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Hello everyone from the wilds of Central Burma!
Some good old railway jokes!
A railwayman and an aviator were discussing the respective merits of their means of transport. After arguing about the value of speed, and finding similar records of safety, the railwayman clinched his argument by saying, "The problem with you aviators is that you organize everything base over apex. Where we sort out all our trains on a massive shunting yard, and run trains on two lines, you have lots of lines between airports, and then try to land everything on two!"
The standard joke aimed at a driver just about to leave is, "Don't forget to stop at Spencer Street"!
[Spencer Street Station is the main terminus for Melbourne. There's no way out of it except backwards.]
This poem was quoted in Patsy Adam-Smith's book Fokelore of the Australian Railwaymen, but it is so good that I quote it here:
The Tale of the Scarlet Runner by Bert Milborne, Station Master, Tasmanian Government Railways
It was on the Tonganah railway track
They were going full steam ahead
They must have been doing ten miles an hour
At least so the fireman said.
When all of a sudden the driver swore
And quickly applied the brake
For right on the track was what Beany called
A hell of a great big snake.
Now Beany of course is a railway guard
And really a truthful man
And he swore the snake was ten foot long
With a head like a frying pan.
Says Beany to me, "Fair dinkum mate
He's a son of a gunner
And one of the blokes that lived around here
Said they called him a Scarlet Runner."
When Robby the fireman saw his nibs
With his head swaying to and fro
He says to Beany, "Hold on a bit
Just let me have a go."
Then he picks a great big lump of coal
And slings is with all his force
If it had only landed where he meant it to
There'd have been no snake of course.
But the Scarlet Runner bobs his head
And Beany lets out a yell
"Why he's fighting as good as my mate and me
When we cleared the Sydney Hotel!"
Then he picks up a great big sassy stick
And the sight would make you melt
And he gets in a lovely right hand drive
And he hits him below the belt.
Then his snakeship drops across the track
And the driver lets her through
And the wheels of the engine on his back
Cuts him through and through.
Then Robby and Beany both shook hands
And they reckoned he was no loss
And the rumour goes that they both expect
To get the Victoria Cross!
Did you hear of the idiot spray painter who painted the old Coffee Pot (at Pichi Richi Railway in Quorn) into VicRail's Tea-Cup livery?
Or the idiot train controller who tried to APEX the Amex quarry train?
Translation: To AMEX a train is to cancel it, from the old VR telegraph code. The Apex Quarry Train is a railfan's favourite, hauling quarry products from near Kilmore East.
A railfan was discussing the NSW C-79 class, pointing out its tall funnel, large driving wheels, and other characteristics which gave it an Edwardian appearance. Then his young brother, a Thomas the Tank Engine fan, came up with a picture of an unstreamlined 38-class, claiming for it a "Gordonian" appearance!
Translation: Nobody could fail to recognise the allusion to Gordon of the Fat Controller's railway!
I saw a friend of mine one day, so I hailed her, "Hi, 'Tashy!" We had a pleasant tait-a-tait over a Harris coffee until her doggie wanted a run. Besides, she had promised to fill in for a baby-cita. Dis was a situation only a real dummy would get into. Now if you xtrapolate this situation to its logical conclusion, you find many factors in comeng with the sea men who crewed the dreadnoughts.
There are ten Melbourne suburban train and tram names in there, disguised. Can you find them all?
"I knew of a young idiot who was going at 140km/h trying to beat a train to a level crossing!"
"Did he get across?"
"Yes, a lovely marble one!"
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