yesterday afternoon, i helped h put together his lego bionicle playset. that is, if by "helped" you mean "put the whole thing together while child and kittens fiddled with the plastic bits." have ANY of you taken on a large scale lego project in your lives? it is eye-straining, back-spasming tedium. i've put together piles and piles of the actual bionicle robots, they're very easy and very playable once they're built. you can even take them apart and interchange the parts into your own cool new robot creation! wow. but this playset, this was a whole different story. there were about 15 little plastic baggies in the set, each filled with a few hundred shiny, colorful lego building blocks in diffrent sizes and shapes. what they don't tell you on the exterior of the package is that THERE IS ONLY ONE OF THE PIECE YOU NEED, and that YOU HAVE TO FIND IT AMONG THE 20,000 OTHER PIECES.
oh, honestly. h was trying to help me find the appropriate piece per the instructions, if by "trying" you mean messing around with the kittens. usually i could find what i needed, but occasionally it would take 10 minutes to locate the small, flat, red, square, four-nubbed piece necessary to build the ENTIRE rest of the structure. one time, i asked h to go upstairs and get his basic box of legos so i could substitute an unfound piece, and he said, "i'm too sick!" my reply? "then i'm too sick to build the rest of this castle!" (i'm not normally so snotty, but this was after at least 3 hours of legoing. my patience was running thin.) he slunk off the chair and plodded, head down, toward the stairs when i shouted, "FOUND IT!" boy, was he relieved not to put in the effort of 14 stairsteps.
the end result was... i would use the word "breathtaking..." but it was really just underwhelming. all that work? all those itty bitty pieces? for THIS?! h enjoyed playing with the built set until it slowly began to fall apart from playing with it. that's right, folks, FALL APART. from PLAYING. with a TOY. then orion knocked over the towers. then it was bedtime.
it's still on the kitchen table today, and my question is, what to do with it? i can semi-dismantle it and place it in a box, but will it ever again be rebuilt? will it get played with in a semi-built mode? will it crumble into it's original state of a zillion pieces disconnected? but most importantly... what was the point?