Daughter of '80s bomber keeps creative award
November 11, 2007
By Monica Hesse
WASHINGTON – The judges of Lego's first Creativity Awards got more
than they bargained for.
When third-grader Kelsie Kimberlin, 8, of Bethesda, Md., is asked to
describe her entry to Lego's Creativity Awards – among 10 winners who
received $5,000 each – her explanation, with a little prompting from
her dad, Brett, is on message: "I don't want kids to lose any parents
in the war." She wrote this in her application essay, saying her
creativity came through singing songs such as "Happy Springtime," a
reworking of John Lennon's "Happy Xmas" with nearly 50,000 YouTube hits.
A team of judges scanned 1,000 entries. But had anyone seen "Happy Springtime"?
"We were judging the basic creativity of the essay," Lego spokeswoman
Julie Stern says.
"Happy Springtime (Bush Is Over)" is more than five minutes of John
and Yoko footage, of birds fluttering past a billboard reading
"Imagine Peace" and of children singing, cherubically, "Buuush is
ooover!" which is also what their T-shirts say.
According to Stern, the folks at Lego did not watch "Happy
Springtime" until after Kelsie had already been declared a winner,
when her mother, Tatiana, e-mailed links to the video.
"We do not endorse her message," says Stern, who says the company
didn't think it could renege on an 8-year-old. "But we do applaud her
creative spirit … and her message of peace."
Incidentally, Kelsie did not write "Happy Springtime." The credit
goes to Kelsie's dad, Brett Kimberlin.
Remember that guy who said during the 1988 election that he'd peddled
pot at a Burger Chef to Dan Quayle? That was Brett. His claim came
from the clink, where he was serving time for a series of Speedway,
Ind., bombings, one of which wounded a Vietnam veteran.
Kimberlin always contended he wasn't guilty of the bombings and would
have been paroled earlier, except for the government machine trying
to keep him quiet about Quayle, who said he never had met the man.
Kimberlin was released in 1993, moved to Bethesda and had two kids.
So what is Kelsie planning to do with her $5,000? Record more songs,
of course. Says her father, "She was just saying, 'Dad, I want you to
learn this Hannah Montana song and then write the lyrics for it.' "