So the Flying and Sailing and Rolling is Over - What Now? - Should Trains and Planes and Ships be converted into restuarants and Night Clubs?Title - Athenaeum Library of Philosophy
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So the Flying and Sailing and Rolling is Over
                           What Now?
Should Trains and Planes and Ships
 be converted into Restaurants and Night Clubs
when their Design-Role is Over?

The conversion and employment of trains, ships and aeroplanes as restaurants, clubs and convention centres raises profound emotional, practical, aesthetic and philosophical questions regarding the way that inanimate and insensate objects are viewed by different people with contrasting agendas. The underlying suggestion is that perhaps the unaccustomed use of a ship, aircraft or a train (and no doubt one day a spaceship] for some purpose other than for that for which it was originally designed and intended, is in some way offensive or demeaning to the object? The objects cannot feel insult or humiliation of course, the entities which suffer pangs of angst are those human beings who, perhaps because they have been closely associated with the objects or similar objects, feel a personal affront. If the British flag is insulted, it is me that feels affronted - not the flag itself. So first as I understand it we are addressing human feelings, rather than some anthropocentrically conceived insult to the object itself? Having said all that, please do not get the impression that I am at variance with those quite understandable feelings.

Wedding Day on The Pullman

Built in 1927 and now converted into a wonderful Restaurant Car without losing any of its original character, this historic Pullman train carriage had been residing at Elsenham Station in Hertfordshire, England. The Pullman has experienced a very varied life., its routes included the Monaco/Istanbul/St. Petersburg runs, and also the Brighton run.

Crazie Mae's. A converted train car with flashy colors on the outside and bright, cheerful tables on the inside, Crazie Mae's is the type of restaurant that adds a flash of fun to an ordinary afternoon. Busy downtown shoppers can stop by the walk-up window and order a treat to take with them. 201 E Main St, Carrboro, NC 27510-2393 Phone: (919) 933-0623


Are the dismembered carcasses of the once beautiful aeroplanes which litter our airfield perimeters less offensive to our sensibilities than the odd disco or restaurant conversion? It could be argued that the abstraction of deliberate or unconscious "disrespect" done to once beautiful original things, such as using them as fire-practice shells, or target-practice is just as offensive as allowing  them to be modified for social and commercial purposes in order to provide enjoyment, or generate capital, or as a venue for the gastronomic enjoyment or diners, or as atmospheric locales for the escapist fantasies of partygoers and disco-queens. Should the likeness of the Mona Lisa be allowed to be reproduced on a can of beans? There well may be instances of abandoned aeroplane-discotheque/restaurant conversions lying about the place, though there are none in the UP as far as I am aware?

Just off the GA ramp at Colorado Springs Airport, Solo's Restaurant is hard to miss. A KC-9 is mated with the restaurant, one wing actually piercing the building. For details see: hip://wow..comb/search104.hamAmazingly enough the wing protrudes the wall and continues well into the restaurant ! Both the wing and two engines of the C-97 are inside and one of the tables near a window looks out on the landing gear!

In the case of LET 7074 [Landfall] which I bought in the early seventies, there was complete ignorance as to its former wartime role as a Tank Landing Craft which took part in the D-Day Landings in Normandy in 1944. It was only due to me as the researcher of its history, and the publication of the subsequent book that I wrote, and my early approaches to the maritime and military establishment and newspapers and TV, that attention was drawn to the historical importance of the vessel, which resulted in her eventual purchase by the Warship Preservation Society and her present custody for posterity. I am very proud of my involvement in this case for at one time the craft was actually due to be dismantled at the breakers-yard.

Ship-Shaped
The Sailing Ship Restaurant located at South Beach Harbor in San Francisco.The after end of the Sailing Ship Restaurant at South Beach Harbor in San Francisco.


As I say above philosophically the actual aeroplane does not suffer [and is incapable of experiencing ] any hideous embarrassment, it is those people who feel a love or emotional or intellectual attachment to these artefacts which feel the pain of hideous embarrassment, a condition towards which I have a lot of empathy, sympathy and understanding. Speaking personally I have the same feelings, although I must confess that my own emotional attachment and affection is more orientated towards the ship or boat as an object of emotional engagement - rather than the later technology represented by the aircraft. This I think is because I am a child of the maritime heritage of my home city - Liverpool, where in my youth practically every family had a seaman amongst its number. It is said that this attachment to inanimate objects is more of a male thing? What do you think about that? What do you say in this connection Mary?


I will end by saying that there is a difference perhaps between the emotional need to protect objects of beauty and technological importance from a humiliating end, and the desire to see to it that examples of this particular technology are preserved for the education and edification of future generations. As to whether the autumn years of a once beautiful aircraft that once flew effortlessly through the skies like some great white bird, encircling the globe as a resplendent example of human achievement should be spent as a earth-bound shell, within which people should be allowed to enjoy themselves, and at the same time providing jobs for the staff thereof or whether the craft should be 'put to death' cleanly, [and preferably privately] and out of sight, like some faithful old dog - I leave that for you to decide.


My point is that: "it ain't as simple as it first appears."

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