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TRACKS CUT BACK.

by SHKarlson Sun May 1st, 2011 at 10:56:30 AM EST

Amtrak began operations on Saturday, May 1, 1971, with an early promotional slogan of "Tracks Are Back."  Congress created the carrier as a quasi-public, for-profit corporation to relieve the railroads of passenger service losses that had already led to the Penn Central bankruptcy.


One consequence of the creation of Amtrak was the immediate discontinuance of a number of the passenger trains the freight railroads had wanted to discontinue.  Some services that might have met any kind of socially-necessary criterion were also discontinued.  Such was the case in Milwaukee, Wisconsin that morning.


In 1971, I was taking slides with a 126 format Instamatic clone.  Here are two 1942 Hiawatha coaches with Milwaukee's canonical rib-sides parked in the coach yard that itself was a remnant of the west end trackage at the old Everett Street Depot. These continued in use on The Milwaukee Road, regularly on the Madison trains and the Milwaukee - Watertown "Cannon Ball"; occasionally to provide additional seats on the Chicago turns; and when holiday loadings increased, to strengthen the Hiawatha itself.  With the discontinuance of the Madison service and the Union Pacific City trains and the Hiawatha transformed into the Empire Builder, sufficient of the 1947 and 1948 smooth-side coaches were available to form the trains The Milwaukee Road operated for Amtrak, as well as to make up the "Cannon Ball."

Milwaukee thus became one of a few stations in the country where Amtrak trains mingled with trains of other carriers.  Southern, Rock Island, Rio Grande, and a few other railroads in the lower 48 chose not to join Amtrak.  The Milwaukee Road's Watertown local, which had a 36 mile run, did not meet the 75 mile cutoff to qualify as an intercity train, and thus it, as well as the carrier's Chicago commuter service, remained in operation after May 1.  Illinois officials were able to set up a Passenger Rail authority, later to become a participant in Metra, to keep the commuter trains running in Illinois.  Wisconsin officials have never been able to set up any kind of commuter train authority.  The Milwaukee Road was able to discontinue the Fox Lake to Walworth (via Zenda) end of its North Line, and the "Cannon Ball" was gone  in 1972.

One encouraging sign that morning was that The Milwaukee Road had applied fresh silver paint to the trucks of its cars and locomotives, and given the upper works a wash.   One discouraging sign was the absence of the Chicago and North Western.  Perhaps the carrier, whose legal department had played The Milwaukee Road for years in train discontinuance cases, arguing that the presence of a Milwaukee Road train serving Iowa or Madison satisfied Interstate Commerce Commission criteria for adequate Passenger Rail service, accomplished the same thing one last time, despite there being no Milwaukee Road train through the Fox Cities to Green Bay.

Up to April 30, a Chicago resident could put in a full business day in Milwaukee, or journey north for an early dinner, using North Western's 149, itself a remnant of a Green Bay train, north at 8 am, and returning from Milwaukee at 7.45 pm on 216, the onetime Flambeau 400 that was still officially an Ashland train in the summer.  (Yes, the first Amtrak-related discontinuance occurred in northern Wisconsin in January, 1971, when the holiday-season Ashland train gave way to the off-season bus.  The summer-season restoration never happened.)

With the coming of Amtrak, the first northbound departure is 27 at 9.40 am, using the same stock that arrived off 24 that morning.  (In the past 40 years, Amtrak has discovered the value of early morning departures from both cities, and, enabling legislation or not, is effectively running commuter trains on the C&M.)


An Instamatic shooting up-sun has its limitations.  Two diesels, four coaches spliced by one of the Buffeteria cars, all reasonably well-scrubbed.  That formation was standard for the Milwaukee turns for much of the first year.  One set could protect 24 - 27 - 12 - 23.  A second coach-only formation left Milwaukee on 46 at 4.20 pm, returning on Nine out of Chicago at 7.25 pm.   The Milwaukee service has never been conducive to travellers who seek a night at the opera, or a sporting event or an evening speech in Chicago.

