Amtrak

Is It Safe To Travel 2: COVID and Air Filtration

OPINION — ANALYSIS

by John Simpson, Editor In Chief

It’s been a month since I posed the question: “Is it safe to fly to Florida?

It was a few days later that I did the math — very rough math, mind you; I’m no statistician, and The Not Fake News is a long long ways from The New England Journal of Medicine. (On the other hand, toss dice against me at your peril. Wargamers take note.) And, in the intervening weeks, the answer has changed a bit.

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Well, At Least He’s Not Trump

President Obama had his detractors — some focusing on policy, others for far less admirable reasons — but he did have two qualities that I’m missing dearly right now: First, he was incredibly charismatic, capable of inspiring people; second, he was not merely capable of complete sentences but remarkably well-spoken.

I miss that. I miss it a lot.

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The Stolen Secretary Matter

Report, by special investigator Johnny Dollar, to the office of the Transition Administrator, Washington, D.C.
The following is an account of expenses incurred in the Stolen Secretary Matter.

It was half past one on a rainy Thanksgiving morning, and I’d been rudely awakened by an urgent telephone message. “We need your help,” they said, and when my country calls I’m there.

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Some Notes From A Siding

I’m on a rail siding just outside of Toledo, just kinda sitting here, watching an empty parking lot.

No, not just me.  There’s a whole train here, waiting for a heavy freight to get past.  But everyone else on board is asleep (not that there’s many of us) so it might as well just be me.  I just finished my book — rereading John Steakley’s “Armor”, one of the best (more…)

Fear and Loathing 2020: Escape From The Beltway

Sixty degrees and drizzly here in D.C.  The kind of weather I’m glad to escape; it’s a sad excuse for a February, far as I’m concerned. Plenty of snow where I’m going, though. Packed gloves, two scarves, and zipped the liner into my old field jacket.  Way too warm in the Uber, but I’ll need it.

The Beltway is deadly (more…)

Dateline: Harper’s Ferry

It’s a curious thing about this nation’s passenger rail network.

I mean to say, apart from that we have one in the first place.  This appears to surprise a lot of people.  “Chicago?  When do you fly out?” they ask, confident in the familiar ritualized response of airline and time and ticket class.  When I say I’m taking the Capitol Limited, they’re at a complete loss.  I must clarify:  Amtrak.  A passenger train.

Yes, Virginia, we still have passenger trains. (more…)

Dateline: Cumberland Gap

More updates from the road, as your Not Fake News action correspondent continues his travels.  For research purposes only, of course.

One of the things I love most about traveling by train is the completely different attitude by passengers.  I’ve seen fights break out over who gets which taxi, whether people have the right to lay their seats back on a plane, or who let out that legendarily nasty (more…)