Lego Advent Calendar: Day 7

I’m not the only one on the interwebs opening up the Lego Calendar. If you hate me and my words, but still want to experience the fun of daily Legos, check out George and Ayleen, the hosts of Toy Break who are not only fans of toys, but are in the toy-making business. Fun times. Subscribe to their YouTube channel and you can watch the happy couple open up the Advent Calendar with sound and motion. JEALOUS FACE

Day 7 is here and I think it’s safe to say that no matter what item comes out of the box, I will like it. Even if the next prize is a Lego sign that reads, “Dan Bergstein looks like a walrus when he runs,” I would still display it proudly in Good World. And I would still run in public because I’m beautiful on the inside.

There was no such sign in today’s compartment. Instead, it’s an item that goes well with a previous item. Can you guess what it is? I don’t care because I’m not waiting around for you to reply before I reveal it.

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Top Ten of 2010!!!

The year is winding down, and soon you will be flooded with top ten lists. Here’s mine.

The Top Ten of 2010

By Dan Bergstein

1. Shoes
2. Birthday Cake
3. Inception
4. Books
5. Natalie Portman
6. The Beatles
7. Water
8. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest
9. Jeff Bridges
10. Bridges

Lego Advent Calendar: Day 6

Today is St. Nicholas Day, a holiday not celebrated in America. I remember this only because I took German in high school and our teacher loved to tell us that on the 6th of December, St. Nick would visit the children of Germany and fill their shoes with fruit and treats. Pretty boring. But, St. Nick had a buddy named Ruprecht who would follow Nick around and beat the bad kids with a staff or bag of rocks.

I can’t tell you how to find the area of a curve, I don’t recall the atomic weight of Calcium, and I’m not sure if the Spanish American War was a real thing, but I always remembered that in Germany, on December 6th, a mythic friend of St. Nicholas will beat your ass if you’re bad. Thanks, high school!

Doing some mild Wikipedia research on St. Nicholas Day was interesting. My favorite sentence:

“Even up to the present day, a flask of manna is extracted from the tomb of Saint Nicholas every year on 6 December by the clergy of the basilica.”

I want some Santa Juice, too! That doesn’t sound right, but it’s too late to go back and delete it.

As much as I enjoy the American, corporate Santa who drinks Coke products and charges you for his photograph, the look of the European “Father Christmas” is fascinating. He’s less fat and more sinister, the type of guy who would certainly be roommates with a living nightmare named Ruprecht.

They should make a movie about Ruprecht. And I should write it! AND I WILL, TOO! First scene:

Ruprecht is carrying his bag of rocks. He spots some children saying the F-word. He beats the children with his bag of rocks. Title Card comes crashing through the screen: “Sack of Pain: Christmas Justice!!!” The exclamation points show the audience that this movie is for real, and in your face.

I think Russell Crowe should star in it and Andy Richter can be the voice of Tootles, the talking bat. (I’m adding the talking bat to give the movie some much-needed comic relief.)

Where was I? Oh yeah, the Advent Calendar. You probably guessed that today’s prize would be a mini-figure, but this particular figure came with a special accessory. What did St. Nicholas give me today?

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Lego Advent Calendar: Day 5

No Sausage Girl, but today’s prize is better than the Toy Crane Truck. However, more Lego Children better be inside this calendar, because right now, Sword Boy is a spoiled kid.

He already has his own skateboard with ramp, robotic snowman, and a giant Toy Crane Truck. Plus, he was born with three swords! Either he’s the luckiest kid in the world, or his parents are getting divorced and are trying to buy his affection with lavish Christmas presents. Today’s prize is shown below. It rhymes with “thumb mitt.”

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Lego Advent Calendar: Day 4

I realized something while placing the Lego prizes on my desk: I need a Lego Mat, one of those flat green Lego pieces that can be used as the base for your Lego tower. As a kid, I must have had a few of these, but sadly my brother and I recently cleaned out our childhood home, donating our old toys. If I had a green Lego plate in my youth it’s long gone by now and probably part of a germ-ridden toy bucket in a dentist’s waiting room. But I need one. The pieces of my calendar are too light and airy, and unless I secure them to a giant thin slab of Lego, they might get knocked over or float away. And then birds will eat them. I can’t have that happen.

