Wednesday, January 08, 2003

Their Lego Land

Where are the children? We went to the library and read. We had corn and pizza for lunch. But now the halls are empty, and the air is still. No one has come to demand assistance, justice or food. Where are the three boys who reside with us here at El Rancho?

El Rancho Lego!
All Legos, all the time. Over Christmas break Alex designed and constructed a Mosquito Bomber, with spinning propeller. He patiently explains the significance of each detail. At the specially appointed Lego table, William is modifying aspects of The Towers. It is a city, a fantasy, a place where walls have faces and rooms are other worlds. Alex displays his collections on shelves. William draws Lego characters. Together they write, direct and produce Lego films. They read trade magazines and online articles. Ask Alex about engines, gears, and the distinction between remote controlled and robotic, and he will eagerly tell all he knows. Max is more than pleased to show his Galidors, and explain the intricacies of the rules of play. He listens to "the brothers" and he's learned the names of the Bionicles and Bohrok. William listens to Max's script ideas and films them for him; from these we all know the characters "On The Range" and "Bidydough."

In the middle of the night I have stepped on an errant Lego. Under the car seats, and sofa cushions and refrigerator there are Lego gears, blocks and heads. Every birthday the request is the same: Legos, please! At Christmas, William and Alex construct Lego decorations: Villages with Alpine skiers, sledders and a bearded man collecting for the poor. Tutu, in Hawaii, is finding them now; on her coffee table and in the bed. They are an inspiration and the tools for three engineers, three story tellers.

Where are William, Alex and Max? In the hall a streak of light breaks the darkness. From behind the closed door: voices; sometimes intense or frustrated, more often engaged, excited. I enter cautiously, just peering passed the door. They look up from their creations. They hope I am not there to take them away from their work. I hope they always find this much pleasure in what they do.

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