Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I think I'd keep this wallet in my front pocket

I have money that needs to be stored. And I usually wish I had a baseplate and some bricks, so I could do the LEGO brick equivalent of doodling while waiting somewhere.
The lady's wallet (above) could be my answer. I think it would look lovely in my man purse.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

LEGO bricks are made for sharing

The joy of LEGO bricks is in sharing. It's fun to share the bricks you have, the passion you feel and the creations you've made.

And so I was overjoyed when a good friend sent me a picture of his first MOC (my own creation). Above is his alligator made entirely from bricks in the Creator Mini Dumper impulse set. Instantly recognizable with a bit of humor in the face -- it's a fantastic first effort from somebody getting back into the hobby. It's also a great lesson that you're never too old to discover the joy of building.

Overall, it's a great MOC because it is his idea from start to finish. I'm just happy he chose to share it with me and I hope he doesn't mind me sharing it with you.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Is there a Geek Life?

On the road back into your childhood, it's hard not to wonder just how much of your life's path was determined by the map you drew as a seven-year-old. Young me didn't know I'd get to write a book about LEGO building. Young me just thought I'd be playing with LEGO bricks at age eight.

Over on's Geekdad, Curtis Silver asks a new question, but one that feels eternal. "Is Being a Geek a Personality Trait or a Way of Life?" In an exhaustive post, Silver lays out the arguments for both sides from a personal and parental perspective. He ultimately comes to realize that geekery is a way of life as we choose to descend into dorkdom.

I think it's true. One of the most intriguing side (benefits?) effect of writing LEGO: A Love Story was that I embraced all of my inner geek-o-sity over the course of a year. I wasn't just holding back a LEGO love, I also found some genuine Star Wars jones and a suprisingly strong science fiction bent.

And one of the ideas I've maintained since writing the book is that there is a geek key out there for each and every person. I know that not everybody cares about LEGO bricks; however, I can see that there is a trigger for people's inner geek. It's in the form of horror movies or Matchbox cars. Your voice raises slightly. You start talking faster. And you have a depth of knowledge that is stunning in its ability to entertain than bore than entertain again. This is simply a question of when, rather than if, the latent geek comes out in us all.

Image via RooReynolds.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tattooed minifigs make an ink splash

While this space is no stranger to LEGO tattoos*; these ads for the Pilot Extrafine take the concept of tats to a new level.

The viral campaign (h/t to Flavorwire) features a series of minifigures with intricate ink drawings that suggest a level of toughness heretofore unacheived by the tiny plastic men and women.

While I'm not sure about the back tattoo on a female minifig, it's hard not to appreciate the dragon tattoo the spans the arm of a smiling prisoner minifig. It makes me want to go out and etch a single teardrop on every minifig I own.

*Sadly, Nathan Sawaya's thumb tattoo has faded to the point where it is quite faint. I saw it firsthand at Comic Con and the dastardly quick regrowing thumb skin has made it into an impression, rather than a bold statement. Nathan promises to get it touched up shortly and return it to its former brilliance.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Just me and Tuan Sau-Wern down by the schoolyard

We exist in a world where it is becoming easier and easier to have a lifestyle based on niches. Is it the human experience if we are all having very different experiences as humans? I like the idea that humankind can share things if only because I believe experience is one of the best ways to bring people together.

It worked at summer camp and it still works with me as an adult. That's why I enjoy reading slice-of-life articles about people's lifelong love for LEGO. It lets me connect with Tuan Sau-Wern, despite the fact that I might not have much else in common with the 31-year-old software engineer from Malaysia.

So if Tuan is ever in Kansas City or I find myself in Malaysia, I'll be glad to dump out a big tub of bricks on the ottoman and get building.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Brick it like Beckham

Look I don't know if my book had anything to do with it, but I find it hard not to see it as more than a coincidence that playing with LEGO bricks as an adult is suddenly cool. First it was Brad Pitt. And now David Beckham has told Yahoo, that's he has been working on the LEGO Taj Mahal.

I like building Lego. This is going to make me sound really weird but when I was in Milan with a lot of time on my hands I found online that there's Taj Mahal Lego set you can buy. So I bought it. I didn't get to finish it though. I know it's not a career but I love it.

So get out there and start building. It's your ticket into the coolest clubs and cliques in the world.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A sneak peek at the LEGOLAND project in Florida

Those on the East Coast got a sneak peek yesterday at the newest LEGOLAND -- scheduled to open in the fall of 2011 in Winter Haven, Florida.

The City part of the park will apparently mirror the LEGOLAND in Billund, Denmark, with a driving academy and Fun Town Fire Academy, where you pump an oversized LEGO fire truck down a lane to put out a "fire."

It's good to know the Dragon rollercoaster will also be at the park in the Castle area. It's one of the only rollercoasters in the world that I know I am brave enough to ride.

So with a park in Florida and California, I'm thinking I've got a backyard available smack dab in the middle of the country if Merlin Entertainments wants to keep expanding...

Image courtesy of Orlando Attractions Magazine.