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AFFOL?

RogueRogue Member Posts: 27
edited April 2011 in Community and Events
I was just curious if there were any other female collectors hiding here. I’m a AFFOL and I feel like I’m part of a rare breed. Haha! ;)
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Comments

  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,283
    edited April 2011
    This discussion has sort of become the unofficial AFFOL roll call:

    http://www.bricksetforum.com/discussion/174/this-is-me/

    I like that you've started a thread specifically for this, though, except I'm moving it to "Community and Events"
  • RogueRogue Member Posts: 27
    Oops! Sorry, rocao! Thank you for the link! :)
  • elazgarelazgar Member Posts: 31
    Well, I think this is good to have an opened discussion of AFFOLs. We can share opinions and ideas from our "female brain"
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    edited April 2011
    I'm a 27 year old male AFOL and I'm curious if AFFOL is preferred over just female AFOL by the female fans. I mean is a separate acronym necessary or preferable? I don't go by AMFOL and I think making a big distinction leads to the marketing department creating all those pink sets aimed at girls that it seems everyone agrees are terrible. I'm sure females have a unique perspective on the hobby, but I also think there are lots of similarities between what male and females like too!
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,283
    ^ I don't think the difference is that important between a new acronym AFFOL and spelling out "female AFOL". To me, the question is whether there is a reason to make the distinction from AFOL at all. And for me, the answer is 'yes'; just as in other facets of life, a minority group rightfully seeks to be treated equally in certain respects, but at the same time seeks out and identifies with other members of the minority.
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    ^ I was wondering how the *female* fans felt about this ;) Precisely because it should be up to them how they would like to make the distinction or not make the distinction.
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    My wife is very clear on this ... she's says she's an AFOL & finds this 'shefol' / 'AFFOL' stuff quite ridiculous & somewhat insulting.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,283
    @brickmatic: well, since Rogue and elazgar used it, I figured they were ok with it. Others might not like it, of course. Anyway, I'll excuse myself from this discussion now :P
  • MatthewMatthew Cheshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 3,734
    I'm not trying to be sexist, but the vast majority of Lego fans (and users on this site) are male, which is why I suggested a tag, or image in the corner of their avatar of something, just to iron out the simple he/she and 'wife' issues. My sister, who is also into Lego somewhat likes the term SheFOL because it just reassures her that there are others like her, in a sea of male Lego fans.
  • RogueRogue Member Posts: 27
    edited April 2011
    Yes, I am okay with the term AFFOL. I am okay using either AFOL or AFFOL to refer to myself. I am, after all, an adult female fan of LEGO. ;) In the case of this thread, I have to separate myself from male AFOL, because I’m specifically looking for other female fans… mostly because I don’t know any (at least in person). It is exactly as @rocao and @Matthew have stated. I think the separate acronym can be necessary in some cases (such as for this thread). I’m not using it to be distinct from AFOL (since that’s also what I am)… it’s more of an addition to it. I mean, you could sit here and argue the need for all of the acronyms relating to LEGO. Technically we’re all FOL, but as AFOL we’re interested in meeting/chatting with other adults… right?

    I never understood the marketing department thinking that by adding pink to LEGO bricks, the product would magically appeal to girls. I think that is ridiculous. They already appeal to me! The theme is what makes them likeable. I mean, I had quite a few of the Paradisa sets growing up… I loved having a horse ranch and a mansion; regardless if they were colored pink. I also loved castle and pirate sets (and still do! ;)).
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    Hmm... names matter. There are lots of examples. For instance, there is dispute on whether one should use actress or actor when referring to female performers. Another example is the difference of opinion on using the terms stewardess or flight attendant when referring to cabin crew.

    As for FOL, I think AFOL is a good acronym because I want to really differentiate myself from children. I don't think that adult fans of LEGO and child fans of LEGO are very similar. The share an enjoyment of plastic bricks, yes, but our whole interaction with bricks is very different. Kids are kids. They generally enjoy playing with toys in the way kids do (although I appreciate there are special kids out there). AFOLs are hobbyists, collectors, and modelers. I'm not just an adult who's playing with LEGO like a kid. I'm a different breed of fan. Hence I'm an AFOL and not an adult FOL.

    An alternative to AFFOL or SheFOL is to simply say female AFOL when the gender distinction is important. A special acronym amplifies distinction.

    @rocao Didn't mean to cut you out of the discussion, lol. Just was surprised the first response was from a guy.
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    "... female AFOL when the gender distinction is important ..." - that's my view too. It's best not to get me started on the whole 'comedienne', 'actress', etc. issue, this isn't the place for it ;-)
  • bahnstormerbahnstormer Member Posts: 180
    as adult is a unisex word, AFOL should be enough or else this could descend into a dating site before your very eyes. then it could take on the gender specific adulteror / adultress FOL.

    i have a daughter who i hope will be interested in lego soon (she's 6 months) and the reaction of friends' older boys of " but she's a girl" when they see whats been put aside for her is getting tedious (although the tantrums can be quite amusing to watch - I want a death star too, etc).

    as this site is designed for 16+, let's leave the playground mentality behind.

