I have finally reached the combination of sick and tired of applying more coats of stain and pleased enough w/ how it looks finally that I'm going to start clear coating this sorry son of a bitch. As it is now, it needs a little work w/ some fine steel wool and maybe some sandpaper but it's good enough for me. The pictures look a little more purple here than in real life but I think this gives you a pretty good feel for the final color.
And that's all there is too it. I'm gonna put three or a half dozen coats of clear on it to get it nice and shiny, let it cure for a while and slap the thing together as soon as I can. The clear is mostly just to protect to wood but there's been enough scratches and other errors produced by my poor handling of the finishing process that it's really more to practice applying it than anything. It makes it look nice and shiny too, which makes my food taste better when I eat off of it.