Category Archives: hybrid elephant

yes, i’m still here…

Hybrid Elephant @ The FSM

it’s just that i’ve been really depressed, and not much is happening in my life recently. i went to the fremont sunday market (flying spaghetti monster) last weekend, and made $80. i’ve got a banda gozona rehearsal thursday and a performance saturday (cinco de mayo, oddly enough, on 1st may… oh well). i got an inquiry about whether or not i ship internationally and i’ve decided that i really should post that on the web site somewhere, so it’s more obvious – yes, i ship internationally, but (for example) to the UK i have to require $25 USD extra to cover shipping costs, which, for most people that order incense from me, would be more than their total order. in general i recommend that if it’s not a domestic order, that the customer should order at least $100 worth of product, or to find some place “closer to home” from which to order.

i’m slowly making progress on my most recent stencil project, which is a picture of gurdjieff. after toying around with various ideas and size possibilities, i finally cut it out – it took two tries, because the first one i got confused and cut out one of the eyes in reverse. it’s taken a while, but it looks like it will do. now i’ve just got to figure out where to paint it where i won’t get caught arrested

gurdjieff stencil

i’ve been really depressed recently, because i’ve been dealing with DVR for the past few months and just came to the point where they’ve finally decided that they can’t help me make Hybrid Elephant more profitable. one of the ways they said they might be able to help is by helping me work out some sort of out-building on our property that i can use as a workshop/recording studio – i had in mind a 20 foot shipping-container-sized office, which would mean less time spent constructing it and more-or-less guaranteed working things like lights and electricity… but after stringing me along since january they’ve decided that they can’t (or, more likely, won’t) help me, because Hybrid Elephant is not “niche” enough, and too “fringe” for their liking…

so if any of you want to buy me stuff to make me happy, Middlesex University Teaching Resources would be a good place to start… they’ve got all kinds of geeky stuff. anything would be fine. surprise me.

other than that, here’s a link dump from the past few days:

John Cleese reports on laughter – appropriately enough…

Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies – this person took the concept that any food can be made better by adding bacon to one extreme… and before you say “eew” think about it a little bit… it actually sounds pretty good, and i’m tempted to try it.

McCain opposes equal pay bill in Senate – meanwhile, the world continues on it’s way to hell.

The very first McDonalds commercial – meanwhile, the world continues on it’s fast track to hell-in-a-handbasket… 8/

The Trailer to Chemical Wedding – which is coming in may. this will either be a total misrepresentation of uncle al, or it could be very interesting.

A Closet Of Curiosities – which is a music blog courtesy of my old friend spreznib, with whom i hope to be making our own music soon.

happy 4/20

now that i’ve got that out of the way, i want to gripe about DVR again. they strung me along for 4 months after not even paying attention to me for almost 5 years, and then, yesterday, i got their notice in the mail that they won’t be doing anything for me anyway, which i could have told you if it weren’t for the fact that all the time between january, when i first met with them, and yesterday, they said they actually could do something for me. basically the notice i recieved yesterday told me a whole bunch of things that are wrong with my business, some of which i can actually change without any suggestions, and all of which can be changed fairly easily as long as i can find some helpful suggestions for what i can do instead. but then it said that, given the fact that my business was so fucked up, they won’t be able to help me, without a clue as to what i should do to change it, or what i should do next. great… even the print brokering, musical instrument repair and pipe-making are beyond the capability willingness of DVR to help me out. and with no suggestions for what i can do to change it, i’m basically right back where i started, not making an even remotely livable income and without the possibility of ever making a livable income in the future.

yes, i am fundamentally against work, but i figure, with my talents, there should be some way for me (and everybody else, if they want it) to make an acceptible income doing what i like to do, but with government agencies that are supposed to help people like me shooting me down every time i try to move forward, it’s getting really discouraging, and right now i don’t know what i’m going to do next. 8(

moisture venting

diemo

the moisture festival opening was last night. the fremont philharmonic played a grand total of 4 tunes, and then vacated the stage, while artists with artificial music, and artists who performed with the zebra kings performed for 2 hours. this was primarily because of RB deciding that we would play the first half, and then conveniently scheduling all the artists that had artificial music for the first half, while saying that the zebra kings (which includes RB himself) would play the second half, including hacki’s performance, and godfrey daniels’ performance, both of whose music we have actually been rehearsing for the past month, unlike the zebra kings, who sound as though they haven’t played together since last year. i really think that once they actually get a professional theatre manager, instead of RB – who is a contractor and a musician on the side, but is definitely not anything like a professional anything – the moisture festival will actually be fun to play. until then, there are, by definition, going to be problems that are a direct result of having the person making the schedule one of the performers as well.

also, the program this year is a joke compared to the program that i produced last year! they actually copied my format – they used a different title font (they actually used papyrus, a “distressed” font that i find particularly annoying), but everything about the format is essentially the same. they even used some of the same ads. also, they cheaped on the printing, which means that the greyscale graphics are at a larger screen density, and coarser than they were last year, and the “colour” cover is on cheaper paper, with no UV coating, and is only colour on one side – and i’d be willing to bet that they paid at least twice as much for it than they did last year. of course they didn’t post the actual schedule in the program, and included numerous warnings that the schedule can change at a moment’s notice. in general, i say “ha ha!”

i took a whole bunch of pictures, but only three of them are worth looking at, because the rest of them were taken from the back of the theatre, with no flash, which means blurry at best. i like the picture of diemo, though. i got down on his level and snapped the photo, and then i was able to turn the camera around and show him the picture, which was really cool. he seemed to like it, too… 8)

passing time

snow! in march!

the opening night of the moisture festival is today. i’ve got to be there no later than 5:30, and we begin playing at 6:30. until then, i am waiting for UPS to deliver 1000 postcards i had printed for margot lovinger, which, according to the UPS web page, has been “out for delivery” since 4:45 this morning. the last time i remember this happening, the guy came shortly after i was forced to leave, and because of the fact that it happened on friday, i wasn’t able to actually recieve the shipment until monday. there’s a good chance that will happen again with this shipment, because i have to go help bill nelson with another one of his computer problems tomorrow morning. if it weren’t for the fact that his computer problems inevitably turn out to be much easier to solve than he makes them sound when i’m talking to him on the phone, and if it weren’t for the fact that he is enthusiastic about paying me, i would consider telling him to find another helpdesk geek.

snow? in march??

well, my UPS shipment just arrived, so i’m outta here.

woof

four punks

Happy Easter, Purim, Narouz, Eid Milad an Nabi, Small Holi and Magha Puja!

