7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 51)

 

— 1 —

There comes a time in every blogger’s life when she sees something amiss in the world and must decide whether or not to use her blogging platform to call it out, even if what she has to say might be unsettling or just too much hard truth for some readers. I have been pondering such a dilemma a long time now, and have decided that it is time for me to raise my voice in a call to action. I have tried to avoid bringing up this subject. I really have. But something must be done, and it is time to speak out. You may want to prepare yourself for what you’re about to read.

— 2 —

7qt51 truck 7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 51)So here’s the story: Last I was driving down I-35 and got stuck behind a Ford F-350 pickup truck that had…let’s see…how do I explain this…

OK, let me start over: here in Texas it is popular to spruce up one’s pickup truck by hanging decorations from the trailer hitch on the back. Historically such items have included metal plates painted with the state flag, or perhaps a sculpture of a bluebonnet. In recent years, however, a new trend has come about in which some men (and I don’t mean “men” as in “humankind” but as in “no woman in the history of the world has ever done this”) hang from their trailer hitches a large metal representation of a certain part of the male anatomy. These items are called Trucknutz, and they are rather popular in certain circles. (Warning: That link contains exactly the kind of image you think it contains.)

Anyway, gridlocked traffic left me stuck behind the F-350 and its swinging garniture for about thirty minutes last week, which gave me a lot of time to think about this phenomenon. I recalled the college marketing courses where we learned that every new product is a response to a consumer pain point, e.g. buzzers on dryers a response to “I always forget my laundry in the dryer.” Never could I have imagined that “there are no scrota on my truck” was a consumer pain point.

I’ve been trying to avoid bringing up this subject because…well, I guess that part is obvious…but this is the fourth one I’ve seen recently and I think it’s time for a call to action: What, as a society, are we going to do about Trucknutz?

— 3 —

That last take left me with a dilemma: Should I use my Associates account when linking to the item on Amazon? At first I went with “no” — even though the commission I get from Amazon purchases through my site is minuscule, I’d hate to profit in any way from the sale of such an item — but then my curiosity got the best of me. I thought of those reports that tell you how many people purchased an item you linked to, and I decided that I must know: Is there any overlap between the “people who read Conversion Diary” demographic and the “people who think that representations of genitalia enhance their vehicles” demographic? It is time to find out. I promise I’ll donate any money I make from such purchases to charity.

— 4 —

Oh, wait, turns out I’m not done with that subject yet. I am just waiting — WAITING — for the day that one of my children asks me about this. “Mommy, what is that hanging on the back of that truck?” Or, more perplexingly, what about when my children are at an age when they recognize what it is and ask me WHY it’s there?

In a “What Would Yaya Do?” moment I was thinking that perhaps I could just ask the driver next time I pull up alongside one in a parking lot, but then I realized that I wouldn’t have any idea how to start that conversation. “Excuse me sir, I couldn’t help but notice that you have an, uhh…well, that on the back of your truck there is an, umm…”

— 5 —

I had meant for this Quick Takes edition to be a big rallying cry in which we all join together to fight this scourge, but now it’s occurring to me that this might not be a worldwide phenomenon. Readers in places like Boston or Seattle: How often would one encounter this sort of thing on one’s daily commute in your area? I am going to hazard a guess that these are also not big sellers in Europe. But I don’t want to stereotype. I could be wrong. Maybe people in Europe find, like their cousins here in Texas, that such an adornment is exactly what is missing from their VW Golfs and BMW Minis. I am certain, however, that they’re as popular in Florida as they are here, seeing as how the Senate debated banning them (though one senator objected since he OWNED SOME HIMSELF).

— 6 —

For those of you who are staring at your computer slack-jawed, needing a moment to clear your mind of the countless questions and emotions the previous four takes brought up, here’s a video of some cute kittens riding a vacuum.

— 7 —

Did I really devote the majority of this week’s 7 Quick Takes to what I think I just devoted the majority of this week’s 7 Quick Takes to? Time to step. away. from. the. computer. Maybe I’ll go for a drive. Er, wait, no, might just lead to more trouble. Time to go bury myself in a book.

New here? Come say hi on Twitter at @jenfulwiler!



Enter the Conversation...

154 Responses to “7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 51)”
  1. Tami Boesiger says:

    I agree, Jennifer. We occasionally see them in Nebraska. ICKY!

  2. mrsdarwin says:

    This week's takes are made of WIN, especially the censorship by fig leaf.

    What you do is, you pull up to the truck, roll down your window, and yell, "I can see why your wife cut them off, but why'd she nail them to your truck?" Of course, this being Texas and all, you may need to be prepared to return fire.

  3. rhinemouse says:

    I live in Seattle. And though I have not witnessed this, er, phenomenon myself, I can attest that my roommate has. Whether or not the offending cars had Texas license plates, she did not say.

    Meanwhile…KITTENS.

  4. Emily says:

    Wow. Wow! Trucknutz? This is a first for me. I can't speak for all of Europe, but I can tell you that I've never seen anything like this in Sicily. Rows of half-naked prostitutes lining the highway? Yes. Trucknutz? No. So, I guess it's all a matter of where you live. (Although, the first time I had to answer the question "Why is there a naked woman outside my window? Do you think she's a secret princess?" It was, well, awkward. So I might be willing to switch!)

  5. Roxane B. Salonen says:

    Jennifer, okay, you've got me way beat in the humor category. I'll have to show my girls the cats on the vacuum in the morning. Yeah, that's right. I'm sticking with the cats visual. It's bedtime and I don't want the other visual causing nightmares. You know what they say about Texas, though. Everything is bigger there. I guess if nothing else, this says loud and clear that size really does matter. Thanks for the laughs!

