One of the hats I wear is driver for a local company that transports Amtrak crew from station to motel and back, morning and night. Four days a week I drive, for the past couple of years, and I have met some cool conductors and ingenious engineers. Shall I use their real names? Conductors Dave, Stan, Josh, Jason, TT (the trophy-winning bike to worker), and engineers Jeremy, Steve, Bryan, and George? . . . No, I better not. ;-)
Over the months, we've had many brief conversations. Depending on who's riding, the conversation will be politics (local and national), sports, music, television, and sometimes Amtrak shop talk, which I do not overhear.
Adding up the minutes spent each day. It's more than I've conversed of some of my grown children in the past year. Those lovable train jockeys have become like family: like second-cousins, once removed.
George the engineer occasionally brings me a CD he has burned of new music: Ever heard of Ryan (not Bryan) Adams? A brilliant and prolific singer-songwriter. You can see him perform on Letterman courtesy of YouTube.
Conductor Dave-47 brings me the latest issue of The Onion humor magazine, which this week reveals a papal plot against the U.S. and a story about an "Area man determined to get money's worth from pay toilet." Dave himself is funnier than Onion. His strength is mimicry, but he gets off one-liners faster than a speeding locomotive. I should sign him as a client. Book him at PK's to warm-up the Tawl Paul crowd some night when the train gets in early. There has never been a really successful conductor comedian. He could be billed as Boxcar Bill. The only problem might be some heckler shouting out "All Are Bored!"
Speaking of Paul, Jeremy the engineer is a hard-core Paultard! Still supporting Ron Paul for President, because he opposes the Income Tax. I'll try to swing him to Obama before November. Convince him that Barack can fix the effed-up Federal Income Tax system -- as well as everything else that ails America -- when he gets in office. ;-)
One of the guys (actually two if you count Jeremy's ministership in the Church of Mail Order Ministers) is an ordained Baptist minister, who preaches at his church on Sundays (but never in the car). Like many other Americans, Rev. Stan is no fan of Obama's former pastor. Looks like Rev. Wright is getting thrown under the bus by Barack and the media as well.
Speaking of bus, the move of Carbondale Greyhound to the BP station on East Main St. has stalled due to no signed lease agreement yet, due to one thing and another. June 1 now seems the likely date accompli.
Speaking of dates, my Match subscription expires at the same time. I better get hooked up soon, or my choices may be limited to Greyhound bus customers (or bustomers as they're known in the biz). Unfortunately, things aren't working out with the nice woman for whom I created the blog of love last week. Turns out, she doesn't read blogs, because she is too busy with real life! Can you imagine that? I still love her, though. Just not in a bloggy way. Wow. That was fast. ;-)