[Tidbits] Elephants and Pigeon's Blood

Elephants and Pigeon’s Blood

A quaint topic…don’t you think…for those with an offbeat
bent? This is the story of the ruby…a stone–when of fine
quality-- so rare…that few jewelers ever see them. In order for
a ruby to be truly valuable…it has to be red. Not dark pink.
Not light pink. Not purple in any shade…but red. There are
those out there who will tell you…the best color is pigeon
blood red. You will hear this again and again. I am here to tell
you…there is no such thing. Doesn’t exist my friends. Never did
exist. Never will exist.

Let me tell you a tale. There was once a frustrated ruby mine
owner from Africa who could not find among his resources one
pigeon blood red ruby. What color exactly was pigeon blood, he
wondered? And so, he flew to Burma and bought eleven pigeons. I
digress here for a moment folks…in wonderment. Why Burma? He
could have come to New York City. We have millions of pigeons.
Zillions perhaps. Who knows? In any case, our man bought the
pigeons and took them, and a Buddhist priest, down to the ocean
when the sun was high in the sky. With chanting in the
background–you don’t do these things without singing a little
ditty folks…Oh Susannah, perhaps…what do I know?–but with
chanting in the background our miner chopped off all the birds’
heads, dripped the blood on his fingers and waited two minutes
before looking. Why two minutes, you ask? Who knows? Why not?
That’s the proscribed amount of time one waits to test the color
of a pigeon’s blood. I’m sure it is written somewhere. And if
it’s written…as you all know…it must be true. Alas…when
our miner looked…nary one drop of blood was a true red. There
were all hot pink. Can you believe not one pigeon bled deep red.
And so there it is…another myth shot to eternity.

And now…on to our elephant. There is a mine in Tanzania–the
Longido mine–which produces huge opaque ruby crystals. Nary a
one, may I add, nary a one pigeon blood red. Still…these rubies
lend themselves to the carving of beautiful ornaments. Most of
the output of the Longido mine is shipped to Germany where
skilled craftsmen carve and create the most beautiful
shapes…sometimes custom-made to order. It seems a buyer once
wanted his Mercedes eternalized and had one carved of ruby. It
was sixteen inches long. It cost $240,000. And a ruby elephant
was also once carved by these folks. A beautiful beastie with
golden tusks, a sight to behold for those of you lucky enough to
subscribe to Tidbits… for those of you infused with the wisdom
of visiting the Tyler-Adam website with regularity…not only
for its Tidbits…but what if you need to buy something for a
friend? What about that? In any case…to see our pachyderm…to
our home page…down the table menu…to Tidbit Graphics…and
click on pachyderm.

And there ya have it.
That’s it for this week folks.
Catch you all next week.
Benjamin Mark

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