Evil Genius Parent Tool #9 – Special Event Freebies

Every now and then, I receive an invite to some special promotional event. Some new book launch, a celebration at the local comic book store, card game tournaments at the game shop. Whatever the event, if it is geeky enough and of benefit to our ‘world domination plans’, then I’ll drag the whole EG Inc down there. I get a kick out of showing off this “EG Perk” to the spawnlings.

However, sometimes I receive a bonus laugh.

Like the last event we went to. Toys R Us had a Free LEGO Build ‘n’ Take Event for Ninjago.

Whoa, Nellie. I know – FREE LEGO. But don’t rush at me!! I’m talking about an event that has already passed!

Anyway, we turned up at this event with the three spawnlings. It was a pre-registered event (more on that in a minute) and we had registered to the max – all three spawnlings and EG Dad. I sat this one out – this time.

When we turned up to check names off, the sales assistant handed over three sets of LEGO and directed us to the table.

“Uh, excuse me. But there are four of us for the event.”

Stunned look.

“But sir, this is for kids.”

Stunned look back from EG Dad – “Where does it say Kids Only?”

More stunned look – “Well, it’s LEGO.”

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“And?”

“My name is on the list. I like LEGO. There is nothing about this being a Kids Only Event. Gimme my LEGO.”

I almost felt sorry for the woman – clearly she had no idea of her demographic. If she did, she would have known never to stand between ANY LEGO fan and free LEGO. Almost felt sorry…

But that was also when I realised how much fun it was messing with the minds of innocent minion-sales assistants who have no idea of fan-doms and geek merchandise. And thus, I want to share this with ALL THE MINIONS – so that you EG Parents can enjoy in the “messing of minds”. While sharing geeky goodness with the spawnlings, of course.

So how do YOU get an invite to one of these special events?

Normally there are two ways – either you have some sort of connection to the publishing/merchandise gods. OR you are willing to join/follow a few different retail groups. Toys R Us is a great example – sign up to their VIP Club and they will send you out invites to these events around every 3 months. Normally the events are pre-registered on set dates at your local store – they will send you an email with instructions for registration. Sometimes it is LEGO. Sometimes it is some other toy. Be selective – don’t ruin it for genuine geeks by turning up to everything and taking everything just because you think you can. These are opportunities to share new stuff with the spawnlings, and if they like it, follow its lead around the store.

The thing is – if you want to be in the know, you need to be willing to make the connections. Follow bloggers or newsgroups in your interests. GeekMom and GeekDad are two good places to start.

Also, head down to your local gaming store. My favourite is GoodGames – they have regular tournaments in-store and plenty of friendly staff to guide you.

And don’t forget your local comic store – places like Kings Comics make it their business to know all the merch news, especially for big events like Free Comic Book Day.

In the meantime, Australian minions should head over to Toys R Us and check out the upcoming LEGO event:

LEGO Bricktober Make & Take. LEGO City Kayak!

Now remember: Don’t go abusing the power, kiddies. With great power comes great LEGO collections responsibility to share with your spawnlings.

And anyway – I’ve already registered for mine.

Minion Musings:

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