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The Great American Road Trip - 18 - Bricks Cascade

Posted by Sumiki , in BIONICLE/LEGO, BZPower, Life, The Great American Road Trip Jun 02 2012 · 7,484 views

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Today, we got up early and headed down to the Oregon Convention Center for the first public day of Bricks Cascade.

It was awesome.

I got my BZP Staff shirt (which is awesome and I never ever want to take it off) as well as a BZP Staff brick for my brick badge, which is still in a drawer somewhere in North Carolina. I met Kakaru and Swert for the first time as well. (The former's awesomeness is recounted in the entry immediately prior to this one.) I got a purple Zamor Sphere prototype after bugging Black Six for a bit, as well as one of those free little Mata Nui stones that were being handed out for free to all BZP members. (I think Kakaru also made them ... ? I'm not sure at this point, really; the entire day is kind of melding together.)

Just as a note, I'm not entirely sure of the order that these things happened in, so while they might be out of order, at least they're all be here. Hopefully.

Xccj got out his Quest for Makuta board game, and we played it on the ground in the middle section of the BIONICLE area, an area that was surrounded by tables. While xccj was very cordial in repeatedly explaining the rules to Kakaru, his brother, Velox, Swert, and me, we all still forgot parts of the rules. (Velox kept leaning back and texting people and only got like one thing during the game.) Kakaru got on a tear at one point and declared himself the Slaughterer of Rahi.

This game never got finished, because one thing after another happened. Swert thought his phone was missing, until he realized that xccj had moved it to one of his coat pockets. Also, Binkmeister showed up.

Yeah. Binky. The guy who basically helped BZPower get started. He's a really awesome guy, and we all sort of randomly chatted with him for a few minutes before he had to leave. (I was relieved to know that I wasn't the only one who got a bunch of free stuff from Kakaru - if Bink had stuck around longer he might have walked off with Kakaru's entire collection.)

Around this time, we had the bright idea to arrange the chairs like the interior of a car and imitate the famous "What is Love?" GIF. Swert played the driver, I was the guy next to him banging his jaw open, and Kakaru was in the middle of the backseat area, his jaw unhooked into a trollface and sliding back and forth. Velox filmed this, and after reviewing the video he took, I can safely say that we're all pretty crazy people to even think about doing that, not to mention actually going through with it. If a GIF of three people at a convention doing this gets circulated around the BZP blogs, the few people left on this site with the impression that we have anything in our heads that even remotely resembles sanity would realize their horrible mistake.

By then, we were all getting pretty hungry, so the six of us decided to go to a nearby mall's food court. This was well past afternoon, and the only thing I had to consume all day up until that point was a large bottle of water. However, xccj had to go back to the con for something that he had inadvertently left behind, so Velox, Kakaru and I screwed around on top of large stone spheres that were placed in a nearby courtyard area. The other BZP staff were just walking back from getting lunch at a donut shop and waved to us. (Later, Black Six told us that "we saw a bunch of people in light blue shirts doing stupid stuff on these balls, and I thought 'is that our staff?' Then we got closer and I was like 'yep, that's our staff.'") We then hid before xccj came back - all save for Swert, who looked like a stalker in a bush.

We went into the mall and traveled up the stairs to the third floor, where we ate. Kakaru and Velox noticed a dental office located inside the mall, and suggested a few things that we could do to prank them - eating cinnamon rolls in their office, or going inside and asking for a burger with a side of fries. Eventually, Kakaru decided on going in and asking them if they would sell him a toothbrush. While they wouldn't sell him a toothbrush or toothpaste, they gave him a one-time-only use brush for free. Velox and I were doing all that we could to contain our laughter.

Thinking that the toothbrush incident would be the only hilarity the mall would provide to us, the offices for a dental school were beside us as we walked out. I pointed these out to Kakaru and dared him to go inside and ask for toothbrushes. They gave him both toothbrushes and toothpaste completely for free.

We went back to the convention center and got there right before the public hours were about to end. Since I had only paid the eight dollars necessary to enter the con for that day only, I thought it would be akin to BrickFair and they'd have to go just short of sweeping people out with a broom to get the public out. Amazingly, I was able to walk around the place freely without a badge, and no one said a thing to me about it.

At one end of the convention center, they had set up a big ramp, one which small car MOCs could be set up on. They had a contest going on to see how far various MOCs would go. While I was initially a spectator to this madness, Kakaru convinced me to run over to the free-play Duplo section, rapidly build a MOC, then set it off. I put Winnie the Pooh on it, but despite this, it spun out of control nearly immediately after getting off the ramp. They later curved the ramp and set it up on the table. It took Winnie a couple of times to make it over, but after it did, I pronounced Winnie dead and reminded people that it was a lesson in always wearing your seatbelts.