also, happy day-after-the-Punk Rock Flea Market. it was a good one. i made $85, and i actually sold a Ganesha murti, which was the goal that i set for determining whether or not to attend the next one. i still have to unload the car, but i’m still sitting around in my bathrobe at 12:00 in the afternoon, so i don’t think it’s gonna happen soon.

one of moe‘s friends spent the night last night, because it was easier than driving an extra 2 hours from her place to get to a herding trial that both she and moe were going to yesterday and today. unfortunately, that meant that her two herding dogs also spent the night, and what with our own herding dog, and the herding dog that belongs to her that moe is taking care of because she’s pregnant (lucy), that meant about a hundred dogs, most of whom spent their time trying to herd the cats, trying to stare down the cats, and/or barking with that sharp, high-pitched, irritatingly insistant bark that herding dogs have. fortunately they also had the idea of getting take-out from Naan N’ Curry – renton’s other outstanding indian restaurant (the other one being Pabla’s), so after stuffing myself with lamb jalfrazi and chicken pakoras, i retreated to the bedroom and read the sacred magic of abramelin the mage while moe did her doggie thing in the living room. moe and her friend got up at some ungodly hour this morning and went to the 2nd day of their herding trial, and, hopefully, i won’t have to deal with that many dogs again until lucy has her puppies in about a month.

guess what?

I AM A TERRORIST!

there are almost a million terrorists in the united states AT THIS VERY MOMENT!!!

are you afraid yet?

the U.S. government’s terrorist list has, as of this posting, 927,436 terrorists, and at the rate it’s increasing, over 20,000 records per month, there will be a million U.S. citizens on the list by july!

are you afraid yet?

and people wonder why i wear a button that says “I AM A TERRORIST!” 8/

whew!

yesterday was full of incense orders, appointments, and rehearsals. i got up in time to go to my 10:00 appointment with the DVR lady and her business consultant (more about this later), and discovered that i had a $35 incense order. so i put the order together and was printing out the invoice when i realised that the person to whom i am sending it lives in the UK, which means that i have to figure out extra postage, and then write to them requesting that extra postage before i ship it. as of 1:30 today (more than 24 hours after i sent the request, i still haven’t got a reply from them. i hope it doesn’t turn out that they only notice when their order doesn’t come and they file a complaint with paypal… 8/ ). in any event, the result of all this was that i left about 15 minutes late for my appointment. fortunately i was able to call and let them know, so they woudln’t decide that i wasn’t there and decide not to help me at all.

i ended up getting to my appointment about 5 minutes late, but then i ended up sitting in the lobby for about 15 minutes before someone came out and told me that the appointment was actually scheduled for 10:30, not 10:00, and that the business consultant hadn’t arrived yet. 8/

finally the business consultant arrived, and she, the DVR lady and i talked about Hybrid Elephant for about 2½ hours. she ended up saying not very much that made me feel as though they actually are going to help me, including a blanket statement, which she did clarify later on, that the DVR won’t help people who are interested in self employment. she did qualify this by saying that those people who do get help from DVR with self employment are a lot more likely to be people who fit into the “niche markets” rather than the “fringe economy”, and that, on the surface, Hybrid Elephant sounded a lot more like the latter than the former. however she did say that it has very definite “niche market” potential, and that i should endeavour to work more towards developing those things, which included print brokering and musical instrument repair – neither of which are entirely out of the question, although both could use some help that i either can’t afford, or don’t know how to give them before they become anything like sustainable business material.

i had hoped to come home and take a shower before going to my 3:00 appointment with ned, but as it was i had just about enough time to come home, slam down something to eat, throw my trombone in the car and head out again. i made it to my appointment with about 15 minutes to spare, and when it got out, there wasn’t much point in driving more than i had to, so i drove up to ballard and took a nap until it was time for my BSSB rehearsal, from which i got home at 10:00, at which point i was so tired that i fell asleep on the couch.

that being said, here are a few things that i have found interesting from the past couple of days:

Cats Help Shield Owners From Heart Attack – this makes me wonder a lot about what toxoplasma gondii has, if anything, to do with it… and i, personally, can’t imagine how toxoplasma gondii could not have anything to do with it, considering how prevalent and insidious the microbe is…

The day the wiretaps go dead is about warrantless wiretapping, and how ordinary citizens can secure their communications against such travesties of democracy, while our supposedly democratically elected leaders are going about the business from a completely different angle: House Steers Its Own Path on Wiretaps. we can only hope that they will continue to be successful, if we want to keep democracy around.

finally, we have Crazy ‘Pot Will Make You Sell Your Children’ Warning from Otherwise Sane Senator, which just goes to show how far we have yet to go… 8/

Continue reading whew!

flash from the distant past

Hybrid Elephant at the Fremont Sunday Market

i went to the fremont sunday market yesterday. i didn’t do as well as i did last week, but i still made $60, which is nothing to sneeze at.

i had this really strange experience, but first, a little back story.

when i was living in bellingham, before i moved to mount vernon (let me see, mental calculations, approximately 15 years ago – gawd, am i really that old?), i was doing graphic design work for almitra, who was trying to pull together a “new-age” business, or commune, or teaching center, or something like that. she was also my introduction to the the himalayan academy, because she had found the 500 pound sphatika lingam that ordains their temple. looking back on it, i don’t see why i worked for her as long as i did, not only because she was one of the truly crazy people that have plagued my life, but also because she didn’t actually pay me in money, but rather in tangible goods, like an african aligator-skin drum, and a Mac LCII computer (which she ended up having a good friends of mine steal back from me), but this all happened before that.

one of the things that i designed for almitra was a deck of cards called “Words of Power”. they were triangular cards with a sri yantra on the back, and various words and their “interpretations” in fancy print on the front. i don’t remember all of the words, but they were all in a very fancy typeface that was very distinctive, and there were enough individual words to make a deck of 50 – 75 cards. all almitra did was come up with a list of words, and this idea, i did all of the design work and had the cards printed at this place in mount vernon, near where i lived several years later. after the cards were printed, i gave them to almitra, keeping a couple decks myself for my portfolio, and quickly forgot about them. i remember finding them when we moved from renton to auburn, but they’re currently buried somewhere in the pile of boxes in our dining room, and have been for at least two years.

Words of Power cards

yesterday, i was at the fremont sunday market, and i had occasion to see one of the people who really appreciates fine quality incense that i have come to know. she was a vendor as well, and someone i first met last year when i went to the FSM (i can’t help but think of the Flying Spaghetti Monster when i use that abbrevation). she had a table where she was giving “readings from a real, live psycho”, and – and this is the really weird part – she was using a deck of “Words of Power” cards as her medium.

