I must have been living in a cave. I JUST figured out that one can pit olives by using the same technique often used for peeling garlic. Lay the flat side of your chef's knife on the little bastard and slam your hand on it. It releases the olive from the pip and VOILA! you have pitted kalamatas for about half the price.
I wish I were smarter. You have no idea how much money I could have saved if I'd know this 20 years ago.