Covert Celebrations, Cryptic Documents and Helicopter Carriers

The second part of the story, in which I descend to the depths of paranoia, receive mysterious documents in the refrigerated section of the local supermarket and discover some sets that seem to have surreptitiously slipped into their 30th year with a nod from the designers of LEGO City. Is this planned? An Easter egg for collectors? A covert celebration? Or merely the product of an overactive imagination?

Since I published my first article about covert celebrations in  the 2018 LEGO City sets, I have been on edge. Shadows flickering in my peripheral vision. Mysterious figures in the local shopping strip, there one minute, gone the next.  Facial features indistinct, not staying still long enough for me to recognise them. I am feeling anxious: worried that I am being followed, with unknown intentions.

In case anything happens, I thought I should share my story, so you will know where it started.

A couple of months ago I was shopping in our local supermarket – picking up some extra food for the next week.  Brickvention was just few days away and I was taking a break from preparing my build. Perhaps I was running a little behind.  Perhaps it was a lot. I can’t recall anymore. It was a period of frantic activity, and I was prone to being distracted from non-LEGO building tasks.

And then the envelope appeared.  Dropped into the child seat of my shopping trolley at the local supermarket while I was getting some yoghurt out of the fridge, I never saw who left it. Before I realised what was happening, a person wearing a black hoodie quickly disappeared down aisle 12, not to be seen again.

It was strange: a yellow envelope, addressed to ‘Rambling Brick’ in the style of a 1970’s television cop show ransom letter: with letters cut out from an old newspaper. I unfolded the envelope, and the word ‘Coincidence?’ appeared.Scan 11

I have received external leads for blog posts in the past: private messages on Facebook, unencrypted emails, even the occasional press release. But this was the first time I had received anything using good old fashioned newspaper and glue technology. I mean, who even buys newspapers these days? Surely printing something through a laser printer would ensure a significant level of anonymity!

Scan 9Somewhat rashly, I opened the envelope. Fortunately, there was only a small Instamatic photograph to be found inside.  The picture was spectacularly out of focus, but appeared to be a LEGO catalog with an indistinct circle around three of the sets. There were four numbers glued onto the bottom edge of the picture: 1988.

Continue reading