%Thomas The Tank Engine

nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Sat Jul 9 21:31:02 EDT 2005

I certainly have nothing against Thomas the Tank Engine, if we could have a non-public appearance by him. I think Thomas does a great job of getting children interested in trains. However, the public Thomas appearances draw such large crowds that I think having our convention concurrent with a public Thomas appearance would be unworkable, both from a Society and a Strasburg Railroad perspective. When they have the Thomas event going on, the railroad can not be expected to simultaneously handle any other special events, including for our convention. Also, it would be difficult for us to have any convention events so many children around. There would probably be problems getting hotels as well.

Nelson Burks
----- Original Message -----
From: nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
To: NW Mailing List
Sent: Friday, July 08, 2005 6:45 AM
Subject: Re: %Thomas The Tank Engine

I'll only say this once. Folks who know me know this already...

If my children are not welcome somewhere, I won't go.
If anyone thinks that I love trains more than my family, they've got another thing comin'!
If someone wants me to put anything ahead of my kids, I'll tell them were to get off the train!

Nothing is more important than my family. I see it like this, when I'm dead and gone my tombstone will have my name on it. Folks will say "he loved his family", or they'll say, "he loved trains..." The latter sounds awfully shallow to me.

Lets don't make this personal.
Ben Blevins

nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org wrote:
So, it has come down to this, has it? "This" meaning Thomas The Tank Engine.
It's not enough that today's government schools are filling kids heads with
politically correct liberal garbage instead of the truth. We have to
demean the
railroad industry by putting a stupid face on the front of a steam locomotive
to bring the subject down to the level of a child. That is utter
nonsense! I
started railfanning during the depression 30's around an all steam original
Norfolk Southern Railroad, and Atlantic Coast Line Railroad. I was to begin
the job of locomotive fireman in 1941 with the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad
out of Rocky Mount, N.C. on the south end of the Richmond District between
Rocky Mount and Florence, S.C., with rights also on the Wilmington District.
When I was a kid, nobody tried to bring the railroad down to my simple
level. The very thing that had appeal was the fact that a railroad was a no
nonsense "grown-up" mechanical marvel that moved freight and passengers
with the skill of special craftsmen who seemed born to work at their jobs as
they appeared to me to be having a good time and actually getting paid for it!
For one of them to take time to look down and talk to me made the likes of
Babe Ruth look like a nobody. I gained respect for the railroads, not because
they looked down at me, but because I looked up to them as a mechanical
marvel of sights, sounds, smells, and the ability to tingle my spine by just
doing their job, rain or shine, hot or cold. I was drawn to trackside just as
a moth is attracted to an open light. True, steam has gone, but to watch a
local freight come into town and pick up and set out a few cars, has the same
facination today that it had 50 years ago, and as a bonus today you have the
added convenience of listening to the engineer and brak eman talking to each
other on a scanner. No, we don't need funny faces on locomotives. You
only need an appreciation for a flanged wheel on a steel rail, and the sounds
associated with them, even down to a flat wheel or a flange squealing in a
tight curve. If those sounds have no appeal to you, then you are in the wrong
hobby. Bill Sellers, Norfolk Southern Railway ( Ret.) Gainesville, Ga.

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