Saturday, December 30, 2006
Friday, December 29, 2006
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Monday, December 18, 2006
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
Friday, December 01, 2006
Recognizing that I volunteered as a Ranger, fully knowing the hazards of my chosen profession, I will always endeavor to uphold the prestige, honor, and high esprit-de-corps of the Rangers.
Acknowledging the fact that a Ranger is a more elite soldier who arrives at the cutting edge of battle by land, sea, or air, I accept the fact that as a Ranger my country expects me to move further, faster and fight harder than any other soldier.
Never shall I fail my comrades. I will always keep myself mentally alert, physically strong, and morally straight and I will shoulder more than my share of the task, whatever it may be, one hundred percent and then some.
Gallantly will I show the world that I am a specially selected and well-trained soldier. My courtesy to superior officers, neatness of dress, and care of equipment shall set the example for others to follow.
Energetically will I meet the enemies of my country. I shall defeat them on the field of battle for I am better trained and will fight with all my might. Surrender is not a Ranger word. I will never leave a fallen comrade to fall into the hands of the enemy and under no circumstances will I ever embarrass my country.
Readily will I display the intestinal fortitude required to fight on to the Ranger objective and complete the mission, though I be the lone survivor.
Monday, November 20, 2006
Thursday, November 16, 2006
On Tuesday I had alluded that I wasn't feeling very good. That was sort of an understatement. For the past week and a half I've been sort of "Holy shit I haven't been this fucking sick in fifteen fucking years please shoot me and put me out of my misery" sick. I'm not going to go into the details of my symptoms, but if any of you have ever read Stephen King's "The Stand" will identify with how I felt. I had been trying to persevere with it and just keep on soldiering on but last night when I got to the yard office I couldn't go on anymore. The other night one switchman called out, and the last two nights my engineer was out with what we're now calling the "Clewiston Cruds". I got the yardmaster to mark me off for the night and proceeded to the local Wal Mart to get the Elixer of the Gods... Nyquil.
Capitol "N", little "y" Big fucking "Q"...
The "Q" had been calling me to succumb to the Green Death flavor...
I got back home and was already opening the bottle before my front door was closed. Down a HUGE shot of it and Bang! Right into the Nyquil coma.
Bliss for eight hours of un-interrupted sleep.
I'm still not feeling 100% but that NyQuil Coma was just what I needed. That and a solid night's sleep. Hopefully I'll be feeling better in a few days... I hope so. I really hate feeling like this. The crop isn't even half over yet and I've got a lot more work to do.
Is it April yet?
Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
|What American accent do you have? |
Your Result: Philadelphia
Your accent is as Philadelphian as a cheesesteak! If you're not from Philadelphia, then you're from someplace near there like south Jersey, Baltimore, or Wilmington. if you've ever journeyed to some far off place where people don't know that Philly has an accent, someone may have thought you talked a little weird even though they didn't have a clue what accent it was they heard.
|The Inland North|
|What American accent do you have?|
Take More Quizzes
Yo Vinnie! I wunner how it figgered that wun out? Wanna go downna two street an getta chizsteak?
Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden
Sunday, November 12, 2006
Tooling down the main line heading out to one of the sugar cane loading elevators, as seen from my window of the locomotive...
Arriving at "Flaghole #4" loading elevator, slowing down to "spot" empty cane cars and pick up loaded ones...
The "Agro" Department, loading cane cars with fresh cut raw sugar cane...
Leaving Flaghole #4 with a load of sugar cane to take to the mill... (Actually not leaving, I had my engineer stop the train so I could get this shot...)
traveling along the mail line again, through large cane fields. Again, the "Agro" department busy burning the fields... This need to be done just prior to harvesting so the cane will be processed correctly and a new crop can grow next season.
A view looking out my window at my train... I look this way often, especially on curves, like this one coming into Flaghole Junction. I look back often to inspect my train for any defects and hot boxes...
Finally, Train 405 arrives at Clewiston railyard with it's load of 100 cars of fresh sugar cane for the mill, seen in the background.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Wednesday, November 08, 2006
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
13) Reflective safety vest (Where I keep a spare switch key, knife, pen, and extra gaskets for glad hands)
Monday, November 06, 2006
hogger, hoghead, driver
Ram-rod, conducer, The Brains, skipper
brakie, pinner, pinhead, baby lifter
yard goat, dinger
yard rats, hostler
car knocker, wheel knocker, car toad, car tonk
Fucking dispatcher, dipsnatcher
Gandy Dancer, snipe
peeps (short for "people")
bull, cinder dick, pussyfoot (in plain clothes)
hogs, lokies, power, motors
hack, crummie, brain box
main, iron, high iron, high rail
string of cars
little terrorists, munchkins
"On the high iron, let the big dogs walk" means the caboose is over the switch and on the mainline so open the throttle all the way on the locomotives
"All black, well stacked, goin' down the track clickity clack" means the train looked good on the visual roll-by inspection.
"Pull the pin" or "let's pull the pin and roll" means "uncouple so we can get out of here"
"Highball it out of here." Proceed at maximum permissible speed
"Double the hill" means the train is split in half to get up a grade
"We are on the ground!" means the train has derailed
"Mosey Speed" means when you approach the limit of your track warrant and have not received a new warrant, you mosey up to the limit prepared to stop.
"Grip" Trainman's suitcase
"Dead Head" A railroad employee traveling as a passenger
"Drag" Describes the movement of a heavy train, such as a coal drag
"Dump the air" Emergency application of the air brakes causing a train to stop abruptly
"Dog chasing" A crew change out.
Sunday, November 05, 2006
Friday, November 03, 2006
Thursday, November 02, 2006
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Monday, October 30, 2006
Saturday, October 28, 2006
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
In a separate small saucepan, put the tomato sauce and season to taste (I like it hot, so I use a lot of red pepper) with the above seasonings and simmer over a low flame till hot.
Cover the whole thing with one layer of sliced provalone cheese. Place the dish on the highest shelf in a oven pre-heated to 300 F (or 30 to 40 seconds in a microwave)
This should serve two bulimia-free adults with a normal appetite. Another suggestion is try it as a hot sandwich on an Italian hoagie roll. If you are in the Philadelphia/South New Jersey area this should be no problem as Amoroso's brand rolls (the best in the world) are readily available. If you are in the Northeast Philly area, look up and see if DePalma's bakery is still open. They used to make the rolls fresh every morning in coal-fired ovens. They were just off Frankford Avenue in the Mayfair section on the city. If anything else, a decent 8" French roll will do. Again, I hope you try this tasty little treat. I'll post other recipes from time to time if you like this one!
Copyright 2005 Thomas J Wolfenden
Saturday, October 21, 2006
"This ain't going to work..."
It's got to get better... Because it can't get much worse.
Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Saturday, October 14, 2006
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
This is what my condo should look like outside. A really nice screened-in patio that keeps the mosquitoes at bay... nice roof to keep the afternoon rains out, a really nice place where I can drink my morning coffee and have a smoke before work... A place where I can BBQ without fear of being eaten alive by massive swarms of carnivorous mossies... But as I parked my truck in the carport and walked around the corner of my building I had a little present waiting for me.
Lovely, isn't it? Apparently, the condo association decided that since one of the screens in another unit in my building were destroyed by hurricane Wilma last year, they were having all of the units' screens and roofs replaced to bring it up to Florida code... Without any notice at all. What pisses me off more than the no notice is that the workmen who apparently did the demolition on my unit left a total mess and didn't even bother cleaning any of their shit up.
Not only did they leave their shit laying around, apparently they didn't bring all the materials they'll need to complete the job so will be back to finish later next week... After I start work on the midnight shift... So they'll be banging and drilling away when I'll be in bed.
