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*applause* Thank you, thank you... Now, on this very special episode of The Skunk Works Wild & Wacky Variety Hour, a new feature we call Shannon's Poetry Corner! *applause*
About this creation
Blame Nannan Z. A lot can be learned from MOCpages' resident Dali of the Brick, that eminent Prophet of Lovecraftian Whimsy. Studying at the feet of that great Blay Sage, this humble neophyte's eyes have been opened to a great truth: Lego® can actually be used to express the profound.

As a general rule, I use Lego® to express my silly side. It's ostensibly a child's toy, and it's supposed to be fun. To that end, whenever I post one of my MOCs here I almost always accompany the pictures with captions that will hopefully give the viewer a chuckle. But Nannan, as all great visionaries do, has forged a new path. He began posting MOCs that almost had to be labeled as Art with a capital A, accompanied by dark existential essays, and poetry. Poetry!

Well, now. Fans of the show (both of you) will have realized that I like to think of myself as something of a writer. I couldn't let Nannan upstage me in this regard, could I? (Especially if I really am -- bowing in Mark Kelso's direction -- the finest storyteller west of the Pecos!) But if I can't be original, I at least know who to steal ideas from. I wondered if any of the poems I had written would lend themselves to being illustrated in Lego® form. One jumped out as an obvious choice:


Progress

We sit
Each in our
Insulated universes
Of metal and glass
And curse each other
Suffocating in the heat
Slowly creeping
Toward our destinations
In one grand stinking mass
Like dumb beasts
Gathered together
To obey a primitive
Migratory instinct.




Written 7/24/04, in response to my afternoon freeway commute at that time. Construction work that summer snarled the traffic even more than usual, and as we inched along I was struck at all us horrible hoggish Americans -- almost every single vehicle was occupied by the driver only, mine no exception. Taking up all that space, burning all that gas, polluting all that air. We are stupid and wasteful creatures. When we finally get our comeuppance, it will come hard.


All right, enough of that... I can only remain serious for so long. Here are the cars, in the order in which they were built.

This little car was built ages ago in preparation for this project. I wasn't sure I could even make a decent regular car... building spacey or sci-fi stuff is a lot easier, since the creation doesn't necessarily have to look "real." It turned out well, in fact it's my second-favorite vehicle here. A nice sporty little number, but what's the point of a nice car when there's no passenger seat for the honey it's supposed to attract?



Orange Stripe Trucking -- "You Call, They Haul." My favorite one, by a long shot. You can tell I like it because it's the only vehicle I bothered to make rearview mirrors for, or give a license plate. Referring to a picture of a Mack cab-over semi found online was a great help in making this -- if I hadn't done that I wouldn't have thought to build the elements that I feel make the truck, the round tanks along the sides.



Next came the yellow one, seen here cutting the convertible off. Construction note on these two -- neither of the drivers have legs. Fully intact minifigs, while they would fit in their respective seats, ended up being too tall. I didn't want to use the taller windscreens I had for them (see the blue car below).




Stuck in miserable traffic, why is this guy the only one that's smiling? He's probably drunk, or high, or something. Oh wait, that's ME! Strike that last bit... It's because the Lego® head with my perpetual reddish-brown beard stubble doesn't exist in a snarl, or if it does I've never seen it. Yes, there I am driving my trusty gas-guzzling SUV -- 210,000 miles on the odometer and still chugging along! It's boxier than I'd like, but I don't have the piece used on the hood of the convertible and roof of the semi's cab in 6-wide red. Maybe I'll upgrade someday... when my Bricklink credit card debt is paid down. 'Link responsibly.

Right around here I began to realize I was getting dangerously low on good car pieces... this one would look a lot better 6-wide than it does 4-wide, but all my 6-wide windscreens were steeply angled, and I wanted it low-slung. It was to be a stud or two longer in the rear too, a real land yacht, but it already looked too narrow for its length so I chopped it.




The taller windscreen just looks funny on these small cars. The wheelbase on this one is a stud longer than the red and yellow cars to compensate a bit for this. I could have made it one longer, just like the gray one, but I wanted to avoid the narrowness thing again. So this one looks too tall instead -- pick your poison, I guess. Further amputating my drivers, not only do this guy and the lady in the car ahead not have legs, they don't even have arms -- they have those tiny shrunken torsos from the Racers sets I got a few years back. Making obscene gestures at their fellow roadhogs is problematic for these two.

