After a quick exchange of messages with Bob, many of my questions were answered. Joining Bob 'No Trackplan' Fallowfield would be this kooky Kingstonian, locomotive engineer Jordan 'Hollywood' McCallum (below, with Bob), and the inimitable Jason 'Edmundston' Shron. I'd often thought it would be neat to participate in a roundtable with fellow VIAphiles. This would be an awesome aweportunity!
Jason with VIA 903 westbound at 1217:
- no profanity
- nothing off-colour
- no railway-bashing
- no off-topic 'mission creep'
- no talking about modelling CN
- no sharing of Bob's trackplan
OK, I made up the last two! The atmosphere was definitely professional, as was the technical production value by Barry and Christian. Barry appreciated the shadowless overcast as the pair worked the three cameras. Christian looked cold. But geniality was snowing in spades upon our merry band, and Bob did not need to ask if I was having fun. Video capture of Jason, me, Jordan and Bob:
Look out, David Frost and Barbara Walters, because Bob Fallowfield has a story-teller's wistful gleam in his eye, the Pierre Berton-like curiosity for a previously-unknown fact, and the tenacity of a sheepdog in his questioning.
VIA 917 westbound at 1446 with waving hogger (above) and CN 3107-3197 westbound at 1509:
Some fun facts from the shoot:
- Bob has been part of an operating crew on a major Canadian shortline
- Jordan was initially hired by Central Western, Canada's first shortline
- Jason favours bell-bottoms
- Barry is somewhat of a bird-watcher
- Christian drove in from Kingston earlier in the morning, so why couldn't I? (below with VIA 918 on the tail-end of a westbound. Note crusted snow - on the unit, not Christian!)
Major appreciation to Bob for inviting me to take part in the Platforum. It was great to finally meet Bob and share in the trackside version of his Fallowfield Effect. He did not bring a paper copy of his trackplan, which was a completely expected disappointment. Thanks also to Jason and Jordan, both of whom I had been fortunate to meet before for adding their unique perspectives throughout the day. Of course there were some unfilmed conversations which will never be on Youtube. These were enlightening and gave glimpses into each participant's world and allowed me to share more of mine.
And now...enjoy the Platforum 'HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS' special here.
January 4 Update: The Platforum Episode 4
Far to the west, Habib Fazil photographed and kindly shared this photo of a new test car for CN's Walker Yard locomotive shop in Edmonton. A great kitbash and a welder's delight. Not even the graffiti was rollered out:
You be the judge...is Pacman like the CP Rail multimark? This topic came up on the Platforum, and it seems lots of railfans like to refer to the latter as the former. When the multimark was created, video games were years in the future. When the going gets tough, the tough get meme-ing: