What Was That You Said …

via Bus Nuts Online.  Another note from the basement of time.

images-1On the railroad a train with loads short of its final destination, say Dallas Texas, would be on the head-in of the train.  Loads south of Dallas to Houston, would be placed on the rear-end.

So if you were to hear over a radio, “185 go on down to the south-end, we will rip off your shorts and fill your rear-end.

Well, if you didn’t know what was going on, it would sound strange, that is understandable.. Continue reading

Mucking Up The Waters …


Holy Smokes, so late in life, but I may have a Man Crush … I could be in love?  It could be I am falling hard for one or two of my Internet Hero’s.  It is after all, close to spring. A full moon, maybe something in the water.  I have developed here lately some kind of weird affectation for Mung, or Vern, or ROS on the bus boards and I don’t know why?

As I absolutely hate all these people who use big words just to make themselves look perspicacious.  I will do my level best to make sure this is not long in the tooth, nor boring.

Here goes. Continue reading

Off The Wagon

imgres One thing about New Years Resolutions or good intentioned policies to improve your life, they are seldom effective.  I believe it is because (in my case) we are weak and do not have the disciplines needed to obtain the goals.

I fell off the wagon this week.  

Tuesday, being a slow day and all, I went over to the internet bus boards and took a little look around to see what was going on.  I just had an urge or a compulsion to see some poorly written missives, bad spelling, idiotic ideas and general BS.  Kind of disappointed in myself, I almost made thirty whole days without any of it. Now there is one wrinkle here I found interesting.  One or two of the main complaints being posted on the boards was “the lack of interest or how boring they had gotten and the fact that no one was posting.”

bus board

I found this amusing, coming from a group of people who rushed in like dogs to lick up their own vomit when someone posted and they felt compelled to critique each and every syllable of it.

Perhaps I can explain it?

There are three things in this life that I try my best to steer clear of.

  1. Religion, no good ever comes out of a discussion on religion, too many people see it in different perspectives.
  2. Politic’s, which I try my level best to stay away from, mainly because I do not truly respect the process or have great knowledge of its workings in relationship to the common man.  Because I never have anything good to say about it period.
  3. Last would be guns and how I see them, and their role in society.  Criminals, or at least the people I view as being criminal and the total lack of enforcement of law.

Over a period of time, I have slowly broken two of the three here, and regrettably, I don’t feel right about it.  My main problem as some would see it, would be my apparent ignorance on any of the three issues on any given day of the week.  I don’t have any real answers, I do have solutions, but apparently most of the time, no one is listening.

My misanthropic outlook on life has a tendency to remove me from the mainstream and to make my viewpoints, thoughts, somewhat irrelevant to what most would consider the norm.  As they are often considered irrational or clearly out of the boundaries of societal values as we know them today.  Much too often, I find myself having to defend my viewpoints and that has grown tiresome.

It might be time for me to just shut up and live out the rest of my life in whatever harmony that I can scrape up and let the rest of it just go to hell. Anywho, I am back on the wagon …. Hello my name is Don, and I have gone two whole days without frequenting bus boards and subjecting myself to a host of internet critic’s.

Now I am off to Facebook, I hear three of my friends there unfriended me.


It’s All In How You Look At It

Related:  Here We Go – 2013

2013 – Here we go.


Like everyone else who makes the mistake of getting older, I begin each day with coffee and the obituaries.  So I guess I will have to make a concentrated effort to do something different in my life these days.  The coffee is good this morning, I am savoring it and reading the latest offering on the bus boards, where one person is trying to trade two guitars for a bus, this is one reason I am giving up reading bus boards this year.

I am going to drop them and stick with the obits (which I often find more interesting).

It has also been mentioned here lately that I could be complaining too much, so I am going to try and change that part of my life that has become so unsavory here of late.  Lord knows, it is often not easy being me, but something just drives me to keep on pluggin’ away and making the best of it I can.  So I keep on chopping and watch where it is the chips may fly.

Often change is hard to embrace, but we need to try.


In the past I have written about the things in my life that effect me negatively, but today it is going to be different.  I am going to try and be upbeat about it all.  (Often I have been known to write with a somewhat remorseful tone or sorrowful attitude in salute to the dog days of my life … What other optimistic and positive folks call The Golden Years)


Here are a few more tid-bits to take with you in 2013:

Don’t lurk around web sites where people comment about your work unless you’re drunk. Don’t use emoticons. You’re too old to communicate like a twelve-year old girl. Don’t forget that you are the product of a culture that went stark raving mad about ten thousand years ago. Adjust your thinking accordingly.

Don’t answer Bus Board or Internet critics questions about the state of your equipment or website.  It’s a trap.   Don’t eat anything bigger than your head. True in the sixties, true today.   Don’t believe that crap that you’re as young as you feel. Your feelings lie.  Any chance you get to watch the Electric Horseman or Lawrence Of Arabia … Go for it. 

Don’t eat at a place named Mom’s.  Don’t hug men while shaking their hand. Enough already with that. The shake/hug (hug?) is probably something Roman guys did when their empire was in decline.  Don’t buy underwear at Garage Sales …

Wow!  2013, I never in my wildest dreams imagined this number … Sixty-five years old, roughly twice as old as my bus. Ironic, isn’t it?  Incidentally, my bus is, most likely in better shape, as it has had regularly scheduled maintenance during its lifetime.

Not long ago, I met an old tymer (sp.), now this guy was OLD (94) and I was amazed at some of the things that he had seen and experienced in his lifetime.  My life pales in comparison.  Soon I will be just like him I am afraid, starting all of my sentences with “back when I was a kid, or back in the day or I remember when.

 Which is of course … A dead give away.

 Happy New Year …

Belle Of The Carnival puts it in perspective here very nicely.


Link info:  One of the features of this site is the ability to ascertain what people are looking at, and what they are ignoring on any given day.  We have noticed a lot of folks are ignoring the links.  Links are inserted into the post to refer you to other items of interest or information.  When you see a link, all you have to do is click on it, and it will automatically take you to that site or info.  After viewing that information or photo, all you have to do is hit the back page arrow and you are right back here.
Just thought we would take a moment to point that out.

Dropping Out


“Totally New Year on tap, and one thing I feel like doing is “dropping out.”  Most people would be making resolutions to “hang in there, and make it better.”  Not me.” 

2013 a New Year!  We should finish out our bus this spring, it has been a long, long walk down the path, but the end is in sight.  It should all come together this year and that will be it.  Today I am reading the bus board and a guy who has a bus just like mine, that has had him stranded for four or five days because it will not start says …. “I am going to lie underneath it and let it speak to me.” And I suppose that is my cue to exit this kind of non-sense.  So in 2013 I am giving up bus boards and will no longer waste my time adding to them or reading them.


It wasn’t all that long ago, we embarked on this adventure of sorts.  We searched high and low for the perfect used bus and dove in head-first.  Welcome to the bus community and Internet bus boards.  And there, began the education of sorts, on buses of every shape and model and bus guys.

A bus guy will find some worn-out old bus, sitting in a field or a lot next to a church somewhere.  Locate the owners, talk them down from $10K to $6,500 and some change and (if it starts and he is lucky) drive off with his prize.

Only to discover it is shot, hasn’t been oiled or lubed in over ten years, needs tires and lot of TLC.  So the next logical step is to come on the bus board and inquire if anyone has any free tires, they want to give away.


Boring is often a word I hear mentioned when it comes down to bus owners.  This close knit fraternity that is often referred to as “the bus community” is kind of like a dysfunctional family of sorts for lack of a better word.  One outfit claims to have a membership in the high 300’s and when they have a meet, it is the same tired bunch of owners who show up, a handful, 10-15 less than 10% of the status quo.

Don Smith Bus 010

A great many bus owners are also snobs.  Whatever I am driving is the best in the west, and everyone else, well, they kinda suck.  The unique thing about it all, is it just not only one brand of bus or buses, it is several.  Little cliques of folks who believe their particular brand of coach or bus is the best and to hell with the rest, seems to be a common thread in the bus community.

And now the saddest commentary on this entire thing.  

I find that I now think it is “normal” to walk up to the fuel desk and tell the guy … “$400.00 on pump six” and not even think twice about it.  That is pretty lame and most of the time it doesn’t come close to even filling the tank.  I remember a time when I did not have a bus, was making $27 a day and a lot happier than I am now.

When $400 was some real money.

Having been on both sides of the fence, owning a bus and driven RV’s of varying brands and/or makes.  I can say this.  All the sticks and staples outfits cost me far less money in the long run, and the caliber of the people I met that had them were far superior to bus people.

Totally New Year and one thing I feel like doing is “dropping out.”  Most people would be making resolutions to “hang in there, and make it better.”  Not me.

don's bus 014

It is time to leave all this to those who enjoy it.  With the New Year approaching and a fresh start, I feel it is time to remove bus boards from my life and get back to basics.  Which is good for me, I desperately need a change of pace and I have always enjoyed new beginnings.

2013 may bring a surprise or two and from time to time, I may find myself still at the table, patiently waiting on the deal, that is to be expected. Surprisingly, I have very few misgivings at this stage in my journey.


New or Old … One thing is for sure, I have tired of bus board banter, and bus boards in general.  Won’t be playing that game any more.  That part of my journey is now behind me.

2013 will much like 2012 it will roll in one day at a time.

2013 will find me trying to keep a 30-year old museum piece (’83 model bus) on the road and in good working order and at the same time, allowing my grandchildren to see a little more of the country, one state at a time.  In other words, I will take the cards that are dealt to me and do the best of it as I can.

We have few options other than that.


What is the big deal?


 As I don’t believe in self imposed exile for asserting my opinion and the shop is too cold to work on the bus, I thought I might share a thought or two with you.  I will try as usual to be as diplomatic as I can.  You know what diplomacy is right?   That is the art of saying “nice doggie, nice doggie, until you can find a rock.”

Having tired of this computer shunt or blocker that the closed minded folks at Eagles International have placed on me, I went over today and logged off on that site.  This will of course end my visits there as I don’t have the faintest idea in the world what my super-secret password might be and could care less.  In other words, I have tired of the game and stick a fork in me, I am done.

A few will read into this thing issues that are simply not there, I suppose others will see this as just more “sour grapes.”  Which is fine.  To be candid about it all, “I often do the very same thing, read something that is really not there.”  This I do know.  I am of the school of thought that criticism is a good healthy thing, and if it adds to the mix, then it is a bonus.  As long as name calling and flaming is held to a min. it should be at least tolerated.

 In other words … If you have something to say … then by all means … say it.


I saw a church disband a long time ago, simply because two old ladies did not like the color of the carpet.  The membership argued and fought, eventually the congregation became unruly and it all shut down.  Canton, Oklahoma, population 600, has “13” churches, what does that tell you?

Internet boards are no different, people are people, and no two people are going to see it exactly the same.  So what is the big deal?

Why do we often find folks majoring in minor things on Internet boards or in clubs?  Here is some more food for thought.  Why did YOU sign on for all of this?  What brought you here?  Did you get a letter or a come-on inviting you to seek out this place?  I did, mine was from a member of this particular tribe of man.  I was invited, I did not just show up on my own accord.

What I was told or sold, wasn’t what I found.  Butchering this hog has not been easy.  (It is a tough job, but someone has to do it.) Here lately I have been mulling it over in my quiet moments of the day.  I ask myself “Why do we join clubs, when we are basically not joiners.  Why do we reply or comment on threads, only to have them ignored.  Why do you bother to send emails or PM’s to people, who never return the courtesy.  Why is that I do not have a T-Shirt lettered Does Not Play Well With Others?”

 And as with most mysteries in life … I have found … There are no easy answers.


Here is where I found reality (or my version of it) often sucked.  Eventually you will reach a point when you notice that people are not answering your comments (on your string or on their string for that matter) and you realize it is time to pull down your shingle and close up shop.  If you make the occasional telephone call and that call is not returned, then it is time to move on.  Sooner or later, (if you are smarter than say “the average monkey”) you get the message.  

 Then there are people like me of course.  We are hopeless, we never seem to get it.

Unfortunately, I have at times given a few people way too much space in my head, and that was my fault.  But in all things, there is always clearly a choice, I should have used better judgement in my dealings with these people.  These folks who put the “fun” in dysfunctional.

Some people seek out adventure in their lives, to explore new places, to find fun, only to discover they have arrived at a place where fun comes to die.  It doesn’t always even out on the Internet … Some items naturally will fall on the negative side of the scale.   It would be best if I remembered that from time to time.

Most guys would be hard pressed to admit it, but a lot of our wives are smarter than we are.  Mine asks me about this bus board turmoil all of the time.  “How is it you can justify the time, putting up all this stuff, with negative results?   To me, there has to be a plus, something to justify the means to the end, and it simply isn’t there.”  

Sadly I find that she is right, often it just isn’t worth the time or the effort expended.  I cannot on most days, justify the time and the effort put forth 99% of the time.  She suggested that I just throw in the towel and be done with it, she suggested that I do that a long, long time ago.  But of course, I could not see it her way, that is why they call it “marriage.”

So, perhaps some day in the future, when people come up to me and inquire, “Are you the guy that was on the bus boards that used to write all that stuff under the name of Boxcarokie?  Are you as witty, insightful, articulate, and as handsome as your writing suggests?”

I will just reply “Uh, not really.  I am only five eight.”

See y’all out on the boulevard … I will toss you a wave when the wife and I roll by.  We will be in the Gun Metal Gray Outfit that is styling in the Smart Aleck Lane …  Flyin High In Our Eagle … The Star Of The American Highway.

Watch those right-handers.