With Dave Sweetman's first blog, Pork Chop Diaries 2009 have officially begun.
As you read this, it's Monday and the Land Line, Land Line Now and our OOIDA crew is hattin’ up to converge on Louisville, KY, for MATS. The weather looks promising, so most of us – like you – are driving.
I’ve got a couple of e-mails today from members wanting to know how we will be covering MATS and who from Land Line and OOIDA is going to the show. The answer to the first question is THE PORK CHOP DIARIES 2009. It's the perfect way to report on such a spectacle. On our blog, we’ll be reporting what’s really happening down there each day, all day. So tune in often.
Second question, who is going?
In our Grain Valley parking lot, I see Howard and Pam Hart fiddling with the OOIDA tour truck – The Spirit – which is lookin’ spiffy. I also see Ron Mermis and his rig bearing the simulator are in the lot getting ready. I’ve seen this routine conducted too many times on cold blustery and even icy days. It’s pretty neat to see the sunshine. As this blog posts, they’ll likely be leaving out.
Our senior technical editor Professor Paul Abelson is leaving tonight as his first business is a press conference with Cummins on Tuesday afternoon. Our field editor Suzanne Stempinski, also known as "Red the Happy Hamster," is on the way as well. She, like Paul, is driving from Illinois.
Our columnist and longtime OOIDA member Dave Sweetman has left his green Horseless Kenworth parked somewhere in lovely Florida and is now terrorizing toward Louisville in his four-wheeler. Sirius XM rockin’, Bluetooth in place, perhaps a bottle o’ green tea (it is St. Paddy’s) nestled in the cup holder – Diesel Dave is probably rolling toward Kentucky at this very moment.
Senior Editor Jami Jones and I will be driving all day tomorrow, along with OOIDA’s Nikki Johnson (Marketing) and Holly Koncilia (Membership). We are SO NOT looking forward to driving through St. Louis during happy hour on St. Pat’s Day. Our Land Line Now crew – Mark Reddig, Reed Black and Barry Spillman – are now loading up all the broadcasting equipment. They will be driving Tuesday, too. Our ad crew will be driving down Wednesday.
Word is that we will likely see Bill Hudgins, topnotch writer and regular columnist for Land Line. He comes in from Nashville.
Others that you will see in Louisville this year include the super people at our booths plus OOIDA President Jim Johnston, Executive VP Todd Spencer, our General Vice President Woody Chambers. Our regulatory specialist Rockin' Joe Rajkovacz will be there, too.
Some people that you read in Land Line and hear on Land Line Now quite a bit are flying in for the show. OOIDA’s Director of Government Affairs Rod Nofziger, Director of Legislative Affairs Mike Joyce will be on hand, as well as Laura O’Neill, our Government Affairs Counsel – all escaping Washington DC for a few days. Doug Morris, our OOIDA Director of Security Operations, is coming in from DC, too. These are people you will want to chat up. They’ll be around our booths.
And where will that be? Well, Booth 12108 in the North Wing, 65004 in the West Wing and Booth 91425 – that’s the Spirit truck outside.