Readings with a live psycho

i was passing by, and i saw the cards, and, without saying anything, i picked one up and turned it over to make sure that they really were the same cards i designed, and then i said “i designed these cards.” she immediately responded by grabbing the card back from me and saying “no you didn’t!” she said that she had a mystical relationship with the cards, and when i came back, a little later, with my camera so that i could take a picture of her with the cards, she said “no, no!” and tried to hide them from me – she was in the middle of a reading, though, and i got a shot of her and the cards anyway.

i haven’t even thought about those cards in 15 years! and almitra is one of the many truly crazy people i have dealt with in my life. i couldn’t have possibly imagined that anyone would use something that a crazy woman came up with as a legitimate vehicle for discerning the future before i actually saw it for myself.

blah

i had another acupuncture appointment today, and once again he put needles in all five fingertips of my right hand. he even told me that the middle fingertip point is called “old dragon”, which is a little amusing considering “the bird” flies from the middle finger. he also said that, in china, the sensation i got when i wriggled around last time and “agitated” the needles in my legs, is what they go for with all the needles, but he doesn’t do that because most western folks can’t handle it. i could probably handle it as long as i knew it was coming, but even i have limits, and for me, the fingertip needles are that limit… although i will say that i have a lot more sensation in my fingertips now than i had before the treatment.

i’m going to the fremont sunday market again tomorrow. i hope to be a little bit better prepared than i was last week. i got a bunch of milk jugs which i filled with sand to use as weights to hold down the canopy – they said that they require 20 pounds per leg, and the milk jugs only weigh 12½ pounds, but i’m hoping for at least 2 more jugs, and possibly 4 more, to join them later on.

DVR didn’t call me, rather as i suspected. i’m going to call them first thing monday, but they’re very quickly losing credibility with me. i already have low expectations about what any government agency can do for me, and when they say they’re going to do something and then don’t, it confirms my low expectations, regardless of how rosy the outlook has been in the past.

i’ve been looking at grafitti stickers recently, and have some interesting ideas, including a picture of george gurdjieff and a picture of aliester crowley, posterised and rendered in black and white. i know exactly what pictures i want to use. it may be that the pictures get stencils made out of them as well. i’ve got a whole bunch of spray paint left over that’s waiting to be used for something nefarious.

moe and i are going to maneki this evening to help one of her friends/co-workers celebrate their birthday.

random busy

my appointment with DVR was tuesday, and i presented the lady with the business plan that ian and i came up with. rather like the term paper that ian and i came up with 20-some-odd years ago, it was 95% bullshit, but presented in a way that made the lady say that it was very impressive, and not entirely because, not too infrequently, the DVR interviews people who are disabled and interested in self-employment, but when they are given the task of coming up with a business plan, they don’t. the next step is later on this week (and if it doesn’t happen by the end of the week, i’m supposed to call her), when either she, or a business consultant calls me to arrange an appointment.

i must say, DVR has done a lot more for me already, just in my mood, if nothing else. most of the other government organisations i have worked with since my injury have said they would help, but very quicly demonstrated that, in reality, they weren’t interested in me at all. i’m not holding my breath yet, but what they have told me about what they do with what i have already done makes me think that Hybrid Elephant could actually be an income-producing venture in the not-too-distant future.

i’ve been in rehearsals for the moisture festival for a few weeks now. the fremont philharmonic has a new trombone player, silveradept, who i recruited on internet. i’m so glad i’m not doing the program this year. i don’t even know where they are with the program, but they just posted the (tentative) schedule on their website on monday, and the moisture festival starts on the 27th. for something that puts itself off as a professional show, they really aren’t that professional.

also, depending on which (of three different) bands you’re talking about, i have also been in rehearsals for Honk Fest West for a while, which is the 21st through the 23rd. the Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band starts rehearsals next week, which is a good thing because they are also performing for Honk Fest.

fremont sunday market

i took Hybrid Elephant to Fremont Sunday Market yesterday, for the first time since january of last year, when, if memory serves me correctly (which it doesn’t with a regularity that i find extremely alarming), i made on the order of $35 for a 9½ hour shift when i went a year ago. yesterday was substantially better – i made $110 – and good enough that i’m seriously thinking about going back a lot sooner than a year from now. i had at least 5 people ask me if i was going to be back next week (i wasn’t sure, but i might be) and one lady that wandered under my canopy, looked around, looked at me, and said "The incense guy!" and ran off, only to come back about 2 minutes later and spend around $40.

so, yeah… i think i’ll probably be back fairly soon. i actually made enough money to buy a membership in the fremont sunday market, which means that i’ll get an assigned booth space that will be reserved for me every week, whether i’m there or not. i’m going to have to get some sandbags for the canopy legs, however, because i spent most of the day trying to prevent the canopy from flying away whenever the wind blew in the right direction.

however, nobody showed up who read about it here (except maybe john and kim, who didn’t say that they read about it here). i know that there are several people in the seattle area who read this blog regularly, but at the same time, because of the fact that nobody said that they had read about me going to the FSM on internet, that meant that i didn’t have to figure out what to do if they had: i was thinking about 20% off your incense purchase, or something like that. oh well…

i just realised that the Fremont Sunday Market has the same abbreviation as the Flying Spaghetti Monster… and knowing john and candace as i do, they probably meant it that way… 8) it makes me wonder how well pirate fish, or flying spaghetti monster fish for your car would sell at the FSM… and nobody else had them… 8) and it would be a really good thing to include along with the “christian” booth and the scientology booth… 8D

oh, also if you want a free TrafficGauge, all you have to do is answer a few questions for the Puget Sound Congestion Information Survey at the university of washington. i’ve already been making very good use of mine… 8)

another victory against wage slavery!

well, i’m back from troy’s with 500 business cards for NBAC, and now i know all the juicy details about why troy quit MMP. apparently there have been substantial changes happening that i didn’t know about. bart is now “general manager”, which means that instead of being back in the press room, being useful, he’s now up front, surfing the net and goofing off. bart says that he’s going to “do something” about the fact that numerous jobs have been going on the press without being spell checked and okayed by the customer (i actually used to have a proof stamp, that had to be initialled by the customer before i would put jobs on the “to-be-printed” pile – that stamp disappeared shortly after my injury [i suspect carl was behind it], and when i got out of the hospital, nobody knew where it was). troy was tired of taking flak for it, and complained to bart, but bart was apparently too busy surfing the net and goofing off to do anything about it once he left the press room. finally, one of the new (sales)girls came back and read troy the riot act for printing a job that hadn’t been proofread, and he told her to eat shit and die. when mike told troy to apologise to her, troy told mike to eat shit and die, and walked out.

