Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Quiet on all fronts...

Was it me or was this a really quiet week? No major rumblings or goings on in the industry, all very mellow with Glassweek and BEC a few weeks away, so it really does seem to be the calm before the storm. Also the brutal winter weather has continued to wreak havoc on so much of this country and our industry that I think everyone is just battening down the hatches and holding on for dear life. In any case with all that said we’re going with a shorter than usual blog this week…


-- Gotta love it when the glass industry has a hero… major props to Robin DeHaven of Binswanger in Austin, Texas. He’s the fella that helped save several people when a plane crashed into a building in Texas last week. Now that’s a guy who should get an award from NGA or GANA for his efforts and portraying our industry in a good light. An American hero no doubt!

-- If you want a very even handed read on the NFRC CMA issue, giving both sides, then go check out the Division 8 report (Click Here). In 2 posts just added this week, JC does a great job with the pros and cons and he does it without the conspiracy theory stuff you get from me. I know I have been pimping that blog quite a bit but it really is solid and a breath of fresh air.

-- By the way, check out the next US Hockey game in the Olympics if you can... these guys are playing their hearts out. Plus let's root for the Canadians in their quest to get a rematch with the American's in the Gold Medal game... a rematch for the Gold would be simply awesome.

-- Last week I wrote about the Stimulus and for some reason there was a problem with the comment fields and so this comment, which I found very interesting was sent to me direct… check it out:
I read an interesting article that gauged what economists thought of how the stimulus was doing. Apparently at three of them thought that a) it did stop the panic (which was no small task around that elusive animal that is consumer confidence) so even though all the money isn't out there, it did it's first job and b) they were really afraid that there was so much worry over all the debt, that with the change in congress that some of it would be repealed before it could accomplish the overall goal.
What I particularly remember is that they felt that was what kept Japan in a decade long downturn. That when Japan initial hit the skids, a stimulus package was passed but then repealed about 2 years in. That sent the entire economy in to a deeper spiral that they are still not out of. I really wish I had kept that link - I know you would be interested
The other thing, to play devil's advocate (which you know I love to do with you) is to note that while it may be taking so much time to get out, it's the very fact that we are democratic country that is hindering implementation. If the government wanted to get stuff out the door, they would just pick people. Can you imagine the onslaught of calls to representatives if people didn't have the chance to bid on these projects? That open process takes time in the best of time - now, all of the bureaucratic workers that I talk to are so incredibly buried and overburdened - they want it off their desk but there is too much to move. And you can't hire someone new to deal with the overflow because it's all temporary.
Such is the nature of our country.

Off to the LINKS!

Well first off CONGRATS to the awesome Link Chick who just added to her family… very lucky kid to get a mom so cool (not to mention a great Dad and Brother!) And so to prepare for her time off thanks to the family leave act.. (and I don’t have to pay her for 12 weeks…lol) she loaded me down with some very cool linkage and here goes..

-- Remember the world’s tallest building in Dubai? We covered it here and even had a video suggested by Brian Pitman of GANA. Well it’s having some issues and it got shut down last week… yikes…

-- I don’t think the Link Chick had to have her baby in these conditions but this Pennsylvania couple braved a middle of the night blizzard to get to the hospital to give birth… wild!

-- On somewhat of the same level of greatness as Mr DeHaven above is this guy who found $72,000 and returned it all to its rightful owner. Fantastic.

Video of the Week…

March Madness right around the corner and this should get you fired up… Murray State Freshman Isaiah Canaan hits a beauty of a buzzer beater!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

But really is it working?

Thanks for finding me again… on the mind this week…

There was an article yesterday about the Stimulus and the fact that one economist felt it was working. All I can say is I hope he is right because it surely doesn’t feel like it to me at this point. In a way if you throw 787 billion at something you have to have a trickle down right? But maybe the question isn’t the Stimulus “working” but has it been properly effective and efficient. And there’s the deal… this stimulus with a few of its plusses have been woefully outclassed by its poor execution. End of the day I hope we can look back and say it really did “save” us but I’m not seeing that right now…


-- Reminder #1 … BEC is coming up and if you have not signed up, please do so. Believe me I know this economy sucks (but yes the stimulus is working!) and a trip to Vegas is frowned upon, but this show/conference is truly worth it. If you’ve written it off, give it a 2nd thought…

-- Reminder #2 … the NGA is doing a webinar on March 2nd on Solar Glazing. This is one that if you want to be ahead of the game and be diversified, that you need to check out. I hear all the time how people want to know more about this stuff, so here’s a great chance. Go HERE for more info. And a special thanks to the gang at Guardian for sponsoring the event.