    Roxane

    P.S. There's another mention of our time together on my recap today. I cropped the photo this time so you wouldn't feel embarrassed by your exposed feet. :)

  6. Sarah - Kala says:

    Unfortunately, all of us were behind a truck with the metal "junk" dangling . . . it was swinging and catching the sunlight and I asked, aghast, "Is that what I think it is?" My husband was disgusted and said, "Yeah," in a "did you have to ask" sort of way. I've seen them a few times in MD, but not at all in HI. I'm with you on this. I do not want to see that at all! And, my kids have seen it, commented that it's beyond rude.

  7. Christine says:

    I have never seen something like that in Germany…

  8. Shannon says:

    Oh too funny, Jennifer. I live, not in Seattle, but close enough to tell you that those items dangle from the bumpers of big trucks out here as well. Some of them are bright blue.

    While they might be a scourge, for me they are a reminder of a good friend. Seeing one of those trucks with its appendage in Microsoft country, a friend who worked with my pastor buddy called him and asked, "What is happening to people around here? And have you seen any of these in the parish parking lot?" They had a good laugh about it, and the worker recounted the story at dinner on a Friday night.

    Pastor buddy died that Friday night, though we didn't know it til the next day. In the week that followed with the funeral and memorial service, we laughed over that story again because pastor buddy was one who loved life and made sure to laugh often.

    On the anniversary of his death last winter, I was driving nowhere near Microsoft Land, but I was stuck in traffic, right behind a behemoth of a truck with shiny silver hangings. I cracked up. I miss my good friend, but he can still make me laugh.

  9. Becca says:

    I agree, those "decorations" are quite disturbing! The more realistic ones especially.

  10. Gorgasal says:

    Re point 4: you could try to get the driver to stop and have your children ask him themselves. Might be an interesting experience for the driver of the "enhanced" truck…

    And no, I have never seen Trucknutz in Europe. Wonder if there's a market for that here.

  11. NC Sue says:

    I'm with you, Jen – this is a scourge. Fortunately it hasn't caught on in North Carolina yet. Please don't tell Billy Bob about them, though.

    I'm not quite sure how to deal with the matter delicately, but there must be a way. I'm fairly certain that the man who feels compelled to hang such an ornament our for all to see is incapable of being embarrassed, but most women I know would, like you, be rendered speechless.

    Quite a conundrum.

    Good luck!

  12. Debbie says:

    HAHAHAHAHA! Now I know what to call those things that I saw hanging down from a truck this week (and of course posted a picture, only I didn't employ a leaf). Truck nutz.

  13. Nzie (theRosyGardener) says:

    I'm such an intermittent participant but I have got them up now.

    I'm not currently in Boston, but as a Bay State native, I can tell you we generally prefer our perversions in other forms than male anatomical represenations on trucks (we also don't have as many trucks as I imagine you do in Texas). Good luck with the campaign!

  14. Amanda says:

    I'm sure it will come as no surprise that Trucknutz (I just cringed typing that) are popular in certain circles in Georgia as well.

  15. Anonymous says:

    I live in Western Arkansas and I think I know the demographic to which you are referring. I'm trying to be polite and not offend anyone but I'm picturing some type of less educated, good-ol'-boy, some-might-say hick man. We have those here too, although, I haven't seen those truck decorations. But I wouldn't be surprised if they started showing up here! Let me know what you decide to tell the kids as I have four also. My two oldest, 10 and 9, are just the age to ask!

  16. ~ Judy ~ says:

    THANK YOU! This "phenomenon" as you call it…has gravely disturbed and offended me for a long time…kudos to you for speaking out!

  17. Elizabeth@Frabjous Days says:

    Goodness me! No, such 'adornments' are not to be found on British vehicles… I would never hear the end of it from my kids if they saw one (or two??)…

  18. Fencing Bear says:

    I would say just ignore the Trucknutz. They're amusing in a teeth-gritting kind of way and, if you think about it, really no more offensive than the prominent genitalia on equestrian statues (heroes never ride *mares*, for goodness' sake!). Like the Vatican putting fig leaves on all the statues on their collection: worrying about it is worrying about something that is just part of who we are as animals. And if your kids ask, just show them a stallion or a bull.

  19. Dymphna says:

    Hmmmm…haven't seen them myself (up here in PA) but it certainly doesn't mean they aren't here. I feel sad for people raising kids these days–it must be difficult to explain all the horrible and inappropriate things that are out there.

  20. Anonymous says:

    I live in a VERY small town in Texas. So I know exactly what you are talking about. The other day I was walking in the Walmart parking lot and had to go by one of these obscene "ornaments". The truck was raised up so high the "ornament" right at my daughter's eyelevel. It made me sick to my stomach.

  21. Heather says:

    Here in Georgia, MANY trucks have the "adornment" you mentioned. I'm not sure how I'll answer my son's questions when he notices them. I'm hoping that since he sits in the backseat, he won't notice them until he can drive himself.

  22. Nadja Magdalena says:

    All you have to do is browse through http://peopleofwalmart.com/ to see how far we have slid as a society. Trucknuts are the logical fruit (no pun intended)of a society in decline…

  23. TwoSquareMeals says:

    Wow. Um…I've not seen those in NC or TN yet, but considering TX was settled by Tennesseans, it's probably only a matter of time. Gross.

  24. Shelly @ Life on the Wild Side says:

    O.K., that left me laughing so hard! I've seen those items you're talking about . . . but only in the South. I live in the Chicago area and I can honestly say that I have never, ever seen one of those hanging from a truck (or a car for that matter) here.

    Good luck with the research.

    For the record, once again, I LOVED THIS POST!!!

  25. Jennifer says:

    I've seen that too, but only once. I'm more bothered by the little metallic "ladies" on trucker's vehicles. We were stuck at a stoplight and my daughter had to stare at that for several minutes. Grrr.

  26. Rachel B says:

    This would be fun: feigning ignorance: excuse me, sir, my children and I were just wondering… what is that symbol on the back of your truck??

  27. Smoochagator says:

    I LOLed through this entire post. Here in Virginia Beach, one does occasionally see a pair of *ahem* hanging from the trailer hitch of a truck. I find them wildly offensive. And sad, because if I was speculating that a small man in a big truck might be "compensating," the presence of a large metal representation of his genitalia confirms it! (This begs the question of what my husband feels the need to compensate for since he thinks Trucknutz are hilarious, but I prefer to push that out of my mind.)

