Monday, September 27, 2010

On the Hunt

It is almost like treasure hunting.  A quest to find a desired item.  The subject of our hunt is a piece of molded plastic that is only worth a couple of dollars. 

A Lego Spartan warrior. 

This past Friday night the mil10s made a run to Target.  If Target is good for something, it is having something that you really didn't intend to buy, but once you see it on the shelf, you just can't think of leaving it there. It must come home with you.  That is what happened to us.  Unbeknownst to us, Lego is now selling mystery minifigures.  We found the small packages almost by mistake.  The thought of buying one of these mystery figures appealed to us, so we thought we would give it a try.

When EK opened the bag, he found an explorer complete with a magnifying glass and binoculars.  There was also a check off list that pictured each of the sixteen figures in the series.  Each of the pictured figures was very interesting and not one that you would typically find in a normal boxed Lego set.  You could see the gears in EK's head start to turn, but in fact we had all caught the fever.  We knew we would be doing this again.  But when?

The next day we found ourselves at hometown's Walmart.   Low and behold, they also had the mystery minifigures.  This time we were not content with simply picking a random package off the rack.  Instead we carefully held the packages and would try to feel the peices inside in order to hopefully identify a unique piece.  EK was hoping for the Spartan pictured above.  We handled each and every package to hopefully make out a spear or shield.  No such luck.  EK left that morning with a man with a serape, sombrero and maracas.  mrs. mil10 found the witch.  After all, it looks too much like Wicked's Elphaba to pass up.

"Are people born wicked, or do they have wickedness thrust upon them?"

It was later that mr. mil10 read online that the minifigure packages actually have a bar code unique to each figure.  Also, by using the cell phone's bar code scanner app, one could easily tell the contents of the package without having to guess or try to blindly feel the contents.  Oh, this was interesting!  What was a mil10 to do?  Go right back to Walmart!  The only difference is that this time we would know ahead of time exactly what we would be buying.  On our second trip of the day we left with a vampire and a karate kid, but no Spartan.

That same night mr. and mrs. mil10 had the pleasure of seeing Matt Maher, Addison Road, and Tenth Avenue North in concert.  Since we arrived early and had time to kill, we found ourselves at Target once more.  Thanks to the bar code scanner app, we were able to use the few minutes we had to scan several packaged figures, but once again we came up empty handed in our quest for a Spartan.

Sunday found a cool front blowing in.  We thought it was perfect weather for Taco Stew, but we didn't have all of the ingredients.  A quick run to the store was needed.  Sure, we could have quickly gone into hometown's grocery stores.  But since we had already been to Walmart twice the day before, we decided to go to another Walmart.  A fifteen minute drive south and we were in a new Walmart.  Unfortunately, they didn't carry the mystery minifigures.  Bust!  At least we had Taco Stew to look forward to when we returned home.

So if you need the mil10s anytime soon, we might just be making trips to random stores so we can pop in and use a cell phone bar code scanner to find out the item inside the mystery package.  We may have found a way to work around Lego's intended mystery, but for us there is still plenty of fun in the hunt!  We will find you, Spartan.  We will find you.

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