Friday, December 30, 2005


Went and saw "Munich" today. It was interesting- but very long at 2-1/2 hours...

Obviously I am just a lowly marketing foof but I was shocked that Steven Spielberg veered away from the book "Vengeance" (that it was based upon) as much as he did. "Vengeance was a great read and really did not have to be messed with. However Spielberg did take some creative license in more than a few scenes and in a few events.

He also tried in my opinion (and in the opinion of some reviews I read) to not take sides in the on going Middle East dispute- but by trying to straddle he really ends up getting both sides infuriated. People have mentioned this movie as an Oscar contender- but I think with its mixed messaging it could affect that.

Finally a portion of the ending was downright bizarre to me- but until you see it, I won't divulge that here.

This was the first time I went and saw a movie so soon after reading the book and all in all it was a good effort but I did hope for better.

Look at this way, for what a day at the movies cost now-a-days, you will get your money's worth with this one and you will have plenty of things to talk about afterwards.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Happy New Year

Happy New Year to one and all...

One quick note on the postings (or lack there of) here. Only getting a few replies on the actual message board is not a major concern to me as I still get a steady flow of replies to my e-mail. I think some are uncomfortable about posting here, even as anonymous. I have no problems with that plus I am heartened by the viewing stats that I am provided that show a lot more views and visits than I ever thought possible. So thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read, view, comment and e-mail.

Also on a non NFRC or glass note- just read the book Vengeance- it was the story that inspired Steven Spielberg's new movie Munich. The book was tremendous- now I have to carve 3 hours out to go see the movie and see how it is portrayed on the big screen. In any case the book was an intense ride.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Happy Holidays

Hope everyone is well at this time of the year... Things are somewhat slower right now as everyone is hustling to get their shopping and cooking done.

As for the Glass and Glazing business, some good things coming up, with Glassweek and the Glass Expo Rocky Mountain in January and the BEC Conference in February.

Of course we'll stay on the NFRC track- while they stress more open-ness, I'll believe it when I see it. Hard to be more open when the cat is guarding the henhouse each and every day. But I am just one guy- On the other side is a monstrous machine led by Potomac Communications- one of the heaviest players in the PR world when it comes to these energy "concerns"

We'll keep at it though- whether it's screaming in the wind or not, I am not going just sit back and let things like this happen without a fight-

So that said, happy holiday and a healthy 2006 to all...

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

2 things

Two items- check out good site-

Also check out the first paragraph from the press release from NFRC...

NFRC is committed to open and transparent communications. In response to membership requests for additional information regarding Board activities, NFRC will provide these informational updates following all Board meetings.

Wow. Could it be that they are opening up? This paragraph led off a long "communique" from Jim Benney-
Who knows, maybe they are planning to open up, but I will believe it when it I see it... Keep in mind that the NFRC has unreal PR agency working for it- The Potomac Group- These folks are good and they know that they have to start spinning some public perception... I would settle for doing the right thing and stop trying to cost the public significant money while feigning- "We're working for the public...."

By the way, next NFRC meeting is in San Diego in March- wonder what it will be like having it in a major continental US City for the first time since early '04.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

New Leader at NFRC

Well it is true as Marcia Falke is now the Chairman of the NFRC replacing Marvin Stover.


The NFRC website is now updated with the new board positions with Marcia on top. While I am sure she is capable of leading an organization I still can not fathom how someone who's life's income depends on the programs that are being implemented can be in that position. Then again most of the board, board ex officio's and committee heads all are in the same boat.

So basically, Marcia and the folks that make their incomes off of these programs will use the public (and good ole 501c3 status) as a shield to cover their own interest.

How does more costs benefit the public?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Get Ready for Glassweek and BEC

The Glass Association of North America has two HUGE events coming up- Glassweek and the BEC show. They are the events that make this industry fly- it is where the movers and shakers go and they are the times and places where things happen for the positive growth of our industry.

For more info go to:

Friday, December 02, 2005

Changes at NFRC

Supposedly some channges are coming on the Board of the NFRC, though they aren't good ones for those of us who believe the public is NOT being served by their profiteering motives. (At the profiteering of certain board and very influential members)

Marcia Falke may be the new Chairman of the Board- which makes sense since Marcia's income or at least 72% of it, comes from the NFRC policies they enact. So now it will be easier for Jim Benney and Potomac Communications to state that the Board and Chair only "do what is in the best interests of the NFRC"- of course they will... they are financially motivated too!

