Had to run out briefly last night with Lego for some electrical cables, and, after checking out, I noticed I had a few quarters in my pocket, and, by god!, there was a claw machine that took quarters right by the exit.
You guessed it, bitches. Totally would've made Gordon Freeman proud, natch solving this physics-based puzzle off the break. (First try, for cereal.)
I think I may have gotten something out of a claw machine maybe once before, as a kid, in a bowling alley, after multiple tries. Don't know what possessed me to attempt this one, but, hell, it seemed relatively impressive at the time.