The Casual Observations of the Human Condition

Caution, politically smarmy.
NOVEMBER 9, 2009 2:34PM

My dog is chewing his butt.

Rate: 8 Flag

I decided to observe the truce today and not write about anyone on the OS. Unfortunately the only interesting thing my dog did all week was bite a chunk of hair off his backside. Yes, I went to the store and got some flea drops, remember winter can be the worst time of year for the pests.

Meanwhile yesterday I was on my long zen walk. I knew today would be an extra crappy day at work and so far I haven't been disappointed! I've spend all morning on a job that under normal circumstances would take a half hour but because the boss won't listen to me it has taken 3 hours and should occupy at least one more. I needed to come to work with a zen state of mind or I might have destroyed something and stormed out by now.

While on this walk I came to where the road crosses the railroad tracks. In the distance I could hear the whistle and knew the 11:00 Amtrak was getting ready to leave the station on it's southbound route. It was an opportunity to do something, I don't like the term bucket list, I have always wanted to try.

Quickly I dug in my pocket and pulled out an old penny and a couple of metal punch-outs, otherwise known as plumbers quarters. And why did I have them in my pocket? In case I happened to be by the railroad tracks when a train came along of course. Yes, yes, act your age but only when the powers that be are watching.

I stacked them on the track, punch out, penny, punch out, to see if they would get squished together. I then walked back to a safe spot and waited. I heard the click in the switch house and soon the bells began to ring and the lights flashed. The train came around the corner and headed right for my pile, oooo this was going to be good.

There's an old wives tale that a penny can derail a train, and it's surprising how many people believe this, including my sister-in-law. Well, the train kept going just in case you were worried about that. When it had passed around the bend and the arms had swung back up, and the traffic had cleared out I went in search of the remnants of my experiment. It was at this point I realized I should have paid closer attention to the cross tie I had stacked everything above, it would have made my search easier.

I looked around but I couldn't find the penny or the slugs anywhere. Perhaps they had fused to the trains wheels and fell off elsewhere, but that didn't make any sense because there wasn't enough heat or a flux agent to cause it to happen. Perhaps the metal got sucked along in the trains vortex and wound up somewhere in the middle of the crossing or even beyond, a small plastic bottle that had been laying in the tracks had gotten pulled along at least 30 yards.

Then I spotted a small silver spot on the rail, it was where the punch out had been laying. I looked just a little past this spot and there they were, the penny and the two slugs. It seemed when the train hit the stack it squirted the penny out away from the slugs so it was on it's own but the two slugs had remained and were now fused together. There was a slight pattern on one edge of the slugs where the penny had been and one edge of the penny was less flat than the rest.

So I can now check one more thing off my list, I put a penny on a railroad track and squished it, don't tell the federal government that I defaced money though, they may come after me. And I learned you can't derail a train with a coin, or even three. And finally I have calmed down from this mornings cluster you-know-what, and I didn't even say anything mean about a fellow OSer. Maybe it isn't such a bad day after all.

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Hey, don 't debunk old wives. I have two of them.
I miss all the drama. Fortunately. Here's to pennies.
Cool! I figure if you can pay money to "disfigure" a coin in one of those souvenir machines, you're probably safe!
I'm not going to try this at home. Pretty cool, though :)
I never understood that phrase "cluster you-know-what" Is that anything like an orgy?
A penny for your thoughts?
"I never understood that phrase "cluster you-know-what" Is that anything like an orgy?"

No, because everyone come out smiling from an orgy.
I bet a dog on the tracks would derail the train. Try it.
Saw this in the feed - pretty cool