good for him. it wasn’t enough that he was working from 3:00 am because of where he lives, and it wasn’t enough that he was only making $17 an hour when the industry standard for a press operator with his experience is more like $30 an hour, he shouldn’t have to put up with taking the blame for doing stuff that wasn’t his fault to begin with. of course this means that now bart will either be forced back into the press room, or he will have to hire a new, presumably competent press operator who is willing to work for $17 an hour.

also, apparently, mike is under the impression that quark xpress has been purchased by microsoft. i don’t know where he got that idea from, but it was probably from sharon, who is doing my job now, and who hates quark, despite the fact that it is consistently more reliable than adobe.

printing stuff

i’m going to troy’s shop in marysville today, to take him the paper and then pick up the NBAC business cards. they ordered ’em on friday, and i may just be able to deliver them on monday. troy is no longer working for MMP issaquah any more. i don’t really blame him much: mike is the guy who bought MMP from carl, right after my injury. a couple of years ago, he offered me a job (actually he offered me my old job back) which i refused because he insisted that i use inferior software for most of the jobs. i don’t understand why the people who don’t actually use or understand the software are in the position of telling the people who are, what software they are going to use. especially when the people who are going to be using, and who understand the software quite intimately (me) inform them that the software that they want to use is inferior and won’t get the work done as quickly or accurately. but that’s apparently the way it is in MMP-land. i won’t mess with his fantasy, but i’m not gonna work for someone who doesn’t want to get the job done right, and get it done right the first time. presumably he’s still got bart, as well, but with all of the work that went through MMP when i was working there, i sincerely doubt that one press operator is going to do it for him. on the other hand, troy has been doing work for me for free, and now i wonder whether or not he’s going to be able to afford to do that any longer. i’ll ask him today.

my awesome web stats

thanks to my awesome web stats, i learned that i have had over 1000 hits on a particular page on my web site. i wonder if i should offer a prize for the person who guesses which one it is? now i know that this doesn’t sound like much, but keep in mind that, while it has been in the same place, more or less, on the net since 1997, it contains no pornography, and it is completely un-advertised.

also, i got my new business cards today. 8)aum ganganaapataye namah

random blah

my depression is getting to be more tolerable, but that’s partially because i now have close to 5 days worth of music loaded on my computer. i’m really liking this open-source alternative to iTunes a lot, especially because it apparently has the ability to go out and find the names of the tracks that got lost when i burned them onto windoesn’t-format CDs that abbreviated the names to 8+3. it also apparently has the ability to find track names based on cover art, because i had the album name of an album by The Insect Trust (and there are only two of ’em), but i couldn’t either find, or automate finding the track names. but when i applied cover art to the album, suddenly it knew the track names as well. admittedly, the track names were in the .jpg file that i cut up to get the cover art (the front and back of the album had originally been scanned and then combined into one file), and i figured i would copy them off the other half of the .jpg, but then, suddenly, they were there and i didn’t have to. also it has a script that finds the lyrics to whatever song is playing… although it doesn’t work as well as it could (it can’t find the lyrics for Fliperama by Tom Zé, or Black Cat by Gentle Giant).

also, i got my first incense order of 2008 yesterday, and while it was only $25, it doesn’t take too many orders like that to make a living, and, if i recall correctly, i didn’t get my first incense order of 2007 until february.

i talked to moe last night. she was taken into the pool where the dolphins were, and she got to meet them. she says that if i want, i can go and “meet” the dolphins for a weekend. apparently the husband of one of her co-workers is an employee of the FAA or something like that, and they’re always getting free airline passes to go to various exotic places. and when i’m not “meeting the dolphins”, i’ve got a potential job, of sorts, helping the father of another co-worker get several warehouses full of stuff sold on ebay. of course, it wouldn’t be with moe, because somebody has to stay home and take care of the dogs – there’s no way we’re taking four dogs on a cross country airplane flight – but if things work out the way we’re hoping, moe and the dogs and i will be there together in a year or so.

hybrid elephant update

i paid (heh) my state taxes today… which is to say, i filed my tax return, but i didn’t owe anything. i’m not really sure how that works, because i actually did around $1,200 worth of “taxable” business (i.e. that which isn’t mailing stuff to people who are out of state), but i’m not complaining – if i could complain, it would be because the lady from the department of revenue i talked to on the phone about how to correct the errors in my tax return was wrong, but i don’t know that yet, and i’m hoping that everything is as cool as she assured me it was. i also did about $1,100 worth of mailing stuff to people who are out of state. this year’s inventory came to $1,066.89, and this year’s filled orders came to $2,454.85 which is about twice as much as it was last year, although about $1,200 of that was stuff that didn’t cost me anything to produce, and i didn’t have to buy anything in order to be able to fill their orders. i’ll never figure out why this business of print brokering actually makes money, but as long as it does, i’ll keep doing it.

shortly after i had the irritating, irrational phone conversation with the lady at paypal yesterday, i received the following email from “teresa”, who is one of the uncountable number of paypal agents i have talked to in the past:

I went in and tried to request a debit card to your po box and I
received an error I believe this error was due to the length of your
name. I have escalated this to the debit card processor for review and
you should receive a notification within 24-48 hours. I do apologize for
the inconvenience this may have caused you.

i don’t know if teresa was the person i was talking to yesterday, or before that, and i don’t know whether or not the lady i was talking to yesterday has anything to do with this whole fiasco, but it appears that i am, once again, waiting for 24 to 48 hours for a mysterious email from some unknown body that either will, or will not tell me that i am, or am not eligible for a paypal debit card. just to make sure, i actually purchased $20 worth of swastika jewelry from ManWoman yesterday, so it’s possible that all this uproar is for nothing anyway.

