Classic Trains and Classic Watermelons!

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Classic Trains and Classic Watermelons!
Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, July 31, 2019 6:49 PM

I've been looking for an excuse or way to wangle in this picture somewhere... but hey, it's summer and what's more summer than watermelons. Not sure if they load them up like this any longer and the Katy is long gone now, as are wooden cars. 

Not only that but those watermelons are nearly extinct now! Those had seeds, lots of them, and half the joy of eating watermelons was spitting out the seeds. It was as Classic as this scene is. Also, don't kid youself, they tasted way better than todays seedless varieties. They were sloppy and juicy and made a mess. Not today, you almost feel like you need a fork and knife and eat it like a steak, and no fun either. 

Have not seen or tasted one of these original watermelons in years and years. Maybe in certain areas in the States you can still find them. 

It is a certainty you wont find this scene however. 

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 2:06 AM
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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Thursday, August 01, 2019 10:18 AM

Watermelons can still be found in roadside stands in Costa Rica, where they're stacked like cordwood.

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 12:06 PM
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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 1:15 PM
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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 2:28 PM

Watermelon Dream 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgEc3yvFnQU

 You know fellas there are 2 things I can eat endlessly ... watermelon and peameal  bacon. Stretch it from here to Jupiter and I'll eat it. Has no end, no boundaries until I drop. Then I come back and do it some more. 

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Posted by Deggesty on Thursday, August 01, 2019 3:22 PM

I wish I had a postcard that I saw at home when I was a small boy--it showed a flatcar laoded with two California lemons.

Johnny

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 4:20 PM

More Watermelon Music brought to you by Mike ... The Skillet Lickers , whoo boy. 
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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 4:41 PM

1946 Watermelon shipping tests report


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Posted by Overmod on Thursday, August 01, 2019 4:48 PM

John Tobias: a bit bittersweet in our context here...

During that summer
When unicorns were still possible;
When the purpose of knees
Was to be skinned;
When shiny horse chestnuts
    (Hollowed out
    Fitted with straws
    Crammed with tobacco
    Stolen from butts
    In family ashtrays)
Were puffed in green lizard silence
While straddling thick branches
Far above and away
From the softening effects
Of civilization;

During that summer--
Which may never have been at all;
But which has become more real
Than the one that was--
Watermelons ruled.

Thick imperial slices
Melting frigidly on sun-parched tongues
Dribbling from chins;
Leaving the best part,
The black bullet seeds,
To be spit out in rapid fire
Against the wall
Against the wind
Against each other;

And when the ammunition was spent,
There was always another bite:
It was a summer of limitless bites,
Of hungers quickly felt
And quickly forgotten
With the next careless gorging.

The bites are fewer now.
Each one is savored lingeringly,
Swallowed reluctantly.

But in a jar put up by Felicity,
The summer which maybe never was
Has been captured and preserved.
And when we unscrew the lid
And slice off a piece
And let it linger on our tongue:
Unicorns become possible again.

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 6:37 PM

Love it. Thats what I'm talking about.

It can't be written today because there are no " bullet" seeds anymore. 

Maybe down Memphis way you can still get the real deal.

13 days to Saskatoon from Florida back in the day.  Figure another day and a half at least up to here. Watermelon in the dead of winter here at Robertsons trading will run you $32-$34 bucks. Everyone stares at the one whole watermelon brought in each week. Finally someone succumbs. Quietly and discreetly. The gals at checkout cheer and congratulate. Life on the shield. 

Not so pricey now that's it summer but going to run you at least 10 bucks, and of course no seeds.

Too many pages to copy

https://archive.org/details/reportofwatermel186wins/page/n1

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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 10:35 PM
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Posted by Miningman on Thursday, August 01, 2019 10:39 PM
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Posted by Overmod on Friday, August 02, 2019 12:23 AM

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, August 02, 2019 12:35 AM

We are putting together a train of these... go back to 2:28pm about the 8th post back. 

So can one still get an old fashioned watermelon with the seeds in Memphis? 

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, August 02, 2019 12:48 AM

http://newsite.watermelonthump.com/activities/thump-queen/

Seeded watermelons are relatively easy to come by here -- the best ones come up from the Mississippi Delta in old beat-up trucks to be sold by the side of the road.

We had this, or something very like it, in Stranger Things...

...hey look!  It's green...

 

And of course this thread wouldn't be complete without

http://storage.googleapis.com/nmb-kstore2/nm00011783.pdf

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, August 02, 2019 12:58 AM

You lucky dog, about the watermelon I mean. Haven't tasted or seen  one of those in many many years. 

Now about the green stranger thing.. what in blazes is it? 

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, August 02, 2019 9:18 AM

Miningman
Now about the green stranger thing.. what in blazes is it?

Not the exact thing that was pictured (the end of the E-956 ALFA-X that has the 22-meter nose*) but a direct ancestor: JR East E5

I think the nose on the other end of the E956 test train, a mere 16m, is similar to the E5's with presumably some enhancement for the higher test speed range. It will be highly interesting to see what the comparative aerodynamic results at different angles, and (most significantly for them) in relatively tight tunnels, turn out to be.

Let's avoid the whole subject of what might go faster than this with a watermelon.

*The question of capitalization comes up.  The 'ALFA' is an acronym (of the tormented-language-to-fit variety) that stands for 'Advanced Labs [sic., not 'Laboratories'] for Frontline Activity' (the X is for eXperimentation) but the JR East page calls it 'Alfa-X', and I have no Web site for any 'labs' so-called.  Make of this what you can.