    Recently I saw a large pair of nuts, as in nuts-and-bolts, hanging from a trailer hitch. I'm not sure what customer pain point brought that about – perhaps it was a husband whose wife said (as I would if my husband wanted to buy a pair of these) "OH NO I DON'T THINK SO NOT ON A VEHICLE THAT I MIGHT HAVE TO DRIVE TO MY LADIES' BIBLE STUDY" and he found a clever way around her objections? Or perhaps it was someone who wanted to comment on the inappropriateness of such adornments? In any case, I thought it was brilliant.

    Great post! Thanks for the laugh :-D

  28. Hope says:

    I live north of the 55th parallel and those nuts hang from the back of trucks here, too.

  29. MemeGRL says:

    Wow. Sometimes the more I read blogs from all over the country, the happier I am to live in suburban Philadelphia. No trucknutz here that I know of. And I think they'd be laughed out of town for overcompensation.
    And I agree–what would you tell the kids?! That kind of thing drives me crazy.

  30. Lisa says:

    As you might guess, they're in Colorado, too. Something defiitely must be done. Out here on the farm, we know exactly what to do about those — But, do you suppose our knights in law enforcement would call it vandalism if we trolled through parking lots "nipping" 'em?

  31. mom huebert says:

    I live in Nebraska, and I've seen those questionable decoration two or three times. Once they were on the back of what was clearly a woman's vehicle, and there was a bumper sticker with a feminist message, something to the effect of "every woman needs a set of b****". *shudder*

  32. Jasmine says:

    I saw that once in Massachusetts!

  33. churchdomestic says:

    Jen, I've seen those on trucks and am always so repulsed by them. Having formerly lived in Texas, I know how many you can see in a week. Fortunately, here in Maryland, they are not so common. We just get bumper stickers that read "Obamamama."

    That said, I honestly wonder, if someone brought their kids to the driver of one of these vehicles and said, "My children were wondering why you have such a thing hanging from the back of your truck?" What would they say?

    So the purchasers of such things not think children will see them? That they might offend ladies with some sense of decorum. Ugh!

  34. Amy says:

    They have them in Tennessee too. I nearly ran off the road the first time I saw them because What the What??

    Scourge is a good word for this little trend. Maybe we should all carry a pair of wire cutters and every time we see a pair ~ahem~ in a parking lot we just give them a little snip snip and find the nearest dumpster.

  35. Aubrey says:

    Your post made me laugh sooo hard. Even here in Nebraska, I have seen those things (already forgot the name) once or twice. I think that the demand is not so much, "I have no sack on my truck," as it is "I have no sack on my…." (you fill in the blank). My husband and I joke about people who drive big, loud, obnoxious trucks. We say they're compensating for something that they're lacking.

    And I'm supposed to be this good little Catholic girl! What has happened to me!?

  36. Elena says:

    Yes- always link to your Amazon account! You never know…

  37. Anonymous says:

    Trucknutz are in WA State too.

  38. beyondhomemaking says:

    I'm just waiting for the day that my son notices *those* and asks his insistant questions.

    As far as my opinion- I suppose if you have to purchase that type of item for your vehicle there maybe a bit of something, um, lacking . . . elsewhere.

  39. Anonymous says:

    there's a state senator in MD who has been working to ban trucknutz by legislation: http://www.feministing.com/archives/006584.html

  40. Marie says:

    Best Quick Takes ever.
    I am guessing that this is a take on the speculation that a very, very big truck is a substitution for another part of the male anatomy. Leave it to Texans to take a criticism of them and yell, "H@@@ Yeah!" to it. But I wouldn't want to see it. I'm a huger non-fan of the fake Calvin urinating on various things and the mudflap women, myself.

  41. Domenico Bettinelli says:

    Oh, they definitely have them here in Massachusetts. And they hang from pickup trucks exclusively. Interestingly, the drivers of said pickups in Boston are much more like the drivers of said pickups in Texas than they are like, say, the average Prius driver in Cambridge.

  42. Adoro says:

    I have seen those here in MN too! The first time I saw it I did a double-take, thinking…"Is THAT what it looks like? It CANT' be! That's obscene!" But like you, I was stuck in traffic and had lots of time to ponder the obscenity.

    But in looking at the truck, I took note that it was a long box, maybe a dulie, and those often make me think of stallions at stud. (They stand them with their rear legs back when they pose them for photos, probably to show off all their equine perfection.)

    So of course, I figured that since that kind of a pickup truck, at least here in the CITIES is more of a..ahem…Freudian concept than a practical one, the little things you and I noticed hanging from them is probably just a revelation of the truck owner's perceived opinion of his own prowess. Or just trying to make up for a deprivation of some sort…..

    *ahem*

  43. Anonymous says:

    I live in Minnesota, and I have never seen one. Thank goodness.

  44. Marcy K. says:

    When I read the first Quick Take I thought, Oh No…what is it going to be? And laughed out loud when I read what it was :) We live in Florida and do have this problem. When I first saw this "display" it took me a while to figure out what it was. Once I did I could not believe it. I'm still disgusted at all the "Calvin" stickers urinating on whatever is out of favor with the driver, such as "Ford," "Chevy," "Osama" or like I saw in the church parking lot yesterday "ex-wife."

    After my initial shock wore off, I still think it is mighty crude, but as I told my 14 year old son, "He must not have any." Though I have seen some that have not been as objectionable. One pick-up I've seen has actual large "nuts" minus the bolts, that hang on chains. At least those are more realistic and less likely to elicit a "Mommy, what are those?" question.

    I can't believe I just commented on "Trucknutz!"

  45. beckygiggles says:

    I totally agree. I live in Tennessee and, while it's not yet a wide spread phenomenon, I've seen them and am horrified.

