I'm used to toll highways, but only in Colorado where they conveniently let you pass, captcha your license plates, and bill you later.
Out here...they still have bridge trolls. Now I am all in favor of creating jobs and now realize I have to get a state highway pass to make traveling anywhere easier.
However, if you are going to be working at the toll highway booths...you should be NICE!
I ran into a character of a man late at night and he was none too happy with me.
It was 0200 (in the morning) and I came upon yet another toll area. Apparently out east and south, you must have a vehicle SIZE limit in the toll areas. I was driving the Gold Beast. Another unheard of thing...is a diesel pickup...only SEMIs or VW diesel cars are the preferred diesel vehicles around here. So I am viewed as some kind of wonderment.
As I pulled up to this toll both, the iron X sign was hanging out about 10 inches into the lane of traffic. How irritating! Like, RUDE! Apparently, someone was too busy eating donuts to pull it back out toward the toll booth and out of the lane of traffic, because the dude was OPEN not CLOSED.
I eased my truck to the right, watching so that both extended mirrors would not hit any of their precious state equipment. I smidged by. When I say SMIDGED, I mean smidged!
Yeah-"smidged" and "wonderment" are words. Just sayin'
I was beaming with pride as I pulled up to the window. I am...a rancher. Ha!
To my surprise, I was greeted with a stink eye and a frown and an actual "hmmpf" from a short man who looked EXACTLY like Wayne Newton-Joe Pesci My Cousin Vinny-Elvis in a traffic vest.
I called him...WAYNEJOE.
Only because WAYNEJOEELVIS sounded dumber. And yes, this is my artistic best. I sucketh. However, it gives you an idea of WAYNEJOE's looks. I shit you not.
And he was soooo pissed at me. He was even more pissed when I handed him a ten and not the $1.10 required amount.
He continued to look back at the iron bar and my truck and snapped out bills from the register to give me back my change. He took his sweet time, I am sure thinking his slowness was going to piss me off because I wanted to continue on my way and most often the troll bridge dudes are fast.
Ha! I didn't care. I wasn't in a hurry. Sure, I was tired, but I wasn't in a hurry.
Looking at me with scorn in his eyes and a frown, he snapped back my change to me, making me reach for it, and pointed to the lane to my right. I mean to tell you, he talked to me with the highest disdain in his voice.
WAYNEJOE: Next time, Missy, take the WIDE LOAD lane.
Well, I knew his drift. However, he was a number one ASSHOLIO, so I took the opportunity to turn things around in my favor.
ME: Uh, excuse me, are you saying I am a fat lady. Because if you are making reference to my weight, then I am totally insulted. In fact, that really hurts my feelings because I am very sensitive about my weight. Also, with that insult, I would like to speak to your supervisor right NOW.
BUG: Mom, I think he was talking about the...
(I put up my hand to my polite and kind daughter who defends Trolls.)
WAYNEJOE: Uh, uh, no, mam. [calming and back peddling his grouchy ass] I was referring to the size of your vehicle and this lane size. Uh, uh. Sorry for the misunderstanding.
I stared at him in silence for a few seconds...and blinked A LOT.
ME: Ok. I knew that, WayneJoe. Next time, don't be such an asshat to people. Yes, I used the word asshat. I have wanted to use it on someone other than a criminal. I didn't hurt anything or cause a traffic problem by using your lane. Wear a damn smile.
ME: And another thing...before I cancel my request to complain on you...
WAYNEJOE: Yes, mam?
ME: [in my deepest Elvis voice] Uh, thank you. Thank you very much. Love your hair.
Yep, I am sure he will remember me for few days. You know what? I don't care. I hope he changes his attitude. Because of him, I dubbed the toll booth peeps as "troll" booth peeps. Oh, and another thing? What do the states do with all that damn toll booth money anyway? The roads suck and several rough areas and potholes about killed my Gold Beast. I know one thing, you can't drive in this state on bald tires or close to with these roads. Frickin' trolls, anyway!