The Death of all Good Things
I often wonder why I seem to be interested in things which other people do not seem to be interested in. It started out with HAM Radio and is now seriously migrating to N Scale model railroading. I wonder why I seem to be interested in these hobbies, while other people my age are not?
Perhaps a lot of it has to do with the local geography. I am located in a blue collar town, where beer, chicken wings, and sports seems to be the top priority for most guys my age. Me? I could care less about sports. Maybe if I stayed in Toronto, a white collar town, I would find more people interested in this niche hobby? On second thought, likely not. Most guys my age there are too busy getting drunk and clubbing, or working their ass off just to pay the bills.
So why the decline? I know that I only had a toy train set under the Christmas tree once or twice while growing up, but it was enough to get me interested in model trains. I am sure that other boys around my age likely also had toy trains around the Christmas tree while they were growing up. But many probably forgot the magic. Long since pushed aside for the instant thrills from computer and console games.
Sure, I have been known to engage in computer games myself. This blog alone gets about 200 hits a day specifically related to my Dawn of Discovery guide. But I will let you in on a little secret about me: I get bored quickly! I will buy a game, play it for a few hours, grasp the concepts, then abandon it for ages, only to likely return to it several months later to play a few more hours.
This is why I only have a few game reviews out there. Only a few games are able to capture my attention long enough that I want to write a review about them! So why then, am I interested in model railroading? It is after-all an expensive, time consuming, and challenging hobby.
Why? I would much rather spend the time and money on something physical, then spend time and money on something virtual. I have built massive virtual layouts in Trainz Simulator, and while I am proud of them, they never seem to show well to others, even if their interested in trains. It is tough to grasp the concepts of a virtual creation for the observer. But a real physical model; well that is plain and obvious.
I think more parents should invest $100 or so in a toy train set this year for the holiday season, instead of buying your child 1 or 2 'cool' new video games that they may play for a few weeks and then discard, use the same money and try to ignite a life long hobby / interest. Trains are cool! They build this nation. They are big and powerful! And operating trains requires logic solving skills.
Toy trains, the next big thing!
I will still get bored of it from time to time I imagine, but I think I will come back time and time again with renewed ideas and a more creative mind. Now, if only i had someone to share it with!