Friday, October 14, 2005

T Model Tommy

I love history‚ÄĒespecially American history. As a kid growing up in the fifties, I stumbled upon my first favorite book, Stephen Meader's T Model Tommy. I read with wonder as Tommy's Model T truck hauled him and his cargo up and down narrow bands of asphalt and gravel through New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. I can still picture the truck's round headlights illuminating the darkened threadlike road as he sluggishly descended a steep incline. I can hear raindrops pelting the truck's tin roof as Tommy approached a washed out bridge. Such were the challenges of an independent trucker in the 1930's.

When I was a boy, black and white televisions brought The Lone Ranger, Sky King, and Leave it to Beaver into our living room. It was a time when World War II veterans purchased cookie-cutter homes in suburban communities then piled their baby boomer children into station wagons and hit the open road on newly built four lanes. While I enjoyed the advantages of modern travel, T Model Tommy was awakening me to the motoring wonders of an earlier day.


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