Monday, March 31, 2008

"Play Well"

I have a geometric thing. Geometry was my worst math subject, but that's not what I mean. I draw things in my mind. Lines across rooms... from corner to corner. I love to make triangles in my mind. The squares created by sidewalks... I make a big X in the middle of them and then I walk inside the triangles my mind creates. I was at a restaurant at closing time and they were mopping the floor. They would stack the chairs on top of the tables, one upside down on top of the other that was right side up. They made a perfect rectangle. It was so pleasing. I love the game Tetris. I love making those lines and trying to fill in all the wholes.

I do have a point to all of this. I think that this geo-thing that I have is the reason I SO love Legos!!! This was not always the case. We got Legos for Mac when he was, I believe, three years old. I didn't think much about them at that time. For Christmas a year or two later, we gave him a Lego creator set. Those are the ones that have something specific you can build. It was a car kit. That one I LOVED. I became obsessed. There were several cars to build and I built them all (for Mac, of course!) and then I started creating my own. Ella wanted all the same cars as Mac got, and there just weren't enough pieces for two of each, so I caved and bought Ella the same set! This was secretly a thrill for me! It doubled my cool car parts! So, we built happily for a while with what we had.

My brothers both had lots of Legos as kids. After they decided they were too grown up for them, my mom put them in her save-it-for-the-grandkids box. Then the grandkids started playing with them and she went crazy. She would find Legos all over the house. She decided that she didn't want them anymore and asked if we did. Yay!!! We now have a HUGE Lego collection! (not as big as Whipples, but big enough!)

Needless to say, my geometric obsession is satiated by building Legos and my kids think that's the greatest! Here are some of our creations! (and Rohan in his knight hood!)

And FYI... from Wikipedia-
The company name Lego was coined by [Ole Kirk] Christiansen from the Danish phrase leg godt, which means "play well". The name could also be interpreted as "I put together" or "I assemble" in Latin, though this would be a somewhat forced application of the general sense "I collect; I gather; I learn"; the word is most used in the derived sense, "I read". The cognate Greek verb "λέγω" or "lego" also means "gather, pick up", but this can include constructing a stone wall.[1]

The Lego Group's motto is "Only the best is good enough", translated from the Danish phrase, Det bedste er ikke for godt. This motto was created by Ole Kirk to encourage his employees never to skimp on quality, a value he believed in strongly. The motto is still used within the company today.


Britta said...

After being friends all of these years I HAD NO IDEA! Yes, 12 years now in the makes and who knew??? I love learning these things about you! I do have to side with your Mom as the pieces are maddening but more than that I am just completely frustrated by trying to build anything with legos! Maybe I never tried hard enough? Whatever the case I am glad that you love them so and I am sure your children are as well!!!

Rachel Chick said...

Oh, Clancy! We ARE kindred spirits! I have the same geometric obsession! I thought I was the only one.

Let me just share with you an interesting tidbit of information that I thought was only MY craziness - I have since learned that they have a term for this . . .
This is from Wikipedia:

The Tetris effect is the ability of any activity to which people devote sufficient time and attention to begin to dominate their thoughts, mental images, and dreams. It is named after the video game Tetris. In the game a player rotates and moves different falling tetrominoes, or shapes made up of square blocks. If the player can arrange the shapes so there are complete horizontal lines of blocks without any gaps, those lines are eliminated. The object of the game is to eliminate as many lines as possible before the shapes fill the screen.
People who play Tetris for a long time might then find themselves thinking about ways different shapes in the real world can fit together, such as the boxes on a supermarket shelf or the buildings on a street.[1] In this sense, the Tetris effect is a form of habit.

Clancy in Idaho said...

That is really funny!!! I didn't know there was a name for this weirdness...
Although, it says, "People who play Tetris for a long time might then find themselves thinking about ways different shapes in the real world can fit together" I didn't come by this via Tetris... I've done this as long as I can remember. I have another version of this that's even more weird... but I will tell you about it in person.... it's a little embarassing... :)