Last night I saw a food truck that was locked up behind a gate on 14th Street, and this sent my mind off into a frenzy of “How does that work?” type questions. The same kind of thing happens to me anytime I see something large, like a car in a ravine, because logistical puzzles of this sort fascinate me. Oh my GOD, can you imagine the paperwork if they have to get a crane to pull your car out of a ravine? Does your insurance cover ravines? Just……wow. I also have a whole story in my notebook about how I was stuck behind a person on the freeway who dropped a house, and how traffic was backed up for miles, and who do you call to tow a house? I will have to write that up for you soon. It simply boggles the mind.
For now, though: food trucks. More specifically, food trucks in New York City. I have been noticing more and more food trucks in New York, and while it seems awesome to be able to walk right up and get a cupcake, I am increasingly wondering about the logistics of such trucks, especially in a city like New York, where it is so, SO HARD to even drive a regular car, make a left-hand turn, park, etc.
So, here are the questions I have, in no particular order, every time I see a food truck in the city:
-- Do you need a special class of driver’s license to drive
a food truck? I’m serious. Do you need a “Class F” driver’s license for
that? Some of those food trucks are
HUGE. It seems like you would need some kind of
truck training to be able to back those things up. Am I wrong about that?
-- How do they determine who gets to park where? Does the city have anything to do with that? Do they have food truck turf wars? Is there payola involved? Do they have fights? Is it like West Side Story, but with food trucks?
--If you make some kind of illegal turn or are somehow speeding in a food truck, do you get a regular ticket, or do they have a special kind of ticket for that? If you have to go to court, can you drive there….in your food truck?
--Speaking of driving, can you park a food truck in a regular parking lot, or would you be worried that someone would break in and eat all of your food? Oh, and if someone DOES break in and steal/ eat all your food, does your regular car insurance cover the food, or do you need some kind of super-special “Food Truck Insurance?” You know they probably have that, since food trucks are now a niche market.
-- Parking, part 2: seriously, there is nowhere to park a small car in NYC. If you live in an apartment, where/ how do you park the food truck? Do you just give up your place, move into the food truck, and park in Queens?
--I also have a bathroom question. Do food trucks have bathrooms in them? Some of them seem like converted motor homes, in which case the answer would be yes. Some are smaller, though, which makes me wonder—where do those people go to use the bathroom?
-- This sets me off on a whole “that can’t be sanitary/ now I can never eat from another food truck” OCD spiral, so that’s really as far as I can go with that if I want to have a semblance of a normal life.
While I was writing these questions up, I actually did a few
Google searches, and I found some food trucks for sale----for $85,000.
I’m going to just let you sit on that number, and think about how stressful it would be to pay $85,000 for a business, then have to spend thousands more every day to stock that business with gas and food, then get up at the crack of dawn to drive said business into the heart of Manhattan. That just does not sound fun to me, which is probably why I have never considered a career as a food truck person. That, and the fact that I can’t cook at all and I’m what you might call an “overly cautious” driver.
Also, if this subject actually does interest you, please check out the New York City Food Truck Association. Who knew??