I took a field trip this afternoon to one of the three major Stage Lighting Shops in town. At the front desk, I asked for anyone in sales, possibly X, as I had spoken with X on the phone but had never met her or visited her shop. She gladly gave me several new "Numeric Edition" Lee Filters swtchbooks and 20 Roscolux swatchbooks for my upcoming Lighting Class. Since she was being so accomodating, I decided to push my luck as ask if she had any GAM books, as I told her the one I had was dated 1998. She told me GAM only updates its book once every five years and returned with a couple dated 01/08. She told me she stocks LUX and LEE, but GAM and AP are special order, although she STOCKS Apollo B-size patterns exclusively! This led to a discussion of Gelatran, Cinemoid, and Roscolene. She asked "Do you want some Roscolene? I have about 1000 sheets of it." So I rattled off some numbers, she came back saying they took it out of the drawers a few years ago so now it is boxes. She said she was considering putting the whole lot up on ebay as "art materials" or for some purpose other than coloring stage lights, as Roscolene just cannot take the heat. I thought of the post about the stained-glass window. Next I needed to buy my own personal roll of YEL Fluoro Gaff tape, as that's a color I don't often see, and every tool I own has either, or both: yellow spray paint/yellow e-tape on it. One roll 2"x50 yards, was $17.78 incl. sales tax. That's almost 12¢/foot! Puts things into perspective when one thinks about it that way and is using one's own money. I noticed the "Strong Authorized Repair Center" Certificate on the wall, which led to a discussion of carbon-arc super troupers, at which point X said "You must meet Y." Y and I chatted for almost 1.5 hours, and I learned more than I would have in a month of college classes. He wanted to show me his new Strand ClassicPalette, but I had to run other errands, besides, I know all about it from [user]Gafftaper[/user]. The moral of this long-winded story is...Make friends with your local Theatrical Supply House. They can and will save your posterior someday. They are a wonderful, often overlooked, resource. Since they sell the equipment, they often also have the latest inside information on the newest available jobs in town. And usually they're fun people to talk with, and learn from, for free! (Plus the price of a roll of g-tape). You can't get that kind of personalized service from a stranger over the Internet, even if the prices are lower.