- Mon Oct 02, 2017 5:07 pm
I first got into Tom Petty in the early/mid 90's. I knew of him and liked his songs, but he became a staple of my days while working, and I will never forget how one of his songs coming on the work truck radio used to psych me up.
I drove an auto parts truck for 2 years, circa 1996-97. The job paid shit, and the trucks were questionable at best from a safety standpoint, but it offered freedom and exploration that a 19-20 year old rarely gets while being paid.
The store was located in Jersey, Son's Auto. Local joint. The 4-5 kids I worked with scrambled for the unreserved trucks at 6:30AM while the "made" dudes drank coffee. They had the prime trucks, which were still pieces of shit, but they had AC, or stick shift, or a cab on the back (a must for long range runs with high dollar parts, meaning more time away from the shop).
I gradually moved my way up, it only took 2 summers. I had a toyota tin can with a cab on the back, and had runs across the Ben Franklin into Philly, DEEP into Philly. The thing was reliable, and had a working FM radio. I had my list of songs that I wanted to hear, and Tom Petty was at the top of the list, American Girl, etc. I would be flooring my shitbox down some ghetto street in North Philly, blasting TP, smoking camels, thinking about going drinking that night.
I developed a relationship with all of the dudes I delivered parts with, mutual suffering. They would bullshit with me, jokes, etc. I use that same skill when I head into the seedier parts of Schenectady, and have made a lot of connections. My buddy tries to do it, and is met with skepticism. He can't understand how these dudes don't understand him or his jokes, yet treat me like I am their best friend.
As it turns out, God? He was a squirrel. A big 'ol meaty one. "I found god, he used to say"