AN INTERESTING HISTORY LESSON

Railroad tracks.  This is fascinating.

Be sure to read the final paragraph; your understanding of it will depend on the earlier part of the content.

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.

Why did the wagons have that particular odd wheel spacing?  Well, if they had tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would have broken on some of the old, long distance roads in England, because that was 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.  Therefore the United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches is derived from the original specifications for an Imperial Roman war chariot. Bureaucracies live forever.

So the next time you are handed a Specification/Procedure/Process and
wonder ‘What horse’s ass came up with it?’ you may be exactly right. Imperial Roman army chariots were made just wide enough to accommodate the rear ends of two war horses.  (Two horses’ asses.)

Now, the twist to the story:

When you saw a Space Shuttle sitting on its launch pad, there were two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the main fuel tank.  These were solid rocket boosters, or SRB’s.

The SRB’s were made by Thiokol at their factory in Utah.  The engineers who designed the SRB’s would have preferred to have made them a bit fatter, but the SRB’s 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, and the SRB’s 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 was 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?  Ancient horse’s asses control almost everything… and CURRENT Horses Asses are controlling everything else.

Advertisements

This Never Gets Old!

 

Simply Too Special

SimplyTooSpecial019

SimplyTooSpecial018

SimplyTooSpecial017

SimplyTooSpecial016

SimplyTooSpecial015

SimplyTooSpecial014

SimplyTooSpecial013

SimplyTooSpecial012

SimplyTooSpecial011

SimplyTooSpecial010

SimplyTooSpecial009

SimplyTooSpecial008

SimplyTooSpecial007

SimplyTooSpecial006

SimplyTooSpecial005

SimplyTooSpecial004

SimplyTooSpecial003

SimplyTooSpecial002

SimplyTooSpecial001

SimplyTooSpecial020

“Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is life, fight for it.”

~ Mother Teresa

Bravo le photographe!

(This link resolves to a PowerPoint file.  If you do not have PowerPoint you can download a free PowerPoint Viewer from Microsoft here. – Ed.)

 

Bravo_le_photographe

Animals are the best therapy!

Animals are the best therapy_001 Animals are the best therapy_002 Animals are the best therapy_003 Animals are the best therapy_004 Animals are the best therapy_005 Animals are the best therapy_005a Animals are the best therapy_005b Animals are the best therapy_006 Animals are the best therapy_007 Animals are the best therapy_008 Animals are the best therapy_009 Animals are the best therapy_010 Animals are the best therapy_011 Animals are the best therapy_012 Animals are the best therapy_013 Animals are the best therapy_014 Animals are the best therapy_015 Animals are the best therapy_016 Animals are the best therapy_017 Animals are the best therapy_018 Animals are the best therapy_019 Animals are the best therapy_020 Animals are the best therapy_021 Animals are the best therapy_022 Animals are the best therapy_022a Animals are the best therapy_022b Animals are the best therapy_023 Animals are the best therapy_024

MEET MOLLY

A most heartwarming story—beats the heck out of murders, politics and terrorists!

MEET MOLLY_001

She’s a gray speckled pony who was abandoned by her owners when Hurricane Katrina hit southern Louisiana . She spent weeks on her own before finally being rescued and taken to a farm where abandoned animals were stockpiled.

While there, she was attacked by a dog and almost died. Her gnawed right front leg became infected, and her vet went to LSU for help, but LSU was overwhelmed, and this pony was a welfare case. You know how that goes.

But after surgeon Rustin Moore met Molly, he changed his mind. He saw how the pony was careful to lie down on different sides so she didn’t seem to get sores, and how she allowed people to handle her.

She protected her injured leg. She constantly shifted her weight and didn’t overload her good leg.
She was a smart pony with a serious survival ethic.

Moore agreed to remove her leg below the knee, and a temporary artificial limb was built.
Molly walked out of the clinic and her story really begins there.

‘This was the right horse and the right owner,’ Moore insists. Molly happened to be a one-in-a-million patient. She’s tough as nails, but sweet, and she was willing to cope with pain.

She made it obvious she understood that she was in trouble. The other important factor, according to Moore, is having a truly committed and compliant owner who is dedicated to providing the daily care
required over the lifetime of the horse.

Molly’s story turns into a parable for life in Post-Katrina Louisiana ………

The little pony gained weight, and her mane finally felt a comb.

A human prosthesis designer built her a leg. The prosthetic has given Molly a whole new life,

Allison Barca, DVM, Molly’s regular vet, reports.

And she asks for it. She will put her little limb out, and come to you and let you know that she wants you to put it on. Sometimes she wants you to take it off too. And sometimes, Molly gets away from Barca.
‘It can be pretty bad when you can’t catch a three-legged horse,’ she laughs.

Most important of all, Molly has a job now. Kay, the rescue farm owner, started taking Molly to shelters, hospitals, nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers. Anywhere she thought that people needed hope. Wherever Molly went, she showed people her pluck. She inspired people, and she had a good time doing it.

‘It’s obvious to me that Molly had a bigger role to play in life, Moore said. She survived the hurricane, she survived a horrible injury, and now she is giving hope to others.’ Barca concluded, ‘She’s not back to normal,
but she’s going to be better. To me, she could be a Symbol for New Orleans itself.’

MEET MOLLY_002

This is Molly’s most recent prosthesis. The bottom photo shows the ground surface that she stands on, which has a smiley face embossed in it. Wherever Molly goes, she leaves a smiley hoof print behind.

MEET MOLLY_003

If you feel like it, forward this and share it with all of the Animal lovers that you know. God’s creatures often reflect the character we aspire to.