When I was around four years old, my days were spent primarily with my dad. My dad would take me to my grandfather’s house which was about 15 minutes from ours. My grandparents and my dad would hang out on the back patio by the pool doing adult things. That’s how I interpreted it anyway.
My uncle Patrick served as my primary guardian inside the house. He was kind enough to regularly entertain me and let me play with his toys (he was my dad’s half brother and of appropriate toy-playing age). I thought uncle Patrick was just the coolest. He would build things out of Legos that just seemed incomprehensible to me. GIANT LEGO PLANES, What!? It was just pure magic.
Well one day, I wanted to play with Patrick’s Legos. There was a big pile on the floor right by the TV. Generally I was pretty entertained by the television soap operas, but I guess on this day I had decided I would begin to conquer my own Lego airplane. I was four-ish, clearly I could handle it.
Now I remember the next parts of this story vividly. I walked over to the pile of Legos. There was a fair amount of yellow, red and black Legos consisting of the two, four and six pronged variety. These Legos seemed underwhelming. Maybe I should have just gone back to my soaps.
But then… there was this shimmering light from the pile. I saw this beautiful iridescent blue. It was kind of clear kind of not. I would later learn the word for this would be known as translucent. Either way, this Lego was special. This Lego had ONE prong on it.
So, I did what any young child would do. I stuck the blue Lego up my nose.
I instantly panicked. The logical part of my small as yet unformed brain kicked into gear and said, “Oooohhh nooooooooo…” and I started reaching into my nose trying to get it out. I kept digging and digging and I panicked even more. IT WAS GOING FURTHER UP MY NOSE. Somewhere in my mind, I worried the Lego would clamp onto my brain the way Legos clamp onto each other.
So, being a young child I toddled out to the patio and informed everyone that I had a Lego up my nose. Very simple. Lego, up my nose, you get it. They all just kind of looked at me puzzled.
The next parts are not so vivid. I remember panic. I remember lots of hands on my face. I remember my dad calling my mom on the phone and some hysterical screaming from the other side of the line. There was a flashlight up my nose. There were tweezers. IT WAS CREEPING FURTHER INTO MY BRAIN. More panic.
So then, my grandfather hobbled in. He hobbled because he had somehow managed to break his leg. Anyway, he hobbled. He demanded gruffly that I be placed on the bathroom counter with a light up my nose. Desk lamps were grabbed, I was placed on the counter horizontally, and I was terrified. I was convinced they were going to cut my nose open. Was this logical? No! I was four… geez.
So, my grandfather stood over me. He placed a tissue on my nose. He shouted, “Blow!” and I blew. “Blow harder!” so I really put some force behind my exhale.
Magically, the Lego rocketed from my nose. Lubed by snot and terror, I was freed from a life of mental incapacitation by Lego.