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“So the pointless arrow does point somewhere!”
“Never heard of it.”
Amtrak is a tracking and logistical system designed by our very own technologically superior commander John McCain while holding a prestigious appointment at the Academy of Sciences and Society (A.S.S.). The name itself comes from a combination of the words "American" and "Tracking". (According to some people, Amtrak derives from the phrase "I am tracking you", referring to some discreet maneuver away from prying eyes, although this is probably an old wives' tale.) Designed to be the most sophisticated network of tracking devices, Amtrak was created to single out individuals who were not patriotic enough. Those patriotic enough will ride airplanes or drive cars instead (preferably cranked out by General Motors). Amtrak does this at an incredibly fast rate of up to 30mph (56.33 km/h on good days) while disguised as innocent locomotives. (This speed is regulated by other logistical and tracking systems, some of which are hostile to Amtrak.) Most of the time Amtrak succeeds in tracking down individuals faster than your run-in-the-mill cops (after breakfast only). According to various trusted news sources such as The Inquirer, Amtrak was slightly behind the times but was using health-care reform money to fund its improvement. It has been suggested that Usain Bolt has been offered a contract by Amtrak to pull Amtrak cars so that they could reach their destinations faster. This method has already been proven to work in China.
Amtrak is known for its impeccable service--it has only been surpassed by the services of a few countries such as Britain, France, Germany (Nazi, Commie, AND Capitalist), Spain, Japan, China, India, Mexico, Australia, South Africa, and increasingly parts of Antarctica as well. The modernity of Amtrak cars means that there are many amenities offered including walls, seats, floors, wheels, and great stationary views of the middle of nowhere. Trains run hourly (more or less; there is rumored to be lines where trains run once a year), although their numbers are often mixed up; i.e.: train 1337 will arrive at 10am while that darn announcement board says 5am. This is NOT due to the advanced propulsion of the train, more likely it is due to Station Managers huffing diesel fumes and/or puppies (kittens are sooo last year). Some smaller corporations compete with Amtrak for passenger traffic; the Doobie Brothers for example claimed to have a Long Train Running in the 1980s. The flip-side of their record was called "Replacement Bus Service" and lasted 18 minutes longer than the A-side when played at 33.333333 rpm.
Amtrak has, as of 2011, succeeded at turning 40, and apparently it took that long to get one of its trains over the hill. (Un?)fortunately, during its birthday celebration, the number of candles on the cake was enough to set fire to Osama bin Laden's beard, killing him.
Once upon a time, in a galaxy long, long ago and far, far away, America teemed with passenger trains. You could not walk two feet without stumbling into a coach or dining car. Unfortunately, jet airplanes evolved and so did highways, and those two predators made quick lunch of those passenger trains. So the trains evolved. Many became freight trains. Others huddled with each other for protection, establishing symbiotic relationships. Finally, because freight railroads were joining in on the predation, the passenger railroads went crying to daddy for help, and so Daddy was obliged to do something to protect the poor offended passenger trains. Daddy put all of the passenger railroads into the same clubhouse, and so Amtrak was born.
Unfortunately, in order to put all of the passenger railroads in the same clubhouse, some trains had to be left out in the cold. Those were quickly gobbled up by carnivores. So that, my lad, is where the Chattanooga Choo-Choo went.
What happened next was the "Rainbow Train" era. Someone had the bright idea of putting cars from several different railroads together, and the upshot was that none of the cars matched each other, offending women, particularly those with fashion sense. In an attempt to correct for this, Amtrak put together new trains featuring the brilliant colors of plaid, orange, and black. When women upchucked at this wonderful aesthetic maneuver, Amtrak switched to red, white, and blue.
However, it was no longer the age of the passenger trains, and so passenger trains had to kowtow to the freight railroads in order to get through to various cities. Bullet trains had yet to evolve, and so Amtrak wound up being beaten by snails and turtles in various races from one city to another, thanks to the freight railroads.
A new creature appeared on the horizon, the Amtrak Reform Council, sponsored by head vulture Randall O' Toole and subsidiary vultures Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin, and Ronald Reagan. This creature specialized in its mating call ("Boondoggle! Boondoggle!" and trying to eat up Amtrak and pick its bones. Unfortunately for the vultures, history buffs and others were watching, and they fended off the ugly birds. And then Barack Obama came in, and Amtrak remained being its lazy self, dozing in the sun.
It is often said that you can get a whole car to yourself. That is not a lie. Amtrak insists on giving its passengers maximum satisfaction to its passengers and giving one individual the luxury of a whole car is something that did not go over their heads. This might lead to ticket prices that are just a bit higher than those of other luxury transports such as Chinatown buses, but the difference in prices should not be more than tenfold at the most. With this added price comes the renowned services noted above.