RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition who publishes zines & physical books & electronic books & music & photography & digital art & just generally whatever feels necessary to survive this deluded earth thru Rojonekku Word Fighting Arts survival systems (Version 69, establish 14 Feb 1973). Comments encouraged.

Friday, March 18

MNZ: The Railroad Press Issue #88


I will be honest here - I am a dude who buys magazines that are nothing but pictures of railroads. I love that shit, for multiple reasons. First off, a lot of times it's the only new magazine pictures you get of random things like industrial Chicago in 1978. If there were a magazine that was just regular pictures of thirty years ago, I'd be all over that. Retro mags. But I also enjoy trains on that weird level that a lot of people seem to. I prefer to indulge this joy by walking railroad tracks though. It's a slippery fascination though, because there's a creepy and weird sub-culture of train aficionados out there, who actually videotape trains going past. In fact, in The Railroad Press, there's full-page ads of nothing but DVDs of trains, simply driving past the camera. That's kinda weird to me, but I've talked to guys who are probably like that. I actually bought a full collection of some train zine from a guy in a sub-division in Ruckersville off of Craigslist for $10, and he was way into it, asking me, "So you're into trains, too, hunh? I've got some more stuff you might be interested in," and he takes me to a closet (no pun intended) where he has stacks and stacks of Amtrak timetables. I briefly thought about buying the whole lot off the dude for $10 and selling them on Ebay, but I wasn't sure if there was an Ebay market for that, and plus I hate the concept of people selling shit at a ridiculous profit on Ebay, as it undermines the underclass economy.
Nonetheless, it is warm today, I am feeling good, getting healed by doing some crazy energy work on myself, deciding that western medicine is ultimately a failure and you just have to heal yourself in this modern world. I would like to go walk the railroad tracks all day long, watch the freight trains roll past, snap some danky pictures of shitty graffiti and whatever detritus is along the tracks, and soak up some goddamn springtime soul power. But I can't drive yet. So I'll probably hang out in the camper trailer all day long, write some lyrics, some gibberish, and get my mind shooting at the universe again like it's supposed to.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

My great grandpa worked his way up to be the president of the boston streetcar association- I think it was called that but ti wasn't streetcars he was pres of the boston railroad so I'm kinda confused about that - in the early 20s. I have various train stuff and their pocket watches were train oriented time wise and stuff. I've got 200 or so postcards all trains. Old ones, or oldish maybe late 18s through 50s. But they're in maine still. Anyway trains cool as shit. The transportation museum in roanoke has few big engines but you just kinda stare at them. I try to figure the engines and everything down to the massive framing but idk crud bout it. Id come get your ass in a heartbeat to walk tracks

Raven Mack said...

they have the O. Winston Link museum or whatever in Roanoke as well. I've always wanted to hike that stretch of double tracks from like 360 to Abilene. in fact, my goal this summer is to do a lot more track hikes, and not reclaimed bike paths former railroad tracks but still operational illegal trespass look at those weird piles of metal in the middle of nowhere railroad tracks.

rhobertson said...

My dad's house is 50 yards from a Norfolk Southern line. Nothing like a coal train giving you the vibrating hotel bed treatment every couple hours. I'm surprised the house still has a foundation, but it is one of the most comforting sounds I know.

Anonymous said...

You should do it def. I did hike the linear state park inside out backwards forwards to get the dogs excercise last year and for the most part its boring as shit. But my deal was wear the dogs out but 2 of them and like 3.5 miles an hour for 8 straight miles had the opposite effect. Like broken hips feeling. Actually out of 30 miles there's just one abandoned house and nothing else is interesting at all. I guess except the old glass caps on the old wire lines, red and green. Wanted to get some but I like my limbs