Zia Hassan

Ode To Marble Run

+++ title = “06” date = 2019 +++

There were so many toys growing up, so many interesting obsessions and fascinations.

The slinky, a world of wonder. The physics that we didn’t need — didn’t want— to understand and the joy of watching the mystery unfold right in front of us.

Or what about the view master? With its reels created specifically for the device itself, better than a shake-me-up kaleidoscope, but not quite a personal movie viewing station (yet). Meditative, transportive, and imaginative are all words I would use to describe it. Easy on the eyes too.

There was mouse trap too, an incredible Rube Goldberg machine with clay and chains of motion. A wonder to behold.

And the best toy of all: marble run. Not because it was a better game than the others but because it was freeing. Little tiny pipe pieces and a marble that starts on one end and comes out on another. Simple, but endless possibilities.

Why do we enjoy this process so much, given that we can’t even see the marble making its journey? It’s the set up. The prep work, the building, the process.

We learn from Marble Run that the joy of executing is not in watching the dominos fall. The joy is in the painstaking work to line everything up.