After this was over, we went on over to another room, where I planked on a table for a while until other people came in. Kakaru was one of the finalists in the figure-out-which-collectible-minifig-is-in-the-bag-while-you're-blindfolded contest, and Velox and I made up the sparse cheering section for him.

We went back to the main convention center, where we made commentary on various MOCs, badly mispronounced both BIONICLE names and BZPower member names, and generally goofed off until everyone in the main center was made to sit in a smaller room so they could announce the prizes - but not before Kevin Hinkle had a Q&A session, where I learned that Ninjago would be ending though it was the second-most-profitable line (though we were promised that its successor would make the Ninjago fans ask why they didn't end it sooner). The Collectible Minifigs are also going to have at least six more waves, and Friends is doing very well. Black Six asked the obligatory "when is BIONICLE coming back?" question, and he might also have asked when the Monorail line was returning. All you had to do, from that point onward, to get the entire room to laugh was to mention "monorail." They then gave out the prizes - Kakaru won two or three while xccj racked up four or so.

However, it was time to leave, so handshakes went all around - save for Kakaru, who gave me a hug. I wish I could have stayed around for the fancy dinner - and tomorrow's day as well - but alas, that is not to be. We got back to the hotel in time to see folks in elaborate costume and makeup, portraying zombies, skeletons, vampires, Henry VIII, Cleopatra, grim-reaper-meets-Slender-Man-in-skeleton-bling-people, ghostbusters, Charles Dickens impersonators ... the list really does go on and on. (Apparently there's some sort of convention in the hotel where all of these people are attending.) The funniest thing about it are the voices - one monster would approach another and say "hey man, what's up?" in a jovial tone completely the opposite of what their outward looks would dictate their voices sound like.

Tomorrow, recovery from a severe awesomeness overdose as we begin the long drive back home.

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I can't even begin to describe everythings we did, so I love that you can actually remember everything. The toothbrush part was by far the most memorable. :sunglasses:
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Ninjago's ending? :surprised: Do we have a timeframe for when that will happen? I thought another season of the TV show was already produced/in production. So I expected at the very least we'd get one wave of sets next year. So is this announcement a short-term thing (i.e. Ninjago ends at the end of this year) or a long-term thing (i.e. We have an ending planned, but it's not happening yet)?
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Ninjago... ending? Goodness. It's becoming hard to keep up with LEGO news these days when they can decide to end things without even giving any indication that they're not doing well...

At least in the cases of BIONICLE and LEGO Universe we had seen signs that they were struggling, and in the cases of Design byME and Hero Recon Team the challenges in making those things successful were understandable. But Ninjago? From what we'd seen, the TV show had been an overwhelming success, the sets had been hugely popular with their core audience, and the other story media like books and magazines seemed to be flourishing as well.

Any news on when exactly it's ending? I had been under the impression that there would be another season of the Ninjago TV show next year. So this is nothing if not abrupt.

EDIT: Yeah, production designer Bjarne Hansen says on his blog "We have just finished "season 3" were Anne [Hofmann] and I shared the production designer title." Unless the quotation marks are meant to suggest that this is the entirely new LEGO TV series we're expecting in 2013 and not in fact a real "season 3" for Ninjago, that quote would imply that either the show is continuing in some form or they put in a lot of work for a season that is never actually going to air.

Anne Hofmann is a lot less cryptic about it: "From beginning of season 2 till the end of season 3 I worked together with Bjarne Hansen on the Design of the series..."
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It took Winnie a couple of times to make it over, but after it did, I pronounced Winnie dead and reminded people that it was a lesson in always wearing your seatbelts.


We really missed out this time :(
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when do pictures

I want see
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Can you give us a list of the winners?
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I can't even begin to describe everythings we did, so I love that you can actually remember everything. The toothbrush part was by far the most memorable. :sunglasses:

I completely failed to mention about half of the smaller things that happened there and they could probably go in another entry or something. And yes ... toothbrushiebrushiebrushie.

Ninjago... ending? Goodness. It's becoming hard to keep up with LEGO news these days when they can decide to end things without even giving any indication that they're not doing well...

Any news on when exactly it's ending? I had been under the impression that there would be another season of the Ninjago TV show next year. So this is nothing if not abrupt.

Thing is, Ninjago is doing quite well. After the awards ceremony I briefly discussed the business decision of this with Black Six. While it doesn't make too much sense, Kevin Hinkle did say that they didn't want to fall into the "BIONICLE trap" as he put it. Basically, they were afraid that if the line had continued for much longer then they'd end up losing money on the line, as the fans that are buying the sets now probably won't in a few years' time.

