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Types Of Marble Collectors


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After five years I still consider myself a newbie but these are a few of the types of characters I have uncovered mostly online and some offline. Feel free to add yours:

The Old Prospectors: We newbies look with awe upon the old prospector. He has seen it all and more. He was around when there were nuggets everywhere to be found. He has tales to tell, but for all that he is suspicious and reluctant to share. We sense he thinks we're out to steal his horde or poke around his honey holes, when really we just want to learn and drool over his findings and remind ourselves that with enough luck and knowledge, we too may hit paydirt and cry Eureka! Tragically, the old prospector cannot see how valuable he is to us young upstarts. We sense he has lost his enthusiasm for the hobby, which we cannot understand given his vast experience and collection.

The Hermits: These are the fellows who have been around longer, and have delved deeper, but they come from a generation that was not technically savvy. When they have rolled into town and tried to contribute online, their enthusiasm and eccentricity caused them to step on toes. MAYBE THEY TYPED IN ALL CAPS. And, just like everyone in their generation, they expected people to be more civil and more tolerant, because they assumed their experience and knowledge covered a multitude of sins. Their feelings were hurt and they withdrew back deep into the mountains, where many of their secrets will die with them.

The Saints and Favorite Uncles: You know them, you love them. They gladly share. Some are gentle and quiet in their vast knowledge, while others bubble over with enthusiasm even after decades in the hobby. Often they are lost among the grumps and egos, but when the dust settles they are still there, faithful as ever, still suprising us with new tricks up their sleeve.

The Snakes: The snake has an impressive collection and sure appears knowledgable, but his thrill in the hobby appears to be more about getting more for less while building his reputation as a pro. Have you seen his 1" Pelter NLR he fleeced off someone for $10? It sure is a pretty marble, you say, but he keeps smiling about how he paid the old lady only $10 for it. What the snake doesn't realize is that his behavior ends up biting himself, and he ends up coiled up in a corner, cold and lonely.

The Jabowocky: The Jabowocky is a vintage marble collector who was magically transformed into a fervent Jabo collector and evangelist. Jabo fever has taken hold of him and the only prescription is more Jabo. He doesn't understand why your enthusiasm for Jabo is not equal to his. He suspects you may be part of a vast conspiracy to devalue Jabo marbles, which to him are all at least stunning if not amazing.

The G-Man; He sometimes appears at shows, or occassionally posts. His marbles are stunning, but his manner is reserved. You get the impression he has marbles from King Tut's tomb, but is smart enough to keep that under golden silk wraps.

The Hot Shot: The hot shot is basically the marble jock. He has the swagger and he has the collection. He is cool, so you cannot really resent him, and he will let you look--but don't touch! You enjoy seeing what he shares but wonder how the heck he got so lucky so often.

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Hi bumblebee, I like your post and won't pigeon hole myself into a category you have outlined but will say this......Sure I like finding deals, from marbles to big ticket items like a car. I've learned that not all people were taught to be honest or fair very early in life and still get suckered. If I go to a garage sale or a brick and mortar shop and something is priced as a great deal/steal, I buy it! If someone ask me what a marble is worth and it's a great marble, something I want bad...I tell them all I can. I don't see it as an opportunity to swindle this for my gain! Let your conscience be your guide! I can live with this rule because at some point, when selling, you must do your homework or you just want it gone! I have received more satisfaction from helping someone who asked for my opinion and hearing feedback that they sold it on ebay for a price they can't believe. They look at you in a whole different way and tag it to your character and to others.....way better than a marble setting in a box at home!

As far as sharing knowledge amongst fellow collectors.....I don't know why you wouldn't other than greed. The only time I remember getting a little pissed off was at a show. A young guy came in my room and thumbed all my marbles......the better stuff(not a whole lot in my collection).....and kept saying, after cyclops loupe-ing with a bright light.."I only buy mint and this has yada yada yada!" "I buy for a big collector yada yada yada!" I'm thinking..well, if it doesn't meet your standard, just set it down without kicking me in the teeth...should I tell him to get his punk a$$ out of here and f-off. It was about work for him and money drove his every action!

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