Monday, March 03, 2008
Nerdier by the day or Das Trains
I am getting nerdier by the day. I ought to take some drugs, get drunk and go out for a dance and pick up. Can't be bothered. More fun to listen to the Great Train Show, a podcast downloadable from our ABC's local radio website.
It is presented by ex Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the National Party, Tim Fischer. His train knowledge is astonishing and far superior to his radio program presentation. Bit harsh, he just isn't a natural broadcaster, but regardless, I love the show and Tim is nothing if not likeable. It talks about local trains, overseas trains and lots of history of course. It is not a train spotters type of show, but much more general. And I love these podcasty thingies. I can listen whenever I want. Beats what I used to do, tape radio onto a cassette using an electronic timer.
In one episode I was particularly impressed by a steam train audio recording. It started with bird noises and you hear the train approaching. It was slowing as it encountered a steep hill and then you hear the wheels slip as it struggled up the hill and the engine working even slower. Marvellous.
To top and tail the show musically, the song Chattanooga Choo Choo is used. Not one of my favourite songs, but a worse one could have been chosen.
I knew nothing about Chattanooga Railway Station, but thanks to the radio program, I do now. It is not a functioning railway station any more, but a private hotel I seem to recall. And one person was right, the sign on top is horrid. Get rid of it. It spoils what is otherwise a fine building.
While we sometimes lament the loss of many railway lines, it must be nothing compared to the US.