The plot thickens.
Santa has visited early this year, and has brought a Lego Advent calendar. There are 24 little numbered doors, each containing a dime bag of Legos. There’s a new toy or doodad to build every day, which, in turn, builds anticipation for Christmas.
I will build these and attempt to discern what they are.
December 4: Fire Piano
This brings back fond memories of childhood, when we would gather around the piano, set its torches ablaze, and plunk out some carols while the cat stared into the abyss. I can’t tell if it’s Norman Rockwell in the style of Salvador Dalí or Salvador Dalí in the style of Norman Rockwell, but I’m on board.
It doesn’t get much more fun than this. A piano would be fun enough, but it also comes with a pet? Also, it has caused to me to imagine this conversation:
Tour Manager: Well, the good news is that we found you an upright piano... Alice Cooper: What's the bad news? Tour Manager: Um, it has a genuinely excessive amount of pyrotechnics. Alice Cooper: [pinches himself]
Ease of Build ★★★☆☆
None of these are real brain benders—nothing on par with the golf tee game at a Cracker Barrel—but I found this one a little finicky. The key bed is made of two 1×4 pieces and it would have benefited by being one 2×4 piece, for example, and the burnt sienna bits are barely distinguishable from the chocolate brown bits in the miniature instructions.
Do I know why the keyboard on this piano only has one octave’s worth of keys? No. Do I know why it has two cauldrons of fire shooting out flames that are clearly the size of a house cat? No. Do I know why the cat is unperturbed by the inferno? Why the cat is looking poignantly into the middle distance? Why there’s a cat at all? I don’t know the answers to any of these, but I am along for the ride on this one.
Extra Parts ★★★★★
If you’re looking for family fun, look no further. New York’s hottest club is Fire Piano. Opened in 2022, this derelict barge moored behind LaGuardia was started by one-legged blues legend Clapton Ahab. Needless to say, this place has everything: all of the notes from Julie Andrews’ Do-Re-Mi, hand-hewn sconces of fire, that thing where a cat eats a bunch of your medicine and wanders around the house startled by spirits…