-- I am loving the Olympics so far… I have to ask though… the Mogul skiing… how does that not destroy your knees? Also if you love or just like Hockey- these teams are awesome. A USA victory would be another miracle when you see how stacked the Canadians, Russians, and Swedes are. (Not to mention my pick- Finland) Plus Lindsay Vonn is pretty dang amazing… (though I know link chick is tired of her- not me)

-- According to Reed Construction the hottest economy in Canada is in Saskatoon. Considering that this winter in the east has been Saskatoon-like maybe that’s where I’ll move. I wonder if they have high speed internet there…

-- Speaking of weather, pitchers and catchers report to Spring training…. That for sure means spring is coming! I am guessing a certain Mr. Bieber is pretty happy given his love for America’s pastime.

-- Funny… on the NFRC Blog there was a note that the Window Film people LOVE the NFRC… well that’s great… can you leave us alone and you guys can love each other all you want? Please?

-- Speaking of the NFRC blog, I always chuckle when I go there because I know that many of the folks in the NFRC elite hated (or still hate) my blog and used to make snide comments about it. Especially on how quick the info from meetings can go from the meeting to the blog… and now by blog is the way NFRC does a majority of its communication. I wonder if they are still wasting 6 figures yearly on Potomac when they can get the word out so quick and easy. Anyway in the end it’s funny that they do what I had been doing and they were so dismissive of it.

To the links we go…. Olympic style…

Link Chick has been all over these games… NBC should hire her as a researcher… or actually she should be doing live blogs of the events- that would be great reading.

-- The games may come off smooth on TV but evidently there’s been A LOT of problems….

-- Last week we had some winter Olympians from odd countries… this week we have a skier… from Iran… never knew they skied there…

-- Depending on when you read this… Tonight (Weds) Shaun White is going for gold… also known as the “Flying Tomato” he is surely a guy not to miss… if you missed it… sorry.. (and I probably jinxed him!)

Video of the week

John Wall is one of the best college basketball players in the country (Kentucky) and he is responsible for this hot new dance… evidently it’s taken the world by storm and if I am ever allowed back in the state of Kentucky, I am doing that dance… check it out… very cool… the video explains it all!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

What's the deal...

Ok to clear up confusion… I am not ending my blog (or leaving my current job either)- this will continue and to find it you need to either bookmark it as a “favorite” or click that little orange button up in the top right hand corner to get it as a feed. (If you use Outlook- the feeds are great) It’s just time to move on from the past and start fresh. And for the conspiracy theorist out there (and normally I am one of you- see NFRC) I made this call after the business issues in my life were done and this move has nothing to do with that. Simple as that… Anyway I hope those of you who enjoy this weekly banter keep with it and those who don’t, thanks for reading when you did. At the end of the day this will always be therapy for me, no matter the venue.


-- Speaking of therapy… I probably need real professional therapy for bantering on message boards… man it’s just too easy and inviting. Gotta quit giving voices to those who can’t stand behind it… to me the bottom line is we all have skeletons of some sort in our closets- some of us choose to deal with it and others like to toss stones run hurriedly away.

-- Major Congrats to Dr. Helen Sanders of SAGE. She just got a new job at SAGE that will continue to utilize her talents well. One of the big reasons I respect Helen and SAGE for that matter is they care a ton for this industry. They could easily stick their noses up and let us all battle away, but they’ve stepped in and added a tremendous dimension to our presentations and perception out there. You want a company like that to do well because they are truly golden in trying to protect and further our industry.

-- Did you see the Green Police commercial during the Super Bowl? Any thoughts? I have seen all sides hitting it from all angles- right, left, green, anti green- and there’s no clear path. I thought it was cute- I like Cheap Trick (and not surprised they sold out for a paycheck- they probably need it) and I did not read too much into it.