paypal gripe

i am apparently ineligible for a paypal debit card because i have “insufficient transaction history”, despite the fact that i have been a paypal member for 3 years. when i have to purchase something, i have had to transfer money to my bank, because i have a debit/mastercard from the bank that allows me to make purchases as though they were credit card purchases, but the vendors that i make purchases from don’t accept paypal as a payment method. when i don’t have enough money in my bank account, i have to transfer money from my paypal account to make purchases, which takes two or three days. so i have made transfers from my paypal account, but apparently that isn’t “sufficient transaction history” for them. according to paypal, i have to make at least $20 (in two purchases of $10 each) from my paypal account before they can issue me a paypal debit card. unfortunately, because of the fact that the vendors that i purchase from don’t accept paypal as a payment option, i am apparently ineligible for a paypal debit card. the lady i just got done talking to said that all i have to do is make two $10 purchases from my paypal account to be eligible. this is after i have waited two months for a paypal debit card that i have applied for twice, and gotten zero response from paypal during that time that even came close to explaining why i was not eligible. if i were to go to a bank (like i did recently when i changed banks) they would not hesitate to give me a debit card regardless of what kind of transaction history i had, but with paypal, apparently you have to make purchases through paypal before you can be eligible for a paypal debit card, regardless of how long you have been a paypal member, and regardless of what your transaction history is. is that stupid or what?

hybrid elephant stuff

i have to file state taxes for hybrid elephant before the 30th. if last year is any indication, i owe about $50 in state taxes. i also want to buy a canopy so that i can sell incense even if it’s raining, and i want to buy a membership in the fremont sunday market.

after waiting 2 months for a paypal debit card, i think i may have gotten through to them that i do, indeed, want a paypal debit card. i applied, waited a month, and nothing happened, so i called them and discovered that no application had ever been made, so i applied again, this time with an operator on the phone, who confirmed that i had, indeed applied. i waited another month, and nothing happened again. so, i called again today and complained mightily. she said that i would get email confirmation within 48 hours, and you can bet that if i haven’t gotten email confirmation in 48 hours and 1 minute, that i’m going to call back and complain again. if i do get email confirmation, she said that i would actually receive my paypal debit card within 7 business days, but i’m going to wait for the email confirmation before i start holding my breath. they did okay when their system had been compromised a few months ago (even though i had to wait a month before i got my money back), but this is getting ridiculous.

hybrid elephant, non-incense stuff

The Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band was written up in the Seattle Times on saturday. there are more pictures if you click the javascript gallery at the times site, or on the static page at the BSSB web site. there’s also John Philip Sousa’s favourite recipe, in case you ever wanted to know. the library of congress apparently offers a whole bunch of JPS miscellanea including scores, instrumental parts, audio files and scrap books… 8) looks like i’m going to have some web pages to update with new information here pretty soon…

someone wrote to me asking about baaṇalingams (which is another name for narmada sivalingams), so i steered him this direction, which, oddly enough, is the result of about 1 hour’s worth of research of on the web, but i didn’t have anything anywhere close on my site, so i put together a new page for it.

busy

Punk Rock Flea Market

the punk rock flea market was yesterday. i worked from 10:00 am until 7:00 pm, and i made $30. but my table fee was $25, so really i only made $5, which isn’t an awful lot considering that i worked 9 hours. i did make an awful lot of contacts, though, including the curator for Form/Space Atelier, the gallery where the PRFM was held.

i got another order from the 90210 zip code, and now i’m almost totally out of the most expensive incense i currently stock(!), Zhingkham Kunchhab Chhoedtrin, which is bhutanese temple incense. i have now sent two emails to the manufacturer, Nado Poi Zokhang but it is my understanding that the chinese government has outlawed the exportation of incense from bhutan, so i’m not sure whether or not i’m going to be able to get more.

also i sent out an order to the UK recently, and the recipient hasn’t received it yet, which concerns me… but the USPS computer system has been down all day (at least that is what they would have me believe), so they can’t tell me whether or not the package has even reached their system or not. 8P

ganesha – the remover of obstacles

last night i got pulled over by the cops. i had just run a red light, along with the car next to me (which happened to contain liz dreisbach, the leader of the Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band, and apparently the cop had been hiding in the shadows on the cross street. but it was midnight, and there was nobody else around, so i think he didn’t have anything better to do anyway. i pulled over and he gave me a warning: “safety tip, when your light is red, that means mine is green”. then he sniffed and said “sandalwood?” to which i responded “yeah, i sell incense” and grabbed a business card, which i keep on the dashboard for just such an occurrence. he thought i was handing him my license, and said “no, that’s okay” but then he saw that it was my business card and said “oh, is that a business card?” and took it, peered at it with his flashlight, and then let me go.

i am firmly convinced that Ganesha Vinaayakeswara was watching over me, and that is precisely why i have Aum Vinaayakaaya Namah painted right over the driver’s side door

aum vinaayakaaya namah

not only that, but when i got home, i discovered that i had a $50 incense order from someone in the 90210 zip code.

busy, busy, busy…

mal, one of the witnesses on my wedding certificate, has recently moved here from alaska, and he left his car in my front yard last weekend so that he could go back to alaska for the holiday.

6:00 am, moe gets up to go to work. i stay at home (like usual) and go back to sleep when she leaves. approximately 7:00 am, the dog barks, but as it’s the dog that irrationally barks at anything at all for no reason whatsoever, i tell her to be quiet and go back to sleep. around 8:00 am, i am woken up by the telephone. it’s moe telling me that mal called the clinic, wants his car, and that i should call him, which i do. i learn that the reason the dog was barking was because mal was knocking on the door of my house – and i wasn’t answering because i was asleep and not paying attention to the dog, who was obviously telling me that someone was at the door… 8/

so i get up and call the printers to change the delivery address on the two packages that are scheduled to be delivered here soon. i talk to a guy who tells me that he’s got to call UPS and make sure that he can, and he will call me back. then i get into mal’s car, with a minor hiccup when mal’s car alarm apparently won’t let me in (fixed by replacing the battery in the remote), and head up toward microsoft to give mal’s car back around 9:00 am. while i’m on the way, i call the printer again and tell them that i called and the guy said he would call me back, but didn’t. the lady says sure, they can change the shipping address on the packages, but it will cost me $10 per package, is that okay? i say, no, it’s not okay! she takes my order numbers and puts me on hold, and while i’m on hold, i get another phone call from the printer – which i assume was in response to the message i left them on friday – to get the physical address so that i can get my packages delivered…

sigh…

so anyway, i give the lady the proper physical address, i don’t have to pay anything, i called UPS and they’re on board with the whole thing, although they might have to deliver one of the packages tomorrow, because it was out for delivery when they got the change of address (which means that i have to stay home all day, on the off chance that they actually are going to deliver it today). i also made a few changes in the Ballard Sedentary Sousa web site, and had a terse but productive email conversation with liz about tomorrow’s recording session and what’s going to happen afterwards.

and i printed out godfrey daniels music from stuart’s web site so that i can play the tuba part at the party.

rehearsal tonight, recording session tomorrow, rehearsal wednesday… thursday and friday are free, so far, but there’s a possibility that i’m going to have to go whip a computer back into shape on one of those two days. then there’s the punk rock flea market saturday, and the Phinney Neighborhood Holiday Fiesta on sunday, more rehearsals next monday and wednesday, the party on friday, and then two weeks of puss in boots performances…

bleh

i’m anxious.

one of my postcard orders is supposed to be delivered tomorrow, and when i called UPS to confirm that, they told me that it was addressed to my PO box, and they don’t (or can’t, i’ve never been sure of which) deliver to PO boxes, and i can’t change the delivery address, only the sender can do that. so i put in a call to the printer and asked them to change the delivery addresses on both packages, but (of course) they were closed because it was saturday, and i probably won’t hear back from them until tomorrow… but that’s when the first package is supposed to be delivered, which means that i likely won’t get a package by way of UPS tomorrow.

i have a rehearsal tonight, at 7:00 pm at hale’s, but it’s only 11:00 am, and i’m antsy. i realise it’s the weekend, but there should be more for me to do, to keep my mind out of the worrying and depressing that i’ve been so apt to do recently.

Limp Fish, Part II – And More, Postscript Songs

i don’t honestly know why, but i have been getting a lot of business from outside the country recently. the most recent occasion was two days ago, when someone from leicestershire ordered a durga murti. i think i like out-of-the-country business, but i’m not completely sure yet.

two days ago, i replaced the (brand new) power supply, and got a refund for the one that i replaced. today i discovered that, because of a screw up at re-pc, i will not actually be recieving the $27.14 refund for up to thirty days. meanwhile, i applied for a paypal debit card, which has yet to be delivered, and i have more than $100 in my paypal account. i would growl more at re-pc except that they have been very helpful to me over the past couple of months, but it really irritates me that i have to wait thirty days before i get my refund.

in other news, i have joined the Grand Council of Bearded Men, which will make me eligible to compete in the World Beard & Moustache Chamionships in anchorage, alaska next year. of course there’s no hope of me actually winning such a championship, but it’s a step in the right direction.

penis enlargement

i have been getting comments in my blog that are spams recently. it’s a very good thing i have a moderation queue, and only accept comments from people who have registered, otherwise i would be bitching more about it.

in other news, my brand new power supply that i bought less than a month ago as part of my ongoing battle with the computer, failed yesterday: i cycled the power, and when i tried to start up the machine again, it didn’t even budge. i panicked, asked advice from my net-geek friends, and then took the whole CPU to re-pc this morning and had it officially diagnosed. it’s a good thing it failed yesterday, though, because if it had waited until today to fail, then i wouldn’t have been able to get a refund from re-pc, because it would have been more than 30 days since i bought it.

why?

i sent out a shipment to australia, and a shipment to chicago. one postcard order has been shipped from the printer and should arrive here on the 26th, and another one is at the printers and ready for printing. UPS made a delivery a couple of days ago, and now i’m all set for the punk rock flea market that’s a week from sunday. oddly enough i have positive balances of close to $100 in both the bank and at paypal, and i have at least one more payment that’s pending. so why am i so depressed and out of sorts?

when it rains…

i went to a banda gozona rehearsal last night. we’re gearing up for a festival of santa cecilia on sunday, which is presumably when we get paid for the year. along with that, memo sent me $60 for taking care of the valves and slides on his alto horn. then when i got home i discovered that UPS had been here, but they didn’t leave the package. so today i got up and there was email from kelly, who wants some postcards, and another email from a guy in australia who wants incense. i took care of the postcards and emailed kelly, packed up incense and emailed the guy from australia, went to the post office and the bank, and came home, where i intend to continue working on the brochure for chris, typesetting the poster for sandy and waiting for UPS to show up.

oh, also i bought $90 worth of the holy vegetable yesterday. considering how it’s going, that should be enough to last me through the end of the year.

i was right… 8/

sandy didn’t even look at the artwork that i submitted, which was based on the puss in boots engraving by doré, but went with the cartoon-style image that her friend came up with… but she did ask me to “put the text in” since i have “so many cool fonts”…

i should typeset it in cuniefont, or something equally unreadable… 8/

hybrid elephant, non-incense stuff

i’ve got a potential client, the society of veterinary behavior technicians, who wants a (as in “one”) 24″x30″ white foamcore sign, printed in three colours, black, green and purple. so far, i’ve gotten five estimates, from around $55 (for 2 colours) all the way up to $90, with most of them falling between $60 and $75. i’ve also discovered that it’s fairly easy to buy foamcore, canvas, grommet machines, and other sign making materials from a variety of web sites out there, which makes me want a vinyl cutter more than ever. some day…

also, i’ve got a postcard order from eva funderburgh, who got postcards from me earlier this year. this time she wants 1000 4/4 matte cards with an aqueous coating on one side… and, wouldn’t you know it, the old mac has gotten to the point where i can’t even rely on photoshop to work correctly most of the time. it’s now, officially, time for 1) reinstall the old operating system (clean install), or, possibly 2) install a newer operating system (OS10.4), or even 3) install the new hard disk that i got during the last battle of the computer, and install, but at that point i’m not sure if i’m going to install the old system or the new one. one step at a time, as always, but i don’t hold out much hope for the mac at this point… it’s a good thing i got linux working as well as it is… 8/

weird contact from india

someone sent me email with the contact form on Hybrid Elephant yesterday, which i just noticed was from a yahoo address in india. it was confusing. it said:

info

contect details

it was apparently from someone named s.m.patel and it had an IP address that resolved to here, which is apparently a Ram Mandir in indore (not this one, but south west, on the other side of indore, in between Devi Ahilyabai Holkar Airport and Sirpur Tank, in Angad Kapoor’s Region)…

anybody have any clue what it means?

grr!

paypal has changed the “add to cart” button from the one that i like – infernal button – to one that clashes with my nice, clean web site – infernal button, which means that i have to go through and change all of the buttons in my site. i wish they would give me a “heads up” before they just do things like this… 8/

help for those addicted to microsoft

i have decided that i’m going to become a community distributor for OpenOffice.org, as a way of making it easier for the computer illiterate to get things accomplished without having to resort to using microsoft products. OpenOffice is definitely preferable for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that most computer virii in existence these days are made to take advantage of “features” in microsoft office that leave the affected computer open to all sorts of nasties. others are, of course, that it is cross-platform compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux/UNIX, it is 100% compatible with microsoft office, and that it is completely free of cost. to that end, i have added a page to the Hybrid Elephant web site containing FREE downloading information, and i am downloading ISOs of the three disks required, so that i can start out by giving copies of them to my (computer illiterate) clients.

