• What's a Foamer?

  • General discussion about railroad operations, related facilities, maps, and other resources.
General discussion about railroad operations, related facilities, maps, and other resources.

Moderator: Robert Paniagua

  by RussNelson
Gadfly wrote:I guess I am missing something..............It STILL looks like something where you have to BUY stuff: editing, formatting services, etc. Then it appears that AFTER you do all that, then there is STILL the problem of marketing the book which still appears to be done by the author himself!
No, you don't have to buy anything. I put the 1974 Inventory of Abandoned Railroads in NYS up on their service without paying a dime. These two: http://www.lulu.com/content/2236031 http://www.lulu.com/content/2604306 . I put them there specifically to reprint them for Michael Kudish's sake. He's definitely a print reader, not an online kinda guy.

Kudish never gets called a foamer because he's always chasing where the trains used to go, so there's nobody there to see him foaming. :-) Same goes for me.
  by Gadfly
What's worse than the trackside foamers is the ones that manage to get hired! :( Now, not ALL of them are like that, but some of the militant fans DID manage to get on. Problem was, they came with all these pre-conceived notions of how the job was to be done, and neither the line employees nor the managers could tell 'em anything. They read in one of the fan magazines, that was the way it was, and that was final.......................until the boss told them to "hit the road and don't let the door hit you in you-know-where"! :P We had one that hired on as a clerk (I told you about him earlier) and just wouldn't listen to ANYBODY. His main trouble was, he could not sit still and DO his own job!!
The moment a train showed up, he had to be trackside. He'd disappear at times to be found standing out in the yard all ga-ga-eyed at a train when he was supposed be racking waybills and building outbounds! And WOE be unto the RR if a steam excursion arrived or one if the engines (4501, 611, 1218) was parked at the roundhouse; he'd find SOME excuse to get out there. Finally, after several warnings and written reprimands in his file (he couldn't even get his probation done without playing "Casey Jones!"), he was offered the choice of resigning of his own accord (to permit him to find other work; at least, they were being somewhat gracious about it), OR being FIRED.

These were the fans that made railroad managers swear that they would NEVER knowingly hire a rail buff and made it hard for those who were even the least bit enthused over trains despite the fact that there is a fine line between enthusiasm and fanaticism. If a hopeful applicant even mentioned that he "loves trains", it was OVER! :-D Railroad managers have long memories, and once an impression is made, it is rarely erased!

  by BlackDog
GOLDEN-ARM wrote:I heard a funny acronym once, for "FOAMER", OR "FOAMITE", but I'm drawing a blank, as to what it was. Anyone remember that one? An old head from Hinkle related it to me, one night on the train heading to Pasco.
FOMITE: Far Out Mentally Incompetent Train Enthusiest
  by 3rdrail
We should have an organization to counsel foamers, Foamers Anonymous. I could stand up at the podium, addressing my fellow foamers and proudly say, "Hello. My name is Paul and I am a foamer." During the entertainment part of the evening, we could watch bus movies and talk about the latest in aero-space technology. :-D
  by BR&P
They're also sometimes known as a "GERF" - Glassy Eyed Rail Fan.
  by 3rdrail
Foamers Anonymous Re-Training - "FART" for short.
  by pierrerabbit
Want an example of a foamer? Go to NJT Rail, read the NJT Photo Incident Follow up thread.
Sounds like one of them, Black Dog, now anyone got the other?!?!?!:P
  by NaugMOW
Anyone want to take a stab at 'FLM'?
  by BlackDog
Focus On Man In The Engine

Far Out, Mom Is The Engineer
  by Plate F
I heard the "GERF" term used by a long-time engineer the other day. I LOL'd.
  by Tadman
Worth noting that foamers generally have no knowledge of the following two important concepts:
1. Business and profitability: Railroads are here to make money. Trains travel at a particular speed on a certain route using correct equipment because it's the most profitable. The railroad doesn't care if the railfans like how it looks/sounds/goes.
2. Real World vs. Theory: there are a million 'on the job' learning points that aren't taught in books or magazines. When problems arise, they cannot necessarily be dealt with by a person not skilled in the art of operating or managing a railroad.

If you find yourself a foamer, stop. It really ruins the hobby for the rest of us. Get a girlfriend, it helps... If you are married, ask your wife how her day was - she will be amazed you still care.
  by David Benton
talking to the wife is asking a bit much imho .
  by GSC
FLM = Fan Lives With Mother, also Foamer Lives With Mother
  by 3rdrail
David Benton wrote:talking to the wife is asking a bit much imho .
Cutting off your nose to spite your face. hahaha!!!