On the bright side, the Morning Hiawatha gave way to a transcontinental train.  The first trip of 31 (the old Great Northern number) arrived just after noon.


Burlington Northern didn't have a matched set of diesels for the first trip, and a train bearing a Great Northern name enters The Milwaukee Road's station with a Northern Pacific diesel.  More exotic stuff would come, but not yet.

In Amtrak's first schedule, Twelve left at 12.20 pm, the same time that the Builder left from the other end of the station.


Fresh paint, freshly scrubbed, otherwise business as usual.

In the first few days of Amtrak operation, some of the legacy trains, including the eastbound Empire Builder and North Coast Limited, were fulfilling their old schedules, and Milwaukee's first eastbound train from Seattle in about ten years arrived on Monday, a school day.

Weekends offered an opportunity to do some trainwatching, though, and if the Builders were on time or close to time, they'd reach Wauwatosa shortly after noon.  The westbound would be first.


Still some Northern Pacific power.  That Milwaukee Road track has seen better days.

I didn't take very good notes in those days, and the date of these pictures, as well as the lateness (or not) of each train escapes memory.


The eastbound the same day also had Northern Pacific power.  Burlington Northern's coach yard still assembled the trains in those days, and the Builder was a blend of Burlington silver, Great Northern orange or blue, Northern Pacific two-tone green, and Burlington Northern green.  I understand that some relief trains ran between the Twin Cities and Chicago with Milwaukee Road power and coaches (imagine a Hiawatha without a Super Dome or any kind of a parlor car).  The mixing of equipment, which Amtrak advertised as part of making the trains worth traveling again, came later.  That mixing had the effect of removing some of the most clapped-out equipment from service, but it exposed the car departments of participating railroads to unfamiliar heating, cooling, and electrical systems. Perhaps more on those days later.

(Cross-posted to Cold Spring Shops.)

Display:
Nice photos of the start of Amtrak's 'rainbow days'!

Congress created the carrier as a quasi-public, for-profit corporation to relieve the railroads of passenger service losses that had already led to the Penn Central bankruptcy.

The Penn Central bankruptcy was caused by a whole number of factors including passenger service losses, but this was actually a fairly minor issue. Just consider how far the PC was from becoming profitable even with subsidized passenger service. No their main problem was absolute rock bottom physical plant. Perlman recognized this and quickly spent huge sums of money to start to upgrade the plant. There was only one catch, they didn't have nearly enough money. What's more, he spent too much too quickly, triggering the bankruptcy. The needed money didn't come until much later when the government provided billions for Conrail. These direct subsidies plus the broken labor unions (thanks also to the federal government) and the ability to easily unload or abandon low density lines finally yielded profits 15 plus years later.

by Jace on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 07:51:17 AM EST
By the way, what's your take on this IRJ article? Especially the Staggers Rail Act inlay on the next page? (Flash alert)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 10:34:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
This is the standard story line. I know Gallamore from his days at Northwestern University. Before that he spent his career with the UP. I would say he's hardly impartial.

The graph on the left is the same one you see all the time, but just how and why did productivity shoot up so quickly after deregulation? Also note that rates have been stagnant and that revenue per car has also dropped. The latter points to the increasing predominance of bulk commodities, namely Powder River coal.

As I noted in a comment to my diary, I think the best indication of the impact of Staggers is to compare Canadian and US trends. As seen here, revenues per ton mile are pretty much exactly the same (see Chart 1) yet no such deregulation took place in Canada. Chart 2 shows the quick drop in operating expenses in the US post Rock Island strike but otherwise the trends are parallel. The higher costs in Canada since then can be explained in part by higher traffic density in the US (Chart 6) as well as by low cost unit coal trains continuously coming out of the Powder River Basin. Productivity gains have been slightly greater in the US (Chart 5) but this is also due to all that PRB coal.

by Jace on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 01:14:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thank you, that figures. (By the way, I missed and didn't get to recommend your diary when it was fresh and only read it recently when I updated the Train Blogging index page, hence I thought of you when reading IRJ.)