How does the group keep its powerful 501 c 3 status? How are they considered the same as a charity?

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Two Links- One Sports and One NFRC

Two links for you to check out...

The first is from Glass Magazine on an article about the NFRC and their Board structure. In the coming days there's going to be ALOT more on this issue! Plus I have not spent a ton of time reviewing this piece yet and I plan on a comment or two....

The second link is sports and as I said at the start, I still have to write about sports- anyway, Jay Mohr is a comedian, movie star and he also writes for his column this week was about Michael Irvin, the former WR from Dallas and current ESPN personality. Irvin was just arrested and Mohr takes a hard look at it- great read...

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

NFRC Meeting in Santa Fe/China

As I write this, the Fall meeting of the NFRC is going on in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The tough thing about trying to introduce other opinions on this group is that its last three major meetings have been in absolutely impossible and expensive locales. Hawaii, Quebec and now Santa Fe- one heck of a travel club eh?

Well amazingly despite their plans to have meetings in Asheville, NC and Alaska- the NFRC did change their meeting locations for next year- San Diego, Minnesota and Washington DC! So the hope is that with meetings in easier to access to cities we can get more people involved and engaged in the process.

Also on a side note, my column in the current US Glass is on China and their effect on our industry. I have gotten some super feedback so far, and for that I am thankful. You know on these issues that I lay out all my passion there's days I feel like I am screaming in the wind- so its nice when others feel similar.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving!

Always the best weekend of the year- 4 days filled with food and football- really what more could you ask for?

But on such a good weekend it is also time to reflect...

Many thanks to go around...

Thanks for the obvious- family, friends and co workers- without them, life is not as meaningful.

From an industry standpoint- thanks for people like the gang at US Glass- who support this industry without batting an eye.

Thanks to the primary glass manufacturers- while we all like to pick on them, they do come to market with good products with unmatched quality 99.9% of the time.

On that note, thanks for products like SN 68 (Guardian) , and OptiView (Pilkington) that are trendsetting and helpful to the industry.

Thanks to the NFRC, as if not for them, I'd be bored... ha ha but seriously they were created to serve a purpose and they did- on the residential side... (hey did ya think I could get through blog entry without mentioning them?)

All in all we have much t o be thankful for- with the exception of one state, the economy for our industry is solid- we have caring people and organizations and healthy competition. Believe me things can be much worse.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Check this out

Glaziers.... industry....

Check out this site:

Good resource!


Just got back from a visit to Denver to speak to the Colorado Glazing Contractors Association. (CGCA) Good people and very well run organization by Rebecca Kaspari. Rebecca used to work for US Glass and is married to Mark Kaspari of Agalite Shower Doors so she has a pretty solid knowledge of what make our industry tick.

Anyway, I spoke about green building and LEED. And yes I did mention the NFRC but avoided going into detail because when I start that it's hard to get me to stop. Green building practices make sense and I guess because of my opposition to some of the things that NFRC does people may think I am against energy efficiency and advancement. That could not be further from the truth. I want and we need better performing building and we need the tools to be able to deliver that- we just do not need extra validations and on site inspections that the NFRC wants to go with it.

LEED as it stands right now is not perfect- but it is a start- if anything it gives architects a roadmap and ideas to do things better.

By the way, Denver will be in the glass industry news quite a bit as they host the Glass Expo Rocky Mountain in January (which is starting to fill up nicely exhibitor wise) and GreenBuild from the USGBC next fall.

Sunday, November 13, 2005


Just a note- I've gotten a couple of e-mails that asked if I'll be bummed if I don't get comments to the subjects and the debate is little. Well at worst this process is therapeutic for me. If there's constructive debate great... If not I still have an outlet to release to....

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Election Results

The election for the Board of the NFRC has now closed- hopefully we will see results on Monday.

There were some solid candidates who could start to make a difference on that board, but I have a feeling that they will probably be on the short end of the stick- but we will see.

I, along with others, made a ton of phone calls on behalf of Cliff Monroe- one of the candidates. Many of the people we talked to were very supportive of Cliff- the question is "Did they vote for him?"

Whether they did or not, all but 1 person we talked to believed that the Board needed new blood- so hopefully those wishes will be granted!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Welcome Again to the BLOG

As more people find this site, I want to re-welcome everyone.

