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Re: [TalkAntietam]

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  • G E Mayers
    Richard, OMG! LOL--talk about connections! WOW! Very respectfully, G E Gerry Mayers Confederate Signal Corps, Longstreet s Corps ... From:
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 8 6:53 AM
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      Richard,

      OMG! LOL--talk about connections! WOW!

      Very respectfully,
      G E "Gerry" Mayers
      Confederate Signal Corps,
      Longstreet's Corps



      ----- Original Message -----
      From: <richard@...>
      To: <TalkAntietam@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Friday, April 08, 2005 9:49 AM
      Subject: [TalkAntietam]


      > It has absolutely nothing to do with Antietam, but I thought you guys (of
      > all people) might enjoy this.
      >
      > Does the statement, "We've always done
      > it that way" ring any bells? ..
      >
      > The US standard railroad gauge (distance between the rails) is 4 feet, 8.5
      > inches.
      >
      > That's an exceedingly odd number. Why was that gauge used?
      >
      > Because that's the way they built them in England, and English expatriates
      > built the
      >
      > US Railroads.
      > Why did the English build them like that?
      >
      > Because the first rail lines were built by the same people who built the
      > pre-railroad tramways,
      >
      > and that's the gauge they used.
      >
      > Why did "they" use that gauge then?
      >
      > Because the people who built the tramways used the same jigs and tools
      > that they used
      >
      > for building wagons, which used that wheel spacing.
      >
      > Okay! Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing?
      >
      > Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break
      > on some of
      >
      > the old, long distance roads in England, because that's the spacing of the
      > wheel ruts.
      >
      > So who built those old rutted roads?
      >
      >
      > Imperial Rome built the first long distance roads in Europe (and England)
      > for their legions.
      >
      > The roads have been used ever since.
      >
      > And the ruts in the roads?
      >
      > Roman war chariots formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to
      > match for fear of
      >
      > destroying their wagon wheels. Since the chariots were made for Imperial
      > Rome, they
      >
      >
      > were all alike in the matter of wheel spacing..
      >
      > The United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches is derived
      > from the
      >
      > original specifications for an Imperial Roman war chariot. And
      > bureaucracies live forever.
      >
      > So the next time you are handed a specification and wonder what horse's
      > ass came up
      >
      > with it, you may
      >
      > be exactly right, because the Imperial Roman army
      >
      > chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the back ends of two
      > war horses.
      >
      > Now the twist to the story
      >
      > When you see a Space Shuttle sitting on its launch pad, there are two big
      > booster rockets
      >
      > attached to the sides of the main fuel tank. These are solid rocket
      > boosters, or SRBs.
      >
      > The SRBs are made by Thiokol at their factory at Utah. The engineers who
      > designed the
      >
      > SRBs would have preferred to make them a bit fatter, but the SRBs had to
      > be shipped by
      >
      > train from the factory to the launch site. The railroad line from the
      > factory happens to run
      >
      >
      > through a tunnel in the mountains. The SRBs had to fit through
      >
      > that tunnel. The tunnel is slightly wider than the railroad track, and the
      > railroad track, as
      >
      > you now know, is about as wide as two horses' behinds.
      >
      > So, a major Space Shuttle design feature of what is arguably the world's
      > most advanced
      >
      > transportation system was determined over two thousand years ago by the
      > width of a
      >
      > horse's ass.
      >
      > .... and you thought being a HORSE'S ASS wasn't important!
      >
      >
      > Maybe I will amount to something yet.
      >
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
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