  46. SteveG says:

    without a doubt. My favorit 'Quick Takes' ever!

    Thank you for starting Friday morning off with a laugh! :-D

  47. Elizabeth says:

    Love your sense of humor, Jen.

  48. babyyahyah says:

    i have never seen those that i know of. maybe i have and not known what it was. now i will be looking for them. but that is beyond gross.

  49. Rebekka says:

    I have seen them once in the California backcountry on the eastern Sierras. How low can you go?

    On the other hand, the kitten vid was hilarious. Especially when they start falling off the vacuum.

  50. That Married Couple says:

    Too too too funny! And gross.

    And I didn't read the other comments but I just saw Mrs. Darwin's. I was already laughing, and now I might just pee my pants!

  51. Christine the Soccer Mom says:

    I just thank the good Lord that my kids (a) typically can't see that low on the trucks in front of us, (2) are usually reading in the back seat, and (iii) haven't seen a super-high-I-go-mudding truck with a … er … pair dangling.

    I hate those things. With a passion. It's EMBARASSING to see them, and people who do that are no better than those with profanity-laden bumper stickers. (Worst ones in my town were the minivans with "Bush S***S" on them. Sheesh, lady, can your kids read? Do you CARE?)

    On the other hand, that fig leaf ROCKS!!!

    Have a super week! See you after vacation!

  52. 'Becca says:

    I live in Pittsburgh and stay in the city as much as possible. I have never seen such a thing. But I grew up in small-town Oklahoma, and I am certain that some of the guys I knew in high school own those now.

    Thank you for speaking up about this absurdity. Something must be done. The only question is…what??

  53. Laura says:

    Add Chicago to your list of areas with them! Can't stand seeing them!
    God Bless.

  54. Tres Angelas says:

    Yes, we have them in Virginia, and I think it's indecent (and pathetic).

    The chrome ones are bad enough, but yeah, I recently saw the same accessory in…well, not chrome.

    It's obscene, and it ought to be stopped.

  55. sara says:

    I have seen such an appendage only once (on a truck, that is). I know I shouldn't have, but I thought it was funny. I'm pretty sure my husband noticed it too, but we avoided discussing what we were both seeing.

  56. sara says:

    & I live on Long Island

  57. Melanie B says:

    Jen,
    I'm laughing so hard my kids are getting worried. And oh I lost it again at the kittens.

    And I can't read this post to my sister, much as I'd like to. Cause, you know, the kids might hear.

    I have to say I don't think I've ever seen the product referenced here in Boston.

  58. lizzykristine says:

    I always feel like I should look away or cover my eyes or something. But that can be a challenge; last time I saw such decor (here in Arkansas) it included blinking lights. Just in case anyone hadn't noticed it before.

    When I lived in Europe, I never ever saw such a thing. Arkansas is a different story.

  59. Anonymous says:

    This post has inspired me to attach some of these to my Prius and drive around San Francisco. If anyone asks where I got the idea, I will refer them to your site.

  60. Michelle says:

    We're in Calgary, Alberta (Canada), and I've seen the 'decorations' several times. Most Canadians do call Alberta the Texas of the north, so I suppose that makes sense. *smile*

    I find them offensive, but less so than many of the obscene bumper stickers…those leave my children with new and interesting additions to their vocabulary, which I really don't appreciate.

  61. Emily G. says:

    Come to the Cincinnati/Northern KY area. They are EVERYWHERE! Where there are hillbillies and white trash, there also will be Trucknutz. I find them offensive and embarrassing, but what can you do?

    I love a local mom's explanation to her kids. She reminded them of that certain part of anatomy on a bull…they live in the country where there are many cows…and said that the man is just advertising that he's a cattle farmer. I guess that made sense to the kids.

  62. fumblingtowardgrace says:

    OH. MY. GOD. I live in Indianapolis, so not exactly Manhattan, and I have never seen anything like this before in my life. But I'm sure outside of the 'metropolis' of marion county they are plentiful!

    WOW. but I mean, LOL for your coverage of the 'trucknutz' phenomenon.

  63. nicole says:

    I have seen those and I agree, disgusting.

  64. Anonymous says:

    I live in Arkansas and have actually seen those "dangly bits" a few times. In addition to seeing them on a truck or two, I once saw these dangling from an older chevy Impala 4-door sedan that was jacked up on huge shiny wheels, and had a custom paint job. Go figure.

    I personally believe that anyone that would have these on their vehicles really doesn't care what people think. If asked why, they would probably just shrug and say, "What?"

  65. Christian H says:

    I've seen a less graphic pair in Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada, if that helps out your demographic studies.

    Only the once, though.

  66. Kelly @ Love Well says:

    I've never seen them in Minnesota.

    Then again, maybe the men here don't want to expose their nuts to frigid weather. Seeing them frozen with icicles and road salt might push a sensitive male over the edge.

  67. anna says:

    @mrsdarwin…

    What you do is, you pull up to the truck, roll down your window, and yell, "I can see why your wife cut them off, but why'd she nail them to your truck?" Of course, this being Texas and all, you may need to be prepared to return fire.

    ROFLOL – and still laughing as I type this. :)

  68. Rebecca says:

    How is it that I live in deep East Texas and have not yet seen these? Maybe i am just reeeeally unobservant.

  69. Erin says:

    I only ever see them on trucks. When I lived in the Seattle area it was a rare enough phenomenon, but I have family in TX and so I'd definitely heard of these. Here in Los Angeles though, I have actually seen them firsthand once. I think I'd probably see them more if I were on the freeway more, but I avoid driving in LA like the plague, and not because of the trucknuts. At least not literally. The little devil sitting on my left shoulder says that "trucknut" ought to be used as an insult reserved for inconsiderate drivers who have nuts hanging from their car, don't use their blinker on the freeway, or are otherwise dangerously inconsiderate of others while driving.

    The little angel on the other shoulder, who would normally tell me such thoughts should be repented of, is silent on the matter due to being distracted by KITTENS!

