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back in 1998 when i was in Bosnia i bought some sets at our PX-shop (where i also worked as a volunteer) Just a little while though, was more busy with other things.....
About half a year ago i got back most of my old lego from my mom, induced by the fact my oldest son is about to get the LEGO-age..... Some classic sets are incomplete, others are complete. Love them still :) Even my son likes them and plays occasionally with them, of course under my supervision;)
So now i woke up from hibernation and with two boys we're going to have great times, also with getting bulk lots at ebay :)
Anyway, mine was 1977-1985 or so, or ages 8-14. Most of my classic space sets said they were recommended for ages 8-14 or something like that, so I thought something was wrong with me for playing with them when I was 16. Soon I started driving a car, going to summer jobs, and later going to college. These things made me forget about LEGO for a while. After the Star Wars sets appeared, my mother bought me an occasional LEGO set every other year or so. I also received the 8375 Ferrari F1 Pit set when I started watching Formula 1 a few years ago. My parents had kept all of my old LEGO in some large boxes and brought them to me to get them out of their house. They stayed in those boxes through a move cross country and back.
My dark ages really ended when my wife and I were at our local mall a year ago and saw a sign that said, "LEGO store opening September 2010". Wow! I started looking at www.lego.com, and I soon found Brickset and some other websites. There were so many new elements that did not exist before! So many themes that had come and gone! I dug out my old sets to check if I really had some of the sets I remembered. My brickset inventory jumps from 1985 to 1992 (6075 Wolfpack Tower from eBay) to 1999 (7101 Lightsaber Duel). Then there are sporadic SW sets up to 2010 when I came totally out of the dark ages. Now I am busy finding the sweet spot where I can buy just enough LEGO without making my wife wonder if I am spending too much.
I've slowed down at various points on the LEGO buying if there weren't any sets I wanted, already had the ones I wanted (and just waiting for new sets to come out) or have had financial hold ups. I'm not sure how many other "Dark Ages" would be classified from that.
If a person moves and has to put stuff (LEGO) into Storage, I wouldn't really count that as a Dark Age, and I have had several times in my life moving, but never stopped my love of LEGO.
Since my collection has always been focused on Star Wars, classic castle and pirates, I've bought lots of stuff online. That means that you can't trace my "dark age" in my Lego setlist. Right now, I'm selling of some odd items in my collection so that I can afford to buy some other stuff that I've wanted to buy for several years.
BTW, I just walked a step into the renaissance by compulsively grabbing a Pharaoh's Quest set off the shelf rack yesterday. Yay.
Christmas 2010, I was at the mall to go to the Apple store to check out what this "iPad" thing was all about... Right across from the Apple store is the Lego store.
I didn't even know they HAD Lego stores, much less ALL THAT! I was just amazed, I loved Lego when I was a kid, had buckets of basic bricks, a few baseplates, etc. when I was a kid in the 80s, but heck, what was ALL THIS AMAZING STUFF?!?!?
My son was 5 years old, I saw the trains, he was really into Thomas the Tank Engine at the time, and I thought, remote control, Lego trains, that looks cool, so I picked it up...
Tens of thousands of dollars later, two rooms of our house taken over... I am completely and totally addicted...
Building Lego has become our "family thing", everyone builds, but it all started with Yellow Cargo Train...
What's weird is how addictive the hobby is. I mean we're just talking about plastic bricks but somehow it has taken over so much of my daily life. I almost liken it to a drug like cigarettes where I need a consistent fix every hour or so.
Ever since X-Wing on PC back in 1993, I have always loved the Y-Wing for some reason. I guess I am a bomber at heart.
My wife had purchased some winter village sets in 2010, but I didn't really think much of it. Little did I know what would happen a year later!
In general, I really don't have any regrets about the Lego addiction. There are much worse things to be addicted to. Plus, I could sell most of the EOL sets and make back what I paid or more. And it's another hobby to keep my brain active.
Bought the Prince of Persia sets after seeing the movie.
Then this Year I picked up the new Super heroes Batman Sets and On my B-day the new X-wing and Now a month later We have 50+ star Wars sets and Counting.
Can't wait till the summer Lego sets come out here.
Also planning on getting the LOTR stuff and marvel Super hero sets.
My son got some for Christmas one year (basic bricks box) and I was playing with it with him, and then wanted some extra pieces and found bricklink, and then (re)found "proper" Lego and started MOC'ing from there. It took me over two years to actually buy a real set, rather than just parts on bricklink.
400 sets later I also have SW, SH, etc. No sign of it stopping!
The set that really blew me away was GG, it was the final nail in my wallets coffin!
So she is responsible for my addiction, just another reason I love her so much! We are getting married next month, with a lego bride & groom on our cake of course!
Now that we are speaking of.. I have a box full of the new wave of Summer SW sets to bring home.. :D
And you know, Brickset here certainly hasn't hurt :).
Well I came out of my Dark ages 4 years back when I stumbled onto the Fantasy Era theme locally. It was a crazy day :) I rushed home, got online, checked prices on Lego.com as back then I didn't had a clue about Bricklink or Brickset. Then rushed back to that toy store, offered my vendor friend 30% off, he did not agree, then rushed back home, rechecked prices on Ebay, then again went to my vendor friend, and did not leave his store till he agreed on my price :D Bought $300 worth of Lego from his store, some City, some Fantasy Era, some Star wars. Got the items at 40% off.
