Hi everyone,

First of all, I know many, many of you found yourself out of work, all at the same time, all over the world. I am so sorry for that. It breaks my heart to know that when we need your talent the most, we aren’t allowed to gather publicly to listen to your gifts. The world needs your art more than ever, but we can’t have it, and that saddens me very much.

Orders are still being made, although the economy is causing us some problems. I still have our cutter coming in daily, and most of our sewing staff are working at home. We are functioning, but it’s a little bit awkward and inefficient at the moment. Please expect further delays, although, honestly, sales are down so we may finally catch up! I say this cautiously, as there are a lot of unknowns right now.

We are switching some of our production to CDC-Compliant face masks — my wife, her aunt, and her brother are all nurses, so the Personal Protective Equipment shortages seen around the world are personal to me. If you want to learn more or help our efforts, we set up a Go Fund Me page HERE. If you can’t donate to purchase materials, I invite you to share this community effort with your friends on Facebook and elsewhere. We’re all in this together, and controlling the virus anywhere in the world is helpful everywhere in the world.

Will this slow down gig bag production? Yes, it will.

Is it worth it? Yes, I think it is. Again, we’re ALL in this together, and I trust our customers will understand that we are in a unique position to help with PPE gear, and it would be unethical for us not to step forward.

I am reminded of the Fantasia 2000 video of Stravinsky’s “Firebird.” I feel the world is right about at the 3:30 mark, but that French horn solo is coming!

I remember this playing at the MN Zoo iMax Theater back in the day, and I tried to get my trumpet students to go hear Adolph Herseth on a fantastic sound system in what was one of his last great recordings with the Chicago Symphony. A few kids went, and one of them stayed to watch it three times in a row! The animation is all around rebirth and the coming of spring. Here’s what I want you to remember: If despair is grabbing you in the throat a bit too hard right now, watch that video, and hold it close to your heart. We will experience a rebirth of our industry, I promise.

5:42 is coming!

With respect and solidarity,

Steve Kriesel

President, Torpedo Bags and Glenn Cronkhite Custom Cases

PS: I just got home and played my video choice on a solid stereo, and I must say, the audio quality is a horribly compressed MP3. Ugg. Sorry about that. Here is a better version, but without the animation: