interesting. i was digging through my incense samples, looking for one i hadn’t tried yet, and i found “Hem Precious Chandan”. when it’s not burning, it has a powerful, sweet, sandalwood scent. when it’s burning, monique says it smells like “drakar” cologne – and, i must admit, it has a very characteristic cologne-like smell. familiar in a way that reminds me of ancient times with my family-of-origin, and situations i only barely remember at my cousins’ house. i also found a tube of “boddhi sattva” incense which is a really powerful camphor. monique doesn’t like it – she says it smells like vicks vap-o-rub, but it reminds me of aarati.
i really like being an incense peddler. i recently had to take inventory (the tax people want to know how much money i spent, so they can figure out how much of my profits to take away), and i discovered, for the first time in my life, i actually think i have *enough* incense… three five-foot-long shelves full, plus another half-shelf full is *a lot* of incense, but if things keep going the way they’ve been going, i should be able to sell all of it within the coming year.
another side benefit is the murtis. i shipped out a shi ga murti to my first murti-only customer, someone from ohio. i ended up having to order *A LOT* of stuff from the murti-supplier in order to get *one* shi ga murti, and then it turned out they didn’t have the one i ordered, so i had to substitute it for a different one. blah. but, at the same time, i now have four nine-inch dragons, two sets of foo-dogs and another shi ga, all of which are, essentially, pure profit!
gah… materialism… but, it’s not exactly like materialism. i like being able to provide these things to people… i like being the one resource when they’re not available anywhere else. a good example of this is one of my incense customers, frank. he’s a professional musician, and he lives in new york. he was a personal friend of george harrison, and he is a personal friend of ravi shankar. apparently george harrison gave him some incense many years ago, and the only place frank knew where to get it from was george… until george died. now he gets the same incense from me! 8) and i recently sent him 3 kilos of another kind of incense, which is one of his favourites, which he can’t find anywhere else. i can’t believe that i’m the *ONLY* incense peddler in the united states who carries the kasturi masala made by shroff channabassappa & sons, but if frank wants to think so, i’m not going to get in his way. i don’t do it because i like having a lot of incense, although i do like having a lot of incense. i also don’t do it because it makes me money, although i like the fact that it makes me money. i do it because i like helping out people like frank, who wouldn’t know where to buy his favourite incense if it wasn’t for me. that’s why the business is called Hybrid Elephant and not something else.
aum gam ganapataye namo namah
sri siddhiivinaayaka namo nama
ashtavinaayaka namo namah
ganapati baapaa morayaa
hrm… joined a new community recently – the bhagavad gita discussion group… except as far as i can tell it’s that translation by ac bhaktivedanta prabhupada. he may have been an outstanding sanskrit scholar, but his english left quite a bit to be desired. i always like to balance his translation with the superior (IMHO) ones by Sir Winthrop Sargeant, Swami Chidbhavananda and Sir Edwin Arnold. but, and this has been a mystery to me for a couple of years now, i can’t seem to find my study copy of the edwin arnold translation. i’ve got 3 copies of that translation. two of them are little, blue, hardbound books, one of which is held together with duct-tape (because it’s been very heavily used for many years, of course), and the third one was published as a collection of “indian miniatures” – lithographic prints of ancient indian paintings, but this third one *isn’t* one of my two study copies, it doesn’t have the slokas marked in it, and i don’t want to write in it because it’s allegedly a “rare” book. i *KNOW* those books got boxed up and transported when we moved out of beacon hill, but i haven’t seen them since. included in the stack of mysterious disappearing books is a digest-sized, red hard-bound “blank book” that i used as a journal for the couple of years either side of my high school graduation. i’m sure they’re all in the same place, but i don’t know where that place is.
work was slow today. shannon was out – apparently her father had a stroke. for some reason, image east keeps not receiving the emails i send them, so i had to frantically dig around and re-send a job i sent to them on friday, which was supposed to be finished today. it sucks, but at least it’s not my fault. i have proof that i sent it, so it’s their problem.