30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Sunday, July 9, 2017

The Other Hobby

The biggest Japanese festival in San Jose is the annual Obon festival.  Traditionally it's a time of the year when people celebrate and honor their ancestors.  The festival takes place in the heart of San Jose's Japantown.  People can go and enjoy the dancing, delicious food, carnival games, bingo, taiko drumming, and temple tours with friends and family members.

I've been going to this festival for as long as I can remember.  I even volunteered at the Obon a couple of years when I was a Boy Scout and a few years in the bingo booth as an adult.

It takes place this weekend... and unfortunately... it's way too hot to go.

So today... I'm hanging out and binge watching Game of Thrones, and there's a chance I'll build this:

I've actually built a few Star Wars Lego sets over the past few months.

It's sort of my other hobby.  At first I thought it would be cool to display some of the more popular ships from the Star Wars universe in my office or classroom.

But I quickly discovered it had a hidden benefit that's actually addictive.  It has a therapeutic effect that makes me relax and helps me take my mind off of things when I'm stressed out.

The first ship I built was Yoda's Jedi starfighter, which I wrote about here back in March.

Lego Set: 75168 Yoda's Jedi Starfighter
Year: 2017
# of Pieces: 262
Build Time: 60-70 Minutes

Lego Set: 75173 Luke's Landspeeder
Year: 2017
# of Pieces: 149
Build Time: 50 Minutes

Luke's landspeeder was my 2nd build.  I purchased this set when I bought Yoda's ship, but waited over a month to build it.  After it was finished, I was really impressed with the design.  It reminded me of the original Kenner landspeeder from my childhood.

After I built this set, I decided to target Anakin and Obiwan's Jedi interceptors, because I felt that they'd look cool next to the Yoda starfighter.  Unfortunately both of these sets are retired, which means the prices went up.

However patience and eBay allowed me to grab each of them for under $30 shipped.

Lego Set: 75135 Obi-Wan's Jedi Interceptor
Year: 2016
# of Pieces: 215
Build Time60-70 Minutes

Out of the two, this was easier to find and was a little more affordable than the Anakin.  I was able to find a brand new one for $16.45 (+ $10.55 shipping).

Lego Set: 75038 Jedi Interceptor
Year: 2014
# of Pieces: 223
Build Time60-70 Minutes

I spent awhile looking for a reasonably priced set on eBay, but never found one sell for under $35 shipped.  I eventually settled on a "used" set.  I took a chance and hoped it was in decent condition and it paid off.

Lego Set: 75153 AT-ST Walker
Year: 2016
# of Pieces: 449
Build Time: 90-100 Minutes

I've always been a big fan of the AT-ST, so when Toys R Us had a sale on some of their Star Wars Lego sets back in April and this one was included, I had to grab it.  At that point in time, this was the most challenging set I'd built.

After this set, I took a couple of months off from building.  However I did buy a few items from Lego.com during their Star Wars Day celebration and received this R2-D2 set for free:

Being the collector that I am... I ended up keeping mine sealed.  However my buddy gave me one of his as an early birthday present.  Last weekend, I decided to put it together.

Lego Set: 30611 R2-D2 Promotional Giveaway
Year: 2017
# of Pieces: 70
Build Time: 20 Minutes

For being a giveaway item, this set is pretty sweet.  I'd recommend grabbing one for any R2-D2 fans out there.

Lego Set: 75172 Y-Wing Starfighter
Year: 2017
# of Pieces: 691
Build Time: 135 Minutes

Oh man.  I'm sure this is a simple set to veteran Lego enthusiasts, but I struggled a lot with this build.  But in the end, it's truly a great looking ship.  This was one of the sets I purchased from Lego.com during their Star Wars Day celebration sale.

I still have two more sets waiting for me to build:

If things go as planned, I should be building the Droid Escape Pod right around the same time this post is published.

In the meantime...

What are some of your hobbies outside of collecting cards?

I hope all of you are enjoying your weekend.

Happy Sunday and sayonara!


  1. I am a voracious reader, and I collect books, and of course, I love good baseball books. I also enjoy to write, and hope to have a book published some day.

  2. I have a budding collection of out of print VHS tapes. I watched a documentary about the VHS boom of the early 80's, and one of the things that grabbed my attention was the concept that there are movies out there that ONLY got a VHS release, that some of them would be lost to the ages if they're never converted to any other format. I'm also a B-movie lover, so the hobby dovetails nicely with the idea of grabbing a tape in this day and age and firing up the VCR.

  3. I also collect and build LEGO kits. Star Wars is the main theme for my LEGO collection, but I also get some superhero sets and others (Pirates, Castle) that catch my eye.

    Another collection of mine is comic books. Marvel is my favorite comic publisher, but I do get a few books each month from DC, Image, Dark Horse, and smaller publishers.

  4. I have 0 tolerance for building those lol. However I did buy the ghostbusters ecto to keep in the box one and wanna add.the firehouse but it's outta my price range

  5. I got my oldest daughter hooked on Star Wars and we just built the Carbon Freezing Chamber set, which is a lot of fun if you enjoying turning Han Solo into frozen carbonite.

  6. I used to collect original comic art from my favorite X-Men titles from the 80s and 90s. I ended up selling the entire collection to buy a new car.

  7. Cool stuff! Man, if Legos were more affordable these days, I could see myself going nuts for them.

    I guess my other hobby is playing/recording music, though I haven't done much with it the past couple years.

  8. tshenson - i collect books too (mostly children's books i've used in the classroom). if you ever do publish a book, please let me know. i'd love to buy a copy.

    ko rob - my brother was telling me about vhs tapes and how they degrade over time. kinda freaked me out bc i kept some of my favorite movies from my childhood. it's sad to think that one day the quality won't be good enough to watch one day. just curious... do you have any favorite movies that are only available on vhs tapes?

    raz - nice to see another lego guy around these parts. i have a bunch of comic books too. unfortunately... most of mine are from the overproduction era of the early 90's

    sports card collectors - i bought the ecto 1 too. i didn't build it though. instead i had dan ackroyd sign it.

    rob - i actually bought that set a while back (for the boba fett figure). have no idea where i put it though. thanks for reminding me. i'll have to look for it this weekend.

    collecting cutch - i can imagine that original artwork is quite the investment. glad you were able to get a new car out of it. i'm guessing your cutch collection is going to help pay for your retirement home ;)

    defgav - yeah... it's pricey. i usually buy them on sale or target cheap bin on eBay.

    1. Honestly, I don't know if I'd call any of my VHS tapes favorites. By definition, if they were good they probably would have got a DVD release by now. I do have a soft spot for bad 80's action stuff, and there's one called Low Blow starring Leo Fong, a self proclaimed protege of Bruce Lee, and it's a hoot. I also love my original Mystery Science Theater 3000 tapes that I collected (through Columbia House at the time, in the mid-90's). They're available in other formats now, but the tapes hold a special place in my heart.