With the arrival of 2020, new people are also arriving at The Trucker, and new ideas are being tossed around. One feature returning by popular demand in the January 1 issue will be the once popular item from days gone by – The Trucker Crossword. We cast aside the original crossword several years ago, and according to retiring editor Lyndon Finney, the decision caused about the loudest uproar among readers of anything in his 15 years with The Trucker.
Thanks to technology, it’s no longer necessary to subscribe to a syndicated puzzle provided. Today, sitting right here in The Trucker offices and using virtually free software, I or someone else on staff can build crossword puzzles in a matter of minutes. Not only can we build the puzzles online and use the files to print them in The Trucker, we have total control over the content of each puzzle. While some “filler” clues and words may be used now and then, the intent of the new crossword puzzle is to focus on trucking industry words and news.
Answers to clues may be names of people, companies or others in the news, or trucker “lingo,” equipment, regulations and whatever else comes to mind while building the puzzles. And many of the clues will be found in the text of the very articles and advertisements of the issue you pick up at your favorite truck stop. Yep, it’s true – to figure out some of the answers, you may have to read the newspaper!
Now I don’t have the intention of making the solution to the puzzle so hard that only I can solve it, but it will likely have at least a few clues that may stump some folks for a while. In full disclosure, when I practiced with a puzzle that I built one day, a day later I couldn’t remember one of the answers!
We’ll also have themed puzzles from time to time, and if you have any ideas or want to send a list of clues and answers you come up with yourself, you can pass them along to me via email. We may use them in a future puzzle with your name at the top! We love reader participation at The Trucker, and this is a fun, easy way to get involved!
So come January 1, find the new issue of The Trucker fast before they scooped up from racks across the country. You’ll not only read interesting and important news about your industry, you’ll also have some fun filling out the crossword after you read the articles. Find out how much you retained! Oh, and if you’re wondering, you won’t have to wait two weeks for your score. The answer key will be published somewhere in the same issue.
If you have any comments or thoughts, feel free to pass them along. We want to make this crossword puzzle something you’ll look forward to seeing every issue!
Since retiring from a career as an outdoor recreation professional from the State of Arkansas, Kris Rutherford has worked as a freelance writer and, with his wife, owns and publishes a small Northeast Texas newspaper, The Roxton Progress. Kris has worked as a ghostwriter and editor and has authored seven books of his own. He became interested in the trucking industry as a child in the 1970s when his family traveled the interstates twice a year between their home in Maine and their native Texas. He has been a classic country music enthusiast since the age of nine when he developed a special interest in trucking songs.