Today, I'm going to relate a history lesson and a story. Pictured here is an actual coin of Julius Caesar. He minted it from silver he stole from Rome and forged in a military mint. This coin had a purpose. It, along with its brethren, paid for the eight legions Caesar took across the Rubikon. "The die is cast," said Caesar before ordering the crossing. Such a move would have only two endings: his success and complete domination of Rome, or his death. This coin crossed the Rubikon with them, an action that led to the end of the Roman Republic and the beginning of the Roman Empire. I wanted this coin so badly. The owner of this coin became part of one of the greatest stories in history. Indeed, it was the story I wanted, and I paid little heed to my wife's suggestion that a book would tell it just as well as a coin. Yet with any conquest, there must be a struggle. Julius Caesar did not take the Empire with ease. Neither would this coin lend me its allegiance without sacrifice. I began to muster my forces, or money, in preparation for the assault at auction. Upon examining my ranks, though, I found them thin and incapable of prevailing at battle. There was only one choice: I needed an alliance. Such an opportunity presented itself in my mint sets and commemorative coins. They were shiny, but common and lacking stories. Among them was the only piece of gold I owned, a Jamestown anniversary coin I'd bought some years ago. The strategy was clear. If I wanted into Caesar's realm, I would have to sell. With enough troops in hand, I set my sights on a battle and dug in. The day before, with my high bid dangling, I was not feeling confident. After all, despite the amount of troops at my side, they were still paltry for the task. This particular coin was in excellent condition. It would not go low, but I'd put in everything I could. And then a thought occurred to me: there was no way Julius Caesar was going to let his most prized victory fall into the hands of fat, lazy, me. Yes, though I'd run marathons in the past, the pandemic wasn't kind to me. Instead of packing on miles, I gouged on ice cream sandwiches. I walked very little, and had begun to snore. I didn't deserve the coin. So, in a last act of desperation, I dug out my running gear and trudged forward. The rain pelted me, but I kept going. I went for five miles, not even a warm-up in my old days but enough now to keep me panting. What moved me forward was the image of Caesar handing me this coin at the end. Only then would I deserve it. The next morning, the field was mine. The enemy retreated before my forces were fully deployed, and I anxiously waited for Julius Caesar to clear customs, then nearly cried upon opening the box.