The SpinFlyer is what you, and the artist who made it, might call a “desktop toy.” Or a “tabletop toy.” Or a “meditation toy.” Or an “art toy.” Or even an “adult toy” (though you have to be a little more careful of your audience when you call it that). It’s most definitely a toy. It’s hand made. It’s designed for that quiet kind of play you sometimes get into when you’re waiting for something, or thinking, or daydreaming.
You give it a gentle spin, or tap, or you blow on it, or you put it near a fan, and it goes round and round and round. Silently. Never quite predictably.
You can experiment. You can try to make it do things like fly over the cup and come to rest without ever hitting the cup. You can count how many times it goes around and try to make it do exactly that many next time, or one more, or one fewer. You can see how gently you can push it. You can let it take you away. If some curious soul happens to visit your desktop airport, what was an invitation to personal meditation becomes an equally attractive conversation piece. So much to share. So many variables to investigate together. So many different ways to play.
It’s a delicate joy. Finely, lovingly made. It’s a work of play art. (Each is numbered, each comes with a signed certificate, each beautifully packaged). So carefully balanced so that a gentle tap will send it into flight. Beckoning you and anyone near to touch it, watch it, play with it.
Sharing is good – as long as it remains in your personal space under your personal protection. Loaning it to someone, as eager as that someone might be to have it under her personal auspices could very well prove to be, shall we say, ill-advised. It is made of plastic and a carbon fiber rod. The rod, as I mentioned before, is delicate, and it can snap in half if you are not careful. A greater risk is the model detaching from the end of the carbon fiber rod where it’s glued. If someone holds the rotating arm by the model it’s likely to snap off the rod, or if they drop the arm and the model hits the floor first, it might detach from the rod, which could easily transcend the parameters of your kindness.
We tried two versions: the Classic Wing and the Desktop Dart. Only some assembly was required, and that proved to be intuitive enough to require only a corroborating glance at the instructions. The Desktop Dart, which looks like a paper airplane made of plastic, seemed to fly longer. The Classic Wing seemed somehow more, well, classic. You can nudge them both in either direction (clockwise, counterclockwise). Because the Classic Wing looks the same going backwards or forwards, it lends itself more to bi-directional nudging. We decided it really didn’t matter which one you had. They were equally playworthy. Equally inviting. Equally Major, fun-wise.