Can you give us a list of the winners?

I can't remember them all.
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Jun 04 2012 05:44 PM
Could you tell me what the answer to the "When is Bionicle coming back?" question was? You actually didn't say. :P

Shame about Ninjago ending though. I wonder what LEGO have up their sleeve next.
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Could you tell me what the answer to the "When is Bionicle coming back?" question was? You actually didn't say. :P

Kevin Hinkle faked like he was waking off the stage and laughed it off as a stupid question. We did ask Binkmeister about it, however, and he said that it wasn't coming back now, but there definitely weren't any "it won't ever come back" notions within LEGO. Like he said, you never really know.
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Hahli Husky
Jun 04 2012 11:46 PM
So THAT'S why the chairs were set up like that. Also sorry about ruining your in-progress game board. I wanted to make it the island. :<

Also that toothbrush-get you guys did was the most hilarious thing I've heard about like, ever. XD
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Also sorry about ruining your in-progress game board. I wanted to make it the island. :<

There was no possible way we were going to continue playing it anyway. Too many more awesome things happened.
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Great recap Sumiki!

Allow me to provide a bit of clarity on the Ninjago update. Unfortunately, it was a slight miscommunication on my part. Things are constantly changing and evolving in our business and my last report had shown Ninjago ending at 2012. I did a bit of additional research after receiving so many follow up questions at the event and now via email, Flickr and PMs and can confirm that it will still be on the shelves in 2013. However, there are no plans beyond that. Of course, that, like anything in our business can change. The line has truly been successful, but we want to be very careful to exit the theme at the right time as to avoid falling into the state where the products are no longer as popular and discounts have to be made to move inventory. I hope this helps, and I appreciate your support of both the LEGO Brand and our Ninjago theme. However, that being said, you will still love some of the great themes launching next year! My apologies for the inconvenience this may have caused- you can now return to your regularly scheduled programing already in progress. :)

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Man, and here I was, under the impression that I was the only person who still played/owned the Quest for Makuta board game. For those of you who have not played it: it is awesome.

I'm looking forward to hearing the other trophy winners, as well as just seeing pictures from the convention.
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He's the lord of all strangeness. - Ignika: Nerd of Life

How awesome is Sumiki on a scale of 1 to 10? - Waffles
42. - Black Six

[He's] the king of wierd, the prince of practicality, the duke of durr! - Daiker

Sumiki is magic. - Cholie

Sumiki says, "Do I creeeeeeep you out?" Yes, he does. - Waffles

Sumiki is a nub. He's cool, but he's still a nub. - Ran Yakumo

"What is a Sumiki?" You may ask. But the answer to that is still unknown, even to the Sumiki itself. - Daiker


Sumiki is best snickerdoodle. - Takuma Nuva

BZPower = Sumiki + McSmeag + B6. And Hahli Husky. - Vorex

What's a Sumi? Does it taste good? - Janus

I would have thought Sumiki wanted to reincarnate as a farm animal. - Kraggh


Sumiki: the horse_ebooks of bzp - VampireBohrok

Everything relates to Sumiki. No really, everything. - Daiker

Sumiki - hat-wearing ladies man. - Black Six

He's in worse mental condition than I thought. - Obsessionist

I'm just wondering why I'm looking at some cat dancing ... I suppose the answer would simply be "Sumiki." - Brickeens

I was like a beast, screaming through the mind of Sumiki at the speed of sound. I.. I wasn't strong enough to stop myself. What I saw was the end of infinity, through which one can see the beginning of time, and I will never be the same. - Portalfig

I imagine the 13th Doctor will be rather like Sumiki, at the rate we're going. - rahkshi guurahk

I was quite sure Sumiki had another set of arms stashed somewhere. - Bfahome

Note to future self: don’t try to predict Sumiki, he’s unpredictable. - Voltex

Let's be honest, I would totally have picked my main man Sumiki to lead my goose-stepping night killers anyway. We tight like that, yo. - Xaeraz

10/10, would Sumiki again. - Bfahome


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Every week, I post a new "Tuesday Tablescrap", a small MOC not worthy of a topic, but something to post and inspire me to build more.