  • RogueRogue Member Posts: 27
    (although the tantrums can be quite amusing to watch - I want a death star too, etc).

    Ha! :D
  • NightfuryNightfury Member Posts: 13
    @bluemoose I completely agree with her. I can't think of any time where it is important to distinguish my gender. I am and AFOL. I collect, love, and build LEGO...just like every other AFOL.
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,843
    I'm not sure if it matters either, though it is nice to know who is female from my point of view (solidarity and all that). But clearly it's not an "us and them" thing, as I've been made to feel very welcome here.
    My pic is distinctively me, as I signed in with my twitter account.
    I can't remember encountering sexism about lego when I was little. I thought it was something every child enjoyed?? Fair enough as an adult there is an expectation that it's more a male thing (collectors mostly are) - but people also see that I'm collecting lego to play with my niece and nephew with, and for my future kids, so that's the feminine side to it I suppose.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,283
    ^ Hmm... signing in with your twitter ID must be how you managed to get a thumbnail pic without an uploaded profile picture. I was wondering how you did that as yours was the only instance I saw of it :P
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,843
    Yeah, it might not have been the best choice, I signed in to ask one question and couldn't be bothered to sign up, and now seemed to have been sucked in to the forum :-P
    hey ho. now you all know who I am! no anonymous trolling from me!
  • burakki62burakki62 Member Posts: 46
    I am a female AFOL and I don't really think we need a title of our own, although it is nice to be made aware of other female AFOLs because we are in a minority. (o:
  • wander099wander099 Member Posts: 114
    I definitely think that the distinction is not needed. As a female AFOL I feel that I don't need any special designation, it shouldn't make a difference to anyone because this is about being a fan of Lego. So long as I like Lego, who cares?
  • jujem71jujem71 Member Posts: 7
    Personally I don't think we need the distinction AFFOL in general use as we are part of the larger AFOL community and that is what is important to me. It can be useful in discussions like this though and on other occasions when a distinction is definitely required.
    I have to say though that I detest SheFOL - can't explain exactly why but the word just seems .... derogatory.
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,245
    edited May 2011
    ^ Welcome aboard Jujem71, nice to see more SheFOLs here :-)
  • colethegeekcolethegeek Member Posts: 12
    As a male AFOL, I don't really care what, if anything, female AFOLs want to call themselves. Certainly it should be up to the individual, but I really see no need to differentiate between who is female and male. Frankly, who cares? If you love LEGO, you love LEGO. I've noticed a wide variety of what interests different male AFOLs, so why should we assume that females have a complete and total different interest in what sets/MFs they collect?

    The only thing that really bothers me is when I hear complaints from friends/family (all non-AFOLs) that LEGO doesn't cater to girls-- big brother has a set and she wants to play with them, but they don't make enough/any girl sets. That's usually the point where I have to point out that if she wants to play with the type of sets that brother has, then she could actually be interested in the type of sets that brother has (or better yet, bring her to the store and let her pick out a set that appeals to her). For heaven's sake, buy the girl a box of just bricks at least (don't tell me that plain, primary colored bricks are gendered)! Yeah, SW sets seem to dominate the LEGO world right now, but there are other series... and I've known plenty of girls who actually love SW. Ultimately, I think LEGO is only as gendered as you perceive it to be.

    I really hope this doesn't turn into a group that somehow flags female AFOLs in anyway (including asking them to somehow incorporate it in their avatar). Why should it matter if the post comes from a female or a male? If it did carry significance for some reason (such as this discussion), then the person can simply type "As a male/female AFOL/AFFOL...". If we flag females, then where does the flagging stop? Should we flag people based on their ethnicity so we can see the difference in what one skin color may prefer over another? What about religion? If the issue is a matter of pronouns and jokes about wives/girlfriends being anti-LEGO, then the solution is simple: assume anyone could be behind that screen name. We're all capable of using gender-neutral statements on a consistent basis, I can't see why this forum needs to be any exception.
  • allyburnsallyburns Member Posts: 62
    I think it's great there are male and female AFOLS, Lego is for everyone.

    What I'd like to see in brickset is Lego dating perhaps - what could be better than a partner who was also Lego obsessed!

    May lead to problems though - Lego collection envy etc. And the divorce could get messy, having to split the Lego collection in half :o) Christmas presents would be easy - just look at the "I want" list on brickset.