Last, but certainly not least, the ugly primer-gray truck. "Go ahead and laugh, punk, it's what's under the hood that counts. And when I get this baby painted cherry red, or maybe a gloss black with some flames on the side... BOSS! And then when I take this little darlin' to the car show, and some sweet young thang in daisy dukes wants me to take her for a ride... who'll be laughing then, punk?" Whatever -- keep dreaming, chief. It was designed to be ugly, and I succeeded beyond my wildest expectations.

Good thing I didn't make any cops for this -- none of these cars have license plates on the rear bumper, and very few have taillights. So not one of them is street-legal... just a bunch of tickets waiting to happen.






I dug through my bag of stickers to see if I had anything that might work on the signs here, but all the clear ones with white lettering were Exo-Force -- L.01, AT02, Japanese characters, etc. Nothing really useful. There was one that said "Sentai Fortress" with bullet holes in it... tempting, but in the end I decided to just leave them blank.





There's always some sort of junk on the side of the freeway: broken pallets...







...discarded tires... something.








Check out those mudflaps -- I just need some decals of the silver girl in silhouette! I'm not into decals, but if some like that had just magically appeared while building this, I'd have made an exception. Hey, did I mention I really like that truck?





Be sure to tune in next week to Shannon's Poetry Corner, when I'll be reciting Samuel Taylor Coleridge's Kubla Khan from memory! *applause* Trust me, I can do it... Now if I could only illustrate it in Lego®... that would really be something.





And remember, If you don't like it, it's all Nannan's fault.




Comments

 I like it 
  March 23, 2011
Um,i have a face with a snarl and a red beard.
 I like it 
  January 28, 2009
Wow. Good, but you must have alot of time on your hands...
 I made it 
  January 7, 2009
This was dismantled a year ago, and I'd forgotten -- the back wheels of that car didn't roll. Another cheat for this scene. It was actually better that way, since I wasn't going to play with the car, just place it on the road section for the pictures. Some of the others would roll out of position if I moved it or bumped the table, but not that one.
  January 7, 2009
There is something wrong... I'm trying to build a little car like the red one, but building the back the way you did the back wheel can't move! Maybe I'm not understanding which pieces you have used... but if a brick with curved top is used, it locks the wheel.
 I like it 
  December 19, 2008
I rate it excellent because the scene is very realistic and also funny. However I don't like cars in which a minifig can't fully seat (even though there is one in my Lego town...), if you can get some new pieces consider to correct this.
 I like it 
  May 4, 2008
Dude! It's like impossible for you to make a bad moc! You are one of the top five greatest moccers on the web, hands down. Word!
 I like it 
  December 31, 2007
I agree with N. Bush- the Ugly Truck is good. And, uh...In Xanadu did Kubla Khan A stately pleasure-dome decree : Where Alph, the sacred river, ran Through caverns measureless to man down to a sunless sea (etc, etc)... Go Poetry!
 I like it 
  December 22, 2007
My favorite vehicle has to be the ugly truck.
 I like it 
  December 17, 2007
Embrace the bley, baby!! Great work as usual, Shannon.
 I like it 
  December 17, 2007
*rubs eyes* Mr. Young does Town??? Great MOC duder. the armless minifigs add to the crammed, squashed in feeling of a traffic jam.
 I like it 
  December 17, 2007
Your poem and moc will hopefully keep me cheerful as I venture out to go Christmas shopping today. The thousands of other slackers and procrastinators will be out in force and I surely will be living this scene in real life.
 I like it 
  December 17, 2007
Ha I made a highway scene too! Yours is way better though, I did not put enough time into it. I made it just to show my highway sign. Yours is nice though, alot of cars, the cement blocks, and you made your own sectoin of road. Nice work.
 I like it 
  December 17, 2007
Ya know, I often wonder just how ridiculous we (that is, modern humans) must look from outside our bubble. Something tells me you would enjoy the book "Ishmael" by Daniel Quinn. Meanwhile, an excellent little characature here, reflecting issues of overpopulation, pollution, global warming, and the lack of reddish-brown, beard-stubbled Lego heads. I'll look forward to the next Poetry Corner with relish...or maybe mayo...no make that mustard.
 I like it 
  December 17, 2007
It's a good feeling to know that I haven't been mumbling alone in my corner. This is a clean build, and of course the poetry adds to the meaning. You have reduced mankind to beasts, good job!
 
By Shannon Young
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