Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

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ccvstmr
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by ccvstmr » Wed Nov 18, 2020 6:20 pm

Don't think I mentioned it much or was teased during my younger years. Even though some knew I was a table top model railroader. While working for a living, yeah, there were some strange looks and questions along the way. To the non-indoctrinated...they won't "get it" until they "see it". Then, the flood gates open with all kinds of questions. And yes, there were still comments about "how fast do they go"? Response...fast enough!

While in the Environmental, Health and Safety department at work, organized a department picnic (with other staff members) at the train club. Put on a small photo show during a department meeting ahead of time so they would know what to expect. Made sure they all understood that while ours is a fun hobby, safety is paramount on so many levels. Better be when we worked in a SAFETY department.

All department members had to sign club waivers and do whatever any other visitors to the club property was expected to do. Had super weather that day. Most everybody pitched in to help and enjoy the event. Had a great time. Even showed some of the younger women how to operate a steam loco (excuse me while I reach between your legs to adjust the burners). Gave them all a new respect for our hobby from the technical/ mechanical perspective. They realized fast...these were not toys. After that, continued to get technical questions indicating an interest in the mechanics of track, trains and other hobby related facets.

I'd do another event like that again, but I'm retired. Only have to entertain myself and other persons equally interested in building and operating steam stuff and other railroad related models. After some 33 years in the hobby, never regretted telling people I was a live steamer! Carl B.
Life is like a sewer...what you get out of it depends on what you put into it!
I don't walk on water...I just learned where some of the stepping stones are!
I love mankind...it's some of the people I can't stand!

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Greg_Lewis
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by Greg_Lewis » Thu Nov 19, 2020 12:12 pm

Most folks I've encountered are impressed when they see the equipment, particularly when they are told that it's not from kits but all built from scratch. I tell them that while some folks go to Home Depot and buy wood to make stuff, I go to the metal yard and buy metal. And if we're in my shop, I pull a piece of bar stock from the rack to show them just what I mean.
Greg Lewis, Prop.
Eyeball Engineering — Home of the dull toolbit.
Our motto: "That looks about right."
Celebrating 30 years of turning perfectly good metal into bits of useless scrap.

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PeterCraymer
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by PeterCraymer » Thu Nov 19, 2020 1:06 pm

As I have gotten older, it has become less. I learned as a kid to do what I like and if other people don't like it that it was their loss and not mine. No need for me to change. I was having a good time and learning stuff! I had a guy at work that was always busting my chops about me playing with trains and stuff. However as time went on and I would be working on something after hours, he ended up being the one who was always seeing what I was working on and what my next project was. Just be true to you and don't worry about other folks who don't understand. They probably struggle to diagnose and change a light bulb on their own or else are just plain mean and their opinion doesn't matter to you anyway. Or at least it shouldn't!

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gwrdriver
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by gwrdriver » Thu Nov 19, 2020 4:55 pm

Never teased, . . but I have invited a few guys, who claim to be experts in anything mechanical and technical (my former dentist was the worst offender), who asked to drop by to see "this workshop and toy trains." One step inside the door and the stunned look on their faces defined "Deer in the headlights." They back out and never brag about such an expertise again, at least in front of me.

I took no joy in those particular experiences. I was more than willing to explain anything and everything, but without saying a word I had just re-defined the term mechanical "expert" for them and they were incapable of admitting they weren't as much of an expert as they claimed to be.
GWRdriver
Nashville TN

jscarmozza
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by jscarmozza » Thu Nov 19, 2020 8:00 pm

I had a similar experience as Keith, I was wearing my NJLS hat and was asked if I sold clams, another time I answered the clubhouse phone and a lady wanted to know if I could clean her carpets; but that's because most people don't have any concept of what the hobby is or involves. Whenever I show anyone my engines, or even talk about the hobby, the reaction has always been positive and that's great, but if I encounter someone who doesn't feel that way it's ok too. This is how I pass my time, and I enjoy the whole thing, from building to running and belonging to a club with the friendship of likeminded people.

Pontiacguy1
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by Pontiacguy1 » Fri Nov 20, 2020 7:32 am

I hear ya GWRDriver! There are a lot of people that believe that because they are experts in one area, they are experts in all areas! Have met a few, and you can pretty easily detect that they don't know what they are talking about. You see it a lot in the automotive hobby too with people that claim they are super hot-rodders, fabricators, mechanics, designers, etc... The old saying is true: Most people don't know how much they don't know.

We all tend to be that way sometimes, though, and we've all had that foot-in-mouth moment at some point.

Most of the people who would make fun of this hobby really do think it's just a big glorified toy, and have no idea what it takes to build, maintain, run, transport, and store something like this.

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PRR5406
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by PRR5406 » Fri Nov 20, 2020 9:55 am

The irony is, once they drive a train, whether is is steam powered or other, they're hooked like trout hitting a fly. Notice that?
"Always stopping my train, and risking my ankles, with American made, New Balance sneakers."

hoppercar
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by hoppercar » Fri Nov 20, 2020 1:23 pm

I had the same experience, in early years of live steam, as a lot of people here have explained....but in.the end it turned out to benefit me.....the "OLD MAN" that owned the machine shop where I worked, in his earlier years was a patternmaker.....when he learned of the hobby I was in, he helped me a lot in making patterns for castings......

atunguyd
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by atunguyd » Sat Nov 21, 2020 1:16 am

I must admit that I don't really see the appeal in the live steam trains, however I totally get the building part (otherwise I guess that I wouldn't be on this forum).
That said I do often want to go down to our local live stream club just to see what the guys are making and to talk to people who know what a "live centre" is (the other group I hang out with are kite surfers who think it is amazing that I can drill and tap a hole in aluminium).

I come from a family that teases, we do that to everyone, and the more we like you the more we tease.
What I have learnt growing up in the family and generally dealing with teasers, is that if you join in in teasing yourself they generally don't know how to deal with it and in most cases it ends up in everyone getting along.

If I were to the person mentioned above I would have told the person sitting on the tea tray "you're doing it all wrong, you didn't even check if your passengers had their safety belts on first! What if some poor mother fell back with her skirt over her head? The heart attacks alone would wipe out half of our membership!

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Steamer Al
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by Steamer Al » Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:10 am

Can't say I have ever been teased, although I dont think people (wife included) "understand" the hobby. Although I don't really advertise or brag about what I do, if people see me reading a live steam and ask about it Im happy to talk. Fact of the matter is the people doing the teasing are probably the ones glued to the TV at night. Each to their own, I do not look down upon other peoples hobbies, regardless of what it is, and I expect the same of mine.

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diddler
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by diddler » Sat Nov 21, 2020 7:33 am

When I started building my locomotive, my Girlfriend said to me " Why do you want to do that, and what are you going to do with it" As the build progressed she started to ask questions, and bragging to her coworkers as to me building it from scratch. My neighbors thought I was nuts, now the ask "how is it coming, can we see it" All is good , I don't tease very well lol

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Greg_Lewis
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Re: Ever get teased for being a live steamer?

Post by Greg_Lewis » Sat Nov 21, 2020 9:40 am

Well, there is kind teasing and there is mean teasing. I tease my grandkids and they know I love them and they catch the tease and toss it back. Big difference between that and someone you don't know well who is mocking or just being mean.
Greg Lewis, Prop.
Eyeball Engineering — Home of the dull toolbit.
Our motto: "That looks about right."
Celebrating 30 years of turning perfectly good metal into bits of useless scrap.

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