Pinned Under Big Rig


Pinned Under Big Rig

“Breaker, breaker, 1-9.
Find my handle, big man, cause Santa Clause is waiting for you at mile marker 99, over.” said “Pop-a-Top Tennessee”, is my pop’s citizen band radio name.

My pop’s a “Two Million Mile Man,” a professional driver, not one chargeable accident on his record, a proud, respectable man with a strong work ethic. Every week for 40 years on the road, from his hub in Knoxville, TN, to every state in the continental U.S. Every weekend, even to this day, he’s in the shop building an engine while watching NASCAR, or racing anything that moves, from boats, go-carts, dirt track cars, dragsters, sprint cars, round tracks, to pro-mod, also called the “out-law” class. In pro-mod you can build the biggest 900cu engine with the power of 2,500 horses, and burn high performance rocket fuel, nitrous oxide. This pro-mod race will blow you away, far surpassing the Chevy Corvette, with a 350hp engine, one always parked in my pop’s driveway, spotless and full of fuel.

Your vette is old school.” I antagonize and challenge my pop in my competitive, full throttle spirit. “Let’s race! My turbo diesel Volkswagen versus your 350hp vette.” The turbo engine is in a class of it’s own. The turbo engine’s pistons compress air in the cylinders…then rapidly cools so that the engine is always turning and lighting a bigger fire.

What’s gotten into you, Staaace?” Why on earth are you asking all these automotive questions?” my pop asked.

“I’m writing a boooring stooory. Don’t you like stories? C’mon, let me drive that terrible vette of yours and this story will rock-n-roll! One time, one time in my life! C’mon, c’mon, c’mon, c’mon, please.” I pester him.

“Yes. I like stories.” my pop agreed. “I could write a really bad story – about all the good cars you’ve wrecked.” and he ended the conversation just like that.”

“Breaker, breaker, 1-9.
Find my handle, big man, there’s a bat out of hell on wheels headed your way.”Anonymous.

My momma was that bat, flapping against the wind in this little red car her boyfriend, Buddy, had just bought her. It was our first ride, and I was full of pride, my 4 foot frame standing on the back seat enjoying the fast passing travel, as safety belts were just a thought, a novelty, an option. Pedal to the metal and the rubber spun in the loose gravel. We shot out of control, “Get down!” she screamed as she dodged a decisive, decapitating blow. The car roof peeled back like a yellow, ripe banana, our soft skin pinned under a big rig trailer. The sudden impact shoved me down into fetal, clenched fist position, struggling, frightened, confused, and covered in broken glass from my shattered senses. I called for help I don’t know how many times in our damaged, darkened den, which caused no little excitement or alarm.

“Breaker, breaker, 1-9.
here’s our handle on the Bell Farm Road situation
looks like a one car MVC, head on collision
heavy damage, vehicle pinned in, will need extrication
check for medical center and helicopter air lift transportation
for one, maybe two patients beyond our trained imagination.”

This was a scene size up by the first responder paramedics.

God’s golden hour was of the essence. This is what I was called to do, but we were going in the wrong direction. The initial vehicle recovery process was over, and at the very first opportunity, my momma transferred me from guarded, critical condition to wilderness disorder and dysfunction.

♦ Bandit Eyes ♦
The crowd stood back a-mazed
my masked momma and me in May
and we quietly stole away
down dusty gray gravel road
to our rustic log cabin home
supersonic rifle to load
we took to the wood
deep into the oaks and the pines
and the house of Mr. Owl
ears open for coyote howl
full moon darkened by a cloud
we were like two racoon out-laws
my bandit eyes ever keenly watchful
– on her

“Stay, Stacy. Stay put. Your grandfather Summers will come for you, he’ll come for you soon.” I desperately wanted to ask her, “Are you in trouble?” but I was too afraid to ask, and I sat listening for my grandfather’s voice on that old, tough stump as a hidden nest of precious eggs, waiting, weary, and nearly cracked.

“Breaker, breaker, 1-9
What’s your handle, child? Smoky Bear’s in the forest but only you can prevent wildfires” Anonymous.

“I can’t hear you,” I responded on mute, “there’s too much static,” and I sat alone on that marked landing zone wondering if I could handle life on life’s terms, if I was ready for what I was about to see and learn.”
~ §tacy §weeney
published 05/18/2015

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