps or paragraphs you're right there with 'em, and when it's all over, you've learned something. Or, as my local fire chief once said, you've simply exasperated the situation.

And it remains difficult to get a philosopher to deliver a load of pig manure to your garden. So I really should get that truck going. It sits there falling apart with a case of nuclear cradle cap, thirsty for paint and a gas tank that won't leak. The project would give me license to make numerous trips to Farm & Fleet, where the livestock section feels sadly ever more equivalent of a hobby section, but the sign over the drinking fountain that says PLEAE NO TOBACCO JUICE remains, and consequently, so does hope. I don't expect much, and the little pleasures suffice. This morning for coffee I ground four scoops of Farmer to Farmer Guatemalan Medium and when I pulled the grinder cap and sniffed it was all I could do to not flop right over and shake my leg like a dog.

So. The year is planned. Grow a garden and recapture my youth. That, and get my decrepit 1951 L-120 INternational pickup truck running in time for deer hunting season in November.

Right off the bat, I got distracted by a woman.

-Michael Perry


Blogger jim said...

great book by a good author- it's his story written in our language-buy it, you'll enjoy it and so will your significant other if you have one and they read at all- he also has another one two out i believe.

November 13, 2011 at 7:50 AM  
Blogger farmgirljen said...

I loved that book (and anything else by Mike Perry). I wish he'd write faster, though I am usually content with re-reading all the books of his that I have. I find something new every time.

November 13, 2011 at 7:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, thank you for reminding me that I want to re-read some Perry over my winter break. I adore his writing.

November 13, 2011 at 8:31 AM  
Blogger Elisabeth said...

I have loved everything he's written that I have read!

November 13, 2011 at 8:51 AM  
Blogger SHJeffers said...

When I read Coop, I laughed so hard I sprained my own uvula!

November 13, 2011 at 12:39 PM  
Blogger The Village Queen said...

Is he single? Ymmm. Good looking and can write... sigh.

November 13, 2011 at 2:24 PM  
Blogger Sonja said...

Love Michael Perry!!

November 14, 2011 at 11:07 AM  
Blogger jenomnibus said...

Excellent writing- I've never read his stuff before but I just put "Truck" on hold at the library. Thanks Jenna!

November 14, 2011 at 2:33 PM  
Blogger Raining Iguanas said...

Jenna, I just arrived here via Jon Katz>Battenkill Books. I was wandering about your site and stumbled upon this post. I have been following Michael Perry for a few years now. What's funny is the minute I entered your blog, I immediately thought of Coop and was about to send you a link to To think that this world is so intricately connected. By the way, it's nice to meet you. -jrg

November 19, 2011 at 6:45 PM  

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