-- To me the best commercial though is below in my video of the week.

-- Unless I am missing something I LOVE the changes to the Buy American Act to include Canada. What happened on the World Trade Center was criminal to me and comparing a Canadian company to a Chinese one is just plain wrong.

-- Still bumming on the Zeledyne deal. I know the job market is tough but there's some serious talent that is or will be available because of it... hopefully everyone will land in some good spots.

-- If you didn’t get a chance to check out the blog, do so HERE. The insight on NFRC was very interesting especially the part where it’s noting its struggles. As been mentioned here many times, this process could’ve been done so much better but that was never in the plans. (and as noted here I believe if John Lewis came on a few years earlier- it woulda been better). This week I heard from several people frustrated and confused because they have no idea what needs to be done. It’s sad that this process came into being the way it did and the havoc it will wreak for years to come.

-- This winter has been bizarre… when Washington DC and surrounding get 50 inches of snow that is odd… (or what our friends in Minnesota call.. “spring”)… Amazing also is that when massive storms hit DC or NY they get a cool name like “Snowmageddon” or “Snowacane” while when we’d get it in Detroit or Buffalo the name is Tuesday. Anyway if you live in DC and you had a snow blower at the ready you are looking really good right now…

Off to the links…

Not sure if Link Chick is following me on my new start and path- hope she does but considering that I haven’t told her yet, I have no idea. Plus I think like the rest of north she's snowed in too I think…
It’s the Olympic edition of the Links.. I love the Winter Games… Speed Skating, Skiing and of course some seriously epic Hockey…

-- Here are 21 reasons why you should watch…

-- Awesome story about a skier from Ethiopia… see again it’s this sort of stuff (like the Jamaican Bobsled team and Eddie the Eagle) that make the Winter games great…

-- Speaking of Bobsled… how about a team from down under? Australian Bobsledders… wow.

-- They are trucking snow into the games since Vancouver is not getting the snow they need… there’s no truth to the rumor that the latest truckload of snow came directly from Kim Mann’s driveway…

Video of the Week

A lot of solid commercials this year during the Super Bowl… but to me this one was the best… I love the whole concept, but sadly I enjoyed the commercial so much that when someone asked me what it promoted, I had no idea… (also note growing in Pennsylvania this whole ceremony was HUGE- so I loved the take off on it)

Friday, February 05, 2010

Check this out

Great blog out there called Division 8 Report....

You can find it HERE.

Interesting take on NFRC and other subjects that affect our industry.

Please give it a whirl and add it to your favorites...

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

No post this week

Hey gang...

No regular post this week...

Just a pretty humorous/comical joke below... we'll be back next week to recap the Colts big win and the performance by "The Who" at halftime... and yeah whatever news there is in our fine industry.

Have a good week all...

Q . What is an Economic Stimulus payment?
A. It is money that the federal government will send to taxpayers.
Q. Where will the government get this money?
A. From taxpayers....
Q. So the government is giving me back my own money?
A. Only a smidgen.
Q. What is the purpose of this payment?
A. The plan is for you to use the money to purchase a high-definition TV set, thus stimulating the economy.
Q. But isn't that stimulating the economy of Asia ?
A. Shut up or you don't get your check..

Below is some helpful advice on how to best help the US economy by spending your stimulus check wisely:

1. If you spend the stimulus money at Wal-Mart, your money will go to China ..
2. If you spend it on gasoline, your money will go to Saudi Arabia ..
3. If you purchase a computer, it will go to India .
4. If you purchase fruit and vegetables, it will go to Mexico, Honduras or Guatemala ..
5. If you buy a car, it will go to Japan or Korea .
6. If you purchase useless plastic stuff, it will go to Taiwan ..
7. If you pay off your credit cards, or buy stock, it will go to pay management bonuses and be hidden in offshore accounts.

Or , you can keep the money in America by :
1. spending it at yard sales or flea markets, or
2. going to baseball or football games, or
3. hiring prostitutes, or
4. buying cheap beer or
5. getting tattoos.
These are the only wholly-American-owned businesses still operating in the US ..

Conclusion :
The best way to stimulate the economy is to go to a ball game with a prostitute that you met at a yard sale and drink beer all day until you're drunk enough to go get tattooed ..