Imagination: The Best Part Is It’s Limitless

As medical and psychological science has advanced, our species has convinced ourselves that we understand our own bodies and the working of our own minds. This is a huge lie. We understand nothing. We have theories–some of which are almost plausible–but in the end that’s all they are. Theories. Creativity, inspiration, and imagination are just a few of the aspects of our thought processes that scientists study without ever understanding.

Take this story, for example. What do you see when you look at a pile of cardboard boxes? Cardboard boxes, right? Maybe the makings of a playhouse or a cheap sled. Do you see an arcade? Probably not. I wouldn’t either, but Caine did.

Caine is a little boy who lives in Southern California. He took empty boxes from his dad’s auto repair shop and built his own arcade complete with prize wall. For $1 you can get two turns. For $2 you get a Fun Pass with 500 turns. Most people buy the Fun Pass. One visitor to this inventive playland writes:

Caine dreamed of the day he would have lots of customers visit his arcade, and he spent months preparing everything, perfecting the game design, making displays for the prizes, designing elaborate security systems, and hand labeling paper-lunch-gift-bags. However, his dad’s autoparts store (located in an industrial part of East LA) gets almost zero foot traffic, so Caine’s chances of getting a customer were very small, and the few walk in customers that came through were always in too much of a hurry to get their auto part to play Caine’s Arcade. But Caine never gave up.

 I’m showing this off for a few reasons:

A) This kid is so adorable! And what a story! His determination and obvious intelligence has inspired a lot of people and earned him a college scholarship before he’s even left elementary school. The world needs more kids like Caine.

B) This is a perfect example of unexpected ideas taking hold and the amazing ways creativity can manifest itself. It also goes to show you that even ideas that seem improbable and outlandish can make for terrific stories. If you ever have one of those ideas for part of your story, hold onto it. Even if it doesn’t fit in the project you’re working on, it might work somewhere and be exactly what you need.

C) Caine had a dream and he went after it with everything he had. Not only did he reach his goal, he went further than he ever could have imagined. Everyone reaching for the dream of publication can learn from his example. All it takes is finding the right person at the right time to help make your dream come true.

D) Just because. 😉

One of Caine’s supporters made this video about his arcade. Watch it and if you have the extra money, donate to Caine’s college fund!

Caine’s Arcade from Nirvan Mullick on Vimeo.

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