  70. Melanie B says:

    Oh my! I just read Mrs. Darwin's snappy comeback. I'm glad I didn't have anything in my mouth!

  71. Starrball says:

    Wow, I'm happy to report that I have never seen any of those here in Eastern Canada :) Just shows you what our culture is coming to!

  72. Anonymous says:

    I've seen Trucknutz in Washington, DC. On a truck with local plates, not a truck belonging to a tea partier.

  73. Amie says:

    Wow, I can't believe that after all those comments I actually have something to add to this discussion…I thought FOR SURE that someone else would have seen what I have seen…

    Here in Las Vegas I have not yet seen the "Trucknutz." But on multiple occasions I have seen the DIY version: two tennis balls stuffed into the toe of a pair of panythose and hung from the back of the truck.

    Oh yeah. Classy.

  74. Emily J. says:

    You know they've got big ones here in Mississippi. Love Mrs. Darwin's comeback.

    What's next: something big and blinky to go on the front of the car for ladies? I guess the carbra alreay failed though.

  75. Dawn Farias says:

    It is SO ironic that you brought this up because JUST THIS WEEK, when I was stuck in (Texas)traffic, I thought "I haven't seen any of those on a truck in a long time. I guess they went out of fashion."

    Apparently not.

  76. Anonymous says:

    I live in Cow-town (Calgary), Alberta, and have seen these a few times. They make me so angry! I find it really offensive to get stuck in traffic behind a truck sporting one. Just sitting there, having to stare at that thing dangling back and forth, glinting in the sunlight… I've changed lanes or even exited early a few times. What kinds of degraded, pathetic MORONS buy these???

    OK, ranting aside, I like the previous commenter's idea of carrying a pair of wire-clippers. The problem of Trucknutz could be curbed with a little vigilante parking-lot neutering, I think.

    -Lina

  77. Holly says:

    Um, wow. I've never seen those before. Poor me. And I thought we lived in redneck land. Hm. Boy, howdy.

    They sorta look like eggplant. That's probably what I'd say to my kids.

    :)
    FWIW, I despise having to explain things like this to my children. I've never come up with the best answer, that's for sure. I really, really despise feeling like I have to explain what the words on the front of magazine covers mean. They are truly pornographic in content. It sickens me, and I don't have a clue what to do about it.

  78. M. T. says:

    I am laughing so hard (in a gasping horrified way of course :) — this made my day. I can't wait to tell my husband. :)

  79. Holly says:

    And can't help but ask….if we "snip snip" these…um…ornaments off of trucks when we find them in parking lots….are we then performing trucknutz vasectomies?

    Sorry. Couldn't help but ask. I know it was wrong of me…..

    :)

  80. Cmerie says:

    Ug, they're awful. We have seen them here in Arizona and also in Wyoming.

    There's also the photos of naked women on the mud flaps or on stickers in the window.

  81. Elizabeth says:

    I live a half hour north of Philadelphia and have seen them several times…trucks and custom
    cars…I'm glad that most of them …uh…hang…low…
    The silver "stripper girls and the totally realistic 5 foot painted one I saw on a semi the other day REALLY make it tough to drive the kids around. :P

  82. foursure says:

    LAUGHING MY SELF SILLY! And I can't tell my 9 year old why!
    I haven't seen them in Knoxville yet, but am half tempted to introduce them as we're a prime demographic for them. (but I couldn't stand myself if I did).

  83. Anna says:

    I've never seen any here in Oregon, but that may just be because I'm not very observant about the vehicles around me – they all just register as "large moving object not to be hit". I'll have to ask my husband if he's seen any truck decorations, of the nutty kind, or not.

  84. Catholic Bibliophagist says:

    It's not often that one can manage to insert the word "garniture" so appropriately into a sentence. Well done!

  85. lyrl says:

    I guess I'm in a tiny minority of your readers here, but the truck testicles don't bother me. People have assigned genders to their conveyances for ages (think how ships are always referred to as "she"). These decorations make the truck a male, and I never thought any more of them than I do of the same decorations on male dogs or horses.

  86. J says:

    I see them all the time now. I remember the first time I saw them, I could not BELIEVE it. I went home and told my husband. It was a while before he saw them himself, but now I see them in various colors all the time…UGH! WHY??!!

  87. Susan says:

    I have not seen "those" in CA. I have only seen the propeller, that goodness.

    I thought those mudflaps with busty women were bad enough!

  88. Salome Ellen says:

    Michigan here — never seen one, and hope it stays that way!

  89. Karen says:

    I have seen these on trucks here in PA but I have to say I got a huge laugh when I once saw them dangling from a Prius!

  90. happygeek says:

    I was just thinking, I really really need to laugh. Then i clicked on your post and i did. A lot. So far, these have not surfaced here in Alberta but I am certain it is just a matter of time.

  91. CMinor says:

    Dropped by, thanks to Mrs. Darwin!
    They're common enough in Georgia(the U.S. one.) I don't think Trucknutz existed 10+ years ago when I was last in Europe, but I did notice that some German long-haul truckers had bumper stickers (with a condom motif) that stated what translated roughly to "Watch Out, Ladies: Mine is 18 Metres Long."

    Yeah, yeeahhh.

  92. Kingdom Mama says:

    Oh, Jen! You have no idea how much I needed to be crying FROM LAUGHTER right now! You rock!

  93. Nzie (theRosyGardener) says:

    haha, Mrs. Darwin takes the cake!

    Amy's comment about snipping them made me think you might want to have a slogan, something Bob Barker-inspired– "Have your truck neutered!"

  94. momof2boyz says:

    Ok. I live in Santa Clarita, California, which is a large suburb outside of LA. Santa Clarita is also known as The Land of Big Trucks driven by jerks…. and i have never seen anything like this!

  95. Kate says:

    I'm a recent transplant to Eastern Kentucky, and truck nutz are a regular fixture here. The first time I ever saw them was on a parent's car dropping off a kid at the middle school. I did a double take in disbelief.

