Posted by: GeekHiker | January 28, 2008

Simple Toys

Google today was nice enough to remind me that it’s LEGO’s 50th Anniversary. I had no idea.

Google Lego Logo


Legos (the company prefers one to refer to them as “LEGO bricks”, but I’m lazy (my apologies)) were one of the two toys I went back and forth with as a kid, the other being Star Wars toys (natch). Occasionally a bit of Erector. Oh, yeah, I was a child of the seventies, all right.

Never did I play with the two at the same time, mind you; instead I would switch off: a couple of months with Star Wars, a couple of months with Legos.

(As a side note, as an adult I did combine the two worlds: immediately after the break-up with The Ex-Girlfriend I purchased the Lego Star Wars game to distract my mind. Funny how life comes around.)

Most of the Legos were the original outer space stuff (again, natch). None of them were as fancy as today’s collections (the really cool pieces in my day were things like yellow windows), but that didn’t matter to me. I built up the space ships and moon bases and had grand adventures.

Those adventures could be pretty complex, too. Storylines that would last for days. I had characters with individual personalities. The stories had arcs, climaxes, dramatic conclusions.

I think it was then that my photographic eye was starting to be developed as well, no doubt spurned on by the special effects shots I saw in the movies (and the industry I would later hope to go in to back when it was all motion control & miniatures). I would set up shots of the actions in my little storyline, using my eye as the camera to find just the right angle.

Other times I would build planes and ships and the like, out of random parts, designs that were entirely my own. Sometimes, when I had a design I really liked, I would draw out instructions on how to build it, so I could rebuild it again in the future.

It was a grand way to spend a rainy Saturday afternoon, playing with simple plastic blocks. The morning, of course, having been dedicated to Warner Brother’s Cartoons.

Today all those Legos are in storage up at the Parent’s house, out in a box in the garage. I know they’d like me to take them off their hands at some point, but given how little storage room I have here, they’re not putting any undo pressure on me.

Which is good. Cuz I sure as hell ain’t getting rid of them.

You can’t hold on to childhood forever, but one small box of Lego’s allows me to remember some of my fondest memories of it.

And why on Earth would I throw that out?

(Blogger friend TGAW has a different, and quite funny take, here.)

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Responses

  1. I have a picture of me sitting on a bench in a mall in Chicago with a life-size man made entirely out of Legos. I bet you played with Tinkertoys too, didn’t ya!

  2. Ahh Lego! I loved that stuff. I remember my mom tried to get my brother and I into the Playmobile stuff, and we despised it. I did like the Playmobile people better than the Lego people, but I had to stay true to my love.

    And because I’m a lego purist, I have to say I disgusted to see all those lego kits out now that give you instructions on how to build aircrafts and ships. What happened to just using your imagination?!

  3. Ah Legos. The memories. I tried my best to destroy them when I was a kid but they kept coming back for more.

    I’m with brandy – I never had any kits – just buckets of bricks and a wild imagination.

  4. Charlotte – Tinkertoys! I think I may have had a few…

    brandy – Never had the Playmobile stuff (lucky me). I went back and forth, I did the patterns (which taught me how to put together strong designs), then branched off on my own.

    Homer-Dog – they were pretty impossible to kill, weren’t they?


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