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Parable of Mr. Miller's Marbles Options
Atiya
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 1:09:27 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/8/2010
Posts: 2,034
Neurons: 6,093
Location: India
I got this in my inbox today, read on.

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprising a basket of freshly picked green peas.

I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes.

Pondering the peas, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.

'Hello Barry, how are you today?'

'H'lo, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus' admirin' them peas. They sure look good.'

'They are good, Barry. How's your Ma?'

'Fine.. Gittin' stronger alla' time.'

'Good. Anything I can help you with?'

'No, Sir. Jus' admirin' th em peas.'

'Would you like to take some home?'    asked Mr. Miller.

'No, Sir. Got nuthin' to pay for 'em with.'

'Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?'

'All I got's my prize marble here.'  

'Is that right? Let me see it' said Miller.

'Here 'tis.. She's a dandy.'

'I can see that. Hmmmmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?' the store owner asked.

'Not zackley but almost.'

'Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble'. Mr. Miller told the boy.

'Sure will. Thanks Mr. Miller.'

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me.

With a smile she said, 'There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever.

When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn't like red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.'

I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles.

Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could.

Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts...all very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband's casket.

Each of the young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and moved on to the casket. Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one, each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes.

Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me about her husband's bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket.

'Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about.

They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim 'traded' them. Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size....they came to pay their debt.'  
 
'We've never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,' she confided, 'but right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man in Idaho ..'

With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles.



It's not what you gather, But what you scatter that tells - what kind of life you have lived.
blue2
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 3:15:43 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/25/2010
Posts: 2,552
Neurons: 23,044
Location: Préveza, Epirus, Greece
Atiya, thanks for posting the story. It's always good to hear about kindness in this world. A good story to start my day off with.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 4:11:04 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2009
Posts: 43,205
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Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
Thanks for marvellous and rousing story, Atiya.
Sparrow
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 4:37:01 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/9/2010
Posts: 180
Neurons: 538
Location: United States
A very touching and inspiring story. And I thought how it must feel to have your loved one die... Selfish as it may sound, I would like to ask God to take me first.
pedro
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 4:46:28 AM
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Joined: 5/21/2009
Posts: 13,057
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Just as well they didn't shower the corpse with peas though
SnehaJain
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 7:20:57 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 8/21/2009
Posts: 86
Neurons: 246
Location: Madras, India
Wonderful story :)
peterhewett
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 9:13:58 AM
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Location: In my head
A touching story.
redsxz
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 9:22:02 AM
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Joined: 9/27/2009
Posts: 1,081
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I'm not sure but is this a real story that happened to you? Since it says India as your location I imagined the location to be some Indian town but Idaho is in America...

Nonetheless, I liked it.
Christine
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 9:34:22 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 4/3/2009
Posts: 3,917
Neurons: 15,842
I got that email along time ago. Yes, it was touching.
Apple Blossom
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 11:51:37 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 5/19/2010
Posts: 472
Neurons: 1,416
pedro wrote:
Just as well they didn't shower the corpse with peas though


Thanks, Pedro. The story brought tears to my eyes. You made me laugh.Angel
MaWeTok
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 1:10:58 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/28/2010
Posts: 69
Neurons: 225
Location: Southeastern, United States
A heart-warming story, Ative. Thank you for sharing.
2thescream
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 1:49:32 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 8/30/2010
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Location: United States
Brought a tear to my eye. Hope it's real, but if it isn't...nice writing.
AnthA1G
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 5:15:18 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 1/13/2010
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Location: New York City, New York, United States
I was almost sobbing! Nice story, Atiya.
Investigator
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 5:44:17 PM
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Joined: 2/21/2010
Posts: 989
Neurons: 2,961
Location: Northern Nevàda
It is one of those stories that circulate around in emails. I haver found that it was true or not. Nevertheless, it is a beautiful story. I don't guess that it matters whether it is true or not. Still, I have known one or two "Mr. Miller"s in my life, so, I believe it is true.
RuthP
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 6:24:53 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/2/2009
Posts: 5,408
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Location: Drain, Oregon, United States
I second Investigator's remarks: I don't know that it matters whether this particular story is true. I, too, have known a couple of "Mr. Millers". The story is true, somewhere.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 6:52:04 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2009
Posts: 43,205
Neurons: 604,649
Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
In the early 60's we lived in Katajanokka, Helsinki. In the City, and in the block of flats. It was still post-war times and there were some people living in the streets in our neighbourhood. All given and traumatized, alcoholics, one could say, war heroes, nevertheless. One of those guys was Arska. He lived in our paper waste box in our yard.

