As he is laid to rest this week, read this in his memory. It’s hard to think his murderer might not have been swayed by this story.


In four minutes, here.


Only without the live cast and even more seriously irreverent, so view at your own spiritual peril.


Nils, from from Hamburg: “Love your sarcasm! Will we ever ride on an airplane that uses WheelTug?”

☞ Maybe, maybe not. But if we ever do, it will be in First Class.


Sarah Johnson: “As regards Gary Diehl’s comment about needing to modify the engine: Nope. You don’t have to modify the engine, just the fuel delivery system. I used to have a Mercedes 300SD that ran like a charm on pure veggie. Dual tank system. One tank (main) full of veggie (pre-filtered if used, not pre-filtered if new), one tank (small auxiliary) with dino-diesel or biodiesel when I could get it. Then, a heated fuel line from the main tank, a heated auxiliary fuel filter (lots of filters in that car) and a switch on the dash where I could switch between the two when the engine got up to running temp. The auxiliary was for start-up and purging the lines most of the year before turning off so I didn’t have higher viscosity fuel in the lines to gel while the engine was cold. All the problems that happened with that car were due to it being a 1984 car and that it was owned by someone who had, unfortunately, neglected the maintenance – not the fact it was being run on veggie. It is a tribute to Mercedes’ engineering of the period that it had lasted and lasted pretty well despite the previous neglect. It is still on the road with a different owner (165,000+ miles).

“But wouldn’t it be great if we had a completely overhauled transportation system? For example, I live in NYC. I don’t need a car here. Sometimes it would be nice, but I can usually call my favorite ‘Man With Van’ or a car service for those times when I really can’t do something with public transport. The main thing I use the internal combustion engine for is driving to VT to visit friends. I do this on a regular basis. About a mile as the crow flies from the house I stay in is a former train station. There is still track and occasionally a train runs on it, mostly freight. Passenger service was eliminated in 1959, I believe, or thereabouts…right about the time that the Red Car was done away with in LA and passenger service everywhere in the US was severely cut down. (Yeah, yeah, profitability was cited. Well, passengers have never been as profitable as freight. If I recall correctly, the federal gov’t got involved with the rail barons in the 1800’s to force them to carry passengers. Obviously, selling each and every person their own personal ‘train’ – the automobile – is MUCH more profitable.) My is that if that line were still running and on some sort of decent schedule that didn’t require my missing 2/3rds a day of work just to get from NYC to White River Junction, let alone up to that former station to the north, without a doubt I wouldn’t bother driving from NYC. I’d happily take the train and use the 1969 Ford pickup I keep in a barn up there. Although its fuel mileage is terrible, once I’m there I rarely drive more than 10 miles in any direction. I spend my time in the forest. And that vehicle is already built, the whole life cycle of it is very extended and we haven’t had to deal with all the pollution generated from the extraction, refining and manufacturing of lots of new vehicles to supposedly ‘improve’ our transportation.”


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