Questions are easy... it's the answers that can be hard to find.
About this creation
Consider if you will, a man: nobody special, just an average ordinary everyday Lego minifigure. Opening his eyes, he finds himself in a strange place.
"What the... Where am I? What is this place? How did I get here? All right, slow down, think -- what's the last thing you remember... I don't remember anything! Where I came from, who I am... My name... what's my name? I can't remember my name! What's going on here?"
"Gotta stay calm... concentrate on what you DO know. I don't seem to be injured... dressed all in white -- like a mental patient or something -- am I nuts? Is this even real? Calm down, calm down... I'm bald, have I always been bald? God, I just don't know!"
The questions mount up and no answers are forthcoming. He begins to wonder if he's alone, and shouts "HELLO! CAN ANYONE HEAR ME?!" The only response is the echo of his own frightened voice. He seems to recall from somewhere in the void that used to be his memory that when you are lost, it's best to stay put. But as there is nothing obviously advantageous about his current position, he begins to move.
The answer to where he is soon becomes clear: he is in some sort of maze. But this only begs more questions. Who constructed it? And for what purpose? Why is he inside it, with no memory of any outside world? "The government," he mutters to himself. "I just know the government has something to do with this."
Turning a corner, the corridor he has been following abruptly dead-ends. An annoyed sigh escapes his lips. Rather than turn back, he thinks, "I wonder if I could climb out?" But the walls are too smooth, there's nowhere to get a grip. Trying to jump is useless. "I have no knee joints, jumping is impossible. It's a wonder I can even walk!"
Continuing on, the thought that he might be dead crosses his mind. He has no idea if he's a religious man or not -- is he in Hell? Limbo? Does he even believe in these places?
"Here's something different, at least!" Leaving the white walls behind and entering a red section, he is excited, and his pace quickens. Although the only difference in his situation is the color of the walls around him, he feels somehow that he's making progress.
But all too quickly the red walls seem to close in on him, as if he's in the belly of some enormous beast. He begins, unconsciously, to move faster -- before he knows it he is running, not thinking clearly, making turns at random.
Seeing white walls again, he realizes that he's just gone in a circle. He forces himself to slow down, take a deep breath, and try the other direction.
But he hits a dead end. And then another dead end. Panic begins to nibble at the corners of his brain. He attempts to ignore his heart hammering in his chest, and goes back the other way again.
Try as he might, he can't stop himself from running. The echoes of his frantic footfalls pursue him. He sees a blue corridor and dives into it, as into a pool of cool refreshing water.
Calmer now, he is even able to laugh at himself a bit. "Imagine getting so freaked out back there, and over what? Nothing! Nothing at all!"
But that is precisely the problem. As he walks on, the nothingness presses more and more heavily upon him. "Am I alone here? Is there anything here but these damned walls? If only I could come across some sign... of something... of anything!"
Another dead end. He sits down to reflect. "Is this all a dream, a delusion? Is this all in my head? Or am I some test subject? Was I abducted by aliens? Have I been kidnapped and brainwashed by the CIA? Is someone watching me, laughing at me? Why can't I remember how I got here?"
"There has to be a purpose behind all this, there just has to be. Nobody builds a huge maze and plops some poor guy in it for no reason! Right? Right?!"
Around the next bend he can see red walls again. At this point he has no idea if he's gone around in a big circle, or if it's a new section of the maze entirely. After all the twists and turns he's made, everything has begun to look the same. In spite of, or perhaps because of, his previous shameful behavior amongst red walls, he strides into this red section defiantly.
He begins talking aloud to himself, or perhaps he's been doing it all along. He really isn't sure. "They can't do this to me... I've got rights, I'm an American!... I think. I sound American... I guess I could be Canadian. About, or aboot? About, aboot, about, aboot... hm, definitely about. Okay, I'm American. Thank God for that!"
"But would the Canadian government do this to one of their citizens? Probably not, eh? Hahaha! 'Eh!' The American government would though, you bet they would! Dirty bastards! But wait!... The Canucks wouldn't have any problem doing it to... American citizens! Oh ho! Got you, eh? EH?! Ha, sneaky rotten hosers, I see right through you! AAHAAAHAHAAAHAAAAAHAAAAAA!!!"