As you will below, already have a few posts and more to follow. Currently the subject is what I consider to be the hottest in our industry right now- the NFRC's plans on rating commercial products.

Believe me, if you are taking the approach of "This will never happen to me" or "I never have to do any of those AAMA or GANA thingees" this is not the case. While AAMA and GANA are trade groups, the NFRC is not. They are designated by the US government as the SOLE provider of energy ratings. If they get this thing going, you will not be able to ignore it.

So dig in, learn, comment (you can post comments, questions etc- on every post if you wish at the bottom right of every post. You can be anonymous if you don't want to log in- it is seriously that simple.

constructive debate- information on hot topics- and keeping the glass and aluminum industry up to speed on the issues that will really affect them is the goal.

So join in the fun.

By the way- here is a link to a story about the debate I talk about in the post below:

Coming up, we'll also do a comparison of Press releases and news article to see where the "spin" is and I will break down the NFRC issue even more.

And yes I am all for talking on other subjects and will!
Thanks for visiting!

Friday, November 04, 2005

The Debate

Back from Boston, where I had the opportunity to debate Jim Benney, the Executive Director of the NFRC. Jim is a good, friendly guy, which made it more of a challenge to go after the things that are wrong with that group.
But I did, and for the most part I think the debate went well. The NFRC Board is the "be all-end all" and Jim admitted that. The NFRC is not a member driven group, so why we all try to develop a consensus and work to put "fair"programs in place is kind of odd considering at the end of the day it truly does not matter.
In the debate a few things fleshed out. I noted that a whole system calculation would be good for our industry, good for designers etc. However what is not needed is the additional validation and on site inspections that the NFRC wants. The NFRC feels like all of that is neccesary while most sane humans, and pretty much the entire audience at the debate did not.
In laymans terms, the industry would submit material to an NFRC certified "calculation agency" for performance numbers. But that would not be enough as the NFRC would want those numbers validated (EXTRA STEP= EXTRA COSTS) and a review either on site or at the glaziers office that the proper products were installed (EXTRA STEP=EXTRA COSTS).
Am I crazy?
Commercial building has steps already in place, legally binding contracts that ensure that the proper products are used. But hand it to the NFRC Board they created a perfect mouse trap here. They will ignore the simplicity and the advantages to go forward with their plan because they need the "validation" yet that whole philosophy is skewed too.
It comes down to the Board of the NFRC and a handful of members who really control the action and will make every effort to make these programs go. Why? Because those folks have a monetary stake in these processes. They have built businesses off of the sole existence of the NFRC and the programs that are created there. Every new rating system means more money for them.
As anyone who follows this debate knows, the NFRC is an IRS 501C3 organization. Somehow that designation makes them more powerful than anyone on the earth. They are a charity, Jim even compared them to the United Way. Yes the NFRC and the United Way are in the same classification for the most part. I wonder do board members at United Way create programs and have ultimate input to create programs within United Way to benefit themselves financially?

I can and will go on and on. I can not stand still and watch this industry get hammered by a group like this.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

OK lets get it started

What I think is the first ever BLOG related to the glass and aluminum industry is now alive! If someone else has one, then by all means I apologize.

We have a good industry but we face huge hurdles.

I started this as a way to get information out to the masses in a non traditional way. I hope that I can spark debate and eventually help the industry win the battles it faces.

First off... THE NFRC

If anyone knows me they know that this group has become a huge focus for me. I believe that some of the programs that they are attempting to implement would be very harmful to our industry. These programs will have no value to anyone involved except the people within NFRC who stand to make significant money with the implementations success.
So I will start posting my thoughts, articles, flow charts, information all around to better inform and educate the "public" (The glass and aluminum industry DO count as the public- though if you hear from folks within NFRC they are only concerned about the "other" public)
on what the deal is.

I will also touch on the China effect, GREEN Building practices, Fantasy football (Not glass and aluminum related but still life and death none the less) and all of the big issues we face as an industry.

So bookmark the site- join in the discussion- I know that not everyone will agree but my goal is simple, bring all of the information to the surface and let the readers decide. Give people in our industry the ammo and they will choose whether to use it or not.

So check back in because later this week, the Blogging begins!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Welcome to THE Blog

Well off and running... check these spaces for insights "From the Fabricator" on our industry and more...