Sunday, April 05, 2009

Trade Show, Old Men, Snuff, Body Language, No Movie Reviews

This past week I attended a cotton industry trade show that I have been attending since 1976. Originally this show was in Dallas, Texas and was one big show with lots of new and exciting things happening within the cotton industry. Then when the industry manufacturers started closing their doors in Dallas and moving to Lubbock, plus the fact that the Lubbock area produces more cotton than anywhere else in the world, the industry leaders decided to move it to the Hub of the Plains, Lubbock, Texas. The past exhibits were large and informative with almost a complete cotton gin being installed in the huge expo booths. It was something to see and the attendance was very good. Now it has dwindled in dynamics and interest so much that it reminds me of the local high school reunion, and the dynamics are about as exciting as screwing an Allen head screw with a Phillips screw driver or maybe watching paint dry. It just isn’t working any more and needs a huge enema. First of all the exhibits are the same every year with very little new stuff going on, then they are set up in the same place every year, then the people have not changed except to grow a little older, and the idea of a real business discussion is a forgotten subject. The funny thing is that the one company that showed real initiative and some innovative product presentation is one of the oldest companies to service the cotton industry in West Texas, being Lubbock Electric Company. LEC is now 64 years old and the founder of the company, Paul Bush, now 92 was in attendance and goes into his office daily. Kudos goes out to Steve Moffett, General Manager, for his innovation product presentation, he even had a young, pretty girl in the booth and great popcorn. What I did notice was a lot of old men that just seemed to come to the show to see each other or to see who had died since last years show. I was even challenged by one old gray haired buzzard because my hair hadn’t turned gray yet. I told him he should read my mature fitness blog site and he would see why it wasn’t gray. Regardless, the show needs some new life, a major transfusion and more than likely they will move it back to Big D hoping to get that transfusion. That seems to be the thing to do now days, since Texas Tech will be playing one game in the Metro-Plex next year (another subject not worthy of discussion today). But the weird thing about this is it will be the same old geezers coming back for their annual look see at the new gray hairs, the larger belly, or the hitch in the walk because of the new knees or hips and still no real business will take place. So, what do we do about it? Well I am not going to do anything about it and I will let the industry do that. Over the past 30 years I was involved in introducing 4 major products to the cotton industry that made changes to the way they had been doing things for over 160 years, from moduling the cotton in the field, to hauling the module to the gin, to packaging the bale in the press and finally to moving the cotton bale out of the gin press area for loading and storage. So, let this ole geezer go on to other glories, in other industries and move the dullest show in industry history to DFW.

Since 1966 I have been attending industry trade shows and one of the things I have always watched is the weird body language that is exhibited by the industry vendors. First of all they all have on their company dress, meaning a starched white(or other color) shirts with the company logo on them, and in West Texas the cowboy boots are most appropriate, then they have their name badges pinned on these freshly starched shirts(forgot to mention, all of this is color coordinated). While some will wear hats, most don’t. I noticed one company where they had on dark blazers with black cowboy hats. Kind of a John Wayne look, certainly not a Clint Eastwood look. Then I watch the way they handle themselves when someone walks up. In this show prospects were so few and far between it was almost like you had to pounce on them, grab them, throw a rope around their massive bellies, and get the order right then. One thing I noticed when a guy came up to talk to me he had a mouthful of snuff and when he would talk the odor would just about knock me to the ground. So, as he talked I just kind of backed up a little to get out of the odor firing line, but then he would just move with me. Like, hey dude take a sniff of my Copenhagen whether you like it or not. Finally we were on the other side of the carpet, off into the vendor booth across from my booth and I was still retreating. Finally I said, “Well thanks for the information but I have to go to the john, will be back soon.” He then wondered on to the next booth to charm someone else with his wad in the cheek.

Speaking of wad in the cheek, I have been trying the Enlyten product that is used in athletics to provide energy, electrolytes, antioxidants, and melatonin (for restful sleep). Whether it works or not is still being determined by my body. The good news is that it is delivered to body by putting a little strip between the cheek and gums(kind of like snuff I think) so it travels through your body faster and doesn’t take hours to start doing some good. While I really have no trouble sleeping and have never taken anything to help me sleep I tried the melatonin since I sometimes do not get the rest I feel I should when I sleep. But, really I could not tell any difference. I will continue to try the energy, and electrolytes in training and racing to see if I can feel any difference. Will report back, and also this will go up on the mature fitness blog site.

Yesterday we competed in the first ever Plainview sprint triathlon and man is it refreshing to see new events and new race directors. This guy really is in to it and will really build an excellent race for the future. This was only a mini-sprint so that he could get his feet wet, but it has all the ingredients for a very successful event in the future. We had 80 go out of the starting gate, which is very good for a first time event. The YMCA and city are really behind it and I feel it will really grow.

No movie reviews today since there not any good movies on, hoping that something breaks next week.



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