I'm back from my trip to Tibet to see the monks at the monastery of the Red Hat sect, the oldest and most unchanged sect of Tibetan Lamaism. I had been there before a few years ago seeking wisdom on a related topic, painted fireplace brick.
The greeting on this trip was cordial. They shared with me a cup of homemade Golk, which is aa mixture of spit and Aspen roots. I, in return, gave them a used set of Craftsman tools. They were impressed but disappointed that I wouldn't exchange the Standard tools for Metric ones. We spent the night philosophising about the potential breakup of Microsoft. (You know, they've been 'in' some high-tech commericals! Like the one for Re-Max, I believe???) Anyway, the conversation seemed to take a lot out of us and put us to sleep.
The next day, they said that they know I'm not here to - how would you say - shoot the poop. Well, I got right down to it. I asked the chief monk what we should do about the paint on the brick on the INSIDE of the fireplace. They looked at each other and then made me walk across a pit of HOT coals in my bare feet! We then sat down again, the chief said, "That was for giving us the STANDARD Craftsman tools AND for asking another stupid question. Now, what is it you want to know?"
Hey, you don't have to hit me on the side of the head TWICE with a tire iron to get through to me! So I said, "Let me rephrase the question: Is there life after your Craftsman tools get replaced by Husky tools?" That did it! There was this deep humming that went on for a couple of days, and still kept on going until I had to leave. I wrote a note and tacked it to the door post, basically, saying that 'I had to go'.
So, you're wondering if I ever got my answer about the painting of brick on the INSIDE of the fireplace. Yes I did! BUT, I'm not going to tell you the answer. If you want to know the answer, you'll have to go to see these guys yourself and ask them in person. (Just don't tell them I sent you.) Oh, and when you go, make sure you stock up on some nice, Craftsman METRIC tools. (They really do want them.) This is the trip to spend all your 'old' lunch money on.