Not to snag your post away, but I do know a fair amount of being "manic" or "bi-polar". I have a first cousin, Hal, who is bi-polar.
A manic episode is usually first identified by the lack of sleep you need to function. Just a couple of hours of sleep and you can stay awake for days, even weeks on end, with maybe only a couple of naps thrown in. You can become obsessed on doing some activity over and over again, or a whole list of things that never seems to end. You can do things that might usually be totally out of your normal comfort zone. You can become paranoid, and stop believing your friends and family have your best interest at heart.
Often, early in a manic episode, you may feel so good, and you may convince yourself that you no longer need to take your medication. This is the most dangerous part of having a manic episode. Without your medication, the longer and more extreme a manic episode can last. Most bi-polar people eventually crash and burn themselves after a manic episode, which leaves them in a deep depression or funk.
The depression can be identified by sleeping for long periods of time, avoiding contact with people and the outside world.
Hopefully, the person's friends or family don't have to intervene, or have to get the person back on their meds.
The good news is that some people only experience the "manic" portion of the disease, and get to skip the "depression" end of things. Everyone's experience is different. Some bi-polar people cycle back and forth rapidly, several times a year. Others may have years between cycles. Regardless, staying on the medication is vital. There are also lots of support groups for people with bi-polar disorder.
If you are interested, you can email me, and I'll be glad to give you some specific examples of my cousin's epidsodes with the disease.
Hope this helps,