    I'n not currently single, but if I ever am, I'm 33 and Live in Edinburgh, come play with my bricks!

    Being serious though, I like the thought of a girl AFOL, just like I like girls who cycle. All to do with getting on with people with common interests lately.

    What are peoples experience with partners who are also AFOLS / or the opposite of AFOLS - AHOLS (Adult Haters of Lego)

  • RogueRogue Member Posts: 27
    edited May 2011
    Ack! I’m sorry that this thread turned into something completely different than what I had intended (I was hoping for something like elazgar’s intro thread)!

    Personally, I don’t think this forum would turn into something that would flag female AFOL. From what I’ve read, everyone here sounds open to all AFOL – regardless of [insert various subcategory here].

    There are such things as AHOL? I’ve never met anyone who hates LEGO. Haha.
  • colethegeekcolethegeek Member Posts: 12
    My partner was denied LEGO as a child (it wasn't "feminine enough" according to her parents), so she never really understood what my constant fascination with LEGO was. When we originally started dating she thought it was cute but strange that I felt the need to bring a LEGO set with me to college. For several years, she would always tease me (lovingly, of course) when I would ask to check out the LEGO section of Target and I was allowed to look at the LEGO store when we were at the mall. But usually the answer would be "Do you really NEED it? What would you do with it? Where would you put it anyway?" when I was caught drooling over any particular set (or just the brand in general). I once got her a small ambulance set as a present when she got her EMT license, which she thought was cute.

    A little less than a year ago, I caught her drooling at the Grand Emporium that was on display when we were at the LEGO store... so as a birthday gift, I took a HUGE risk and bought it for her (worst case scenario, I would be sleeping on the couch, but at least I would have an awesome set to keep me occupied through the night). To my great surprise, she actually got excited when she saw the box. We spent the rest of her birthday night just building, and by the time we were adding billboard sign, she was completely addicted (needless to say, she found a place to display it immediately). Now, our house is covered in LEGO displays and she has a MF collection to be proud of. Now, we have to alternate dragging the other one away from the LEGO store.
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,245
    ^ Sounds like a match made in heaven :-)

    My wife tolerates the hobby, but that's about as far as it goes :-(
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Member Posts: 4,401
    ^ Ditto, though my wife does love the modulars and medieval market. She is more a playmobile gal. And I'm not sure AHOL is going to catch on...for the obvious reasons.... :o)
  • otterotter Member Posts: 12
    I'm a female AFOL and like some have already mentioned, distinctions for female AFOL don't really bother me - the distinction itself seems rather silly. I'm the major collector in my family and my husband supports my hobby - which I'm very grateful for, and occasionally tries a few building projects of his own.

    My first set in childhood was 6080 King's Castle and I remember playing with it all the time - I loved it more than Barbie or other 'girl' toys. Unfortunately, I had to part ways with my first set a few years later when my mom gave it away to a neighbour. If I knew, at the time, that I would become an AFOL some day I would have never let her give it away!

    As an AFOL, not everyone sees my hobby as unique or valuable. Both our moms think it's childish. My mom-in-law was cleaning out her house the other day and we found an old box of dirty (but vintage) lego. She didn't understand why I wanted to bring it home with me....a filty box of toys, she called it. In the words of Will Smith, the Fresh Prince of Bel Air - "parents just don't understand!"
  • legomattlegomatt Member Posts: 2,538
    Speaking from the male (single, 30's, GSOH, NS, likes animals ;o) ) perspective for a moment, I find it reassuring that there are female fans of lego out there... I don't know ANY other (male or female) adult fans of lego beside myself, so it can sometimes make me feel odd that I 'still' like one of my 'childhood toys'. Of course, I'm old enough to not care what other people think, but the thought had occasionally occured that "what if only other guys understand this hobby... will I be viewed as childish by prospective partners" etc.
    So for me, hearing opinions and thoughts from clearly female fans is a fantastically reassuring thing... of course, that still doesn't mean i won't be single forever. LOL. :o)
  • jujem71jujem71 Member Posts: 7
    I have always had an interest in LEGO but my darling husband @bluemoose reintroduced me to it several years ago. We have now become seriously involved with these lovely little bricks. Because both of us are fans it does mean that we struggle when it comes to being in any way restrained about our LEGO expenditure. This is one of the pitfalls about both partners being AFOLs - no money but shed loads of LEGO :)
  • RogueRogue Member Posts: 27
    edited May 2011
    "This is one of the pitfalls about both partners being AFOLs - no money but shed loads of LEGO :) "

    On the plus side, if you ever lost your house – you could build yourself a new one. ;)
  • AETerryAETerry Member Posts: 48
    Yay! Other female AFOLs!

    And what would the Housing Market say if Lots of Lego Houses started showing up?
  • clundsbergclundsberg Member Posts: 44
    edited May 2011
    In reference to pink LEGO - I always found it interesting to think that colours are gender associated. Why is this? My son *loved* pink when he was a toddler and has a few pink hot wheels to prove it. Of course now that he is 6 and in school - notsomuch.
    It is also interesting that playmobile managed to seemingly have an easier time bringing girls into the fold.
    LEGO is a nice happy medium with star wars, city, space, medieval, etc. They are branching out with more and more female lego characters (I love the pirate and medieval one the best) which always helps. Growing up, boys had he-man and the girls could play along with She-Ra (actually if the boys wanted Hordak, he was part of the She-Ra line), Star Wars had Princess Leia and GIJoe had a handful of female characters. Common knowledge, but my point is that despite this, those cool girls that actually played with them were a rare breed.
    LEGO seems to be gradually filling that gap, but the main problem with them is (alas!) not exactly a good toy to be running around the yard with unless mowing over bricks doesnt bother anyone.
    But I digress (and jump tracks - a lot) this is an AFOL board and we collect as opposed to running around the house playing with LEGO, right?
  • AETerryAETerry Member Posts: 48
    edited May 2011
    But I digress (and jump tracks - a lot) this is an AFOL board and we collect as opposed to running around the house playing with LEGO, right?
    I run around the house with my daughter while playing with LEGO, hold your head up high and rejoice ye fans of LEGO. This is a toy and a hobby that shall know no bounds or limits be it gender or age!
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    @clundsberg Interesting question about pink. According to the article on gender roles, "gender expression refers to the external manifestation of one's gender identity, through masculine, feminine, or gender-variant or gender neutral behavior, clothing, hairstyles, or body characteristics." As a society or culture, we express gender differences externally and I am not surprised that we do it by color as well. A similar question would be why are skirts and dresses gender associated?

    @AETerry I like your sentiment! LEGO unbounded!
  • clundsbergclundsberg Member Posts: 44
    @AETerry - I *totally* run around my house with legos. I really must learn how to do sarcasm in text beter :D To me building Legos is also more fun if th emini's help out. If I stop during mid-construction, I have to set it up so they look like they are working on the set/vehicle.
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    edited May 2011
    ^ please don't take offence at this, it is not meant as such, but it is LEGO, not Legos ;o)
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    ^ according to The LEGO Group.... whose authority over the English language is unquestionable ;)
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    edited May 2011
    It's a an example of a 'non-countable noun' or 'mass noun', like 'snow' or 'gravel' ... you don't say "there's a lot of snows on my front lawn", or "my drive is made of gravels", so you wouldn't say "there's a lot of legos on my rug" :-)
  • EnbricEnbric Member Posts: 64
    I don't think there's much to gain from a LEGO vs Lego vs Legos discussion.
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    Actually, The LEGO Group insists it's an adjective.
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    That's because they want us to say 'LEGO bricks' every time, but, frankly, life is too short. Last time I checked, LEGO didn't get to decide what counted as 'English', and I'm happy with it being a noun ...
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    I'm just trying to save @Martin some work ;-)
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    Who decided it's a non-countable noun then? I can count the legos on my rug ;)
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,245
    edited May 2011
    I don't think there's much to gain from a LEGO vs Lego vs Legos discussion.
    I agree with you here but I will just say that, here in the UK we never pluralise it: that seems to be an American phenomenon.

    Do you do the same with other 'non-countable nouns' like milk, sheep and software?
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    ^ Agreed. It is an American phenomenon. The way things are spelled here are different from the way things are spelt in the UK ;)

    "Do you do the same with other 'non-countable nouns' like milk, sheep and software?"

    Not with milk, sheep, and software. But we do with hair, light, noise, paper, room, time, and work. Some nouns can be both countable and uncountable. I would say we treat Lego the same way, sometimes countable and sometimes uncountable. It is perfectly acceptable.
  • MartinMartin Member Posts: 375
    Thanks @atkinsar, my shift and delete key have been working overtime here... :-)
  • EnbricEnbric Member Posts: 64
    I don't think there's much to gain from a LEGO vs Lego vs Legos discussion.
    I agree with you here but I will just say that, here in the UK we never pluralise it: that seems to be an American phenomenon.

    Do you do the same with other 'non-countable nouns' like milk, sheep and software?
    I think that it isn't an issue with pluralizing a non-countable noun as much as it is that Americans think that it is a countable noun. Now why it is considered countable in the US and non-countable in the rotw, I don't know.

    As you know, news outlets almost always refer to them as "Legos" on this side of the pond, and almost every time the first comment to the article is an attempt to correct it. Articles with comments like this from a few days ago seem to be the norm.

    It's definitely an American phenomenon and a strange one at that.
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