This week marks the 162nd anniversary of the first transcontinental mail service between St Louis and San Francisco in 1858. It was a stagecoach service, and who wouldn’t want to get on and take a ride. You all know the rules. You need to take the list so that the time continuum will remain intact. I would take your own water too. Life on the road will not be easy.
Top Ten Things Not to Do on the First Transcontinental Mail Route in 1858.
10 If you go, do not ask for a first-class ticket. If you do, at best, the driver will not understand you. At worst, instead of an inside seat, you’ll get to ride up on top. (You can’t blame the driver, Manvel. He thought the best spot on the coach was next to him. I hope you can handle that musket. It has a real kick. Yeah, the grin on the driver gives me the creeps too.)
9 If you go, do not complain to Tiny, the WWF champ, about the food along the way. If you do, at best, Tiny will be too busy to hear you. At worst, Tiny, who thinks the food is great, will take yours. (Well done, Manville. Now Tiny, who has questionable taste, thinks you are going to give him your food for the whole three weeks of the trip. Maybe you can trade a rattlesnake for your old food portion. Watch out when you grab that snake though.)
8 If you go, do not ask if you are there yet. If you do, everyone will think you are joking. At worst, the driver is not pleased and has stopped the coach. (Since you opened your mouth at mile 50, Maolmin, the driver is contemplating leaving you at the side of the road. After all, there are 2750 more miles to go, and he doesn’t want to hear the question 55 more times. Oh-oh, here he comes.)
7 If you go, do not complain about the restroom facilities. If you do, at best, everyone will ignore you. At worst, you’ll be sitting next to William Fargo a director of the Overland Mail Company. ( Not a good person to hear your complaint. You see, Maralyn, his company just invested one million dollars in coach stops every 10 to 15 miles, and the fact that you don’t like them is not sitting well. I think he just told you to use a bush if you are dissatisfied. That puts a different spin on it.)
6 If you go, do not forget your winter clothes. If you do, at best the weather will remain warm. At worst, you’ll be subjected to exteme temperatures. ( The coach has no heat or window glass, Marcell. Maybe you can ask the person next to you if they have an extra coat. No, you can not ask if you can share their coat. That might be an easy way to be put off in the snow.)
5 If you go, do not think you can take all the room you want. If you do, at best, the coach will be empty. At worst, all nine seets will be filled.(The coach is narrow and cramped, Marcellus. You can only have the space by your seat. I think you better stop inadvertently kicking that guy with the .44 revolver on his hip. Say didn’t Wyatt Earp carry a .44?)
4 If you go, do not think you can stay overnight in one of the way stations. If you do, at best they will have room. At worst, you’ll stay overnight and be stuck there. (Because the coaches run 24/7, Marcian, it could be several days until one comes through with an open seat. Because of this, most passengers try to sleep on the coach which is almost impossible. Try going without sleep for three weeks.)
3 If you go, do not tell the masked man with the gun that you are not going to give him your valuables. If you do, at best, he will laugh at your attempt at humor. At worst, he will invite you to do a dance. (There highwaymen do not fool around, Marden. Just give him the money. You do not want to dance to the tune of a pistol.)
2 If you go, do not forget your bandanna. If you do, at best you can buy one in the way station. At worst, you will be confronted with continual clouds of dust. (Remember, Marek, there are no windows on the coach. The dust is a constant companion, and if you are lucky, you won’t come down with consumption as a result of the trip. What is consumption? Don’t ask.)
1 If you go, do not discuss the coming transcontinental railroad with Mr. Fargo. If you do, at best, he’ll laugh. At worst, he’ll be tired of the conversation and ask the guy with the Springfield musket to put you off the coach. (Fargo is worried about the railroad, Maribelle. Of course, his business is safe until 1869 when the government turned its mail service over to the now completed transcontinental route.)