  96. Kate says:

    This was hilarious! You description, comments, everything – absolutely hysterical. Perhaps one reason I found it so funny is that those are almost commonplace here in Fredneck County, MD. I thought they were funny at first, but by now I barely notice them anymore. Of course NOW I'll notice them again, thankyouverymuch. :)

  97. Courageous Grace says:

    Hah! I about fell out of my chair laughing as I read your post today. Call me strange, but I'm not really offended. In fact, I'm quite amused. Of course my son isn't quite old enough to either see it (from his carseat and height) or ask me about it.

    The only one's I've seen (here in DFW) are shiny metal. Hubby and I start laughing and making jokes about the driver compensating for something when we see them.

    I figure there are enough things to get offended over in the world that a pickup's nutz ain't worth it. Besides, it just goes to show how ridiculous people can be.

    I can see the insurance claim form now…"Insured was struck in head by other driver's testicles which became detached during accident."

  98. Teresa @ Grammy Girlfriend says:

    Great blog..Had a free night to blog hop and enjoyed yours. Hope you will stop by new Christmas blog …There is a great giveaway that I will draw for on Oct 1st and all you need to do to enter is comment. Hope you have a great weekend.
    http://grammyababychangeseverything.blogspot.com
    http://teresa-grammygirlfriend.blogspot.com/

  99. eulogos says:

    I have never seen this and would prefer not to but I suppose that is too much to hope for.

    I clicked on your link and Amazon said "Hi, Susan." Amazon keeps track of whatever you show interest in and suggests similar things….thanks!

    Why that part of the male anatomy and not the other part, I wonder?

    Susan Peterson

  100. Headless Mom says:

    I hate those things too. They're all over here in the greater LA area. You need to make an anti-truck **** button! ;-) I also hate the skin industires (missspelled on purpose) stickers and the other awful things that people advertise on their vehicles. Keep your debauchery to yourself.

  101. Holly says:

    …and…WHAT GUY WOULD BUY YELLOW ONES?

    What would that say about a person?

  102. Amy says:

    I've seen these in AL, too. Disgusting and embarrassing!

  103. Anonymous says:

    Oh yeah, we have them here in New York too. And they are always on the back of pickup trucks. No guy driving a Prius would dare suggest to the world that he is the proud owner of a big pair. If it is any comfort, it is not only women who are perplexed at the phenomenon of guys proudly displaying these… uhm, totems? As a man I also can't quite understand why another man would chose this to dangle from a bumper hitch. Beyond the retrograde crudity of it, it induces an involuntary squirm at the imagined pain of it all. But what do I know? I can't even appreciate those bon vivants whose rear windows bear stickers of scruffy boys urinating on the logo of opposing sports teams.

  104. kate says:

    this is hilarious. I was just thinking this exact same thing the other day while driving down the freeway here in Portland, Oregon. But the best part about this whole scenario, it was a woman driving. That threw me for a loop.
    love your blog, love it!

  105. thepipers says:

    I've only seen these one time. And to make it worse, it had a kiss lip-print on it. I was so disturbed. So.disturbed.

  106. Judith says:

    Oh, Jen, I laughed so hard I almost fell off my chair. Then I read your post to my husband who is still laughing!
    We clicked through to Amazon for a look (didn't buy any, though!)

    We live in rural Pennsylvania, hip-deep in trucks …… but haven't seen these yet. Maybe I should get some for my van (maybe not, given the clergy sticker on my bumper! LOL

  107. Anonymous says:

    I have never heard of or seen these things. I live in Indiana. But I do see Cosmopolitan magazines out in every store I go into. They are right at the checkouts where my children can read the headlines on the cover. Wait until your kids can read. There have been many times I've wanted to start a national campaign to stop stores from putting these right out before children's eyes, but I figured it's probably a loosing battle. I have politely spoken to several store managers, however, about how crazy it is to put this magazine out right where children can read the covers. Oh well. This was a funny post.

  108. Susan Thompson says:

    I have seen these in Southern California (north Los Angeles County) many times. I thought they were funny.

  109. Rachel Gray says:

    I saw those once here in Los Angeles. They absolutely should be banned and those who display 'em need to be fined, big-time. It's obscene.

  110. Lucia says:

    I live just south of San Francisco and see these around sometimes. While I think they're really gross, I don't agree with trying to ban them. It is someone's right to be gross as long as they don't promote violence or do physical harm to someone else. It would be a stretch to show that these cause sexism and disregard for women's rights, although I'm sure some people belief that. Your kids will see horrible things in the world, far worse than immature decorations, and it would be good to realize that talking about uncomfortable realities is better than shunning the subject. Banning these (crude and gross) decorations would be unconstitutional and tantamount to pushing your moral codes onto others- very undemocratic.

  111. Laura says:

    I live in the San Francisco Bay Area, and I've definitely seen these before–always attatched to the back of oversized pickup trucks. Given that I tend to presume that anyone who is driving one of those oversized vehicles is likely overcompensating for …problems… elsewhere, I take it as confirmation. I find it funny that this of all things is one of your higher comment generating posts :).

  112. odat_kim says:

    I live in Toronto Ontario Canada and there's one truck I regularly see with this adornment. I didn't know the purpose of the item when I saw it as I've never seen a trailer hitch adorned with anything before, this is the only adornment I have ever seen. At least now I don't feel odd thinking about what it vaguely resembled.
    Kim

  113. Rachel Gray says:

    Lucia, of course it's not unconstitutional to ban obscenity. It's been banned in America ever since we had a Constitution, and our founding fathers would never have supported a version of democracy that allowed the lowest common denominator to impose its disgusting vision in public places. The bar has lowered since their time, but even today you wouldn't be allowed to display a picture of hardcore porn in a public place. Nobody questions that *some* things do need to be outlawed, in spite of our First Amendment. The only question is where to draw the line– how to define what's obscene and needs to be banned.

