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Tiny Bubbles

w00t! Reader Big Blue Bug, down there in the comments, promised me a Don Ho ukulele headstock inlay in return for some Don Ho art.

Sadly, I cannot accept the gift. You know what they’re doing to people who export shell inlay these days?

This CITES enforcement thing is a trip; I’ve heard some horror stories from people trying to import antique instruments with ivory, bone and pearl inlay.

Either that, or totally no big deal, depending on who you talk to. Which tells me it’s probably another thing that individual Customs agents have a lot of autonomy over. One bureaucrat with a hair across his ass on a Monday morning can make a lot of lives miserable.

All’s I know is, I tried to buy some pearl from StewMac and they can’t ship the stuff outside the US. But DePaule can do it because they ship directly from their supplier in Viet Nam.

Yep. It’s another one of those “international” treaties that somehow manages to crush trade in one country and toss it to another. I’d call it an unintended consequence, but I’m not at all sure it is.

Anyway, I’ll be cutting my own inlays, but here’s a little Don Ho lovin’ for BBB, just for being awesome. Mwah.


Comment from S. Weasel
Time: June 13, 2012, 11:05 pm

Now, if you can do pearl engraving, Bug, we can go Xtreme.

Comment from BigBluBug
Time: June 14, 2012, 2:10 am

Hmmm. I’m sharpening up my gravers in anticipation of having plenty of free time. I plucked a weasel pic (the one holding the paintbrush) cuz it looks likes like she’s tappin’ that back right in a Ho down manner. I’m going to try graving a toe tappin’ weasel into a cream colored disk of Corian. I was gonna surprise you with the ring inlayed into a sandelwood disk and then into a small sheet of dark Brazilian roswood veneer. It’s not mother of pearl but I’ve seen Corian inlay and it looks nice. Plus it lets me color the weasel just right. Ah but even the Brazilian veneer is covered by CITES.

I understand that CITES is a good thing (and I try to remember to burn a tire for earth day) because of Gorilla paws and the whole rinoviagra thing but I draw the line at finished goods that were made a long time ago. What makes me the most crazy is recycled piano keys. I can’t send anything I’ve inlayed with them to my relatives in Europe.
And I bet I can guess where the confiscated stuff ends
up. As far as MoP, have somebody send you a live abalone; you can tell them it’s for Her Majesty’s pet otter.

The Don Ho images is perfect. For a tattoo sure, but just think of a Che style teeshirt. Just need a caption. I’m so excited I could give you a foot rub. Except for that whole Uncle Badger stabbing me in the face.

Speaking of Uncle Badger and face stabbing, mentioning
the lap guitar was a bad thing wasn’t it. I know it was. I crossed the line. Sorry. Won’t happen again. Hula Blues, never heard of it.

I think my life has meaning again. Mistress Stoaty, I stand before you awash in awe. Off to sharpening and don’t forget to try a couple of swipes with metal honing compound when doing so.


p.s I once sent a friend in New Zealand some African Blackwood to use as inlay (which happens to be in the Dalbergia genus so it’s a rosewood. Ha!). I cut and polished the blocks and engraved “Hopi Indian Prayer
Sticks” on them and put a cardboard Kokopelii in the box. Screw you CITES.

Comment from BigBluBug
Time: June 14, 2012, 2:11 pm

Put a pineapple insignia on the che beret.

+ The Epic Ho Art

+ Caption it: Bubbles O Muerte

= First Zazzle millionaire.

Don’t forget us little people.


Comment from David Gillies
Time: June 14, 2012, 8:09 pm

If there’s a more sure-fire way to drive a species extinct than to outlaw its commercial exploitation, I can’t think what it might be. Remember, if vegetarians had their way, the only place you’d see a cow would be in a zoo.

Comment from Nina
Time: June 15, 2012, 7:08 pm

Just remember that I’ll be there in a few weeks, so if there’s anything legal you want brung from these here United States of ‘merica, be sure to ship it to me by the 1st of Joo-lye.

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