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More must-haves for that truck that runs good

Vivian Herron, Columnist
ALL | GrassValleyArchive

We’re still working on stuff you need to haul around in your truck that runs good … I hope you’re paying attention.

Pete Milano, our Washington School teacher, said, “Rope! You needs lots of rope, most of it too short to do anything with. Also, get a couple of those plastic blue milk crates, gotta have those.”

Ted Peach of Nevada City agrees, but recommends a very long rope broken and tied in several places. He even wrote out a list for me – what a classy guy!



“A metal box that originally housed a bottle of Glenfiddich Scotch whiskey and now holds every tool you could ever want, except the one you need right now. Lots of dirty rags, used Zip-loc bags, a pair of reading glasses originally put in the truck for emergency use but they got lost and never turned up again, several garbage bags and a carefully packed first-aid supply in a plastic bag that promptly disappeared into the mobile county dump that is your truck.”

Anyone want to bet the reading glasses are tucked into the first-aid kit?




Linda Ivie, a long-time Bigtown mail carrier, said you need a big ball of twisted-up wire that might could hold up a muffler if a bracket breaks, and a tire pump that runs off your cigarette lighter. “It takes almost forever to fill the tire, but it’s better than nothing.”

Her husband, Wayne, said a cell phone is quite handy “so you can call the wife when you’re broken down somewhere and whine about it (not that she can help you, but it feels good to whine sometimes), and to find out what happened to the Twinkie that was supposed to be in your lunch.”

More of Wayne’s must-haves: a respectable supply of fast-food trash and snack wrappers in case you’re stranded in the boonies and need kindling to start a fire; a spare tire, preferably full of air; extra water for the radiator that keeps running low and you can never figure out why; and a good scraper to get at least half of the mud off your boots because the aforementioned wife gets really, really ticked off when you track it into the house.

If I were you, though, I’d take Wayne’s suggestions with a grain of salt. This is the same guy who once needed a small amount of joint compound and used Linda’s Mixmaster to whip up a batch. It is only because Linda is such a deeply committed Christian that Wayne lives to tell the tale today.

Mr. Peach keeps his jack under the hood, tied down with a rag that doubles as a dipstick cleaner when he checks his oil. Sugartush shook his head when he heard that; he swears by wiping the dipstick off on the bottom of his Levi’s pants’ leg.

You don’t have to completely fill up your truck, you know. Leave room for the rusty refrigerator and ever-popular tied-down mattress set that you’re going to take to the dump any time now.

The gentlemen of Washington are prepared to put on a truck accessory tour just for you, dear reader – give you some hands-on experience in selecting custom truck bed gear like yard maintenance equipment, dead engines, hay bales and miscellaneous debris.

They have even offered – oh, this just touches my heart – to donate some of the stuff they’ve collected over the years and have stored in their vehicles, sheds and under their houses, and will personally transfer it all into your truck.

Do they ask for thanks or gratitude for their sacrifice? Indeed not. Just bring down three or four beer kegs, and they’ll call it even.

Vivian Herron is a longtime resident of the town of Washington whose column appears on Saturdays. You can write her in care of The Union, 464 Sutton Way, Grass Valley, 95945.


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