These stories are true. In several events I have first hand knowledge. In others, the reporting and who did the reporting, convinced me of their veracity. For example, the stories "Queeny Tank" and "Union Made" are two stories in which I was a central actor; other stories, such as "A Fight at Little Annie Fanny’s" and "Equal Pay" involved people and details I knew of first hand at the time the events unfolded; others such as "Cannonball" and "Yahoo" were written based on situations described to me by participants to the events. Truck drivers, dockworkers and loaders are represented within these pages as real people, facing real, stressful situations that arise in their lives as working people. These are situations that are not that uncommon or extreme in the experience of the people living in working class America. These are situations that can be quickly related to by working people.
It was my intention to present the working class world in such a way as to make the world of the workie relevant and meaningful to those living outside of the experience. It seemed to me that was best made possible by leaning on actual events, factual events that when viewed from the proper perspective breathe life into an authentic working class picture. I have tried to be faithful to the actual events, shading the stories only to flush out the cultural meaning of the story and examine the impact of the personalities involved. Do not mistake this to mean that the stories are moral melodramas. Perhaps sometimes, but as I do tend to utilize the traditional three part structure of beginning, middle and end, the tales, any moral, as often occurs in real time, is more Rorschach than preachy. So at bottom, the stories in A Dozen Miles are descriptive evidence of actual situations that can typify the working class and through those situations there are, often without intention, moral questions raised as they would be in real time. These are questions that are not always given clear answer.