When I was a kid, I loved Legos, in particular the castle sets. I spent hours constructing medieval villages, moats and everything in between, and occasionally I’d even put in a spaceport — you know, knights need to travel, too. Eventually, Legos started a pattern that I would continue with any hobby that I lost interest in. I boxed up all of my Legos, put them out for a yard sale and sold them by the scoop. The resulting $100 that I made ended up financing my comic book habit, which got pretty massive at one point. I ended up selling my comics for my first set of rims when I moved into the custom car world.

About two years ago, I got a wild hair up my ass and decided to buy a Lego Star Wars set because it looked fun and complicated. It was, and although I wasn’t really sure what to do with it when I was done, I found that the act of pushing together blocks was very relaxing, and a little bit cathartic. I’d sit there, blind to outside distractions and the world around me, and click the tiles together like I was 8 years old again. Since then, I’ve been looking for more and more challenging Lego projects (all in the Star Wars genre, naturally), and I’ve built some of the biggest and most complex sets available. There’s still one big hurdle to tackle, but since it’s 50 inches long, I have no idea where I’d put it. Maybe someday.

But the other day I decided that it was time to build another project. Time to lose myself in the world of minifigs and the Empire once again, just like I’ve done countless times before. I bought myself a pretty standard kit at around 480 pieces, sat myself out on the porch at our patio table and just started clicking. It didn’t take that long to build, but those few hours of quiet concentration were definitely worth the money I spent those little colored blocks.

Now I’ll never play with the toy, and it’s not going to do anything other than sit in my office and collect dust, but with each completed kit I get more and more into that mind like water state that I’ve been attempting to attain for years. Even though I’ve been pretty close (and gotten there in a few writing spells every now and then), taking a few moments every few weeks to get back to my roots seems like a good idea. Just a good way to get back to neutral, avoid the perils and pressures of the outside world and just be a kid again.

This weekend is going to be pretty stressful, and I know that I’m going to come out of it a bit more frazzled than usual. That’s why I think I’ll spend some time at the toy store to pick something out. Then I’ll sit down on Tuesday on my back patio, listen to nothing but the sounds of the outdoors, and get back to ground zero. I can’t wait.