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Lugall Med. & Light Frame Cable Hoists

Lugall Medium and LIght frame cable hoists

Just in! Check out these medium and light duty frame cable hoists from Lugall. US made. Tough stuff.

Lonnie & Lilly

Picture courtesy of Lonnie AKA Snidely Whiplash AKA the man in the striped overalls.

Our Phones Are Working Again!

UPDATE: Our phones are fixed! Call us and let us know what’s been going on this last couple of days.

Our phone lines are currently not working today because apparently AT&T doesn’t really care whether we have working phone lines. :) If you are needing to get a hold of us please email us at: Hopefully everything will be back up and running tomorrow. Sorry for the inconvenience. We are currently wading through the purgatory-like abyss of dealing with telecommunications companies. So how has your day been?

HJE Caption Contest

Welcome to the first ever HJE Caption Contest. Here’s how you play. Look at the image above. Really look at it. Now close your eyes and think of a funny caption. Are your eyes closed? Probably not because you are still reading this. Once you have your favorite caption, enter it in the comments section with your name. Or, if you are shy and don’t want your name associated with your sense of humor, you can also use an ALIAS. We will read through all the submissions and pick a winner.

A glossy postcard will be printed and inserted in all HJE orders for a month with the winning caption (along with your name/ALIAS). That’s right. You could be famous. Your witty caption will go out to a whole bunch of slightly confused customers that don’t quite understand why they have received a postcard with their order. It will be fun! All it takes is a little brain power, a little luck and a little caption.

If you are wondering where this image came from, it was created by the hardest working man in the art business Charlie Mylie. You might remember Charlie as the guy that did a lot of the Epstein’s Day box art requests. Charlie doesn’t want to work for “the man” but he does like working for us, so we are glad to support him in his quest to be a professional artist. Charlie also has a website. Check it out, and contact him, if you want him to draw something for you sometime.

Happy SK Day!

Picked up our SK Day t-shirts this morning. Thanks La Cucaracha for staying up late and printing them last night. If you have any t-shirt printing needs, check them out here:

What is SK day you might ask? Well, for starters, all SK merchandise is discounted for today and tomorrow from 5 to 20%. That is exactly 2,836 brand new discounted SK items. For more info you can check out the thread that started it all on garagejournal here.

SK Day T-Shirt Design

HJE Hard Hat Stickers

They’re not just for hard hats! You can stick them on anything! The circular saw blade was originally painted by my Aunt Nancy for Harry J. Epstein’s birthday. Classic design. Hope Target doesn’t sue us. Yeah stickers!

SK Day!

Epstein’s is excited to announce that we now are offering every one of SK’s 2,836 products on our website. This move was prompted by a Garagejournal thread that was started to support SK.

In case you don’t want to read through the entire thread, we are going to have an SK Day on September 23rd & the 24th. On those days, there will be an across the board discount on all SK products (5 to 20%) on our website. However, I would encourage people to not just participate in the event to get a discount, but to participate in the discussion as well. This event isn’t just about nationalistic support for a US manufacturer, but a show of support for companies that make and distribute great quality products in a humane, sustainable way.

I realize most companies are content to just tell you about the sale and leave it at that, but I am going to ask a little more of you. If you are thinking about participating in “SK Day”, the question I’d like you to ask yourself is, “What kind of relationships do I have with the businesses in my life?” Are business relationships formed out of mathematical equations that seek to formulate the cheapest possible path or is there a duty we have to each other to form bonds that go beyond these calculations? For me, this question permeates every part of business. It informs the relationships that manufacturers have with their distributors. It informs how retailers interact with their customers, and it informs how companies treat their employees.

We should take a second and ask ourselves if there really is an invisible line we cross over when we enter into the business world that permits us to treat people a certain way. Does the phrase, “It’s not personal. It’s just business,” really describe how we feel, or is this just an expression that we use to explain our actions? If business is not personal, then we go to work everyday in an impersonal world, make impersonal decisions and surround ourselves with impersonal people that we have impersonal relationships with. To accept the fact that we can behave one way in business and another way outside of business, is to accept that outside of business we are people, but inside, we are numbers.

The idea that is often put forward is that businesses that treat people like people will always fail against business that treat them like numbers because treating people like numbers is cheaper and more efficient, and in the end, cheapness is what really motivates people. This is the argument that some corporations put forward. They call this progress, and it is progress, in their conception of how things work. If I were to follow their model, the first thing I would do would be to figure out all of the expenses I could cut. This would mean reducing my employees salaries to minimum wage, reducing their hours so everyone was working part time, canceling their health insurance, and taking as much of their vacation time as I am legal permitted to take. After I did this, I would then be in the position to offer the customer what I think they want, cheapness.

I think this conception of business fails in four important ways. The first is that cheapness does not create sustainable business relationships. It can temporarily bind people together, but as soon as some else offers it cheaper, the relationship is meaningless. Secondly, people aren’t entirely motivated by money. They are also motivated by meaning, specifically, meaningful relationships, and the meaning that people can create between each other is a much more powerful and sustaining force. Third, a lot of us spend our lives in business, and we want those environments to be as pleasant as possible. Pursuing a path that seeks to reduce every part of our environment to the bare essentials creates a terrible work environment and it makes people resent their job and their employers. Lastly, this approach acts as if its effect on the larger system in which it resides is somehow none of its concern. It acts as if it is an isolated individual with isolated concerns, as opposed to being a small part in a much larger whole.

What I have had the opportunity to see at Epstein’s is the importance of meaning in our relationships. It is a rejection of the strategy, “How can we get as many customers as fast as possible?” and an embrace of “How can we form relationships with people that last.” I will spend most of my life “in business”. I don’t want that to be filled with impersonal relationships that amount to figuring out how to make things as cheap as possible. Instead, I want to contribute to the notion that our ideals do not have to stop at this invisible line, that there is no real separation between the two, and that business is in fact extremely personal. This approach can only work if there is enough people out there that recognize and support companies that try to show these values in their words and in their actions.

It is these questions that I hope people think about when they participate in this event, and these discussions that I think are important for us to have as individuals and as a country.

SK Warehouse Tour

Some sneak preview pics of my visit to the SK warehouse! More to come (including a video) when I get back in town!

NOS SK Black Oxide Combo Wrenches

sk black oxide combination wrenches metric

Just added a number of these NOS metric SK black oxide combination wrenches. We’ve had these awhile, and are just finally getting them online. Comes in a variety of sizes: 6MM, 7MM, 8MM, 9MM, 12MM, 13MM, 14MM, 15MM, 16MM & 19MM.