Further unmentioned parallel trends I thought of when I saw that article: the end of the industrial crisis induced by the oil crisis, the emergence of outsourcing and the rise of imported goods (boosting transcontinental container traffic), and perhaps the delayed effect of saving on infrastructure after no more having to run passenger trains.

Regarding hardly impartial authors, can you 'decode' the end of the next article to me (who is less versed in US congressional politics)? The part about "...not only a Democratic House and a Democratic Senate, but we had the two leaders of the committees of jurisdiction who were committed to doing things that would have been highly negative to out industry"?

(By the way, I'm not sure about the political slant of IRJ's own authors, but the article on the termination of Florida's HSR project in the same issue and the one before is rather critical of the governor and his Reason Foundation spinmeisters.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 02:04:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
we had the two leaders of the committees of jurisdiction who were committed to doing things that would have been highly negative to out industry

That would be Jim Oberstart in the House and Jay Rockefeller in the Senate. They were both behind an effort to kill what is a mechanism to keep all but the most determined shippers from fighting the railroads over excessive rates. This cumbersome mechanism is known as the stand-alone railroad cost model.

For a shipper to prove that the rates charged were too high, they have to develop costs for a virtual railroad along the same lane. You start with nothing but a map and then develop a brand new railroad (complete with its own name!), an operating practice, timetable, labor and capital costs, traffic forecasts, etc. all to come up with a reasonable rate to move a load from point a to b. The results of this lengthy and costly exercize are then presented to the Surface Transportation Board for their final decision (the rates are deemed 'reasonable' or 'unreasonable'). Here's an example of an unsuccessful petition. Suffice to say, if you ship anything less than full trainloads, you're not going to bother to challenge the rates.

by Jace on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 02:51:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Here's a link to the bill. It never made to the floor in time for a vote.
by Jace on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 02:59:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thanks for giving the background!

I'm of two minds about this. On one hand, yes the 'virtual railroad' ruel seems rather unfair from the viewpoint of customers, and the current profits of Class 1 railways after the government help they got in the past few years are obscene. On the other hand, I don't think rate cuts should be pursued, that only magnifies the problems stemming from the current business model aimed at short-term profit maximisation.

First, there are still a lot of decrepit lines in need of maintenance and bottlenecks in need of capacity enhancements, which railways would spend even less on if you cut into their profits by forcing them to reduce rates. Instead, the railways should be forced to invest more into infrastructure. Second, there is the fact that manufacturing and energy consumption drops much more dramatically than GDP in a recession, making a very strong effect on railways, and you don't want railways profitable one year and going bust in the next, nor do you want them to throttle the whole economy even more by attempting to save themselves with rate hikes. Instead, the railways should be forced to pay down their debts in good times and make some preparations for the next downturn.

In your first link, this comes up too:

Industry executives ... are concerned proposed rules granting shippers access to a competing railroad will undercut carrier profits.

If I am not mistaken, this would have been some limited implementation of the idea of Open Access, which is at the core of rail 'reform' here in Europe. IMHO full open access is a very bad idea that is detrimental to long-term investment in general and network-wide investment in particular: it cuts away at profits on the busiest routes, leaving less money to spend on less-frequented lines, be them ones that could be made busier and profitable in themselves with upgrades, or branchlines which when closed mean the loss of some traffic on the mainlines, too. It's not like there is no competition without Open Access: there is one with other modes, chiefly road traffic. I'm not sure that my criticism applies to the proposed US rules to grant access to a competitor: if, say, the primary benefactors would be small customers on branchlines, the overall effect could be positive.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:18:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Regarding short term profit maximisation vs. investments, it's on full display in an article I found via Jace's (my emphases):

Rail Chief Blasts Shipper Activists on Regulation Law | Journal of Commerce

The CEO of Norfolk Southern Railway told investors that railroads are fighting a group of "cynical and short-sighted" shippers who are pursuing a new federal regulatory bill that jeopardizes carrier finances.

