When I was a kid I was fascinated by marbles. When I saw them in a store, I wished someone would buy them for me. If I ever said anything about it to an adult (someone I perceived as having the resources and authority to fulfill this wish), they usually figured I wanted to “play marbles” with my friends.
The thing is, I did not. I’d heard about this game where an opponent’s superior play could net him (or her, but my neighborhood was full of boys) my marbles.
I was not willing to take that risk.
I wanted the marbles because I liked to look at them. I liked to feel the smooth, cool glass rolling about in my hand.
I’ve not changed much in my 50 years of life. Today I can purchase my own marbles — and I have done so on occasion. I keep them in jars or other glass containers so the light can wash through them. I have a small square jar thing of marbles in my windowsill right now.
Sometimes I wonder if I’d enjoy the marbles more if I’d been willing to risk losing them from time to time. I wonder if I’ve held too tightly to things like my marbles and thereby missed out on something greater.