His wild laughter takes on a definite note of hysteria. As he comes upon another dead end, it dissolves into a shriek of rage, and he begins pounding impotently on the walls and screaming. "YOU LET ME OUT OF HERE! GAME OVER! I'M NOT PLAYING ANYMORE! YOU LET ME OUT RIGHT NOW, GODDAMMIT!"
Running blindly, caroming into walls, screaming all the while. "I'LL GET YOU! I SWEAR TO GOD I'LL GET YOU FOR THIS! I'M NOT A LAB RAT! YOU SICK SONS OF BITCHES! I'LL GET YOU! I'LL KILL YOU ALL!"
Weeping abjectly, promising his unknown tormentors anything and everything if they'll just let him out, he's been here forever, he'll die here, suffering is all there is, he must be a horrible soul to merit such treatment. When he comes to himself, he finds he's in a blue section again, with no recollection of having crossed any color border.
He feels cleansed after the cathartic rage and tears. He moves on with something like a fatalistic satisfaction. "I must traverse the maze. Yes. It's what I do. Sisyphus has his boulder, I have my maze."
"I will walk this maze forever, paying a penance for sins I can't conceive." This thought makes him feel stronger, it gives him purpose. Maybe in time he will find atonement for his crimes, maybe in time he will even find forgiveness.
"Of course I'm here for a reason. I must have done something. Otherwise it's just... just madness! 'Let's build a maze and pop some random guy in it just to see what he'll do'... No. No, I can't accept that. I won't."
He comes upon a new wall color he hasn't yet seen, yellow. "Making progress, making progress," he murmurs to himself. The terrible thought that the walls themselves might change colors and he's actually traversed this section numerous times already swims up out of the depths of his subconscious, but he quickly squashes it.
He is almost lighthearted as he walks along. Surely his newfound realization, his recently made peace with his predicament, has not gone unnoticed by the unknown powers that have placed him here and watch over his every move.
He has no idea how long he's been in this maze. Hours, days, there's no way of knowing. The color of the walls may change, the corridors may twist and branch differently, but in a more fundamental way they are forever the same. Nevertheless he is certain of some grand climax just up ahead.
He feels like a traveler nearing home after a long journey. "There will be no other colors. I know this. I can feel it. This is the last stage. Just around the next bend is the doorway out of this maze."
He regrets his earlier threats of vengeance. "When I meet my captors, I will thank them. I have grown spiritually. Surely they cannot fail to notice this. I have paid my dues, I have learned my lessons. I have earned the right to walk out, and I bear no grudges."
And yet, as the yellow walls give way to the white ones that first surrounded him, his body sags, his heart sinks. He was wrong. He isn't at the end at all, but back at the beginning.
Slowly he stands up again, throwing back his shoulders and marching bravely on. Whatever his mission is here, he hasn't accomplished it after all. Until those nameless powers are satisfied, he must keep going, and do it all over again.
And again, and again, and again, and again, and again...
A note on the build:
Having recently moved, my Lego collection is currently piled up in a corner along with a bunch of other stuff, awaiting preparation of a future Lego room. I can't really get to most of my specialty pieces, and even if I could I have no room to spread out. I'd have to shift 20 containers each time I needed a different kind of piece. But I haven't built anything in a while, and I'm going through withdrawals. I just needed to push some bricks together!
This is literally all the room I have to build in at the moment: squat on the floor with a baseplate in front of me, with exactly one bin of parts to the side. The way I have my Lego sorted, you can't do much that is interesting out of one bucket. You can, however, take a bin of basic bricks, one color at a time, and build a maze.
There don't seem to be that many minifig-scale mazes out there, which kind of surprises me. I'd like to return to this theme again when I can do a more elaborate one -- have stairs and ramps and ladders for different levels, have some monsters lurking in there, have some more interesting wall textures, etc. But this will quiet that Lego monkey on my back for now.