bizarre

so i’ve apparently got a customer, or something… his name is lamar, and he has been trying to get me to sign up for a number (i think it’s 4 now) of “social networking” sites, the most recent being wayn dot com (WhereAreYouNow), but looking at their terms and conditions, i wouldn’t go anywhere near them if i had to (which i don’t). in the past he’s added me to a “friends network” at facebook, friendster, and myspace. i have no idea who he really is, although some time back i interacted with a guy named “lamdon” who was a representative for nado poizokhang, one of my incense suppliers, and “lamar” might be the same guy… or he might be a guy that bought incense from me a couple of times last year. i really have no clear idea of who he might be, other than, perhaps, a persistent spammer. at the same time, if he’s a customer, i don’t want to alienate him, at least not without figuring out who he is first…

busy

i’ve got to mail a package, and then take some extra computer parts to re-pc, and then get to issaquah by 1:00 to pick up business cards for NBAC, and then go to north bend to deliver the business cards to NBAC, and then potentially, go to the bank and deposit the check from NBAC for the business cards. then i haven’t yet decided whether or not i’m going to go home, because there’s a Puss In Boots rehearsal at hale’s tonight at 7:00, and i think it would be more efficient to go directly there rather than going home first, even though the rehearsal is at 7:00. but if i go directly to hale’s from there, then i have to have my tuba and related goo-bah, which i have to think about now… and if i do end up deciding to go home, then my tuba will already be in the car.

but i’ve got an appointment with ned at 3:00, which i didn’t realise until just a moment ago, which throws a wrench in the whole scheme of things… 8P

i’ve got something going on every day this week: i’ve got a trolloween rehearsal with the fremont phil on tuesday, then trolloween on wednesday, then a day of the dead gig with banda gozona on thursday, and another day of the dead gig on friday, then i think there is a gig at meany hall with banda gozona on saturday, but i’m not sure (relevant messages came through in email during the time when my email/schedule was malfunctioning). then, next tuesday is john phillip sousa’s birthday with the BSSB (tickets to the sousa bash are sold out, but if you want to go, i can probably get you in, standing room only), and next friday is my high school 30th reunion planning (i’m OLD!), which i’m not sure i’m going to go to, because i didn’t get along very well with those people when i was in high school, and i can’t think of any reason, other than time, that i would get along with them any better now. then next saturday is a performance of the fremont phil for the opening of a new park in fremont. next sunday is WORLD ART CAR DAY, and it is also the veterans’ day performance of the BSSB at the north shore senior center, and then, theoretically, there is a recording session for the BSSB on a week from next tuesday.

more blah

i have a Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band performance at the oyster festival in shelton tomorrow, for which i have to leave at 11:00 tomorrow morning. i’ll probably be getting back around 5:00. liz is going to pay us for gas.

they finally decided on a design for the business cards, but they’re only going to get 500 of them to start because there’s something going on with their addresses that’s going to change before they would be able to run through any more. they asked for light green paper with some flecking or texture, so i decided for them that they want sage green classic crest cover, and if they don’t we can change it next time. by this time next week i will probably be $70 richer than i am now… at least. whee.

depression is coming back again. i bit the bullet and sacrificed my last bong hit. i actually split it in half and put it in my vapouriser, which will make it last longer, but this is the longest i have gone without cannabis since my injury – at which time i didn’t really notice it anyway. i’ve basically had two bong hits that i’ve been vapourising slowly for a month now. i hope i make enough money to buy more at some point. it’s pretty miserable and depressing without cannabis.

blurdge

photo by starrchilde, who was driving with her kids outside of loisville, kentucky. if you look carefully you can even see the sign.

by the way, DON’T SEND HTML IN EMAIL!! it’s rude and it uses up a lot more computer resources than plain text. web browsers and email clients are two entirely different programs with entirely different functions. if you want to communicate something on the web, i expect to see HTML code, but when i get two pages of HTML code in email, especially when it’s to convey a FOUR WORD message, i’m going to get pissed. make email messages PLAIN TEXT by default! if you can’t learn how to control your email client, or you use a web-based email service that doesn’t give you the option, then you need to learn, you need to get a different service (i know yahoo, gmail hotmail, and even AOL have a plain-text-only option), then you DON’T deserve to send your HTML crap to me. next time, i’ll block your IP address at the server level, so any further email to me, from you, will bounce. i’m not kidding.

Frownland – Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band, Trout Mask Replica

the depression is slowly lifting, and the table is still clean enough that my keyboard has not been covered up yet. i still haven’t been inspired enough to do anything with it yet, but i’m leaving the option open.

they agreed that what they wanted couldn’t be done on the artwork for the business card, but they changed the font to one of those “fonts in word” which may or may not be a “real” font. fortunately, it’s a font for which i have a “real” analogue (Americana), and i changed it for ’em. haven’t heard back yet, but as this is the third go-round with artwork, i’m hoping that they’re gonna be happy with it pretty soon. i still have to talk with them about paper (shudder) which is a whole different miasma to which i’m not looking forward.

i updated the schedule for agilityfun, and posted the updated schedule at noon on monday. i then wrote an email to diana at 2:00 that said i had updated the schedule. at 4:00, diana wrote me and said that doug had sent an updated schedule on the 26th, it wasn’t showing up, and they need me to update it right away. O_o i wrote back today and said that they need to flush their cache, which moe said was “pretty confrontational”. i think it’s “pretty confrontational” that diana assumes that i’m not gonna update the schedule unless she reminds me, but i guess part of being a person that “removes your obstacles” is being able to respond to confrontation with another level of happy, which i’m not sure if i posess any longer.

meanwhile, my Os9 mac is dying slowly, and i’m seriously considering breaking down and putting OsX on it. i somehow, magically, came into possession of an actual DVD of tiger, and even though the only software i currently keep the mac around for is Os9 stuff (quark and photoshop), i’ve run both of them on moe’s OsX laptop, so i know they work. the only problem is that the processor is a 900mhz G3 with a “Sonnet” G4 upgrade, and i don’t know the first thing about whether or not OsX will actually run on it… and if it doesn’t, i’m not sure whether or not i’ll even be able to “downgrade” back to Os9.

i’ve gotten started putting my gallery on flickr, but i abruptly discovered that they want me to pay if i want to have more than three “sets”. i’ve currently got about 25 “sets”, including the stuff that i took on our recent vacation, but i don’t know if i’ve actually got enough money to pay for a “professional” flickr account (one of the reasons why this blog is on hybridelephant is because i don’t have enough money to pay for a livejournal account any longer). also, if you’re not logged in (as me, i don’t know whether or not it works if you’re logged in as anyone else), you can only see two of my three “sets”, although when i’m logged in, i can see all three of them. here is the set that it leaves out. i just uploaded the sets today, so i’m going to wait until tomorrow before i start raising a stink about it.

