So, now that I've established my historical link with the mythos, you might understand a little why I felt a warm nostalgia when I stumbled on the 1974 television series MOVIN' ON. It stars Claude Akins as the old school long-haul trucker Sonny Pruitt, with Frank Converse as Will Chandler, an educated guy who takes to trucking for the adventure of it. It had the same basic setup as ROUTE 66, with the duo going from place to place and situation to situation in search of paying loads. In one episode they're caught between a mine owner and the miners, and the next, they're helping keep an Amish settlement from being cheated out of a land purchase. It's all good fun, with Sonny's irritable 'don't get involved' nature well balanced by Will's light-hearted personality and strong sense of right and wrong. They meet all sorts of interesting and refreshingly common characters along the way. That's something that today's popular culture seems to be missing. The common person, I mean. The truck drivers, farmers...rural people, people with no grand schemes or high principles; just a desire to live life as best they can.
It was a nice afternoon TV discovery for me; it made me think of those crazy childhood days in the seventies. The seventies to me were really not about Disco and SATURDAY NIGHT FEVER...we were country people. When I look back, I still think of Conway Twitty, talking to cool strangers on the CB, and of listening to raunchy country comedy recordings my dad would buy from the truck stop, with his pack of Camel cigarettes and six-pack of generic beer. The theme song, sung by Merle Haggard, is a favourite trucker song of mine to this day; when I was a kid, I had no idea about the show, even though Will and Sonny are mentioned by name in the lyrics.
MOVIN' ON, for both bad and good, reminds me of those times...good stuff.