The one about the parents stepping on scattered Lego

He has done it: your dad has reached another parenting milestone. Early Sunday morning (it couldn’t possibly be “late Sunday morning” because you start your days, and ours, at 5 am now), I heard some contained screams of pain coming from the living room, followed by a very calm: “Nina, il faut que tu ranges tes Legos quand t’as fini de jouer”.

Bravo, Chéri, for keeping your cool where I might have totally lost it and woken up the whole house.

You see, uncle Nini, mein Maud and Abuelo were visiting so we could all celebrate your birthday together in Berlin. They came bearing gifts.

Abuelo gave you a Bosch workbench with lots of cool tools and gizmos and gadgets. Nini and mein Maud bought you your first tub of big kid Lego. I can’t promise to keep my hands off your Lego, forgive me. In fact, I could actually promise to never not play with it.

Lego was a huge part of Nini’s and my childhood. We played with it together, we built little space-cars and had adventures around the house, we fought over the “good” pieces (you know, like the heads that still had partial faces on them because they hadn’t been totally erased by our greasy little hands over time; or the flat pieces without which you can’t possibly make anything cool; or the “lights”, which are just little transparent pieces)… Those were the days.

I’ve read lots of parenting blogs and information websites in general, and a recurring story seems to be the one about the parents stepping on the pointy little Lego pieces scattered (some might say strategically) on the floor. This often happens in the dark or early in the morning when one is too tired to open one’s eyes completely and see one’s foot heading straight for…

Lego! *wince*. Note: for the record, I find it important to disclose that this evil arrangement of malicious Lego occurred naturally as I pulled a fistful of pieces out of the tub and deposited them onto the carpet.

Uncle Nini had a thought: you already have Duplo, and the pieces are much bigger. Wouldn’t that hurt more? Oh, my little brother, still so much to learn…

A bigger piece will make contact with your foot before you’ve put your full weight on that foot, therefore allowing you to draw back. Worst case scenario: you don’t pull back quickly enough and you get one, maybe two, relatively sharp corners digging into your tender foot. However, the smaller pieces use their size to their advantage, only revealing their presence to your unsuspecting foot once you’ve taken the weight of your body off the back leg, thereby making it impossible to stop the soon-to-be aching foot from pressing down. But, just how many pieces fit under an adult foot? Contrary to Duplo, Lego pieces can nicely fit a good ten pieces under your foot. At four corners on top per piece, you’re looking at fourty tiny, pointy corners to potentially injure yourself on.

So, please don’t booby-trap the floors of our house.

And congratulations, Chéri, for having survived another parenting milestone!

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