Who knew free-running was for real?

There's two kinds of people in the world: those who like to be chased and those who do the chasing. I mean literally, not in some kind of financial, romantic or metaphysical. I mean driving, running, even walking.

As a young kid, I knew that I liked being chased much more than doing the chasing. All I had to do was stay ahead of the pursuer, and I sort of controlled where the chase went. I would use my big mouth to get other kids to chase me on the school playground. I rarely got caught.

I wasn't especially fast. It was because I would take unconventional paths, racing full speed toward obstacles like tree roots, other kids, playground equipment, etc. The other kids would have to slow down and still would trip, stumble and backtrack, allowing me to get away.

How did I do it? Somehow, I was able to observe, plan and execute a route through the obstacles long before I physically reached them. I could see the route through a tight spot before I come to it, planned where to put my lead foot, how to twist my torso, and so on. I had to solve this puzzle continually and it was great fun to get that rush as I was able to do it, all while keeping the pursuers at arms length.

To do this, I had to cut certain things close: twisting and turning to fit through small gaps, avoid tree branches or jungle gym bars, running on ice. This skill greatly helped in my brief but legendary career in the difficult world of elementary school dodgeball.

Doing this produced a certain amount of grace in movement, from the constant motion, the minimal exertion to avoid obstacles combined with a constant speed. It creates a kind of high, flowing across the ground, mind moving faster than my feet.

This, I found out recently, thanks to Paul Blart: Mall Cop, is a sport called free running, or parkour in France. These two physical disciplines are very close to what I did as a kid. That is pretty awesome. Watching free running is nearly as much fun as doing it, I bet.

Now that I'm living here in the future, where's my free running HD channel?

Toy Story Legos mentioned in story about Lego toys

Yes, when Toy Story 3 comes out next summer, there will be a new line of Lego sets for it. They will join SpongeBob, Indiana Jones, Batman, Star Wars and other themed Lego product lines. Pretty much you put a cool media thing in front of Lego, and I start to salivate.

K/2 to NYT for breaking this particular toy story. For those of you Lego fans, whether you are an Adult Fan Of Lego (AFOL) or searching for bricks for your kids, the NYT has a big feature piece on the company and its bricky goodness.

(What is k/2? It's short for 'kudos to' my improvement on the h/t moniker, which I think is not useful and to quote Inigo Montoya: I do not think it means what you think it means. Princess Bride Legos? That would so rock.)

It's a hoot that they found someone who dislikes the company's resurgence and all-around success, because Lego is deep into movie and TV-themed product lines. Substitutes Hollywood's imagination for open-ended play of old-fashioned Legos, they claim. Someone ought to tell them that the sets come apart and can be built into whatever you want.

You want creative? How about the new Fire Brigade set:

And the update of the 1958 Town Plan set, which Minnie Trackball just got for her birthday:

And this fan built one, which is jaw-dropping gorgeous:

And soon I will post the pictures from Brick Fair 09, which will blow your yellow cylindrical head right off of that peg you call a neck.