Call it my mascot or tail, but Marlin is usually there.
Meet Marlin, the small figurine in Miami Marlins uniform. He's tiny, as you can see him standing on top of a tamper to get a sense of his size. He's about an inch tall and weighs four and a half grams. I should say, I am not a Marlins fan and the reason I have Marlin has nothing to with the Marlins. It really makes no sense why I still have Marlin, and that makes having Marlin that much cooler. I named him Marlin because it was easy to see why, so no questions there.
I first got Marlin when I was in middle school. I was required to make a 3-D model of a baseball stadium, with players, bases, stands and everything else. That's where Marlin came in. I don't know exactly where he came form, since my mom bought all the supplies, but I do know he's supposed to be on a pencil. Marlin has a hole at the bottom, supposedly to stick him at the end of a pencil like those colorful erasers. Instead, Marlin was hot-glued to a shoe box and pretended to be an actual baseball player while my project was being graded. I don't remember much of the project after I took it back home, it's not around now, and I assume the rest of the pieces from it aren't either. But Marlin is the only piece that survived, for some reason. Part of the reason why he's featured now.
So a few years passed before I rediscovered Marlin. For years, Marlin was living inside some drawer in my bedroom and when I found him again I knew there was a better use for him. At this point I had already been working in coffee for a few years and I got a pretty cool idea. I would take Marlin to the coffee shop where I worked and place him on top of the grinder, and that'll be his new home. I thought it would be a fun thing to do, presumably because it's pretty random and seemingly pointless, but everyone else thought it was a good idea too. So I placed Marlin on the grinder and told everyone to keep him there. To not move him for any reason. Some customers asked about him, and I told them it's just a fun prop, a decoration, or our mascot. Sometimes I would say Marlin is our bodyguard or a quality control specialist, since he pretty much saw everything we did and was there 24/7.
Since the entire coffee grinder vibrates when the motor is running, Marlin would rotate and sometimes fall from atop the grinder. Since he doesn't stand entirely flat - his base is slightly convex from the residue glue when he was in my 3-D project - he would seem to "dance", if you will, whenever we ran the grinder for a long period of time. I would always make sure he was standing and facing directly in front of the grinder, straight at the person using it. If he was going to be there, he should look sharp like a soldier.
Having Marlin there became a "thing", however you define that. It became fun to have Marlin there to me. A cool story. I know, it seems weird. He doesn't talk, or do anything for that matter. He's small, and I don't even like baseball that much. It's that combination of the randomness of everything involving Marlin, and the fact that I saw him atop the grinder everyday for years that prompted this fondness for the thing. When the shop I worked at changed owners, I made sure to keep Marlin before he was thrown out or lost. I took Marlin with me when I moved to college, and he lived in my desk with my other knickknacks.
There isn't much to do with Marlin besides what he already does, but I like and appreciate the fact that there's some history with him. Even though he is a tiny, lifeless figurine he acts as a sort-of lucky charm that I'll be taking with me to even more places. It's been three years since I first placed Marlin on top of a grinder for the first time, and it's fun to know he's been around that long and looks just like he did in middle school. So be on the lookout for Marlin in the future. He'll most likely keep living on top of more grinders chillin' and making sure everyone is doing what they're supposed to.