I've Decided to become a Train Conductor
Before we get into the meat of this matter, I want to apologize for failing to provide you with the usual sassy Saturday fare last week that you have all come to love and depend upon. Unfortunately I was detained by "The Great Power Outage of '03". The man-made disaster struck as I was at work descending in an elevator. I don't think I need to tell you that I was in quite a pickle, and was trapped in that little metal box for the next 24 hours, although I had company in the elevator; three visiting Japanese businessmen shared my fate to wait out the long hours in the darkness. Thanks to them, I survived by cannibalizing their tender Japanese flesh and piping hot blood to nourish me during my agonizing imprisonment, and I'm currently negotiating a movie deal with CBS about my heroic adventure called "Alive 2: Elevator Madness". I promise I'll never leave you again my faithful readers, unless of course I have to organize my sock drawer, fall down the stairs and break my legs again, or leave my torrid past and hit the rails, becoming the best train conductor in the entire world.
That's right, I've decided to become a train conductor. I'm dead serious you guys. Drastic steps towards this new occupation have already been taken, such as enrolling in Fancy Boy Training Academy, so there is no turning back now. No, I'm not presently taking any heavy drugs, or suffering from a quarter life crisis. This is something that I've been brooding about for years now. I just turned 25 a few weeks ago, and reality came down on me like a ton of bricks. I've been working non-stop since I was a teenager, and what do I have to show for it? A few Hall and Oats records and knees that pop like champagne corks, that's what. I have been complacent in my position of being a lackey, a servant if you will, to the corporate overlords who throw me some scraps now and then for being a good boy. I am just a pawn in this mad chess game of society, and despite all my rage, I am still just a rat in a container with metal bars. But no more! That all ends.......................now.
I have never told anybody this, but my grandfather, Harry "Whiskeynips" Paskiewicz, was a famous train conductor back in the 50's. I don't like to mention it at gatherings or social functions because I don't want to seem like a braggart, but my grandfather was not only the most skilled train conductor in the golden age of the rail, but he also won the congressional medal of honor for singlehandedly defeating the Native Indian savages and Tusken Raiders that would continually harrass the Chicago/St. Louis line. He was fast friends with the likes of prominent figures like Teddy Roosevelt and Al Capone, and it wasn't uncommon to see him hanging out with the popular movie starlets of the day. Unfortunately, he was killed at the ripe old age of 68 when he tried to be the first man to drive a train from New York to Paris. Because no rail exists between these two points, he was lost in the sea along with his cargo of Alf shirts. Understandably, this is a lot to live up to, and has been haunting me all my life. I've always felt the conductor's blood in me chugging me in this direction, and despite all my efforts to fight this urge with drugs and video games, I cannot deny that it is my fate to ride the rails in the glory of my forefathers.
Alas, national interest in trains are waning. Shipping is now primarily done with interstate trucking, and passenger trains are all but null and void. Amtrack has made a joke of the honor of the public train transport with their ill-kept cars that commonly derail, killing many people who placed their trust in the company and the conductor. The conductor was once seen as a revered authority, almost a holy figure, but now is cast down upon the likes of rodeo clowns and pirates. I plan to change all that. Much like the ranger Strider from Lord of the Rings, I have thrown off my traveler's shawl, and have returned to reclaim my hereditary throne as king of the railways, and hopefully also get to bang hot Elvish chicks. I know my friends and family will not understand the path I have chosen, but I know in my heart that it's the right thing to do. As the wise archmage Richard "Deadbeat Dad" Kyanka once said: "I'm the boss applesauce."
But this transition for me will not be an easy one. I know full well that there will be obstacles I must overcome, such as my sexual appetite for young, nubile boys, and my insatiable craving for White Castle hamburgers. There are many benefits to being a train conductor, as well as some negative aspects. Here are just a few of them I've learned from my recent experience as an intern on a train:
Perks of being a train conductor
Chicks dig the uniform. It's no secret that the ladies like a man in uniform. This goes for the standard train conductor uniform as well. With the fancy hat and shirt combined with the overalls crafted from very soft, thin fabric, allowing a ghosting of male genitalia, even the most prudent women go wet with desire. It's common for a conductor to have several hundred children in every state in the union, planting his fertile seed wherever his train might go.
Eating sandwiches on the caboose. There's only one thing I like more than eating my roast beef sandwich, and that's eating my roast beef sandwich in the caboose of the train. Although the caboose is often called the "ass" of the train, it is also a place where the conductor and his crew can kick back and chow down on some tasty sandwiches. This is a peaceful, almost Zen-like place for them, giving them time for deep introspection, a time to reflect on their past and future crimes.
Can smash the fuck out of drunk drivers passed out on the tracks. The natural enemy of the train conductor is the drunk driver parked on the train tracks at 2 am. That's why nothing pleases conductors more than slamming into these intoxicated vagabonds at full speed, utterly destroying the vehicle, and ending the life of the hardly sober occupant. The best kind of DK (Drunk Kill) is when the "victim" wakes up right before the train hits due to the light and noise. They either fumble for their keys, futilely raise their hands in front of their face before impact, or (my favorite) scream as loud as they can. Their blood curdling screams of terror blend with the train whistle perfectly, creating a symphony of horror, bringing tears to even the most hard-hearted of conductors. The record number of DK's in one season is Danny "Crazytrain" Manic with 17.5.
Get to make people wait for you. That's right! Who has the power now? When train conductors see a road crossing up ahead, it's common practice to slow the train down to about .25 MPH. Once the train is halfway past the crossing, it is reversed, a sandwich is consumed in the caboose, and then forward again, this time at .1 MPH. This lets all those jerks in their SUVs know who the real boss on land, and if they have a problem with it, they can just turn their stupid plastic car around and try another crossing, where we will be waiting for him.