...Moorman said, "We are still engaged in defending against the long-running initiative by a small, but well-funded, group of rail shippers who are attempting to alter the economic regulatory regime which governs us so as to lower their rates, and at the same time seriously damage our ability to earn adequate returns for you our shareholders, and invest in the future."

...He also repeated a complaint that a congressional mandate for carriers to install costly crash-avoidance positive train control systems by the end of 2015 is "the second really bad thing that Washington has done to us." Carriers are seeking funding help or tax credits for that cost.

He can cry foul at shipper short-sightedness and protest the long-term investment of PTC at the same time, and speak about returns for shareholders and demand government support (which tax credits are).

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:30:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I tend to view this battle between Congress and the railroads as just another flare-up in the never to end war between shippers and railroads. If the shippers had their way, they wouldn't have to pay for transportation at all. If the railroads (or really any transportation company) had their's, then the shippers would have no other choice but to pay whatever the carrier desires.

To me, transportation is fundamentally a form of robbery (you'll have to pay me to get your goods back!). The stronger the transportation side becomes, the higher the ransom and vice versa. The government's role is to develop policies to balance these battles while minimizing their total outlays because either way, they (the government) will have to pay. If the shippers are favored, the railroads quickly become underfunded and will need capital and or operating subsidies. If the railroads win, the shippers will look to cut costs elsewhere and maybe even threaten to relocate without some sort of payoff.

Longer term and despite what industry executives will tell you, railroads (and again this can be expanded to all transportation modes) tend towards two things: regulation and under-investment. As I've recently noticed in the maritime industry, regulation starts out with a self-imposed structure which then allows carriers to better control each other and prevent predation. Rates should become more stable and maybe even increase. If or rather when this structure fails, then in comes government regulation. Under-investment ties directly into this since once the industry becomes regulated and shippers are captive, then what incentive is there to invest in maintaining let alone expanding the physical plant?

The low density lines in the US are in a slightly different soup than the major railroads but one that also leads to under-investment. After the regional/short lines were spun off from the Class 1 networks, mainly as a way to cut labor costs, they typically saw traffic increases. But these increases came about because the shipper's hand was strengthened relative to the carrier's. The rates dropped but so too did investment. Just a quick look at the homepage of the American Short Line RR Association shows how bad this situation has become. The two most prominently displayed links concern government subsidies for infrastructure!

I think that the European open access model is similar to the short line railroads here in that the function of the EVU's is to reduce labor costs. The difference is that the short lines here impact only their own workers, while the EVU's can ultimately threaten labor on the former state owned lines. It's a government policy that is designed to strengthen the shippers/customer's position relative to the railroads. As you noted, under-investment will surely follow but favoring shippers only seems to accelerate the process. Open access here is limited to trackage or haulage rights which is a whole other story.

by Jace on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 11:04:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
My solution would be re-nationalisation :-)

I think that the European open access model is similar to the short line railroads here in that the function of the EVU's is to reduce labor costs.

EVU? Do you mean the German abbreviation for Eisenbahnverkehrsunternehmen? The standard (British/EU) English term is "railway undertaking" (useful source: ERA Glossary), abbreviated RU. The reduction of labour costs is one angle, but there are several more which don't emerge for railways owning their infrastructure:

  • there is the opportunity to devolve what used to be public service here and end state subsidies (also applying to some freight transports) with a convenient excuse,
  • close branchlines previously maintained as public service,
  • a lot of politicians here really believe that competition = higher efficiency, and
  • the truly big issue (and emerging big fight) is the division of costs between railway undertakings and infrastructure managers (via the setting of track access charges). Open Access provides for a similar juggling of costs as done in 'reforms' that (directly or indirectly) affect unemployment benefit, disability benefit and pension scheme costs at the same time but are sold with rhetoric focusing on one of these only.

It is also worth to mention that even just in railfreight, European Open Access doesn't evolve as planned, yet it evolves in a way that could have been foreseen easily. New railway undertakings are financially weak, thus, instead of bright new innovative entrants bringing lots of new capital to the rails and slowly pushing out slow-moving former state railways, the bigger former state railways are consolidating themselves and encroach into each other's former territory by buying up the troubled new entrants, and the freight branches of the former state railways of smaller EU member states. (And long-distance passenger traffic open access is an even stranger story, but that would fit into another diary.)

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 02:28:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, I meant Eisenbahnvehkehrsunternehmen. I tend to read the German language industry press more than the British press.

a lot of politicians here really believe that competition = higher efficiency

This to me stems from the 'success' of deregulation in places like the US. The tendency is to look at the class 1's only and not pay too much attention to the regionals. I was in Vermont recently and was shocked by the condition of the tracks of the former Central Vermont (once owned by Canadian National and now a regional).  

The issue with access charges is very interesting. How high is too high and how low is too low? As the infrastructure managers strongly influence the success or failure of the EVU's as well as determining long term subsidy requirements, they effectively become the policy arm of the national government. Perhaps they can be used as a step towards re-nationalization.

New railway undertakings are financially weak, thus, instead of bright new innovative entrants bringing lots of new capital to the rails and slowly pushing out slow-moving former state railways, the bigger former state railways are consolidating themselves and encroach into each other's former territory

The new entrants (which sound a lot like our regionals) will surely drive rates down with labor being the one big area where they can cut costs. The lack of substantial barriers to entry (especially now that pretty much anyone can buy/lease a TRAXX locomotive approved to run throughout Europe) should only accelerate the process. It really can become destructive as carriers vie for the most lucrative traffic. I know there are a lot of issues with freight in Europe (punctuality, border crossings, train size, axle loads, etc.), but is there any proof that rates are too high and are thus driving away traffic?

by Jace on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:52:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The new entrants (which sound a lot like our regionals) will surely drive rates down with labor being the one big area where they can cut costs.

The problem for new entrants is taking risks. One accident, taking on one loss-making transport, one unforeseen line closure, one badly considered merger or acquisition, not to mention an economic downturn, can kill them financially, thus only big companies with a large financial buffer stand a chance. In Germany, we can speak of this process in past tense: KEG went bust, Rail4Chem went up in Captrain which Veolia had to shed and is now owned by France's SNCF, ITL was also bought by SNCF, and the latest purchase was TX by Italy's FS, which is also indirect majority owner of OHE. HGK is only "private" in scare quotes (being indirectly 100% owned by the city of Cologne), and SBB ran its own subsidiary from the start.

is there any proof that rates are too high

Rates are always too high... the debate focuses on the pricing model. The RUs demand track access charges based on marginal cost pricing, that is, the cost of running an extra train – which would mean low rates for RUs, and IMs in need of high state subsidies. IMs would be more happy with average cost pricing, that is, distributing all their costs to all trains operating on their lines by some weighting.

The exact method of weighting is another bone of contention: how much of it should be by train-kilometre, by ton-kilometre, and by consumption? Playing with that can shift costs between (standing on its own feet) railfreight and (subsidized) passenger transport, thus subsidized passenger transport can be turned into an indirect subsidy of an infrastructure manager and with that a twice indirect subsidy of freight RUs that bloom thanks to low rates set by that IM.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 05:20:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There are three books about the evolution of the deregulated freight railroads of the U.S. that will reward careful study.  The most recent is The Men Who Loved Trains, with an extended discussion here.  Two older volumes, Main Lines and Merging Lines, briefly discussed here, provide background on the creation of Conrail, the subsequent deregulation, and the ultimate creation of the four big U. S. based railroads.

