From the fabricator: Time flies

Humor me this week, please, as I start off with a quick reflection: It was an e-mail conversation I had with Rodger Ruff of AGC that hit home for me this week. I made a comment that we are living in a crazy world, and his reply was along the lines of: "My dad just shakes his head all of the time at the antics and goings on in our society."

It made me think, as I often do, of my own father, who has been gone for 11 years, the anniversary of his passing actually this week. My dad would never have jumped on the computer to read this blog. I am sure my sister would have printed it out every week and faxed it to him so he could read it the way he wanted to. My dad also would have been amazed--but actually not surprised--at the adventures in the industry. As many old timers can tell you, a lot of what we have seen these last few years is a repeat of the past.

My dad would be beaming with pride over the way his oldest son (my brother Steve) has survived frustrating times and landed beautifully on his feet. He would be tickled but still in awe over the fact that after many years in the glass business, my sister actually found her true calling on the floor at Nordstrom. And obviously, he would be shaking his head all of the time at my antics. And if he was around today and reading this post, he’d tell me to quit it, so I’ll move on, but know that I miss the man pretty badly. He left this crazy world way too soon.

Elsewhere: 

  • This past week, there was a regional glass show in Texas, and I stopped on through. One of the main speakers was from the National Association of Home Builders, and he was very interesting. He noted that many of the economic indicators are moving in the right direction, but just aren't anywhere near where they have to be. The most fascinating stat involved how they track the housing markets. Six months ago, only 12 areas had positive economic indicators. Today, that number is 101. There is still a long way to go, as that number represents only a third of the areas they study, but it's improvement.  
    I also got to see and hear the fiery and passionate Deron Patterson of PPG. That is one dude that can bring it. Jeremy Kaeding of Sage gave an impressive presentation as well. And it was great to run into old friends Greg Oehlers and Jack Wickstrom, looking dapper in their Tri Star Glass gear. I was able to see the great Premier Glass Products team, which now includes Bob Larson, and for the first time in quite awhile, the always classy Larry Long. It was nice to run into Bob Cummings of Trulite. I haven't seen him in awhile, and he continues to be the most optimistic and friendly guy around. Even to me! Last, it was great to see Bob Lawrence in person. I get to e-mail him from time to time, but nothing beats seeing such a good person face to face.
  • I finished the Steve Jobs autobiography this week on the planes (two planes; no Internet; ouch!), and it was solid though not spectacular. If the book could have just been a case study of his business life, it would have been perfect.
  • Last this week, a neat stat on candy. Highest volume candy sales in the U.S. in 2011: Snickers, 470M; followed by M&M’s at 383M; and Reese’s at 343M. Wow, just imagine what those M&M numbers could’ve been if I wasn’t on a diet the first six months of the year! But seriously, those are some mindnumbing numbers.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him atMaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

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