Ranger Tom is not happy about this clusterfuck one little bit.
Can you say "What the fuck?"
Anyway, to see more pictures of my trip to Alaska scroll down to yesterday's post. I'll be posting more later on in the week. Seems the pictures of the moose I took down the street from my beautiful tourguide's house are too dark... They came out on her camera though and she's going to be emailing them to me later this week so I'll post them then.
Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
After all was said and done and my training was done, I had a few days to myself before work actually started so I took a small trip slightly north west of Clewiston, Florida... I had a week off and had a fabulous tourguide to show me around Alaska so I hopped a flight to go someplace I've never been...
The weather wasn't completely cooperative, but I made do...
Maybe someday I'll be operating this locomotive...
My lovely and attentive tourguide took me to the Kenai peninsula and we spent the night in Seward, Alaska where the weather was slightly damp and moist... Here, pictured above is a slightly rainy day in Portage, Alaska... Fortunately we left early enough Sunday morning to escape the deluge... Go here for that story: http://www.adn.com/news/alaska/kenai/story/8288801p-8185319c.html
The view from my hotel in Anchorage... Just a slight bit cooler than Clewiston. Amazing view in the mornings!
Speaking of my hotel room, they had 1 liter bottles of water provided... But the marketing could use a little fine tuning... What this shows, at least to me is: "Here, drink this special water where carabou have pissed and shit into..."
Last but not least, seen on the University of Alaska, Anchorage library parking lot, where my beautiful tourguide works and goes to school...
I've got to get me one of those! All I need is the malt vinegar!
Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden 2006
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Monday, October 02, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
Ok, I'll bite... So I pick up the paper and start to read... And start to get the giggles which turn in to hysterical laughter. JP asks what was so funny and with tears in my eyes I hand him the article... He begins to read and has the same reaction as me.
JP and I, being from places that get snow regularly, thought this was insanely funny.
It seems that a group of octogenarian philanthropists in town decided it would be a swell idea to truck in ten tons of snow for Christmas...
Apparently, even though it's a really nice idea at the core, this group didn't think out this whole thing all that well...
Number one: Ten tons of snow isn't all that much. About as much as would cover the front lawn of a typical suburban house with 2" of the white stuff...
Number two: By the time it gets here it'll be a ten ton block of ice in the shape of the truck carrying it.
This aught to be interesting.
I can just hear that phone conversation now...
"Hey Phil, you ain't gonna believe this... Someone wants ten tons of snow delivered to Florida..."
I think Florida is going to be giving me a plethora of material in the upcoming months...
On to other things completely unrelated, I've finally got my job assignment for the upcoming crop. I'll be on the 11 PM to 7 AM shift as conductor on a "road job" meaning I won't be in the yard much. I'll be going out on long trips picking up the loaded cane cars at the various elevators along the main line, starting October 11th. That means I have a week off so I'll be taking a small trip out of town. I'm going slightly north and west on the 4th of October and I'll be back on the 9th... Photos will be posted on my return!
Copyright 2006 Thomas J Wolfenden
Sunday, September 24, 2006
Just a slight breeze...
The object is to keep the cars on the track... But shit happens.
Totally destroyed cane cars. Some of them still in use were built back in the 20's... The oldest builder's plate I found so far was dated 1923.
And last but not least and nothing to do with the hurricane... Isn't he just simply the most stunningly handsome railroader you've ever seen?
Saturday, September 23, 2006
Saturday, September 16, 2006
I'll miss scenes like this... A small stream running through the woods on a mountain side...
It was a beast, wasn't it?
A job well done. A perfectly regulated section of track. I was good, wasn't I?
And I'll miss the little critters I'd see at work along the tracks... Here's two little guys I literally had to stop my machine, get off, pick them up and move off the tracks in order not to run over them.
But, with all the good in West Virginia, there was some pains in the ass... There is no strait, flat roads in the Mountaineer State...