Particularly the Berlin Wall. I didn’t know about this, ah, unique story of voting with one’s feet. For a given value of ‘feet.’
In December 1961, a 27-year-old train engine driver named Harry Deterling piloted what he dubbed “the last train to freedom” across the border. Instead of slowing down his passenger train as it approached the fortifications, Deterling throttled it up to full speed and ripped through the wall.
The train skidded to a stop in West Berlin’s Spandau borough, allowing Deterling, seven members of his family, and 16 other people aboard the train to remain in the West. The train’s engineer and six other passengers chose to return to East Germany.
You have to wonder whether any of those people were thinking at the time, Mein Gott, if only the driver would just ram through the verdammt thing we could be free… hold on, we’re not slowing down. I have no way of knowing; but I figure that if I was stuck in a dirty Commie hellhole (yeah, redundant, I know) I’d be looking for escape routes all the time myself, if only to keep from going insane from the existential despair of being stuck in a dirty Commie hellhole. Sort of like always having a zombie plan, only for real.
That’s it. I just wanted to get one last shot of Commie-bashing in before I go under the knife tomorrow. Not that I expect any complications, but you never know with general anesthesia.