And since then, my wallet does not like me :P and the wife rolls her eyes, but my kid loves me to be the Coolest dad in the world :)
Basically, I played with Legos from a wee kid to probably about age 14 or something, but eventually I had so many other hobbies that it fell to the wayside. It didn't help that I had relatively few sets, not that many to display or anything. Our family was always tight on money, so the collection wasn't big. Now I'm 28, and in the years in between I haven't done much with Legos. I did build a few of my sets partially some years ago to try and preserve them. But after '99 or so I hadn't really kept track of new sets and such, because at that point it seemed there weren't really many interesting sets around anyway - the Castle stuff (my favorite theme) was a bit meh, and the initial Star Wars sets didn't seem all that awesome... and so forth.
As it turned out now that I came out of my dark age, I should've done the preservation thing much earlier. As we were emptying our things from our childhood home - mother was moving away from there - I wanted to of course take the Legos, which had been by far my favorite childhood toys. But as I finally found them and started assembling them, so many of the sets have missing or broken parts because of my youngest brother's destructive ways. And of course from heavy use by me as well as my brothers, in general the parts are very worn, discolored, teeth marks, etc etc.
But on the positive side, I did discover that building the sets aside from the missing and broken parts was just as fun as back when I was a kid. So I got the irresistable urge to get new sets, for a new building experience, and to collect my favorite themes again - things worthy of display and not worn down by age.
I should've done this at least two years back. Because now Kingdoms, the best Castle line so far, is hard to get - I've managed to get started in it fairly well now though - at least in terms of amount of soldiers! What's more though is the Star Wars line that has seen many improvements over the initial stuff. Vader's black-and-gray ship is out of production, same with A-Wing and Snowspeeder.. and it's hard to get stormtroopers now too what with Imperial Dropship also being out of production :( And I'd need a bunch of them. At the same time I don't like the idea of buying used - and usually overpriced. Also a Star Destroyer would've been nice. I have a great craving for the Super Star Destroyer now, and hope I can manage getting it before it's out of production too. So far the only SW set I've secured is the TIE Defender. From current sets aside from the SSD I also want the TIE Fighter and possibly the Endor battle pack to at least get a second stormtrooper. Death Star and R2-D2 would be great too, but I don't think that's possible with my financial means :( Fury fits into that category too - it looks nice, despite not being familiar with the ship. In any case I've got dioramas planned for both Star Wars and Kingdoms, once I can get all the necessary things.
Long story short, I'm back in the "game" and craving for more to build. If only my wallet was happy about it.
Eleven months ago (July, 2011) was a very tough time for me at work... Irrational boss(es), HR involvement, soul-searching on my part, and very very long and intense weeks. My wife told me, and I remember it vividly: "get a hobby or get a new job."
My lack of time and decisiveness made me think back to my childhood and remember what it had been to smile, laugh, and be happy. LEGO used to do that for me.
So the next time we were in Target, I picked up the little packaged Creator Mini Plane. From that point on, I was hooked. I found (sadly) Brickset only after spending wayy too much on eBay, making rookie mistakes on prices I paid. Then I began to (obsessively) read Brickset and buy more and more from the Lego Store. Until very recently, I had been saying that everything was for my 2 sons (2 and 4), but now all my relatives and friends know that is not the truth.
Thankfully, Lego has kept me sane and stopped me from making a bad work situation worse.
Middle of 2010, My friend which was working with me wanted to buy a present for his son, we went to the Entertainer and we choose a nice creator truck for him. There was a Brickbeard's bounty on the shelf which brought me the memories back! I always wanted a pirate ship, but my parents couldn't afford that kind of big set. Later on we had quiet a lot to drink, few bottles of Vodka finished. Next day I woke up, I can see my account down by 88.00 spent on ebay. I bought the Barracuda ! Few months later I could not stop, I started buying few smaller sets etc. then the IF, QAR, death star... now superheroes come up... so I need them all...
I'm still trying to convince my girlfriend that that's for reselling ;D
and I love the minifigs. all series present.
I hemmed and hawed and finally got it in December of last year, after realizing I HAD to have a 4 foot long Lego depiction of such a cool ship.
While at the Lego store to purchase it, I noticed a built Pet Shop in the store window. I would never have thought I would be interested in a Lego "doll house" but after leaving the store, I could not get Pet Shop out of my mind. It was so polished, so sophisticated. It looked nothing like the Legos from my childhood and after about 24 hours of pondering, I ordered it from shop at home.
That was all last December. Now barely 7 months later, I think I have nearly $3,000 sunk into Legos and am fully addicted.
My Lego history is almost identical to the original poster's. I still have all my childhood Lego from the '70s and early '80s in my mom's attic. I know I have all the parts to build "yellow castle" and "Galaxy Explorer" up there. When I was a kid, the only Lego stuff I really cared about was "Space" and "Castle".
I vaguely recall the introduction of the Pirate system, which came out just as I was getting old enough to forget about Legos. I remember being frustrated by the launch of the dedicated ship parts just as I was getting out of Lego, as I had tried for years before that to make a good looking pirate ship with little success!
As a kid, the sets I had lasted about 24 hours in built form. They were always quickly dismantled, thrown into the giant pile of pieces, and really, the only Lego world I ever knew was that of MOCing.
I recall making a not bad looking ORCA ship from the movie "Jaws", an off-shore oil drilling rig, and countless other stuff.
I also recall trying to build a Mil Mi-24 gunship, probably around 1980 or so!
I feel the anniversary of my return to Lego as quite a big thing, back to doing something I love and really wanted to do, build a massive city from plastic bricks.
Who else saw their Lego return as a momentous occasion? Who can remember their first set or even the set that bought about their return?
So I am a total newbie in more ways than one...
My very first introduction to Lego came when my son was about 4 in 1986. I helped him build houses, cars and trucks, etc. The Lego collection was added to with each of my four children, so now I have a 60litre crate of basic Lego. This is now being used by my grandchildren when they visit.
I started collecting my very first set at the beginning of February, I'm a late bloomer I suppose...lol