Gotta love the Internets, with their cat photos, their funny videos of stupid people getting hit in the ol’ guts-and-garbage, and the free plans to build your own Millennium Falcon.
It is, of course, that last one that trumps all.
Before I knew the Falcon plans were free, out there in the cloud, I spent five whole dollars on them to give Jenn on her birthday a year ago. I guess some enterprising fella just printed them out on cardstock, complete with the same poorly translated Japanese instructions that are online, and mailed them out to
suckers who’d give them money Brad.
A quick aside – actual quotes from the instructions:
- A, B, C, and D are attached from a reverse-side side.
- MF-22 are stuck on a main part.
- A display is made and it is completion!
I’m not belittling the designer for his lack of English. Listen, the man’s clearly both a genius and using his powers for good. But Jenn simply looked at the tiny black-and-white photos, incomprehensible instructions and minute cutting requirements once every few months before putting them back in a drawer.
I finally talked her into it one night recently, mostly by promising I’d do the ciphering and the cutting. And I did. Over the course of four evenings.
But you know what? Even though I’m the sort who sees time as my most valuable commodity – someone who normally tries to cram as much in a day as I can – I didn’t feel like we squandered those evenings. We sipped beers. We chatted away while I cut parts and she folded parts and we glued parts. We laughed at the inanity of the instructions. We made “Pew! Pew!” sounds as we test-ran our emerging starship.
We were doing stuff with our hands. We were figuring out stuff with our brains. And you wanna talk about a sense of completion? When we finished, we had the effing Millennium Falcon. On our night stand. (And possibly on a pass or two through the yard, emerging from a giant “cave” in the ground where I’m replacing a stair-rail post. Just saying.)
But there’s a problem.