I was usually told to get our waste basket out. My mother sometimes put some edible waste; bread, sausage, cheese and something in a separate package to give to Arska. So I went down to the yard and to the waste boxes, put the trashes in the trash bin and knocked the paper box to give Arska the package mother had send to him. He took it and said I and my mother were blessed and thank God there still are good people.

I can still remember the last time I gave my mother's food package to Arska. It was late April -64, Sunday. Arska burst into tears because mother had put some cake in the pouch. He blessed us again.

Monday afternoon I came home from school and noticed an ambulance in our yard. It was there for Arska but too late, he had died. Later a policeman came to our door to give us a note, written on a scrappy piece of paper. Arska wrote: "Good people give what they have, you give more."
excaelis
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 7:42:46 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/30/2010
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Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Nice parable, Atiyah.

JJ, thankyou for sharing that one. I'm much more giving as I get older. I try to teach my son. Cool that your parents did the same.

Anth, how come you have the freakin' Iliad as a signature while my modest effort got censored ?
AnthA1G
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 8:52:58 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 1/13/2010
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Location: New York City, New York, United States
@JJ, there are many good people in the world.Applause It's just hard to find them in a world full of... bad people.Anxious

@excaelis, is this another conspiracy theory of yours? lol
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 9:13:02 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2009
Posts: 43,205
Neurons: 604,649
Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
AnthA1G wrote:
@JJ, there are many good people in the world.Applause It's just hard to find them in a world full of... bad people.Anxious

@excaelis, is this another conspiracy theory of yours? lol


Have you read the sticky note in Site Features about the signatures?
Been there half the summer.
excaelis
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 9:34:49 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/30/2010
Posts: 10,965
Neurons: 32,652
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I looked through the site features section in re signatures and found only a 120 character limit. Not that I give a fiddler's fart, rat's ass or flying fig how long anyone's sig. is. I just don't want Anth being longer than me. You know.

edit: [ sticky what ?]
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 9:45:12 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2009
Posts: 43,205
Neurons: 604,649
Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
excaelis wrote:
I looked through the site features section in re signatures and found only a 120 character limit. Not that I give a fiddler's fart, rat's ass or flying fig how long anyone's sig. is. I just don't want Anth being longer than me. You know.

edit: [ sticky what ?]


Sticky like this:
excaelis
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 9:57:29 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/30/2010
Posts: 10,965
Neurons: 32,652
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I clicked on that and nothing happened.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Friday, October 15, 2010 10:01:29 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/21/2009
Posts: 43,205
Neurons: 604,649
Location: Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
I suppose so.
Besides, mine is 11 longer than yours.
Articulate Dreamer
Posted: Saturday, October 16, 2010 3:40:16 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/16/2009
Posts: 12,811
Neurons: 99,046
Location: Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Nice story, Atiya.
No matter how many variations there are on this theme, they are inspring, each one.
Atiya
Posted: Tuesday, October 19, 2010 2:33:43 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 7/8/2010
Posts: 2,034
Neurons: 6,093
Location: India
JJ, thanks for sharing your story here. Reminded me of something I heard/read somewhere - mother is synonym of kindness.
Christine, I agree these stories are floating around since long but this found my inbox recently :-) so decided to share with the TFD members.

If eachone of us try to be little bit kind to people in need, this world will be so much better.

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