Thursday, April 21, 2022

Trolley Thursday 4/21/22 - Why There Hasn't Been a Trolley Post in a While

I'm usually not one to be so open about my private life on my blog, especially this one which is a testament to my own enthusiasm and passion for streetcars, but I feel I owe my loyal readers and riders an explanation of why there hasn't been any new blogposts or content lately.

The short answer is: I am very depressed. The past two or so years of the pandemic have taken a serious toll on my mental health and it's been a challenge for my friends, family, and my therapist to help keep my head above water. It has gotten difficult over the past couple of months back, as I've began recognizing that my depression is getting worse and I am losing interest in the things that once make me passionate. My little Volkswagen, my artwork, writing, even streetcars, nothing seems to capture me anymore and if it does, it fills me more with dread and worry than any mental refuge. 

Originally, I started "Twice Weekly Trolley History" as a means to have a portfolio and to train myself for the rigorous world of freelance writing, with the goal being to keep to a consistent schedule and maintain a consistent quality all throughout my run. While there have been ups and downs, I am very proud of the progress I made since 2020 in getting my posts out and being well-informed, as well as practicing how to have better grammar. Unfortunately now, I feel completely burned out. Everytime I look at a blank Blogger page now or see what posts I've yet to complete, I just feel... unenthusiastic. Even an interesting subject like the Blackpool Boat Trams would still elicit the same ennui I feel right now struggling to write this confession. 

While people have told me to take a break in the past, I'm usually not sure that I can. I fear every week I am not producing history content for my readers, my credibility as a motorman and a historian goes down. As a creative too, there is no hell more agonizing than having so many good ideas but being unable to even get up the motivation to act on my urges. Thus, I remain stuck staring at a blank word processor and feeling horrible for every word I don't write. This, compounded with me being diagnosed with borderline personality disorder and struggling with antidepressants that make me feel worse (or nauseous like right now) just combine into me being unable to enjoy anything much right now.

I don't know when my trolley blog will return. I'm not even sure if my portfolio is through enough to demonstrate my writing skills. I just hope you all understand what I'm going through, no need to even swamp me with offers to help. I appreciate just your understanding. 


  1. Hey - don't be so hard on yourself. I'm a writer and I've put out four of five books since 2015 and I can't book five written. I'm on chapter four but nothing. Give yourself time. YOU have to be your biggest cheerleader. You're the only you you have. If you're on FA, I'm warhorse573, by the way. LOVE the VW.

  2. I'm not dead, just stymied. Email me. overheadcoachATgmailDOTcom - Tom

    1. Is this your address “mr blogger?” I just put up a long comment

  3. I just wandered into the site and discovered your wonderful work. You actually made a great start. There perhaps other blogging platforms which may be more to your liking such as Substack which a friendvogbminevusescagtervtrying nearly everything else.

    Perhaps you could cover with a wider net.

    Using Wider historical sources such as “the interurban era” and the electric interurban railway in America” plus what has happened with the rediscovery of trolley transit in the form of light rail and heritage street car lines plus museums.

    There is no “Railway Age” type website history plus what’s current for the light rail, interurban world.

    Think of this, here is an example or two.

    SEPTA has announced a proposed plan to revitalize all of its trolley lines into the 21st Century. How does that plan compare to what was in Philadelphia plus suburb trolley lines. Even a pdf book on subject.

    Or in Maryland suburbs near DC a long east to west light rail line is going up not to far from what was.

    Or how about a section of your website about how what Congress once did with the passage of public utility holding company regulatory acts which forced electric utilities to divest electric railways was just as toxic to electric railways as the auto.

    Or there is a pdf monograph out there on how Dr Thomas Conway Jr stitched together on their depression era death bed a network of Midwest electric interurban railways that gave overnight package and freight service decades before FedEx.

    That leads to perhaps a discussion about exactly who exactly Dr Thomas Conway, Jr was in instrumental in creating the industry team that created the PCC car and standards that lasted in the form of subway cars into the 1980’s