Wednesday, March 3rd 2010
A HUGE Thank You to the Many Members of GATMIPTA.

If I ever write a country song, it will be about the endless chivalry of men in pickup trucks. More on that in a minute.

I was GOING TO vote yesterday. Remember? I said I would. And I tried very, very hard. And at the end of the day, I was there – in the dark – staring at my designated, closed-looking polling place. I arrived  too late.

I drove away, enlightening Ethan-9yr on the importance of Early Voting whenever possible just in case your day goes all crazy at the last hour and a half and all your civically minded good intentions go all straight to hell and all.

I mighta not used those exact words.

How did this happen…?


Let’s see.

I was telling you yesterday that it’s about impossible for me to efficiently get from Point A to Point B, like EVER. I just can’t. So. I planned ahead.

Outside of our town is a little town with an odd name. And it’s so close it’s really just part of the same town, but they like their weird name and we all consider them part of US, but really legally they’re not. They’re them. With the weird name. And that’s where Ethan-9yr had a baseball practice last night. And where he got hit in the leg with a coach-pitched baseball and had some revelations about his true feelings about the game.


We’re in the small town with the unusual name. And my one and only polling place where i HAVE TO GET TO BEFORE 7 PM…? Is called “Same-Exact-Weird-Town-Name Elementary.” And it’s right up the street – this town that really isn’t it’s own separate place, but it likes to think it is.

So. I figured I’d drop Ethan-9yr at practice, go vote at the Elementary School and go back in time to see Ethan-9yr rethink the merits of America’s Favorite Pastime.

Except. The school is not in this little town. It’s WAY SOMEWHERE ELSE. I mean, WAY.

I drop Ethan-9yr off, put the address into the navigation system in the car and go a little ways before pulling over and thinking, “Um. No. This canNOT be right. But I’m really bad at stuff like this, so maybe…?”

And that’s about where I was when a guy in a pickup pulls over next to me and rolls down his window.

Sidenote: Men in pickup trucks are the guardian angels of West Texas. Seriously. It’s not like that everywhere in Texas. I know. I’ve lived other places and never met a guy in a truck under any circumstances, and I was just fine with that. But here? Oh. My. Gosh. If you pull over for any reason at all, regardless of weather, a small cavalry of men in pickups will surround you in no time, offering assistance, directions, need a tire change, and is everything all right, ma’am? It is the STRANGEST thing.   Previous Men in Pickup posts here, Mike’s in this one here, and the very first time EVER after I moved here and by far the strangest of them all can be found here.

So the guy in the pickup yesterday waits for me to roll down the window and asks if I’m okay.

I say yes and tell him the name of the school I’m looking for.

He decides he knows one that could be it, and he’s going that way anyway, and would I follow him?

Seriously? This is a new level of five-star service provided by the Guardian Angel Type Men in Pickup Truck Association (GATMIPTA). And? I like it.

I agree, and then he totally goes off-script and asks, “If that’s not the right place, are you going to punch me?”

Huh? I’m really harmless looking. I mean, I’m in a GIANT mom-mobile, but am wearing an argyle cashmere sweater from an after-Christmas sale. And I’m just trying to VOTE.

“Uh….? No?”

“I thought you looked familiar.”

“No! I just have one of those faces. Everyone says that.”

“You’re a kickboxer. And I’ve seen you punch.” He smiled.

“Oh! Yes! Sorry!” I’ve mentioned before how I don’t recognize anyone? Ever? It’s REAL helpful. I still can’t picture ever having seen him before. Ever.  But that didn’t stop me.

I followed him.

It was not the right school. I did not punch him. I said thank you instead and called two different people who might know. And that helped a LOT, since I was directed to the correct  place WAY FAR AWAY from the baseball field Ethan-9yr was practicing at.  Also, this person told me I couldn’t go to this place anyway due to safety concerns. Uh? Whatever. I have none of those. And even random guys in pickups have a healthy dose of fear of my punches so I didn’t listen to that anyway. (Okay, maybe not fear. But still.)

But I had to go back for Ethan-9yr. Who was hurt, and rethinking his decision to play baseball even though it’s only the second practice. I listened. I drove. We got all the way back to the elementary school (and really?  I think it needs to be renamed. Today. I suggest, “NOT THAT LITTLE TOWN, SO DON’T BE CONFUSED, Y’ALL ELEMENTARY.”)

And we stared into the mostly dark school  for a few minutes before leaving.

I realized two things.

I should always Early Vote.

And I should never go on the Amazing Race.

Not all places have Guardian Angels in Trucks hanging around.


2 Comments on “A HUGE Thank You to the Many Members of GATMIPTA.”

March 6th, 2010
11:35 am

Oh sweet pea. You and GATMIPTA make me laugh.

Holy Mama! » I’m SOOO Helpful
March 15th, 2010
2:30 pm

[...] to be swept down the street by a tidal wave, that didn’t happen.  But a nice member of GATMIPTA stopped anyway to offer assistance. I suppose I looked ridiculous standing in the snow in my tall [...]

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