    When you talk about protecting the disgusting truck-driver's rights, you're forgetting our rights not to be forcibly exposed to something so offensive and humiliating. I was violated the one time I was forced to drive behind a truck like that in bumper-to-bumper traffic. You say anything that doesn't promote physical harm is okay, but what that truck driver did attacked me, and the damage was done as soon as I saw it. If he didn't realize how hurt I was by it, a law might help him figure it out.

    As for not having any decency laws because our kids will see horrible stuff anyway– the amount and intensity of the horrible stuff they'll see is very much affected by the laws and how much our society weakly chooses to tolerate. Kids in the 50's had TVs and movies, but they saw a lot less smut than kids today– it's NOT inevitable.

  114. Jane says:

    There was an 18 year old boy with them hanging off the back of his mom's MINI VAN here in a small town in RI. People were not happy. I don't know why but after a month they were gone. Good riddance!

  115. Martha says:

    I live in the western suburbs of Chicago and one of the trucks in our parking lot has the trucknutz. UGH. Very poor taste.

  116. Roz says:

    I laughed so hard I had to run for the bathroom. Then I lost it again when I read Mrs. Darwin's response.

    I needed that.

    I was going to forward this to some people with an incredulous "Do you believe this?" note, but after reading the comments, I realize that I may be the only inhabitant of the contiguous 48 who had never heard of them before. Perhaps it's because I'm so ladylike that I wouldn't dream at gazing at "private parts", even those of cold steel. However, knowing me, it's probably because I'm oblivious to many things.

    I'm from Michigan. Perhaps here, near t he Motor City, we're so aware of what powerful vehicles stand for that we don't have to add anything overt to make sure everyone gets it.

  117. Arkanabar T'verrick Ilarsadin says:

    Jennifer,
    the point of pain is the general emasculation of men in our society. The Art of Manliness is a far better response than this.

    The demographic is the same one that was most consistently rude to me when I was a cycle-commuter. There are two things that generally motivate a man to buy a dually: one may need the power in order to do one's chosen work. His truck will often advertise his business, and get battered in service. That group was no more to me than any other, and typically the considerate ones made sure that their consideration was not brought down by their large trucks and the trailers they often towed.

    The other wants the power of a dually to compensate for a feeling of powerlessness in some other area of his life. Those trucks were often modified to draw plenty of attention to themselves, and they usually had flawless finish. They were no more used for hauling, towing, or off-roading than a roadster is. And their drivers were the most likely of anyone to hurl abuse at me as I rode my bicycle.

    Given this, I suspect that any response to inquiries about the nature of the objects in question would include a string of obscenities.

    The object in question is, objectively, an obscenity. Call your city council, mayor, and sherriff, and say so, and that you expect local law enforcement to enforce the laws against public obscenity.

  118. Laura Hernandez says:

    I live in Morgan Hill, CA – it's about an hour south of San Francisco. I have never seen these and am so glad to say that. Totally gross!

  119. The Opinionated Homeschooler says:

    Well there's Texas and then there's Texas. Here in the middle of the crunchy blue capital, l'Ile d'Austin, I have never once had my eyes seared by those … things.

    What it's like up in the outlying redstate areas, who knows.

  120. Carolyn says:

    I have never seen those in the UK. Thankfully! :-)

  121. Jennifer says:

    I'm ashamed to say my 20 year old brother used to have those on the back of his truck… yuck.

  122. Jess says:

    I have never seen or heard of them before! Either I am not very observant or the people of the DC Metro area are not big purchasers of this product – thank goodness!

  123. Jess says:

    OK, so Bob just chimed in as I was posting that he has indeed seen these but south of Richmond. I'll keep an eye out the next time I am visiting my mom in Blacksburg – lots of pick up truck drivers in southwestern VA!

  124. Amy says:

    I am laughing out loud and read parts of the post to my husband because just the other day I saw… yup… my first pair of Trucknutz, on a truck, in a WalMart parking lot. I came home and told my husband about them, and we had a good laugh. Having just been introduced to the "People of WalMart" site, we found this especially fitting.

    I had no idea until now that these were a wide-spread phenomenon, nor did I know that they actually had a brand name. LOL!!!

    If my kids asked, I think I'd have to play dumb… must be modern art or something.

    And by the way, I'm in southern Ohio. :)

  125. suitableformixedcompany says:

    I work at a gas station in Oregon. We have trouble with what men put in their windows and on hitches and bumpers – but right now I'm most flatfooted about how to deal with women who seem determined to be more degraded than the men they know, and announce it with raunchy window stickers.

    I read a fair amount of history, and I know there have always been people like this. (OK, I've read the Bible. There have ALWAYS been people like this.) But until recently in this country, the people who sided with public decency had the courts behind them, and could count on church leadership, not to mention most of their neighbors,too.

    Still, at out station, we're trying to tell ourselves it's a great mission field. Now, if God would only equip me with what to say and how to say it. On my own, I'm usually more inclined to bite my tongue and turn my eyes away, even as I see that these people need God even more than they need gas.

  126. angela michelle says:

    oh no! I've never noticed them before but now I'm sure I will ALL BECAUSE OF YOU!
    At least they don't have those naked young woman MUD FLAPS (so, so many things wrong with this). Or do they? ;)

  127. Amy says:

    Thank you for pointing it out. I saw one ages ago and NO ONE believed me. They thought I was crazy because something that awful couldn't possibly exist.

    I think they're awful and tasteless. Don't buy them (for obvious starters) and if you see them in a store or advertised, point out to the manager how offensive they are.

  128. Mandy says:

    I wish I could say I was among the North Carolinians who *haven't* seen them.

    Trust me, they're here.

    I've even seen them on a female's jeep which also had a spare tire cover that read "Girls gotta have their toys too."

    Yeah… I totally don't see the appeal.

  129. Lady Caitie in the Pretty City says:

    You know, usually when they say a man is compensating for something, that "something" is not directly related to the object. How crass!

