How Specs Live Forever
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 the US railroads were built by English expatriates.
Why did the English people 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 use that odd wheel spacing? Well, if they tried to use any other spacing the wagons would break on some of the old, long distance roads, because that's the spacing of the old wheel ruts.
So who built these old rutted roads? The first long distance roads in Europe were built by Imperial Rome for the benefit of their legions. The roads have been used ever since. And the ruts? The initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagons, were first made by Roman war chariots. Since the chariots were made for or by Imperial Rome they were all alike in the matter of wheel spacing. Thus, we have the answer to the original questions. The United State standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches derives from the original specification for an Imperial Roman army war chariot. Specs 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 chariots were made to be just wide enough to accommodate the back-ends of two war horses.
Italian Wedding Night Tradition
As is tradition in Italian families, Marol spends her wedding night in her family home. Her mother sleeps in the adjacent room in case Marol has any questions. Mama tells Marol, "You have any a problem, you come and see Mama." Later, Marol's husband unbuttons his shirt, and Marol jumps up, runs next door and cries, "Mama, Mama! He has hair all over his chest!" Mama reassures Marol, "Men have hair on the chest. This is sign of a good man. Go now and make him happy." But when Marol's husband takes off his belt, she goes jumps up again, runs next door and cries, "Mama, Mama! He has a protrusion in his pants!" Mama reassures her, "He finds you beautiful. This is sign of a good man. Go now and make him happy." Finally, Marol's husband takes off his shoes. Due to a terrible childhood accident, he only has half of his right foot. Marol jumps up and runs back to her mother's room, shouting, "Mama, Mama! He has a foot and a half!" Her mother gets up and announces, "Stand back, Marol -- this is a job for Mama!"
Q: Have you guys ever heard of the Italian chef?
A: He pasta way..... we cannoli do so much, he was here today and gone tomato.
This German guy wanted to marry this Polish lady, but Poland had a law that you have to be Polish in order to marry someone that is Polish, so, in other words, he'd have to have 50% of his brain removed. So he goes to his doctor and says, "I've just got to marry this woman, I love her so much." So the doctor says, "Well, it's risky, but okay." So into the operating room they go for the brain removal procedure. Later, when the German guy wakes up, the doctor comes in and says, "We are VERY sorry, but we accidentally removed 75% of your brain instead of 50%." The guy looks up and says, "Mama Mia!"
What Is The Difference...?
What is the difference between a English actuary and a Sicilian actuary? An English actuary can tell you how many people are going to die next year. A Sicilian actuary can give you their names.