10/25/11 - Duplo Flower
11/1/11 - Slender Man and Masky
11/8/11 - Bizarre Black Spaceship
11/15/11 - 2001 Monolith

11/22/11 - My Little Slizer 50
11/29/11 - Punching Bag
12/6/11 - Thunder and Escorts
12/13/11 - Three Concepts
12/20/11 - Kaxium Alternate
12/27/11 - None (Christmas Break)


1/3/12 - Daiker
1/10/12 - None
1/17/12 - Volant
1/24/12 - Nidman's Chute Shoop Shop
1/31/12 - None (Brickshelf down)
2/7/12 - None
2/14/12 - Atomic Lime
2/21/12 - Spearhead
2/28/12 - Glatorian Kahi
3/6/12 - Seeker
3/13/12 - Skyscraper
3/20/12 - Microphone
3/27/12 - Toa Vultraz
4/3/12 - Flammenwerferjüngeres
4/10/12 - Umbrella
4/17/12 - Lime Beetle
4/24/12 - Special - Flame Sculpture
5/1/12 - None (BZPower down)
5/8/12 - Purple Ninja
5/15/12 - The Original Sumiki
5/22/12 - 7/24/12 - None
7/31/12 - Tahu
8/7/12 - None (BrickFair)
8/14/12 - Special - Chess Set
8/21/12 - Heavily Armored Wasp
8/28/12 - Spaceship Drill
9/4/12 - Scuba Vehicle
9/11/12 - Orange Guy
9/18/12 - Strange Flying Thing
9/25/12 - Goblet
10/2/12 - None
10/9/12 - Aim .............................. Down
10/16/12 - Gold Bot
10/23/12 - Teal Mech
10/30/12 - Special - Teal Mech (#2)
11/6/12 - Bits and Pieces
11/13/12 - Two Spaceships
11/20/12 - TARDIS Interior
11/27/12 - Christmas Creep
12/4/12 - Toaraga
12/11/12 - Fireplace
12/18/12 - Abstract Duckling
12/25/12 - None (Christmas)
1/1/13 - Black Bot
1/8/13 - 1/22/13 - None
1/29/13 - Handheld Rhotuka Launcher
2/5/13 - 8/6/13 - None
8/13/13 - The Hinklebot
8/20/13 - Special - Post-Apocalyptic Piyufi
8/27/13 - 8/5/14 - None
8/12/14 - Another Chro Original
8/19/14 - Kanohi Zatth
8/26/14 - Miniland Hatpile
9/2/14 - S. S. Starfish
9/9/14 - Special - Claude Hairgel
9/16/14 - Green Flame
9/23/14 - Avohkah Tamer
9/30/14 - Special - The Havoc Wreaker
10/7/14 - Fire Snake


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Formerly known as the Bring Back Teal Club, the Unused Colors Society is a club that serves to promote colors that are little-used or discontinued, such as teal, old purple, or metallic blue.




ToM Dracone
-Toa Lhikevikk-
Dirk Strider
Toa Flappy
Lime Paradox
Toa Robert
The X
Dave Strider
Akuna Toa of Sonics
Commander Helios
Popup2: The Camel
~Shadow Kurahk~
~System Of A Down~
Kohrak Kal17
Jackson Lake
Thunder on the Mountain
Ackar's Follower
Bitter Cold
Doc Scratch
Mendicant Bias
Darth Eryzeth
Toa of Vahi
Makuta GigaDon
~Toa Drokonas~
Progenitus Worldsoul
Toa Kuhrii Avohkii
Bohrok Kal
Toa Neya 2011 Edition
~prisma son of dawn~
.: WoLVeRINe :.
Alternate Velika
Schnee 1
Brickeens (again!?)
The Great Forgetter
Thomas the Tank Engine
Jonah Falcon
Oh my miru
Element lord Of Milk.
Lexuk Toa Of Insanity
Michael J. Caboose
knuckles chaotix
The Bean
Lord Kaitan de Storms
Toa of Dancing
Toa Arzaki
The Oncoming Storm
Lego Obsessionist
Toa of Pumpkin
Teal Armada
Toa Zehvor Blackout
Mr. M
Mylo Xyloto
Lord of Ice
Gamzee Makara
Zarayna: The Quiet Light



Vorex: Keeper of Time


Toa of Smooth Jazz



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If you learn one thing in life, learn this:

You should never, ever question why demons would possess a soda.

just a heads up - Cthulhu would probably eradicate mankind before bringing back Bionicle

so yeah, all I'm saying is, please think twice about this okay

nothing gets democracy flowing like erratic capitalizatION

[the NSA] couldn't say no when I offered them an ostrich farm in exchange

Sumiki -- nice try but we all know Toa Mata Nui stuffs its bra

You have a great understanding of history, but don't forget, war, murder and other poor decisions are also huge characteristics.

Also a long line of really great hats.

Shhh, I'm trying to focus on the negative to justify my dislike of history.

have we mentioned hats

To be fair, I am the one responsible for the invention of Mafia in the 1320s by seventeen bored italians locked in a mine shaft.

It's a long story.


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