December 01, 2004

Trains in Virginia

The Country Pundit provides an interesting history of the Virginian Railway.

I only have so much time to become consumed with a hobby, and SF, music, gaming, writing, and the Internet already completely consume my non-committed free time. But if I could score some Provigil and take on an extra hobby, it would be trains.

Posted by JohnL at December 1, 2004 09:26 PM

Sorry, Provigil's probably not enough. What you really need is a time machine.

Trains as in the life size guys or model trains? Or both?

Posted by: owlish at December 2, 2004 08:46 AM

Model trains. My dad and I were about halfway through a pretty big train table, HO gauge, before I "outgrew" it. I don't know whether any of the trains or tracks have survived life in their Texas garage, but someday I could be seriously tempted to get back into it. Our current house is too small, but we may move to a larger one in a couple of years.

Now about that Provigil... with your training, what do you think about it? It seems like a miracle drug for limited uses. I would love to have an extra day a week (or even just per month). Stay up for 36 hours straight or so, one to four times a month, and then get a good solid 8 or 9 hours' sleep to recover? Seems better than my endless 18-hour days with 6 hours' sleep.

Posted by: JohnL at December 2, 2004 09:16 AM

Thanks for the great link! And I especially like the link because it tell part of the tale of my favourite RR the Norfolk & Western. I'd love to get myself a big table and make up my own N&W set.

Posted by: The Maximum Leader at December 2, 2004 12:52 PM

Sorry, I missed your Provigil comments earlier.

I haven't actually ever prescribed it, so I don't have a huge first hand knowledge of the drug itself. I do have various thoughts, though.

1) 36 hours on, a good solid 8-9 hours sleep sounds like being on call. My first year of residency during psychiatry we did that 5 days every 28 [more or less, on average you might get 2 hours sleep at night]. Being on call sucks. Horribly. Part of what made it suck was what was happening, but a significant portion is the hours.
2) 8-9 hours was never enough after call. The day after the day you were on call was almost worse than the day after call - after call you were on your 3rd or 4th wind, you probably had lots of caffeine flowing through your system, and everyone knew you were postcall, so you were treated differently.
3) We had a resident who had an hourlong commute, and had a wreck postcall. She started taking Provigil, and didn't have any more wrecks.
4) Abuse potential exists. How large a potential I don't know, and suspect no one really knows. I would never prescribe it to someone who just wanted to make more time [and I suspect it does pretty poorly at that; I wonder what truckers are taking these days?]

Posted by: owlish at December 8, 2004 10:27 PM

Regarding point number 4, I got my impression of Provigil being a good "day stretcher" from this article and from a similar article in Readers Digest.

Posted by: JohnL at December 9, 2004 08:17 AM

More thoughts here:

Posted by: owlish at December 9, 2004 11:26 AM
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