Alright, so hopefully everybody has a good idea of how the reflector-collector duties are being handled from last month's article. The collection is already off to a great start - I have reflectors from Florida, Oregon, Tennessee, and Washington. It's pretty funny, though, how quickly this has caught on. As soon as I arrived in Lake Charles, Louisiana, for the Lakefront Tour show, Jamey Jordan handed me a box full of more than 40 reflectors and their collective pieces. I'm now having trouble picking who to go draggin' with because I've had numerous offers pile up at a few different shows. For this, I have to implement another rule: Whoever asks me first will be the drag machine for that particular show (unless I already have a reflector from that state, then I'll just drag to my heart's content with anybody I please).

With that out of the way, I just wanted to take the opportunity to gab about shows in general. In the past three months, I was out of town for 10 out of 13 weekends. I have traveled to shows spanning coast to coast and even had the chance to go to Hawaii for the Hawaiian Autofest. I also ventured up north to both Washington and Oregon for the Drop Zone and Sittin' Pretti shows. I've really been working my butt off to try and make it to as many shows as possible in as many different regions. My reasoning behind spending as much time at shows (besides the fact that I love to hang out with all my buddies nationwide and see the coolest and newest mini-trucks) is to really get a feel for what this lifestyle and magazine are all about. I've always had my own opinions, but this year I really wanted to go outside the office and dig deep into the mini-truck lifestyle to ensure that we're bringing you the most extensive custom-lifestyle coverage you'll find anywhere. I think there are plenty of magazines that can show you the trucks, granted none can bring you as many ground-breaking minis, but nobody can capture the hearts and lifestyle of mini-truckers except a true mini-trucker. That is the number-one reason why I have risked insomnia and many other hardships. I've jumped on a plane every Thursday of every week for the last three-and-a-half months, only to rush back into the office and try to bang out tech articles and features in time for our weekly deadlines, usually having to work late into the night. It will always be worth it to me, though, as long as we all stay committed to pushing the limits by customizing the coolest trucks out there and throwing the best shows.

Collectively, mini-truckers are some of the coolest, most down-to-earth people. They're always willing to help out a fellow mini-trucker. Now, of course, there are bad apples in every group, but for the most part, we all want to help each other grow and succeed, with friendly competition along the way. With this being said, I love my job and the chance to meet and hang out with the coolest group of people in the world - mini-truckers. This is an enthusiast magazine for a reason, and that is because we too are enthusiasts. Why do you think I love to go out cruising, draggin', and hunting for reflectors? It's because long before I worked on this magazine, I bought it off the shelves to learn how to 'bag and drag my own trucks. Oh yeah, speaking of draggin', back to the topic at hand.

Recently, I flew up to Seattle to check out the Sittin' Pretti show. For a one-day show, I was very happy to see such a big mini-truck turnout, and it so happens that many people up in the Northwest are working on some very cool mini-trucks. So, while I was up there, I took the opportunity to jump in Sponge's Isuzu p'up to go kick up a few Turtles (reflectors like the one pictured) and pile them into my suitcase for the trip home (airport security just loves the reflectors). To vary the collection as much as possible, we went hunting for Turtles. Turtles happen to be a lot harder to break free because they are smoother, rounder, and not quite as tall. Generally, they break into pieces if you do get them up. Once again, God was on my side because Sponge spotted a whole one that we busted free, which happened to slide into the median for easy pickings. I swear, I don't think I could ever tire of laying frame on the pavement, throwing sparks and reflectors out the back. Well, make sure to check out the welding story in this issue and try it out. Honestly, it's not as hard as some people think. Even I can do it! I'll see you at the next show. L8888888!