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The Origin of Ben King
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When I was very young, probably around 2 or 3, my dad showed me his old collection of Legos. All but one of his sets didn't have minifigures, they were mostly large scale cars or trucks and such. The one set he did have was a Johnny Thunder set that came with Johnny in a little desert jeep. http://lego.wikia.com/wiki/5918_Scorpion_Tracker
He liked the Johnny Thunder sets a lot because he was a fan of the Indiana Jones movies. My dad and I would build castles and all sorts of things with his bricks. Before long, I started getting sets too. I don't know what the first set I got was, but I think it was the Star Wars set with Qui-Gon Jin in the Trade Federation ship.
http://lego.wikia.com/wiki/7204_Jedi_Defense_II
I remember when I got that set I didn't know much about Star Wars and I told my sister that the guy with the long hair and beard (Qui-Gon) was Obi-Wan, and I also told her that white was the most powerful color of Lightsabers.

One of my real life friends and neighbors, Elliot Lannon, whom I had known since I was born started collecting sets as well. During the summer after Kindergarten a new neighbor moved in. His name was Evan and he was a couple years older than Elliot and I, but we still became friends. Elliot and I found out that Evan liked Legos, too. Before long we all started building sets that could fit together and we would come up with a plot and play it out on our sets. More often than not we wouldn't even know how it would end so we would just make it up as we went.

For years and years to follow I bought sets consistently. During those years I would go through many different "phases" were I would be obsessed with one theme for a while. Like most people at one point I was crazy about Star Wars. Usually the games Elliot, Evan, and I would play would match the theme we were into. I still go through "phases" such as these, that partly explains why I have so many folders on my homepage.

I continued building avidly until somewhere around 6th grade. At that point I still built Legos, but it was sort of like I had a extended builders block. I also still bought sets. A few of my others friends had been Lego fans as well, but one by one they all lost interest until only Elliot and Evan were left. It was a depressing time in my Lego "career." I didn't want to be bored of Legos, but whenever I sat down to build I just ended up sitting there for hours, searching desperately for a spark of interest to re-ignite my passion. Yet nothing came.

I'm not really sure how I got back into Legos. There are a few possibilities. One is that I got some sets for Christmas and I somehow got inspiration. Another, which definitely contributed if it wasn't the cause, was the fact that summer came and Evan, Elliot, and I had lots of free time and one of us decided that we should play another game like we used to. The third is that I just randomly got inspiration, which is possible considering I get a lot of ideas for creations randomly.

Anyway, at that point I was interested again and thats what matters. During that summer that I described above Elliot, Evan, and I played many games. When school hit, we all sort of got less active because of homework. During winter break we played another game.

When spring came, I had been looking up pictures of Lego creations on Google, and I found out how good some builders were. I was utterly blown away with what people did with their bricks. I soon began finding as many cool creations as I could and I saved them and showed them to Evan and Elliot so we could use them for inspiration for out games that summer.

After finding awesome creations in just about every theme you could think of, I took a liking to Pirates. While I was searching for cool pirate creations I found Sebeus I's Flickr account. I was amazed by his creations! Building custom hull was something I never thought was possible. I had never even though of it at all.

While looking at his creations I noticed he had a Mocpages account also. I had come across Mocpages a couple times during my research, but all I knew was it was a really slow website, so I didn't ever really check it out (this was before the mocpages crash). I really loved his creation "l'Amor del Comercio."
(http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/271263) It still remains one of my favorites of his to this day. Anyways, summer came and I decided that I would build my own version of it because it looked so cool. I studied the pictures for a few days, then I spent 4 days (and late nights) working on my rendition. When I was done I showed it to Evan and Elliot. They agreed it was very cool and they wanted to build there own.

While they built their own versions, I started reading up on mocpages. It looked like a pretty cool place. It was filled with all sorts of Lego fans. I then did something that would change my Lego "career" forever. I created an account. I plunged into the vast sea of creations on the pages. I was officially a Lego freak now, I was past the point of no return. That same day, July 7th 2011, I posted my first creation. The Ombra Morte. Like with most of my creations, I look back now seeing all sorts of flaws, but at the time I thought it was awesome. Still, it was a big improvement on what I had built before mocpages.

I'm not going to go into a lot of detail about my creations because my mociversary is in a few days and I'll describe my builds in that post. I soon found other great builders such as Ian Spacek, Paul Vermeesch, and Max Pointner. Their works inspire me a lot, and over time I got to know them better.

Soon the Mocathalon came and I got to meet some really great friends as well as builders. These are Paul Romano, Sebeus I, Rinse Jan, and Christopher Baldacci.

Through other events I got to meet many other great people. The list is way to big to put here.

In case any of you are wondering, Elliot and Evan still build to this day. Elliot has a mocpages account, thought he isn't the most active builder ever. Evan also has one, but he goes by e chr1s as his account name. Evan doesn't have any creations yet, because he is extremely busy, so he only builds in the summer. Hopefully he'll get some up soon. The only people who know about my hobby are my friends who used to like Legos, Elliot and Evan, and my family.

And now we reach the present. I feel I have improved since when I first came here. I plan on continuing building for my entire life and am excited to see what the future holds for me.

Thanks for reading this very long story,
-Ben
Permalink
| July 3, 2012, 5:31 pm
Terrific testimony, Ben! Believe it or not, the Scorpion Tracker was one of my very first sets; I remember that I used to enjoy driving it over the radiators in my house, pretending they were giant Egyptian artifacts. Good times! It's been great getting to know you and hopefully we'll get to meet one of these days :)
Permalink
| July 3, 2012, 5:58 pm
Very nice, the scorpion tracker is a set I will never forget,
Nice to know I have played a role in your coming to mocpages :)
Btw, I still have l'Amor del Comercio, never wanted to demolish it.
Permalink
| July 5, 2012, 9:17 am
Great origin story, pretty long for someone who doesn't have dozens of years of history to go over :P
Permalink
| July 7, 2012, 8:51 am
Quoting Flare .
Great origin story, pretty long for someone who doesn't have dozens of years of history to go over :P

Thanks! You're right, it is rather long...
Permalink
| July 7, 2012, 1:06 pm
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