Finn Murphy Book Signing
Books on the Common
404 Main Street
Ridgefield, CT 06877
Saturday, November 4, 2017
1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
On any given day, nearly 2 million semi-truckers haul freight on American highways. Finn
Murphy is one of them. More than thirty years ago, Murphy dropped out of college to drive a truck for a living. Since then he’s covered more than a million mi
les packing, loading, and hauling people’s belongings all over America. Known by his trucker handle “U-Turn,” he spends his days and nights in a 532-foot, eighteen-wheeler he calls Cassidy. He specializes in long-haul moving and, more specifically, high-end executive relocations—in other words, the packing, transporting, and unpacking of someone’s personal loot. He’s a bedbugger driving a roach coach, but these roach coaches are often insured for millions of dollars at a time.
In THE LONG HAUL: A Trucker’s Tales of Life on
the Road (W. W. Norton; June 6, 2017; $26.95, hardcover) Murphy introduces us to the rollicking and often rocky life of the professional trucker. Forget what you think you know, however. Long-haul movers don’t live in the rarified world of broad interstate highways with sixty-acre purpose-built terminals; Murphy has to navigate leafy suburban cul-de-sacs and one-way city streets. He has to know how to back up blind-side, for example, and how to judge his turning radius to the millimeter. He has to make split-second decisions after ten to fourteen hours of backbreaking physical labor. And he has to be his own public relations department, dealing with stressed clients who can be testy, suspicious, and even downright hostile.
Murphy’s story is filled with colorful characters and funny, poignant, and often absurd situations. He introduces us to a memorable cast of truckers, movers, and clients, among them Tommy (the Vampire), Murphy’s helper in Florida who never sleeps and has a penchant for cutting limes in the shotgun seat of the moving truck; Mr. King, one of Murphy’s first clients, whose half-mile curved driveway nearly ruined him; and Mike, another driver, who may or may not have tried to kill Murphy with a 600-pound vault.
In the candid, no-holds-barred, and entertaining tradition of Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential, Finn Murphy’s THE LONG HAUL exposes the unvarnished inner workings of a select, reclusive world that most of us don’t know.
Finn Murphy grew up in Cos Cob, Connecticut and now lives in Colorado. He started working as a long-haul trucker in 1980.
“Finn Murphy invites you into the air-cushioned cab of his eighteen-wheeler and along for a coast-to-coast ride that is trenchantly observed, wryly funny, and filled with human drama.”—TOM VANDERBILT, author of Traffic