With that in mind, my girlfriend and I drove for over an hour to the nearest Lego Store to buy a $4 Lego Mat. This makes no sense for a variety of reasons.

1. I don’t really need a Lego Mat.
2. I could have probably bought one at the local Toys R Us, and saved $500 in gas.
3. I could have found one at a thrift store or stolen one from a weak child.
4. Traffic was satanic and the mall crowd was even satantic-er.
5. I could have made my own Lego Mat out of a piece of sticky, sticky cardboard.

But the holidays aren’t about logic and practicality. If they were, I wouldn’t put plastic balls on a plastic tree while singing Mariah Carey songs, and instead of gift wrapping those jars that have cookie ingredients inside, I would just give my family members waded up, wrinkled $20 bills. Everything about the holidays is impractical, and a trip to the Lego Store is the best type of unnecessary trip because it results in the ownership of Legos.

I’m rambling. To those who want to see today’s Advent Calendar prize, read on. You’ll never guess what it is. I mean it this time. Ready? It’s a…It’s a…

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Lego Advent Calendar: Day 3

I set my expectations low for Door #3. I’m old enough to know that every day cannot be met with robotic snow creatures and sword-wielding youngsters. I’ve lived a life. I’ve learned much. The real world is a harsh, painful place. Going into Day 3, I was prepared to be rewarded with a single Lego brick that the company would call “Christmas Fun Block!” And I would have been satisfied with that, because even if your Lego Calendar gives you crap one day, it only means something grand is waiting for you tomorrow.

Luckily, Day 3 wasn’t a total washout. In fact, I was happily surprised. What lived behind the third door? Take a guess before you read on. (Hint: It’s not a skateboard ramp.)

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Lego Advent Calendar: Day 2

The more I look at Robot Snowman, the more I love him. And after today, he is even better, so I’m raising his score to a solid 3.5 out of 4. No, Cynthia the Sausage Girl did not live behind door #2. I’m OK with that. In fact, had she been Day 2’s prize, I would have probably thrown out the rest of the calendar, because what’s the point? After you get a Sausage Girl, there’s nothing else to care about.

Today’s item is another home run. I don’t quite know how this fits into the world I’m creating on my desk, but I’m glad it’s there. Are you ready? Are you scared? You should be. Day #2 is…

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Lego Advent Calendar: Day 1

Advent calendars are fun ways for kids (and adults) to countdown the days until Christmas. The calendar has 24 “doors” that hide a treat. Most Advent calendars house a tiny piece of gritty chocolate behind their cardboard doors. Not so with the mighty Lego Calendar.

With a Lego calendar, each day is treated with a new Lego “thing” that will eventually create a wonderful and strange holiday scene. These calendars are nothing new, but the popularity has been on the rise for the past few years, as stores such as Target and even online retailers sell out of them well before December 1st. You can still find one on ebay, or in some book stores, but expect to pay slightly more than the typical $30-$40 price range.

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Hi. So…Internet, huh? Crazy stuff. Um. What do I do now? Wanna play Internet Scrabble or Internet Hungry Hungry Hippos? Or we can watch cat videos, if you’d like. No? Fine.

You have questions, and I have answers.

Q: Who Are you?
A: I’m Dan.

Q: Are you the same Dan from SparkNotes?
A: Yes.

Q: Are you the same Dan who was an editor for Stuff Magazine?
A: Yep.

Q: Are you the same Dan that worked for Sports Illustrated?
A: Sort of.

Q: Are you the same Dan who works as a freelance writer for a variety of magazines and websites?
A: Yes.

Q: Are you the same Dan that I went to college with?
A: Yes.

Q: Why do you have your own site? Do you think you’re better than me?
A: Not at all.

Continue reading Welcome!