Stephen Karlson ATTITUDE is a nine letter word. BOATSPEED.
by SHKarlson (shkarlson at frontier dot com) on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 08:40:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Jace, I'm paraphrasing (with some elision) from a very recent Classic Trains article that details a number of concessions Stuart Saunders made to get his merger approved, including putting up Pennsylvania Railroad money for the Metroliner project, and agreeing to incorporate the passenger-heavy and seriously bankrupt New Haven Railroad as a condition of the merger.  Yes, Penn Central was likely doomed from the start, and it surely carried other burdens.  But without its failure, there likely would not have been an Amtrak in the form it took.

That same article explains where the "for-profit" requirement came from.  In order to achieve the policy goal of freeing the solvent freight railroads from future passenger losses, the planned Passenger Rail authority had to, in principle and in the out-years, turn a profit, in order to achieve sufficient bi-partisan support to get the legislation passed.

At the very beginning, all Amtrak did was write checks.  The railroads continued to sell the tickets and operate the trains.  The rainbow era began about six months later, and I have some slides from the heady days of its beginning for a future diary.

Stephen Karlson ATTITUDE is a nine letter word. BOATSPEED.

by SHKarlson (shkarlson at frontier dot com) on Mon May 2nd, 2011 at 08:32:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I love it, a discussion of the PC on Eurotrib!

As you noted Saunders made a lot of concessions with the government and with the unions to win approval for the merger. The concessions on passenger operations (including the addition of the New Haven) only helped to doom the PC. I agree that this failure was one of the major factors behind the creation of Amtrak, but passenger service losses, substantial as they were, were not the ultimate cause of bankruptcy of the PC. As I noted, that falls to the deplorable condition of the railroad (mainly on the Pennsy side) and Perlman's rush to upgrade the plant.

I look fowrard to seeing your photos of the true rainbow days!

by Jace on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 11:15:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In his blog post linked downthread, SHKarlson notes too:

COLD SPRING SHOPS.

In both Wreck and Men, there is ample evidence that deferring maintenance on the railroad means spending a little less money now in order to spend a lot more money later, at the risk of losing business, and that pursuing risky and currently money-losing ventures in the hopes of offsetting losses in the core business is wishful to the limit.


*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 01:49:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This summer, as I clean house and sort the old slides, I'll make time to scan a few pictures.  The Friday after Thanksgiving of 1971, I hung out at the Milwaukee Union Depot as all sorts of Burlington, Great Northern, Union Pacific, and Gulf Mobile and Ohio goodies ran on trains to Minneapolis or Chicago or St. Louis.

Stephen Karlson ATTITUDE is a nine letter word. BOATSPEED.
by SHKarlson (shkarlson at frontier dot com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 04:21:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Have any of our US correspondents heard of an audio recording by O Winston Link, the famous railways-at-night photographer, called Silent Night ?

I've heard it mentioned a couple of times and it sounded wonderful but the internet hasn't heard of it.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 06:39:52 AM EST
I have not heard of this. Is it an interview, the telling of a story or...?
by Jace on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 11:18:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I read a magazine article about him that suggested that he'd once made a recording of somebody playing Silent Night on a church pipe organ for 20 minutes, during which time a distant express beat it's way up a valley, getting louder and louder until the clatter and clash as it came and stopped in the station. Then carrying onas  it woofed away until it faded. just leaving the lady playing Silent night.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 12:46:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You have to see his photographs. Very complex flash photos at night of US steam trains. Truly great - even orgasmic, if you are of the DoDo persuasion...

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 01:01:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How true. Icons of the 1950's.

Also worth noting is that in his later years, Link had quite the bizarre life.

by Jace on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 01:16:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Goodness, how very sad

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 01:33:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have his book "Steel, Steam and Stars" which has most of the iconic works in it. A great investment.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 01:30:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Isn't it weird that genius is so often associated with compensational behaviour (re Winston O's later life)?

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 03:11:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's December 24, 1957, Train 42 at Rural Retreat, Virginia.  Available on You Tube.

Stephen Karlson ATTITUDE is a nine letter word. BOATSPEED.
by SHKarlson (shkarlson at frontier dot com) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 04:18:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
thank you thank you thank you

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue May 3rd, 2011 at 05:09:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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