Railroad tracks.
The U.S. Standard railroad gauge
(distance between rails)

is 4 feet, 8.5 inches. That’s an exceedingly odd number.

Why was that gauge used? Because that’s the
way they built them in England ,
and English expatriates designed the
U.S. Railroads.

Why did the English build them like that?
Because the first
rail lines were built by the same people who built
the pre-railroad
tramways, and that’s the gauge they used.
Why did ‘they’ use that gauge then? Because the people who
built the tramways used the same jigs and tools
that they had used for
building wagons, which used that wheel spacing.

Why did the wagons have that particular Odd wheel spacing?

Well, if they tried to use any other spacing, the wagon wheels would break on some of the old, long distance roads in England , because that’s the spacing of the wheel ruts ..

So, who built those old rutted roads?

Imperial Rome built the first long distance roads in Europe (including England ) for their legions. Those roads have been used ever since.

And the ruts in the roads? Roman war chariots formed the initial ruts, which everyone else had to match for fear of destroying their wagon wheels.

Since the chariots were made for Imperial Rome ,
they were all alike in the matter of wheel spacing. Therefore, the
United States standard railroad gauge of 4 feet, 8.5 inches is derived
from the original specifications for an Imperial Roman war chariot. In
other words, bureaucracies live forever.

So the next time you are handed a specification, procedure,
or process, and wonder, ‘What horse’s ass came up with this?’, you
may be exactly right.

Imperial Roman army chariots were made just wide enough to
accommodate the rear ends of two war horses …
Now, the twist to the story:

When you see a Space Shuttle sitting on its launch pad, you will notice
that there are two big booster rockets attached to the sides of the
main fuel tank. These are solid rocket boosters, or SRBs. The SRBs are
made by Thiokol at their factory in Utah.

The engineers who designed the SRBs would have preferred to
make them a bit larger, but the SRBs had to be shipped by train from
the factory to the launch site. The railroad line from the factory
happens to run through a tunnel in the mountains, and the SRBs had to
fit through that tunnel. The tunnel is slightly wider than the
railroad track, and the railroad track, as you now know, is about as
wide as two horses’ behinds.

So, a major Space Shuttle design feature

Of what is arguably the world’s most advanced transportation system was determined over two thousand years ago by the width of a horse’s ass.
And you thought being a horse’s ass wasn’t important!

Now you know, Horses’ Asses control almost everything…
Explains a whole lot of stuff, doesn’t it?

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