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Someone made a massive Marine Corps Air Station out of Legos and it's absolutely glorious
If you're like me, then you might have memories of walking through toy stores as a kid and going ape shit over those massive box sets of Legos — you know, the ones that cost as much as a car payment and require half a kitchen table to stage — before your parent drags you to the other end of the aisle, and (if you're lucky) buys you off with the cheapest Lego kit there. Usually Jar Jar Binks or a train conductor, instead of the X-Wing or sci-fi battle tank you really wanted.
Such is life. Legos are designed to drive children into chaotic building frenzies that deplete their parents' bank accounts.
Then we grow up and forget about those little multicolored cubes, and their sharp corners (unless we step on one of those deadly caltrops). That is, until someone makes this:
Seriously the best thing to ever come out of Twentynine Palms.Beyond the Brick
This 75-square foot Lego Marine Corps Air Station was constructed by Paul Thomas and shown at Bricks by the Bay, an annual exhibition for Lego aficionados and fans in Santa Clara, California. The massive set, which was uploaded to Beyond the Brick and reported on by The Aviationist's David Cenciotti, was inspired by Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, California, and is probably the only good thing to have ever come out of one of the Corps' most reviled duty stations.
Screw it, this thing is never getting off the ground, let's go grab a beer at the Blockstripes NCO club.Beyond the Brick
The diorama is 10 by 7.5 feet, and includes a small squadron of Lego F-35B Lightning IIs (no word on whether these Lego variants are combat ready); three MV-22 Ospreys; a CH-53E Super Stallion; an attack helicopter that appears to be an AH-1Z Viper based on four rotor blades; and a host of support and logistic vehicles.
And of course, since it's a Marine Corps Lego base, there are, well, jarheads — or would they be blockheads?
Even Lego Marines routinely show up wearing the wrong uniform of the day.Beyond the Brick
There's Lego Marines loading into Lego Ospreys, doing repairs on aircraft, and based on that tiny blue portajohn on the set's edge, drawing Lego dicks with tiny Lego markers. For added realism, the set also includes a Lego Humvee towing a water buffalo, because you know 1st Sgt. Brick gave his Marines a hearty peptalk about passing out during formation that included the words: "Hydrate or die."
Even in Lego land, duty has no friends.Beyond the Brick
Unfortunately, the diorama doesn't appear to be for sale, so instead, we here at Task & Purpose strongly encourage any E-3s reading this to save the money they're about to blow on a new lifted pickup and go broke buying Lego kits instead. (If you do, take some photos and send them our way.)
‘I made promises to the people that I lost’— How the Iraq war forged a Navy SEAL’s path to Harvard Medical School and NASA
Navy Lt. Jonny Kim went viral last week when NASA announced that he and 10 other candidates (including six other service members) became the newest members of the agency's hallowed astronaut corps. A decorated Navy SEAL and graduate of Harvard Medical School, Kim in particular seems to have a penchant for achieving people's childhood dreams.
However, Kim shared with Task & Purpose that his motivation for living life the way he has stems not so much from starry-eyed ambition, but from the pain and loss he suffered both on the battlefields of Iraq and from childhood instability while growing up in Los Angeles. Kim tells his story in the following Q&A, which was lightly edited for length and clarity:
You can almost smell the gunpowder in the scene captured by a Marine photographer over the weekend, showing a Marine grunt firing a shotgun during non-lethal weapons training.
A Marine grunt stationed in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina is being considered for an award after he saved the lives of three people earlier this month from a fiery car crash.
Cpl. Scott McDonell, an infantry assaultman with 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, was driving down Market Street in Wilmington in the early morning hours of Jan. 11 when he saw a car on fire after it had crashed into a tree. Inside were three victims aged 17, 20, and 20.
"It was a pretty mangled wreck," McDonell told ABC 15. "The passenger was hanging out of the window."
New Vietnam War movie 'The Last Full Measure' takes some well-deserved shots at the military’s award process
Todd Robinson's upcoming Vietnam War drama, The Last Full Measure, is a story of two battles: One takes place during an ambush in the jungles of Vietnam in 1966, while the other unfolds more than three decades later as the survivors fight to see one pararescueman's valor posthumously recognized.
With ISIS trying to reorganize itself into an insurgency, most attacks on U.S. and allied forces in Iraq are being carried out by Shiite militias, said Air Force Maj. Gen. Alex Grynkewich, the deputy commander for operations and intelligence for U.S. troops in Iraq and Syria.
"In the time that I have been in Iraq, we've taken a couple of casualties from ISIS fighting on the ground, but most of the attacks have come from those Shia militia groups, who are launching rockets at our bases and frankly just trying to kill someone to make a point," Grynkewich said Wednesday at an event hosted by the Air Force Association's Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies.