Category: General

Organizing A Big Lego Set

This is a real issue, especially if you have kids who LOVE Legos. How do you reign in a massive Lego set? Yes, it’s a ‘first world’ issue. But it is an issue.

Adam Savage’s Tested channel on YouTube focuses on ‘one day builds’ for small to medium sized projects, but for the task of taking on his Lego collection, he may have bitten off too much than he could chew. He does end up with a really nice custom built unit to hold ArtBin Super Satchels of various shapes and sizes, but it apparently took him 10 days to really get his full Lego collection under control. The issue, which I have observed with my son’s substantial Lego collection, is that there are just so many variations of Lego pieces. And the variation has accelerated over the past 10 to 15 years as all these unique, custom kits have been developed. Back in the 80’s, when I was a kid playing with my Lego collection, the variation of pieces was not nearly as wide as it is today.

I really like the ArtBin Super Satchel storage containers that he used for some of the smaller and ‘wide variety’ pieces and I may look into buying some of these bins to use. And it also appears that ArtBin has storage ‘cubes’ for the Satchels, which alleviates the need to build a custom unit the way Adam did above. We have already gone down this path to a degree by using the small plastic Gils storage units from Ikea. The one drawback of these for Lego storage is that they are a little deeper than the Super Satchels and not as big.

This may be another ‘quarantine’ project worth taking on.

Trends Driven By COVID-19

Interesting visuals from the firm Glimse detailing several different search trend lines as a result of COVID-19 and the fact that 80% of the world is now on ‘stay at home’ instructions. From the above screen grab, it is interesting that while the interest in Skype has grown significantly, it is about a third less searched than Zoom. The old guard, standard bearer for video calls has lost some of its luster to the new hot girl.

And with everyone staying at home and social distancing, our personal hygiene and sex lives are pretty much going to shit.

And Justice For All?

It is clear that many ‘true crime’ stories seen in the media are presented with their own perspectives, agendas, and points of view.

As a viewer, you need to look at everything with a critical eye and make your own judgements on what may be true, what may be fiction, and what may be straight up BS. I get that.

Yet, over the past several months I have been listening to (In the Dark Season 1, In The Dark Season 2, Serial, Last Seen, Up and Vanished), and watching (Making A Murderer, The Innocent Man) several “true crime” stories across different media (and then following up with some “I obsessively want to learn more” online research efforts). I am genuinely interested in stories of this nature (and CIA/spy stories, but that’s a whole different animal). I really like the dissection of the evidence, the facts vs. the fiction and all the analysis that goes into developing a Prosecution and/or Defense case.

The level of incompetence and corruption that is present in these cases is beyond reproach. And while it is also clear that the cases being profiled in these varying series are of extreme circumstance, it does make you seriously question what is actually happening across the broader legal and judicial system, where similar cases have not had the luxury of being exposed on Netflix or in a podcast.

Across the stories that have to do with wrongful convictions (The Tardy Furniture Murders, Steven Avery, Ada, OK Murders in the 1980s), the major trend that is so glaringly obvious is the unchecked authority that the District Attorneys have, and how they use that power to wrongfully convict powerless, underprivileged, under-resourced people that can, in their mind, be ‘thrown out’ of society. These DA’s bring in personal prejudice, evidence manipulation, false evidence, or a combination of all these elements. This is best illustrated by the prosecutor in the Tardy Furniture Murders, District Attorney Doug Evans, who’s office has struck black prospective jurors at almost 4½ times the rate they struck white prospective jurors.

I don’t really have an earth shattering thesis other than to say that we really need to bring more checks and balances against these prosecutors to ensure that they are held accountable for their actions. In fact, why don’t you just watch this video from the always excellent John Oliver:

Happy New Year, Doctor

I went to the Doctor on New Years Day, but it wasn’t to cure a hangover. While everyone was out reveling and celebrating the turn of the new year, yours truly spent the week between Christmas and New Years battling pnemonia. Hardly a fun way to bring in the new year, and in fact, I find great irony in the fact that I was sick as a dog to close out 2003, being that it had been one of the rougher years in my life. So what did I do while being bed ridden for a full week? I am glad you asked…Lots of TV and some other things:

I am happy to report that I have rejoined the human race. While I am not functioning at 100%, I am feeling much much better. Here’s to a wonderful 2004!