Lego. I have a love / hate relationship with those little multi-coloured bricks. We always enjoyed our time with their chunky younger brother, Duplo. You could knock up a tower or a house in a matter of minutes and still look like a pro. Now those bricks are getting smaller and I swear they are out to get me.
- They are sadistic
The little bricks of pain. They hide under the sofa, behind a toy, beneath a table. They wait until you are bare foot and least expecting it and there they are, under your feet, piercing their sharp corners into your soft soles. How something so little can cause some much pain is a mystery. They will break your nails trying to prize them from their fellow bricks and break you back whilst looking under chairs for the tiniest of blocks. These mini bricks of torture will mock you in your own home.
- They rob you of your money
You want to buy Lego sets, especially from a brand franchise, then open your wallet and see the notes fly out. Their shiny boxes and pretty pictures hypnotise your child and draw them in. You try to resist but the whining starts and you soon give in to pressure. Each block is worth more than gold. It would probably be cheaper to buy the real Death Star than make it out of Lego.
- They will not be tidied or organised.
They turn up at your house looking smart and ordered. Packed in their little neat bags, numbered for your ease. A small sweat breaks out when your child starts to randomly rip open the bags and empty on the table. Those slippery little suckers have no intention of staying near their numerical group and slide off to the nearest table edge. Once the set has been built they routinely fall apart, just to piss you off. Within a week the Minecraft House looks more like a derelict building site and the whole lot needs to be moved to the holding area where it will be regenerated into a new space ship / car / torture implement.
- They will demand hours of attention
Like stepping into a twilight zone, there is no definitive time you can spend on building. By step 15 in bag 4, the whole world has turned into a brick. The kids have walked off at step 3, bag 1 – they just want their finished toy to play with. Oh, and that sinking feeling when you realise you have gone wrong and need to retrace your steps… Those bricks are laughing at me.
- They try to make us to conform
Why can’t they just let us get a box of bricks, all shapes and sizes and just build whatever you darn well like? We are expected to conform, do as they say and click one brick to one bar with a hinged joint in the middle. It can take 10 steps to make one door. They are like mini dictators, controlling our minds and quashing our inventiveness.
I have to admit, anything that inspires my children off their tablets and TV and into their own creative world has to be admired. From the little kids to the big kids, it seems we are all rather brain washed by this simple construction toy. It looks like we may have all fallen under their spell. They are clever, evil little things.