Al’s Corner – May 2022

       Spring Golf Tourney is May 19th

           Golf, Truck Driver Shortage Reasons, Inflation, my Cat

Lots of stuff to write about this month, so let’s get this month’s Al’s Corner going.

*GOLF-–One of our traditional sites is the host again for our golf tournament this month. Eagle Springs located off 270 in the northern part of St. Louis, is our location. Always a fun time as it is secluded, is friendly to the average golfer, and is an excellent value. Eleven is check-in and lunch, then it is time for golf.  Drink tickets, hole prizes, team prizes, networking, and fun is included. See you there!

Many people ask me is the driver shortage real. So, recently I decided to talk to some carriers, for their thoughts on it. Mike Mills, who is one the nicest people I have ever met in this business and is a well-respected National Sales Rep for Werner Enterprises. I asked him his thoughts on it. He said “Yes the shortage is real.”. He stated that driver turnover is substantial throughout the industry. He did not give me any numbers but by researching it on the web, it is near 100% turnover for the industry. This means that if you hire one hundred drivers in a year, one hundred also leave in the year. I did not think that it was that high. Werner according to the web has 8,000 trucks, 24,000 trailers, and 13,000 employees. So, that makes them one of the largest carriers in the U.S., so I surmise they have similar turnover. These types of large carrier’s train most of the new drivers, so their value is great to our economy, and they would feel and see it the most.  Many of the trucking companies gave this answer as to why this is going on including Mike—Lifestyle. It was stated as the main issue every time. Why? It is a tough lifestyle in so many ways. One big one is that is hard on relationships, because they are gone a lot. My question to anyone that thinks that drivers are overpaid is “would you want to be gone from home 5 days per week or more?” To me, another problem with driver supply is that so much is delivered to your home, which takes away potential drivers out of the “pool” that could drive over-the road, or long-haul loads. Other factors affect the supply like restrictive government regulations, older drivers leaving the industry, while younger people not replacing them, and not wanting to drive. But lifestyle seems to be the biggest. Hope this provided some insight. 

Inflation is skyrocketing as I write this too.  How bad will it get, looks like some rough times ahead.

My next topic is a very personal one. For 16 ½ years my wife Kathy and I have had a cat named Simbee “Big Bite, The Biting Machine,” Hursey.  He has lost 25% of his weight recently, has acute kidney failure. Not sure how much time we have left with him. I first met him in my basement when he was 3 months old after bouncing around 2 different owners for a month. He was so little, a foot tall. I noticed he had big feet and ears. Wondered how big he would get. He ended up over twenty pounds, and a little overweight, but a huge animal. Like me, his dad. He had hair that was so soft (could not stop kissing and petting, still), and he was so playful. A few months in we took him to a vet, and he was fixed, and his claws removed. I have always believed that they hurt him then. They do not do that anymore to cats. Thus, he has always been awful when we took him to the vet (scared, mad, terrible). He was also not very friendly to anyone but me and Kathy. Too bad because he was so friendly and loving to us. He was a fetch cat, and I treated him like a dog from the beginning. That is why he was a little friendlier to Kathy since she treated him like cats like, a momma’s boy. I have had four dogs over the years that I loved. Bobo and Bear lived to 15 years each, while Otis, and Sunny only a few years sadly. With the Biter I have given up a great deal when it comes to vacation and travel over the years because I loved seeing him every day, and because I wanted to be involved in my work daily. Not be away from it for more than a few days here and there type of thing. So, it worked out, having him as a friend and a nice distraction. He never had bad days (most pets do not), he was always the same. It looks bleak for him right now, but who knows, I will update next month. Love that, Cat!

My personal step update—on April 16th I completed 730 days=2 years of having at least 10,000 steps every day. My wife Kathy was at 172now as of May 6th, she is now at 190. 

Thanks for reading, hope you have a great month.  AL