Truck drivers may not wear funny red suits and sport bushy white beards (well, I have seen a few with the latter), but they nevertheless bear a strong resemblance to ol' St. Nick.
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood gave a shout-out to America's truck drivers in his blog yesterday, "On-time gift delivery is no holiday miracle; it's the work of America's truck drivers."
"Americans celebrate all sorts of holidays and holiday miracles," he writes. "But, as Santa One gets prepped this week for its annual Christmas Eve run, it's important to celebrate one of the most amazing wonders of all--how those holiday gifts and groceries really get into our stores and homes -- America's truck drivers."
He gives some specific examples of real truckers, and also points out how many of them give of their time to help others this season.
"And many of those who are not on the road are volunteering their time and trucks to help others. For example, in early December, Robert Ruckman drove an empty trailer to Ellicott City, MD, where it was filled with clothing, toys, and other items that he delivered to needy families in Crum, W.V."
Then there's this neat little story video, posted by Driver Solutions, a take on the "Night Before Christmas" story talking about how truckers and Santa are alike. While the classical version revolves around a man witnessing a visit from Saint Nicholas, the trucker edition of the tale features an encounter between a truck driver and the legendary figure at a truck stop during a blustery snow squall.
The concept was developed by Kylee Wall, the multimedia content producer for Driver Solutions. Wall was working on a project to represent a day in the life of a trucker when the spirit of the holiday season inspired her. She wrote her own version of the Christmas classic, likening Santa's one-night around-the-world delivery trip to the American truck driver's daily routine.
"Yes, Santa Claus steers eight grass-chomping reindeer instead of a diesel-powered eighteen-wheeler, and he's seated in a sleigh, not a cab," said Wall. "But what he does is strikingly similar to a professional truck driver."