  130. Monica says:

    No. I'm a reader in Seattle, and I have NEVER seen Trucknutz here. Not even when I've traveled to the State Fair. Nope. None. But my parents live in Houston, and we have seen our fair share (well, I personally think seeing them once is probably more than enough) of Trucknutz while visiting there. So maybe we CAN all band together, because there's a chance that even readers in Europe will visit places that have Trucknutz, and I think we can all agree that our visits will be more pleasant without them…

    My husband and I had a very good laugh at this post, though. Thanks for that! :)

  131. Judy says:

    I'm in Sydney Australia and haven't seen these, and pray God that some moron doesn't decide to import them here. Afterall, there is enough American trash "culture" here already!!

    Don't think they're funny at all, just confronting and disgusting. As shown by all the comments, people are forced to see this by people with no concept of principles, who wallow in dirt and corruption.

  132. maggie says:

    MY EYES! MY EYES!

  133. Kevin says:

    Living in central Illinois, I've seen those truck decorations exactly twice. Granted, one of the trucks in question had Texas license plates, but still… I'm sure that's just a coincidence.

  134. Amy @ Books for Bread says:

    The first time I saw these on a truck they were a pair of rubber ones–and they didn't just sway back and forth. I was deeply offended and disgusted–what kind of men are we raising in this country?? Thanks for bringing light to this issue–I wish there was a law banning them!

  135. Julie says:

    And they are chrome, no less.

    My son said, "I guess that is a boy truck."

    There you have it.

  136. Carrien says:

    I've only ever seen a photo of a blue pair hanging and always thought it was a joke played on the guy by his buddies, a pre-wedding hazing perhaps.

    Now I see I may have been mistaken in the joke assumption.

    Hmmm, I suppose they want everyone to know they have balls? The big truck with the dangly bits is replacing the penis car of the 80's?

    Your guess is as good as mine.

  137. monica_divineoffice.org says:

    "Rows of half-naked prostitutes lining the highway? Yes. Trucknutz? No."

    I agree, those trucknutz are disturbing but here in Europe we have different problems.
    I appreciate the way you presented this issue.

    Liturgy of the Hours

  138. Dymphna says:

    Doesn't bother me.

  139. tony says:

    I remember a conversation my wife and I had with a couple of her friends present.

    They had been discussing her getting a radical new haircut. I asked: "You would do that without talking it over with me?" One of her friends piped up: "It's her body she can do what she wants with it!".

    I said: "Ok, if you do that, I'm going to get my ear pierced."

    (I wouldn't do it, but all that was required was the threat).

    Trucknutz are my response to anything strange and girly my wife wants to do to her car.

    "Honey, you do that and I'm going to buy testicles for my car." :)

  140. Mommy, M.D. says:

    I live a couple hours from Austin, and our "Washington County Fair" last week featured a mechanical bull.

    With nuts.

    There is a picture on my blog of my five year old son riding the bull, complete with nuts in view.

    The bulls, I mean.

  141. Marcy K. says:

    OK, so I laughed hard the first time but went back today to read the comments and I don't think I have laughed this hard in years!!! The mental pictures of blinking lights attached to the "display," and of a Prius driving around San Francisco with a set just made me go over the edge. Thanks so much for taking my mind off of all the depressing stuff going on. Fantastic post.

  142. Monica says:

    OK, I linked to the Amazon page with the Trucknutz. How is it possible that "Customers Who Bought Related Items Also Bought

    The Rosary: Keeping Company with Jesus and Mary by Karen Edmisten

    The world is a strange and wonderful place…

  143. autumnesf says:

    Hubs gets MAD when we run across these…with our daughters in the car. Feels like his children are being flashed.

    We've joked about carrying pruning shears around and doing surgery. But can you imagine the arrest records? Jailed for neutering trucks.

    Not a good idea.

  144. Kelly F says:

    Jennifer, there was an opinion piece here in the Anchorage Daily News about Trucknutz.

    http://community.adn.com/adn/node/143778

    Goes a little deeper into this trend.

  145. Anonymous says:

    Well, I was going to proudly post that I've never seen them in Georgia until I read all the posts of people who HAVE. Great. Now I have something else to worry about the kids seeing besides the "I love pornography" bumper stickers and naked lady mud flaps.

    I think I did see trucknutz once when we were driving through Kentucky. I kept staring. I was trying to figure out what I was looking at. I remember thinking "Could that be…? Nah…" and now I know that it was! Yuck!

    Recently, I did see a truck in the local Wal-Mart parking lot with a squirrel on the hitch. My daughter and I thought that was pretty funny. And really typical ;-)

  146. Katherine O says:

    Ha ha ha!! “Swinging garniture”!! I needed a good laugh! Thanks!
    I always look forward to your posts, they never disappoint!!

    Peace be with you!!

  147. New Reader says:

    I live in Northern California, and I’ve been seeing these for years. Hideous.

    I’ve also been wondering how we would be able to eradicate this pestilence from our daily commute…. Isn’t there some kind of public decency act this could fall under?

  148. Lynne says:

    Sadly, I am related to a person who has a “set” of these (they don’t come in singles, right?!) I’m in MN, but as a native Texan who can speak from experience, I must say I’ve found that all states have rednecks. They have different accents, different coarse and hickish expressions, but I’m telling you–Jeff Foxworthy could identify them all. You could probably extrapolate this into “all countries have rednecks”. Yet I still doubt that any European country has these things. But beyond their decorative appeal, there are other, more delightful, non-standard redneck uses for…this anatomy. I highly recommend these: http://brucesbar123.com/ (no offensive content)

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  1. […] One of the fist times I read Conversion Diary, Jen was talking about the proliferation of Trucknutz in Austin. I confess, I had been feeling quite smug about Dallas, since I had never spotted such a thing […]

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  4. […] say you’re an educated gentleman, a man of letters, and you find yourself desiring some Trucknutz. “But no,” you say, “I couldn’t do that. It simply would not be classy. I […]

  5. […] who could care less about staring at my offspring can click on over to Conversion Diary for far more interesting Quick Takes.) […]

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