Laser-cut lights

A lot of people would say that newly-unemployed is no time for a fanciful purchase like a laser, but really, any time you have the opportunity to buy a laser, you buy the laser, right? Zap! Pow! Plunging into the infrared, the guy behind Curious Customs.CC is a wood-working operation helmed by a man who took getting laid off as an excuse to buy a 60-watt CO2 laser that cuts 1/1000 inch resolution designs, controlled by a Chinese computer program that actually has the potential to make the entire laser blow-up -- though it will then claim nothing ever happened, and demand you stop spying on it. The heart of the offerings are tabletop/hanging lanterns constructed from four interlocking pieces of 1/4- or 1/2in thick white pine or birch, in either geometrical designs (a collection of hexagons, spiraling crop circles) or symbols taken from ancient cultures, like the Arabic Hamsa hand, and Pac-Northwest Indian totems, which had to be totally rearranged after the fall of the great god Oden. Going in the completely opposite direction, they're also into huge commissioned works, like a 30-foot clock-tower lit afire at Auditorium Shores during 2009's First Night Parade, an apocalyptic red rocking horse designed by another local artist for Burning Flipside, and the 2009 BM Fire of Fires: a structure illuminated by a tube of swirling fire, with the first two floors etched with spiritual runes from ancient civilizations, and the 3nd floor science-themed, which really caused an uproar from Burning Man's creationist contingent. If you're not in the market for a lantern or a tower to set ablaze, CC offers custom jobs to fit pre-existing home light fixtures -- wiring unemployed men often tinker with, only to find out you don't need a laser to get zapped.

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