The Battle of The Computer is over, and, once again, I have won!

i’ve resurrected my computer: i got the operating system installed: i’m now running a shiny new version of Feisty Fawn, despite what walt mossberg says, kubuntu linux is vastly preferable to anything micro$not ever produced, if for no other reason than it is free, but there are many other compelling reasons it is preferable as well, such as it installs more quickly, and is easier to configure than any version of windows that i have ever worked with. not only that, but apparently SCO has filed for bankruptcy, which means, at least for the moment, that we can continue to use free, open source software with impunity, while having a hearty laugh at the expense of those who would have made it otherwise. after i got feisty installed, i searched around and discovered that sigrot isn’t a part of debian any longer (for what reason i know not), but signify is, however signify isn’t as easy to configure, so i found an archive that had sigrot on it, installed it, and now i have my email signature, complete with rotating, random quotes again. i even got xscreensaver working better than it was before.

meanwhile, SixApart has seen fit to let barak berkowitz go and get themselves a new CEO, which makes me even more glad that i bailed from livejournal when i did.

i didn’t make that much money at the punk rock flea market, despite the fact that i was there for almost 12 hours, but i did manage to make $30 without realising it (it was 6:30 in the morning when i arrived, and there’s a good chance that i was, for all intents and purposes, asleep when i did it), which makes me wonder if i could do any better in tacoma. if nothing else, it would mean not having to get up at a ridiculously early hour and drive fourty-fiive minutes before getting there. my boxes of stuff are still in the car, but moe’s car is blocking the driveway, so i’ll have to get them out tomorrow.

i’ve also got some “i am a terrorist” articles to post as well, but they’re going to have to wait until tomorrow as well.

1058

okay, here’s one of the reasons why i have been grumpy and out of sorts for the past 3 days, since i got back from OCF.

i applied for a paypal account for my business back in, oh, i don’t know exactly, somewhere in 2004 or 2005. i applied for their “expanded use program” and they said that they had sent me an expanded use enrollment number on my bank statement in february of 2005, but i never received it. ever since then, about once a month, i have called paypal and tried to work it out to the limit of my frustration, and then given up until next month, having failed to complete my expanded use enrollment. at this point, i don’t even recall why the expanded use enrollment was so important to me, but it probably has to do with money i could be making if i completed it, or something like that.

since then, i have lost count of the number of paypal “associates” i have talked to, but at least ⅔ of them have had extremely heavy indian accents and have spoken quickly enough that i found it very difficult to understand them. not only that, but around ½ of them have given me a completely different story than the other ½, something about how i have a visa card, and there is a policy where they don’t allow more than one expanded use number to be sent for a visa card – which doesn’t really make any difference, because they never sent it me the first time.

finally, two days ago (the day after i got back from OCF), i talked to yet another associate who told me (once again) to look at my february 2005 bank statement (who would have guessed that it would be necessary to save a document for that long) and read off the charges to her. when i read off the charges and they didn’t include a charge from paypal, she wanted me to fax the statements from february and march (just to make sure). i don’t have a fax machine any longer, and they don’t accept email attachments (probably a good thing, considering their general incompetence), so i had moe fax them from her place of employment the next day (yesterday). today i called them…

AND THEY HAVEN’T RECIEVED THE DOCUMENTS YET!

they said that it takes 24 to 48 hours for them to receive faxes, which doesn’t make any sense to me. according to how i understand fax is supposed to work, fax is supposed to be a way to transmit printed documents on an almost instantaneous basis… but they said that it takes 24 to 48 hours. and then, on top of that, they wouldn’t confirm their fax number for me. i don’t know who has my bank statements but i’m thinking more and more that i may have directed moe to fax my bank statements to an unknown and potentially harmful recipient.

not only that, but the first associate i talked to said that she was putting me on hold while she went and checked whether the documents had been received or not, and then hung up on me. the second associate i talked to was very apologetic about the first associate hanging up on me, but she wouldn’t even go check on the documents because it hasn’t been 48 hours yet.

i used to be very nice to telephone drones when i had occasion to call them, but that was a very long time ago. since then i have actually been a technical support engineer (telephone drone) for microsoft, and heard all the phone calls from the other side, and now i have absolutely no patience with idiots, pointless policies, people who assume that they’re never going to talk to me again, so why bother being nice, and outsourced people from another country who don’t know what they’re taking about and can’t speak the language anyway.

if it weren’t for the fact that i actually use my paypal account on a regular basis, i would close my account and go somewhere else in an instant.

and to make matters worse, i have no cannabis and no way to obtain more… and the country is going to hell in a handbasket and there’s nothing i can do about it.

>BP

1021

today i went to the burien strawberry and arts festival with my art car and a small pile of incense. i made $69.

i’m really surprised at how many people looked very closely at various aspects of my car, but didn’t ask me about it at all, because i’m fairly sure that, for the most part, the people in burien have absolutely no clue what it means. there was also a “christian” booth on the other side of the festival site, and people with shirts that said “Jesus Loves You” were very carefully avoiding even looking at my car, as though just looking at it might mess up their “christianity” somehow. there were a few western folks – like, maybe five, total – who asked me what it said, and there were a few indian people who knew what it said without having to ask, including one guy from nepal who read off the names like he was reading the newspaper (which made me feel very happy and very sad at the same time), and said that since he came from nepal he hadn’t been chanting as much as he used to. it turned out that he was a vendor up the row from me, and his business is called “Ganesha Imports”, which struck me as particularly amusing.

then, the guy in the booth next to me got ripped off while i was watching. it was rather distressing, actually: there were a couple of kids – seriously, they couldn’t have been older than 14 or so – hanging around my car, and when the guy’s back was turned, one of them swooped in, grabbed all his money, and was gone before he (or i) could do anything. the guy said he lost around $450 (he was selling gold and silver jewelry), plus his ID and wallet. fortunately he didn’t keep his car keys in the bag as well, but i’m gonna keep my eyes open tomorrow and report that kid if i see him again, which wouldn’t be too great a stretch… especially since the guy he ripped off is not going to be there tomorrow…

moe is in portland. apparently her mother had a mild stroke or something, because she was in the hospital a couple of days ago. moe hasn’t said anything specific about what happened, other than to assure me that her mother is okay, but she’s planning on coming home tomorrow, so i should know more then.