I learned a long time ago about the full moon. My years in law enforcement taught me that crazies come out of the woodwork and craziness happens during them. My partner and I came up with a theory about them:
The moon can move whole oceans with the tides. The highest tides are during the full moon.Oceans are water. People's brains are about 80% water. What's the moon doing to those people's brains?
Anyway, last night being the full moon and New Years Eve, I was really happy about going to work instead of out and about. Nutcases and alcohol definitely do not make a good mix. I call New Year's Eve "Amateur Night" because only amateur drinkers come out, and myself being a professional drunk, stay clear of amateurs.
So it being a full moon and New Year's, I headed out to work last night confident in my belief I'd have a good night...Wrong.I rolled into the rail yard at 11:30 and was greeted by the evening shift engineer, the guy I'm to relieve already leaving the parking lot... All he told me was the radio was out and the Yardmaster will be bringing me a hand held radio for the shift.
OK. The radio in that particular locomotive has been unreliable for quite a while so I assumed it finally took a shit... Well, it did, but I wasn't going to be getting a radio because no one told the yardmaster to begin with... Now some of you might not know that the radio is my number one tool on my job. It keeps me in touch with my conductor and switchman while moving the rail cars in the yard.
While we're building trains to put up into storage tracks, I may me 70 or 80 cars away from the crew... That's 2,500 to 3,500 feet away. I don't move my engine or train an inch until I get good signals from my crew. No radio, no movement of my train.
So I call the Yardmaster and inform him of the dilemma and the only thing he says is go to the locomotive shop and get another locomotive to use.
That's a big fucking help... I have to get ready to make a move that minute or we'll get blocked out, and since it'll take upwards of 20 minutes to fire up another engine and get it ready, that definitely wasn't an option.
Needless to say I got another radio real quick (after I raised hell) and we were able to start work. Hopefully they'll have it fixed by tonight when I get in.
Then, all throughout the night shit just wouldn't go right... I won't get really involved about it right now because I'd be writing a novel by the time I got finished, but it just seemed like nothing was going right and by 8AM I couldn't wait to punch out and get the hell out of there.
I can just imagine what it would have been like if I'd have taken the night off and headed to the Tiki Bar... I couldn't wait to get home today and get a few stiff drinks in me...
Shit happens during a full moon. It's just like saying "Slow" or Quiet" to a cop, paramedic or ER Nurse.Something bad will happen.
I just hope it's not a portent to what 2010 is going to be like.
And when I got home, I get a email from an old girlfriend of mine... She wished me a Happy New Year and said she was still thinking of me a lot lately, wishing we could get back together... She sent me a picture of her she had taken while thinking of me...
Copyright 2010 Thomas J Wolfenden
Photos pinched from the googlenet/interweb