The Texas Observer 14 Get Your “NUTS TO BUTZ,’ Bumper Strips To Express Grass-Roots Sentiment: 3 for $1.00; 25i Apiece for 100; 200 Each for 100 -1,000; 15d Each for 1,000 or Send Cash, Check, or Money Order To: NUTS TO BUTZ: P.O. Box 61544 Houston, Texas 77061 Southern Voices carries no new recipes for making fried chicken faster, cheaper or more easily . . . no hints on growing more magnificent magnolias . . . no tips about camping on the Appalachian trails. Instead it presents Voices by knowledgeable people speaking out dispassionately about issues, ideas, solutions. They will.offer you fresh insights from new perspectives. They use fact and fiction, the photograph, verse, the charcoal pencil to convey their thoughtsthoughts readers do not always agree with, but that do constitute a valid point of view. Eighty pages with plenty of illustrations, many in full color, rfiake the bi-monthly as attractive as it is informative and vital. And a part of vitality is a sense of humor. Sometimes it’s the best way to make a point. So please be prepared to smile, maybe even laugh openly when you’re reading Southern Voices. Here is some of what Southern Voices is all about: William Hedgepeth climbing aboard a Pascagoula spaceship; Walker Percy explaining why he doesn’t write dirty; John Egerton spinning the fantastic true tale of the Great Hope Watermelon Caper; T. Harry Williams appraising Lyndon Johnson; Paul Hemphill telling why he quit the newspaper; Barbara King opening her diary about being Southern, a woman, and surviving in New York City; Reynold Price’s novel-in-progress; Ferrel Guillory assessing’ Republicans in the South; Tom Wicker looking at Sam Ervin’s pro-war, anti-civil rights record.. Join the growing number of readers throughout the nation. Complete the coupon below. Mail it to P.O. Box 10802, Birmingham, Alabama 35202. We will bill you just $7 after you are enjoying Southern Voices. r Name Address City State L Zip smile up at him and draw my finger across my throat to indicate that his ass is in Big Trouble. Having waved that red cape in front of the second bull, I, or we, suddenly find ourselves cut off in the passing lane by the cowboy in the lead truck and hemmed in from behind by his colleague. These guys are going to show us who’s King of the Road, and they’re using their two-way radios like cops catching crooks on television. Which makes this as good a time as any to interrupt our thrilling narrative with a short discourse on the theory and practice of Citizen Band radio. About 20 years ago the F.C.C., noting the congestion on the lower short-wave frequencies, decided to allocate some of the higher but limited-range frequencies to quote Citizens, who could use them for any legal and legitimate purpose other than simple social. intercourse. The pure hobbyist was still supposed to learn the Morse Code and some basic electronics and pass a fairly stiff F.C.C. test to qualify for an amateur radio license. Which could take a month or a year, depending on how hard a person studied. If not altogether useful to the average ham, this red tape at least has weeded out the simple-minded dilletante and has created a fraternity of communications fanatics so proud of their achievements and privileges that they tend to be self-policing. Unfortunately, a great many people possess the instincts of hams but lack the ambition and/or brains to obtain an amateur license. And over the last few years these people have discovered Citizens Band radio. They discovered that CB is largely unlicensed, minimally regulated, and offers a cheap short-cut to short-range hamming. Naturally, all licensed, conscientious amateur radio operators hate the guts of these electronic ignoranti who plug in their store-bought CB transceivers, scoff at F.C.C. regulations, and generally comport . themselves in a manner that gives hams a bad name because most people don’t know the difference. Police departments aren’t too happy about CB either. Unlicensed, CB walkie-talkies are a boon to burglars and other bad guys; and almost every truck in the country is now in communication with almost every other truck within 10 or 20 miles for the primary purpose of avoiding cops and I.C.C. scales and otherwise conspiring with one another. Which brings us back to our story. Thanks to CB and redneck righteousness we are now bumper-to-mudflap between two diesel tankers, either of which can swallow a BMW without even chewing. And with wonderful precision they are now slowing down, from 60 to 50 to 40 to 30, with the lead driver sticking his left arm out his cab window and motioning us to pull over and stop on the grassy shoulder of the road. To emphasize this desire to talk to us . in person \(since we have no CB center stripe, whipping to the left or right whenever we show any inclination to change lanes. To myself I’m saying: Hell, I grew up with truckers in my daddy’s Hub Cafe in Pharr; knew them and rode around with them from ’46 to ’51 when I was a little kid. They all took real good care of me and they let me bore them to death with kid questions about Autocars, GMCs, Macks, Whites, and Kenworths. Why, Max Medley and Bobby Angel and Slim Somebody were my best friends back then. But I also got to remembering some of the fine stories my best friends used to tell about their little pecadillos, like when the aggrieved party in some dispute would first stomp the guacomole out of and then cut an ear off of some fo’ol who clearly deserved it. And maybe pickle this trophy in a Mason jar mounted on the dashboard of his Jimmy Diesel. I never saw anything quite that bizarre and I suspect these stories were exaggerated for my wide-eyed benefit. But I feared that before I would have the chance to relate such nostalgia and establish myself as a certified trucker lover, our two truckers would beat the flour tortillas out of us. Consequently, we elected not to pull over and stop. Nor could our truckers force us to. We refused to pass on the shoulders, which had a guard rail on the left side and a ditch on the right; and our adversaries could not stop us by blocking the road without having a dozen or more curious motorists behind us getting out of their cars and walking up to investigate the cause of the delay.
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