I figure I may as well do something with this blog, since I have one. I've got a bunch of views, so far, but no posts to merit those views, which I don't understand, but okay. I never really had much to talk about until recently, though. I think I've settled on a theme for this blog, or at least for this post, but I think it's going to have something to do with the fact that things are much different now than they used to be. At first glance, that statement might sound a bit negative, but I just mean that things aren't the way they used to be. 5-10 years down the road, everything will be different. That's just the way life goes.
More specifically, my relationships with LEGO and BZPower are significantly different than they were 10-11 years ago. When I first joined the site back in 2003, I was still a youngster. By that point I had been following the Bionicle story fervently; I knew all the characters' names and powers, I knew about every single Rahi and Kanohi, and I was intimately familiar with the island of Mata-Nui, even though there were still many secrets I had yet to discover at that point in time. I was also very interested in MOCing, piecing together MOCs from my piles and piles of pieces I had been collecting ever since my grandmother bought me my first Bionicle sets in 2001. I stumbled onto BZPower after hearing about it on the Bionicle message boards on LEGO.com. There were a few active posters on the boards, but a few would always sign off as "So-and-so from BZPower." One day, I decided I had to figure out what this "BZPower" place was. I knew it had to be related to Bionicle in some way, but I honestly had no clue what I was about to discover.
To my 10 year old self, finding BZPower was like me at the age of 21 discovering a $500 check I had forgotten to deposit - basically, quite possibly the best thing that could ever have happened to me at the time. I was greeted by a wealth of information related to this universe I had fallen in love with, complete with references and helpful links. Then I entered the forums and my entire life was changed. I discovered there were other kids like me who loved these toys and this story as much as I did, sharing similar interests outside of the toys, too. Writing fan-fiction, building MOCs, making comics - this place had it all. So I joined without hesitation.
I was never a user of much status, save for the few times I posted a particularly impressive MOC or started up a comic series that I lost interest in before the second comic was published, but I was always around. There wasn't a term for it back then (or if there was, it wasn't very popular) but I would have been categorized as a "lurker," or somewhere who visits often but doesn't contribute content or discussion. Plenty of online communities have those - and to this day I'm still somewhat of a lurker in many places - but back in the day if you didn't post, you weren't on the radar. Even now, if you're not making content or replying to topics, you're just another name.
I did my fair share of posting, though. I knew the unwritten rules of each forum I frequented and whatever acronyms they had. BBC and Comedies is where I spent most of my time, however. I was utterly fascinated by the hilarious spins on the main storyline and the other stories people came up with, and I spent a lot of time honing my building skills and creating some impressive stuff (I go back through my old Brickshelf folder from time to time and gawk at the creativity of my younger self). I knew how to critique other users' MOCs and how to write my own chapters of comedies - I even had a few of my very own, but they were mostly just spin-offs of a comedy written by an old BZP friend of mine, Takiris.
Speaking of Takiris, of all the people I had met on BZPower, he was probably the one I knew the longest. Ever since I commented in his comedy "Matoro Gets Kidnapped" (which has since been deleted due to the Dataclysm of 2011) he and I were constantly collaborating on a variety of projects. We often guest-starred in each others' comedies, and I would guest-author a few chapters of his and vice-versa. We both realized I was the better MOCer of the two of us, so the responsibility fell to me to depict him when I could. Our fictional characters were inseparable friends, and he and I were pretty close IRL for a while. To this day, Takiris has a PGS spot in any work of Bionicle-Based Fiction I write.
Even so, the winds of change come blowing. Now, BZPower isn't quite the hub of activity it used to be, especially since the toyline it existed to discuss has been cancelled. I haven't kept up with Takiris (who now goes by a different screen name) in years, and he hasn't been active on BZP in a very long time. I'm not much into MOCing like I used to be, even though my current picture comic series is based on my MOCs. Things are very different now. I have different priorities in my life - school, work, and church, mostly. I'm also active on Reddit and currently am very heavily involved in a growing community over there. My interests have changed a lot, too. I will always have a place in my heart for these story-driven pieces of plastic, but I'm not 10 or 15 anymore.
I was gonna try to write about how things are different now a little bit more than I did, but then I got carried away with reminiscing. I may try to cover that in a later post, though.
Thanks for reading!