If a person keeps on truckin’, they press forward despite the difficulties or obstacles that come their way; to be persistent.
Example: Patrick recently lost his job and is now running low on cash. Despite the circumstances, he plans to keep on truckin’ as he looks for work, and he hopes his situation improves soon.
‘Keep On Truckin’ Origin
If you’ve driven before, chances are you have seen 18-wheelers driving around on the road. They are a common sight to see and are hard to miss because of their large size. Oftentimes, these massive trucks are carrying cargo from one destination to another. These deliveries are made even in harsh weather conditions like rain or snow. Why am I telling you this? Well, the point is that these trucks are constantly pressing towards their destinations so they can complete those deliveries! You might say they are known for being persistent. Thus it seems a metaphor developed from this and now it’s applied to people who act like a truck—they keep on going and going.
So how old is this phrase? It was used in a 1936 song called “Truckin’ My Blues Away” by Blind Boy Fuller. According to Wikipedia, the phrase originated from this song. As for it’s earliest appearance in print (that I know of), that would be the Roland Record newspaper, 1971:
“The seniors recently voted what their class motto would be: ‘Keep on truckin’ and ‘We’ve only just begun.’ Beautiful.”
Here is an example sentence:
- I didn’t get much sleep last night and I have work in an hour. Definitely not an ideal start to the day, but I’ll keep on truckin’ despite my lack of energy.
- My cat is older and has a handful of health problems to deal with. He’s on two different medications, so hopefully he can keep the ball rolling for years to come.
Note: Know Your Phrase is a website with many idiomatic expressions on it. If you don’t know what those are, that’s okay, here is a page that might help. It has idioms with sentences and examples on it, so hopefully it is easy to understand. Give it a look and learn about them!