And now, a housing crisis story that does not involve greedy bankers, bad mortgages or even a recession: just a whole lot of teeny weeny bricks about to get scattered unless someone steps in with either a lot of cash or a storage shed the size of a jumbo jet hangar.
In fact, by any child's standard -- especially those crazy for Bionicles, Duplo and LEGO Agents -- this endangered property represents the ultimate dream house. But the address in question, a two-story Lego domicile in England, faces certain demolition Tuesday unless a last-minute reprieve comes through.
The house, built from more than 3 million LEGO bricks, is the brainchild of James May, host of the forthcoming BBC-TV series "Toy Stories." On that show, May takes a nostalgic look at classic toys and concocts challenges based on them. About 1,000 volunteers helped May build the LEGO house, which sits on a British wine estate in Dorking, Surrey.
Trouble is, the winery needs the land back -- and the folks at LEGOLAND Windsor, who had planned to buy and reassemble the house, changed their minds due to the costs and logistics of finding the home a new home. Relocating the LEGO house could run in the $100,000 range, which in many U.S. cities could buy you a nice starter home, and some LEGO kits for the rec room.
Which makes one think: Where are those Star Wars LEGO Jedi when you really need them? (Though so far, a Facebook page has tried to bolster support to save the house.)
"Knocking it down is just wrong on every level," May told the London's Mail newspaper Sunday. "It's a really lovely thing -- it would break the hearts of the 1,000 people who worked like dogs to build it."
LEGO-loving kids, too, will be no doubt dismayed to hear the news. At least one LEGO Club member and self-styled LEGO expert (OK, it's this writer's son) voiced his displeasure in a video you can see above.
Now, for those actually flirting with stepping in to buy the house, be advised: This toy is not a toy. May actually built a working shower and toilet out of Lego for the residence, the latter perhaps giving new meaning to the word "brick." May even had kitchen fixtures such as a breadbox and coffee mugs made of LEGO bricks.
But is the house liveable? Perhaps ... if you're one of those jug-headed LEGO figurines. As for humans, the house of plastic would likely prove far from fantastic. The Mail reports that May slept in the house, on "the most uncomfortable bed I've ever slept in"-- and discovered the house was not waterproof.
Let go my LEGO: British TV host fights to save huge toy home