Get to blow the whistle. TOOT TOOT! TOOT TOOT! Wake the fuck up everybody, a train is coming through! TOOT TOOT!
Disadvantages of being a train conductor
As you can see, this is not an easy decison for me. The benefits outweigh the negative aspects to be sure, but there is a lot to stake in this venture. I am risking my family, friends, and the woman I love, all on a wild dream. A beautiful, wild dream. It's hard to put into words the emotions I feel inside about how I feel about becoming a train conductor, so I would like to share this poem I wrote one dark, moonless night, drunk on a cheap jug of wine.
Hobos. Goddamn hobo stowaways! If there's one thing I hate, it's hobo stowaways. These vermin not only hitch a free ride, but they steal cargo, eat all the snacks, play the banjo during all hours, and tell tales that lack any merit of truth whatsoever. I can usually clear them out with my "Hobowacker" (a baseball bat with a buzz saw on the tip), but some are wily and I end up having to hunt them for hours. I like luring them with whiskey, and then tossing them under the wheels so they are sliced in two, but many have grown wise. After my recommendation, the train industry hired an expert on hobo disposal, our very own Josh "Livestock" Boruff. He recommended open cars designed to trap hobos and then compact them into easily disposable cubes, banjos that transform into a killer robot, cutting the hobo to ribbons with its razor sharp strings, and shooting them in the head with a gun. Thanks to Josh, the hobo population is down 72% and the train industry can rest easy. For now...
Dickhead co-workers. This can be a big problem, leading to outbreaks of violence among the crew members. During my tour of duty, I saw no less than 4 scuffles between co-workers, and even one knife fight. These altercations can be caused by arguments about overflooding the caboose toilet, whose turn it is to watch for hogs on the track, or even something as simple as movie trivia. But the most common cause of these fights is the band Rush. Half the guys on the train are always die hard Rush fans, and the other half hate Rush with a passion. George Jefferson once said about America during the Civil War: "United we stand, divided we fall." The same goes for a train, so measures had to be taken to preserve the peace. The new rule on every train in America is "No Rush allowed!" Geddy Lee said he was not pleased with the decision, but understands that it needed to be done.
Boredom. Oh god it's sooooooooo boring! Besides a random DK and hobo encounter, 99% of train conducting is making sure the train is on the tracks, and not randomly plowing through fields and houses. This can be done by going to sleep or quietly masturbating in the coal bin. I've heard that the suicide rate among train conductors is about 90%, but I don't let the figures scare me. I plan on reading all the books ever written, and then after I read them all I might even try Harry Potter. Shooting craps and cockfighting is another way to pass time, but is severely frowned upon by the industry. I'm sure I'll think of something to do. Maybe hangman...
The undead. What a terrible night to have a curse! The one thing I hate more than hobos, people who dislike the musical stylings of Rush, and being bored, is the undead, particularly skeletons. It's a little known fact that skeletons are naturally drawn to trains due to the fact that many carry cursed Indian gold around the country. This gold is sought after by the skeletons, and they don't stop until the train and her crew are destroyed, or they are defeated. For this task I have created "Skeletonwacker" (a baseball bat set on fire), and await any foul creature that will lay a hand on my train. If the army of the undead want my cargo, they are going to have to get through me!
The Train Conductor (a spoken word poem)
He stands alone
Bound to the path of glory he chose
The wind rushed past
His brilliant silky hair danced in the breeze
Sweat glistened on his perfectly toned bare chest
His fully engorged penis broke free from its confines, cutting through the wind like an aerodynamic mushroom
He straddled the iron snake that wound its way through fields and mountains
Full control of his machine, master of coal and steel
Back home they didn't understand him
So he left them, he left Her
Waiting by the window, Her tears flowed freely, longing for his return
But there was no return for a train conductor
His home changed daily, always on the move
This was the life he chose
To be a train conductor, is to be alone
I know my path is a lonely one, full of peril and danger, but I only have one life to live and I cannot waste it by sitting at this life sapping computer box pounding out extraordinarily absurd articles every weekend. All my possessions I leave to my Reverend, Samuel, and I am leaving Greasnin a terrible case of herpes. This is it. Now I see clearly. My whole life is pointed in one direction. There never has been a choice for me. I am, and always will be, a train conductor. Bye forever my dear friends, I shan't ever forget you! TOOT TOOT!State Og: Donkey Kong's Got Nothing On Me
Howdy folks, this is Dennis "Corin Tucker's Stalker" Farrell reporting from my new office in the State Og space station, located in lovely downtown Burbank due to a lack of rocket fuel. This week's State Og is great. If your friend asks what you think about it, you'll slap your forehead and go to say "A-durr! Of course it's great!", only you'll slap your head too hard and fall over on your mom's really nice coffee table before you can actually say it. Then you'll be worrying too much about how to fix the table before she gets home to remember what you were about to say. But trust me, it's great.
State Og's prices are competitive, because we know you want the most bang for your buck. Our rates are slightly lower than the rates of ALL our competitors' combined into one monstrous rate, with phallic tentacles probing for your money and your schoolgirl daughter! Don't believe me? Just ask Peter Hayward, professional elephant wrestler:
"YEEARRRGH! GET IT OFF! SWEET FANCY MOSES, IT SAT RIGHT ON ME! THIS ELEPHANT IS SERIOUSLY HEAVY! SHIT!"
Now go read this week's State Og before you break something else.