This moc has a deep metaphorical meaning. everybody goes through something like this in their life. It almost makes me cry, but i cannot tell if they are tears of joy or sorrow.
Edit: It's been half a decade since I last visited this site. In that half a decade, I've become an older, wiser man. I was horrified that all I would find here would be relics from a time before I began to comprehend the world. Unlike the man in the maze, though, I am not disappointed to be back at the start.
I like it
August 25, 2013
Great MOC! You have excellent ideas and some impressive writing skills. This looks like an example of our need to assign meaning to things beyond our immediate understanding in an effort to continue the illusion of control. Well done.
poor guy... mind if i make a continuation of this?? P.S. i request an alliance BTW THANK YOU FOR NOT HAVING AN EXIT!!
I like it
Spencer The Soccer Player
August 23, 2010
Just the fact that its' minifig scale makes it better than mine. http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/190698
Your story was incredible. You sir, have an art for writing. The Moc itself was good, but once you added in that tale of woe, it made the entire thing come alive. I think you for allowing me to read such a thing.
This is amazing. I have a suggestion to make for part 2, (if you make one) The man finds himself still walking in circles for what seems like months. Then he feels like he's not moving, but that the walls around him start getting higher, and higher, and smaller, and smaller, and then he passes out, and wakes up in, not a maze, but a hallway. seemingly stretching infinitely to both ends. He then ends up in a small room, very small. a room with the ceilings, walls, and even the floors, covered in newspapers that say that explain his past, he was a mass murderer that couldn't get caught, etc. etc... you make the ending. But back to the maze, amazing, incredible, perfect replication of what really would have happened if a person was stuck there. It seems that when the colors change, so does his emotions. I can't wait for a part 2. Thanks for reading, sorry it's so long
I like it
December 29, 2008
Very well done. I liked the color symbolism. You're a nihilist.
I like the point to this maze...making it a comic about some guy trapped in there going in circles! You must have felt like God, controlling his fate. I like the idea of the multi-level maze, you could put a bunch of people in th next one and they lose eachother and everyone but one person could get out. I think I might make a maze!
It just goes to show that good work does not require a lot of special pieces, just a good imagination and a little work. Maybe in the follow up you can have a green area where he is always asking why it's just him in the maze and he is envious of those on the outside. Then the grey area where he just becomes overly depressed. You see where this could get out of hand. Great work, keep it up. ~ Chris.
Wow, that was great. The ride was fun and the ending made me want more. I'd love to see some more mazes. Infact, I might have to try this. That is if I get the other hundred things I want to build out of the way. Bravo!
Awesome idea, Shannon! Love your story and mystery stuff in general! Do you know "Huis clos" by Sartre, "Hotel California" by The Eagles and "Cube 1-3" (Canadian movies)? Maybe you could build such a cube and write a story about the minifig´s fate?! I´d love to see that. Great work!!!
How do you like my stuff?
Greedz from Germany, Steffen
A brilliant concept, Shannon. Most of the time, the limitations we place upon ourselves with an artistic medium enhances our creativity...certainly the case here. I would be interested to get your take on black. Meanwhile, this creation as it is, is a wonderful meditation on some of the big questions in life (and I don't mean "about or "aboot"?).
Wow this surprised me. At first i thought it would be short and maybe a nice movie. Now I see that it has so much more that film could not catch. There is an increbile amount of suspense and emotion in your writing as well as curiosity to the happenings of the mini fig. Again, you astounded me. As basic as it is, it is clean, simple, and elegant.
Smells like "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream". Nicely done. But what if our entire existence is but an experiment and we are all but rats in a maze, brains in a box, etc? And Canadian vs. American? But I live in North America too; North America that is. A subtle line, but I have to admit some surprise that you let that one slip. As always, brilliant build and story. Lee.
I liked it. The way you expressed the feeling with the colors was realy great. With red he was angry, blue he was calm, yellow he was lightharted, white he was pondering. Good creation. Really liked it a simple design.
You're right, there haven't been any full sized minifig mazes. It would be great if you returned to the labyrinth; it is ripe with many potential themes. I never realized how much "stuff" you could express with the labyrinth.