THE ROAD TO HELL IS PAVED WITH LEGOS
After years of careful consideration, I have determined that the absolutely worst toy out there today is the nefarious Lego. Their market has expanded now, and many knock-offs exist, including random bricks and mega-sized blocks. But the basic product is still the worst, for so many reasons, as I was unpleasantly reminded of this past Easter.
On Easter Sunday, in a futile attempt to cut down on yet another holiday’s worth of candy, I decided to make Legos the centerpiece of the kids’ baskets. My daughter had been clamoring for the new Moana set, and my son really likes Ninjago (for the uninitiated that is simply Ninja Legos). For good measure I bought my toddler a duplex set of Mickey Mouse’s train, even though as a child with two older siblings he much prefers the smaller bricks. I added in a few sets of bubbles, one obligatory chocolate bunny, a couple of lollipops, and congratulated myself on my wonderful parenting skills. Then came Easter morning.
The kids were excited about the Legos. So excited, in fact, that all three, at the same time, requested my attention to help them put together their various island/ninja mobile/train. I apparently had not thought that out. So I raced back and forth between all of them (my husband works in the mornings), trying desperately to race through instruction manuals that are ridiculously long and as vague as the ones you get when making IKEA furniture. Speaking of IKEA, both of the regular sets had random pieces leftover that you didn’t use, making you wonder if you left out an instrumental piece which will result in a fatal engineering flaw somewhere down the line.
Numerous times I stepped on these little pieces, racing between the two rooms (my daughter wanted additional space to build hers). Forget walking on a bed of hot coals. If you want a true test of your mettle, or if you sadistically covet pain, walk on a bed of Legos.
I thought the fun was just beginning once we got them up and running, but it was precisely at this very moment that the kids lost interest. Because, let’s be honest, while these things may be fun to build, they are not very fun to play with. Even the newer versions like the Lego Friends, who are slightly more bendable than previous iterations of figures, still can’t do much other than sit and lay down. There’s no clothes for them to change into, or hair styles to change, or places for them to go, unless you have an entire town. Of course, the price of these bricks prohibits or discourages any normal family from having too many, so you don’t really have a lot of other figures or sets for them to interact with. Sure enough, each set came with advertisements for more of that genre, commanding my kids to collect them all. Did I mention that these things are not cheap??
Even when we manage to have more than one set (we have a couple of the princesses), by the time I cave in and buy another the first set has already been ruined, broken apart, and tossed into the general Lego box. The instructions are long gone and even if we can find some pages, there is no way in hell we will ever be able to locate that random one pink square you need to complete the palace.
I think these sets are best left to adults with plenty of spare time and cash, who can buy all of the sets at once and then create a giant model to gleam at with pride like Will Ferrell in the Lego Movie. As for me, I will be on the hunt (no pun intended) once more next Easter for an easy gift to supplant the candy.
I am mediocre mom!
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