Cory Brick Has the Resolve to Solve

Brooke Johnston, Feature's Editor

The Rubik’s Cube: The classic puzzle that captures our attention but intimidates us from actually attempting to solve it. According to The Telegraph, even its inventor Erno Rubik couldn’t solve his “magic cube” after he completed building the puzzle in 1974. 

But if you’ve been in a class with senior Cory Brick, you’ve seen what quick work he makes taming the beast. He can solve a 3-by-3 Rubik’s Cube in only 13.4 seconds and a 2-by-2 in three seconds, averaging from 19 to 20 seconds each time he solves a 3-by-3. 

How does he accomplish this? Are his fingers lightning quick? Is it just trickery? 

For him, all it takes is a steadfast blend of passion and practice. 

“The first time I picked up a Rubik’s Cube,” Brick began, “was probably about two to three years ago. My friend Adam loved doing the Rubik’s Cube, and I had a class with him. He told me, ‘You should pick one up and see how fast you can go.’”

In the beginning of his journey, the quickest he could solve a standard Rubik’s Cube was in one minute and 19 seconds. After some experimentation with a 4-by Rubik’s Cube, he realized he could tackle a 3-by-3 in under a minute, and his enthusiasm only snowballed from there. 

Everyone wants to successfully tackle the complex puzzle, but most are unsure where to start. The plethora of guides and YouTube videos appear daunting at first, but the seasoned speedcuber broke down the best methods of turning the difficulties inside-out. 

“There’s a couple methods you can learn, but there are two good ones. One is your beginner’s method, and then there’s another one that’s most widely used,” he explained. “It’s called CFOP. Basically, you started off with the cross, your first two layers, and then you do your last layer in two steps.” 

With a clear idea of how to approach the cube, time becomes the next major hurdle. While Brick acknowledges the tediousness of learning every configuration, he contends that anyone can learn, no matter their schedule. 

In fact, according to Brick, “It’s really not that hard to learn how to solve a Rubik’s Cube, but it gets progressively difficult when you try to go fast.” He mastered the beginner’s method in a day; when he shifted his focus to the CFOP method, it took him two to three months to learn its every algorithm. 

He couldn’t conquer the cube’s ins-and-outs without serious motivation. Propelled by curiosity and a desire to continually improve, the tenacious learner almost always has his Rubik’s Cube on hand. 

In fact, Rubik’s Cubes double as fantastic objects for sharpening concentration. 

“If you have ADHD like I do, or maybe some form of autism or something like that where you have to keep your hands moving or some part of your body, it’s a really great thing to do during class if your teacher lets you do it,” Brick said. 

The versatility of Rubik’s Cubes is part of their fame. They’re both brain-stimulating puzzles and agents by which thousands of new people meet every day. 

Speedcubing, as experienced puzzle-solvers call it, unites passionate cubers across the globe every single day. The WCA, or World Cube Association, is a 501c(3) nonprofit organization that governs international competitions in which participants compete to solve a Rubik’s Cube the fastest. 

Someday, Brick aspires to be a speedcuber competing for cash. As of right now, he admitted that he’d like to improve his time to accomplish such a goal. 

Events aren’t just defined by the competitions. Interested cubers gather together to purchase new cubes, express their passions and make new memories. 

“It’s kind of like Comic-Con,” Brick illustrated. “We bring our cubes, maybe more than one, and we just hang out.” 

Brick’s core maxim is similar to Chef Gusteau’s “Anyone can cook.” 

“Don’t tell yourself you can’t solve a Rubik’s Cube,” he insisted. “It’s really not that hard to learn how. The hardest thing to do is to test yourself on how low you can get your time.” 

Brick firmly believes in the universal capacity to improve and aspires to beat his own records every day. There is something to be learned from his doggedness and relentless pursuit of improvement. 

Take his advice and try solving a Rubik’s Cube yourself! You never know how quickly you’ll catch on.