June 06, 2001
There was only one seven-year-old kid who could talk so high over my head that it bored me to incomprehension. The things he said, his genius, his inunobfuscatably compressed imagination were so above mine that his lengthy speeches to me were no longer language, but more like the droning that must be his master's address to a dog. For, coming to my senses and grasping at that tail end of his communication, I could feel that it concerned me, that I could use it, but I possessed nothing capable of harnessing his power. Admittedly, I use seven-year-old as a metaphor for ten-year-old, because the latter has fewer syllables. But that's still young for a kid to talk so high over his peer's head. He chose me as occassionally in my life a socially-disinterested, intellectually-focused and highly boring peer has chosen me as a sympathetic receptacle for his Niagara of ideas, receptacle which he doesn't realize is little more than a bobbing plastic bucket. And I really caught nothing, was incapable of catching more than nothing, besides those last drops that fertilised my own imagination with possibilities that my mechanical conventions instantly mowed down. He was telling me about Lego. How I wish that I had listened more carefully, for how I like imaginative constructions that use all the arrogance of logic to simply support the fecund heap of alien creativity in mind-blowing kaleidoscopes of innovation. But I only heard parts. The rest of the time I was squinting into the sun, looking left and right for oncoming vehicles, staring at the tennis courts, and trying to keep my place in line. And somehow, from the humble brick, he had built a solar system. Somehow, each sphere boasted its own coefficient of gravity. Somehow, each sphere existed at its own pace of civilisation, and each approached differently its exploration of the others. I don't know where in Toys R Us he ever found so many Space sets. Think! Planets. Gravity. Space exploration. There's so much potential in this idea that ... I'm sure there aren't many Lego kids who could pass up the chance to own a solar system. I hope that twenty-four-year-old kid still has his Lego and has gone on to build parallel universes. Not many of us are his equals in imagination.