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Posted by BaltACD on Friday, August 02, 2019 10:14 AM

Overmod
 
Miningman
Now about the green stranger thing.. what in blazes is it? 

Not the exact thing that was pictured (the end of the E-956 ALFA-X that has the 22-meter nose*) but a direct ancestor: JR East E5

I think the nose on the other end of the E956 test train, a mere 16m, is similar to the E5's with presumably some enhancement for the higher test speed range. It will be highly interesting to see what the comparative aerodynamic results at different angles, and (most significantly for them) in relatively tight tunnels, turn out to be.

Let's avoid the whole subject of what might go faster than this with a watermelon.

*The question of capitalization comes up.  The 'ALFA' is an acronym (of the tormented-language-to-fit variety) that stands for 'Advanced Labs [sic., not 'Laboratories'] for Frontline Activity' (the X is for eXperimentation) but the JR East page calls it 'Alfa-X', and I have no Web site for any 'labs' so-called.  Make of this what you can.

I believe those 'nose treatments' are designed to minimize the 'piston effect' when the trains enter tunnels - Japan has many tunnels on their high speed routes.

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, August 02, 2019 10:42 AM

Um, I'm almost ashamed to admit it, but I can take or leave watermelon, have to be in the mood for it.

But can someone who's half-Irish sneak a potato in?

By the way, Lady Firestorm would love  to get her hands on one of these!

https://streamlinermemories.info/?p=3700  

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Posted by SSW9389 on Friday, August 02, 2019 11:09 AM

Our local Kentucky Kroger has a 2 for $5 sale on watermelons right now. 

On the historical side watermelon shipment in stock cars was common from the Missouri Bootheel in the early 1900s on both the Cotton Belt and Missouri Pacific. Joe Webb writing in Two Streaks of Rust notes the watermelon traffic for his Cotton Belt home town of East Prairie, Missouri. In the 1920s and 1930s the two popular local brands grown in the East Prairie fields as the "Irish Grey" and "Tom Watson". A typical car of the time could hold 800 to 1,000 melons. Buyers would be working 25 to 30 cars at a time on the side track at East Prairie. A melon farmer could grow about a car load of melons per acre, and a acre of melons would realize the farmer $500. Prime harvest season was in August and September. In a good year upwards of 1,000 cars of watermelon would be shipped on the Cotton Belt out of East Prairie. 

Ed in Kentucky 

 

COTTON BELT: Runs like a Blue Streak!
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Posted by Miningman on Friday, August 02, 2019 11:13 AM

Overmod-- When you stated "we" I thought you meant the green train had appeared in Memphis. Duh, it was late. Still quite a funky looking thing coming or going. 

Firelock--We have 2 giant watermelons and now a giant potato as our train. Next thing you know Penny will send a photo of this on her model railroad. 

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, August 02, 2019 12:47 PM

Miningman

Overmod-- When you stated "we" I thought you meant the green train had appeared in Memphis. Duh, it was late. Still quite a funky looking thing coming or going. 

Firelock--We have 2 giant watermelons and now a giant potato as our train. Next thing you know Penny will send a photo of this on her model railroad. 

 

Don't be surprised if she's workin' on it as we speak, Vince.  I think Mr. Potato-head is a perfect fit on an O gauge flatcar!

Wayne

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, August 02, 2019 2:11 PM

Overmod-- Well that answers the age old question ' Can you pull the emergency cord for a watermelon?'  Answer.. yes, but only if the train is just getting underway. Sounds reasonable to me..

SSW9389-- 2 for $5 in Kentucky .. at least 10 bucks here for one in Northern Saskatchewan. Such is life. Maybe down to 6.99 in September for a while. 1,000 car loads of watermelons, wow. I assume none is handled by rail these days. 

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Posted by Deggesty on Friday, August 02, 2019 2:58 PM

Well, let's go back to South Carolina in the forties--canteloupe, 10 cents each or 3 for a quarter, small watermelons 25 cents each, and large watermelons 50 cents each--and they were fully ripe when the man drove his wagon up by your house (I don't remember if he had a horse or a mule; I paid more attention to what he had in the wagon bed). 

Johnny

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Posted by Penny Trains on Friday, August 02, 2019 6:52 PM

Flintlock76
Um, I'm almost ashamed to admit it, but I can take or leave watermelon, have to be in the mood for it.

Don't be.  I can most definitely LEAVE them.  Along with strawberries, lobsters, walnuts and everything else I'm allergic to and will nbever get to taste.  Sad

I recall an early issue of CTT where a modeler had made a stack of watermelons on a G scale flatcar by painting pecans!  Big Smile  And my aunt from Atlanta says it's "puh-cons".  A pee-can is something you relieve yourself in!  Laugh

Big Smile  I'm Cuckoo For Choo Choo Stuffs!  Big Smile

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, August 03, 2019 11:26 AM

Vince, if you have access to a greenhouse, and some of the relevant 'soil supplements', there is nothing for very large and thoroughly seeded quite like these.

Yes, I revel in the implied LV connection...

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Posted by Miningman on Saturday, August 03, 2019 12:01 PM

2 Staff at the school I work with have greenhouses and really into growing their veggies so just maybe. 

Sent you an email. Thanks 

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