I’ll start off today’s blog with a vid of one of my favorite Rube Goldberg machines from Pee Wee’s Big Adventure…this blog is dedicated to my 9 year old autistic son, Kal-El:
Kal-El recently discovered Rube Goldberg machines while watching the Holiday Special of Mythbusters in the 2nd collection on Netflix Streaming. He started constructing blueprints of Rube Goldberg machines and his most elaborate was starting with a pair of suspended scissors that would clip a string and then a series of soundwaves, falling hammers and reflective lights off of mirrors would eventually (6 pages down, all taped together) shut a door that would pull a man’s wiggly tooth.
He’d recently been experiencing some low self-esteem and was thinking he was stupid because of his disability. Mind, you…he’s not stupid. I’ve seen him create some of the most elaborate amazing things and he can recite almost the entire dinosaur dictionary complete with facts about each dinosaur. His struggle is with thinking around challenges or hard questions. But the Rube Goldberg machine that he constructed was amazing. Very well thought out for an autistic 9 year old, let alone any 9 year old.
Autism is like a Rube Goldberg Machine…Kal-El’s brain has to go through a series of elaborate complicated thoughts before he can come to the simplest conclusions.
He has been asking me for parts for his machine, and while I was at St Vinnies on Feb 1st during my Tour de 2ndChance, I found a brand new huge bucket of K’Nex toys (gears, and other bits to build machines & vehicles). And the next day a metal marble roller coaster toy from Mega Bloks called the Magnext iCoaster. The premise is to hook it up to an MP3 player to enhance the rollercoaster design. The sound sends soundwaves through the parts creating extra action. It’s pretty neat. However, my only complaint is that it didn’t included a cord to plug your MP3 player into the sound box. Easy enough to find at the store, but irritating none-the-less. It may be why it was sent off to St Vinnies in the first place! Those kids who aren’t playing with this toy don’t know what they are missing! It’s actually kinda fun for me as well as my kids!
Magnext iCoaster Bought at St Vinnie’s in Bremerton on 02/02/2011 for $38.50 (original retail price $129.99!!!) I think I’ll play the Ghostbusters theme when we hook it up.
I cannot wait to see what Kal-El comes up with. I told him to go through his toys and find things that have moving parts or that could be used for his machine. I will post what he comes up with when he completes it…he wants me to film him setting it off.
Pee Wee Finds!
In the spirit of the qwirkiness of my blog and one of my inspirations in life, I thought I might add the couple of Pee Wee goodies that I’ve found at 2nd hand stores over the past year:
Anakin with a Chairy Puppet Doll Bought for $2.99(?) At Bremerton Goodwill on April 29th, 2010
I had been regularly asked to be the score presenter for the Dockyard Derby Dames (Roller Derby team) and I was pretty consistent about coming up with unique “boutfits” for each game. I wanted to dress as Pee Wee Herman but due to being quite busy, I had delayed until the DAY OF the bout to find a gray suit. I already found the trademark red tie at a retail store several weeks before. That morning I walked into St Vinnies on a whim and I ended up walking straight into the store, to the rack, and there it was! And HALF OFF!
Pee Wee Boutfit Found at St Vinnies for 50% off of $12.95 on June 26th, 2010
All I needed to alter was the legs to make them pencil thin like Pee Wee’s and the result was this:
The secret word that day was “LEAD JAMMER” so whenever you heard the secret word at the game…you knew what to do…SCREAM REAL LOUD! The crowd had fun with that.
And last, but not least…a recent find:
Pee Wee’s Playhouse VHS Tapes Found at Silverdale Goodwill on 02/01/2011 Unpurchased for $3.99(?)If I didn’t already have all Pee Wee’s Playhouse on DVD, I’d have jumped at the chance to own Volumes 1-8 of Pee Wee’s Playhouse.
STAY TUNED FOR TOMORROW’S BLOG!
Perler Beads…you know…those melty beads.