Yep, That’s Him!

I wasn’t totally sure at first, but I was convinced after a minute or two. But why? Why was this woman staring at me? At first, I thought she was looking at the Glass.com® display booth where Daniel Snow and I were standing. But as I moved, her eyes followed me. Was she stalking me? What did she want?

It was the final hours of the Glass Expo Northeast ’22 show taking place in Uniondale, N.Y. The show had been a tremendous success, with more traffic than anyone had expected. I had been on my feet for several hours and was a little anxious to wrap it up and call it a day. The lady staring at me was starting to cause me some concern. What was going on? Then a man joined her, and he, too, seemed to be following my every move. I was starting to worry.

Our Glass.com booth was in a busy aisle intersection which meant we had heavy traffic all the time. Down the aisle in front of us was Access Architectural Hardware, and every time I looked their way, Mark Kemp had a crowd around him. Across from Access was the Strybuc booth and they, too, seemed always to have a crowd. To the left of us were John Weise of Barkow and Mark Haeck of Mainstreet—always two of the most sought-after guys at any glass-related event. Chip Olson, another big draw, was directly across from us in the Quattrolifts booth. These were all very popular destinations, so the stream of people walking past our booth and regularly congregating in the aisle intersection was incredible. Yet here stood this man and woman, apparently oblivious to the traffic as they stared at me. I was becoming concerned about this, so finally, I shouted out to them, “Hey, are you lost?” The woman immediately turned to the man she was with and said, “Yep, that’s him!”

As they started toward me, I did not know what to expect. Then I heard her say, “I wasn’t sure at first because he was wearing a different shirt yesterday, but I remembered his voice when he spoke. That’s him.”

I had no idea who they were or what they wanted. Had I offended this woman somehow and was unaware of it, or was something else at play here? Then I heard her say, “Give it to him.”

I thought about running, but the crowd would have prevented me from going very far. Plus, I couldn’t leave Daniel there alone, could I? Well, I could have, but as I said, the crowd was pretty large.

Then the guy asked her, “How much am I supposed to give him?”

“$3,” the lady replied and, at that moment, I became even more confused. In an instant, the three of us were standing face-to-face.

“I’m happy to take your money,” I began, “but why do you want to give me $3?”

The lady replied, “Because I promised you I would if I won. Don’t you remember that when you stamped my bingo card yesterday, you told me that you expected a cut if I won? And when I asked you how much, you replied $3. I promised I would. That’s why I’m here. I won, and I’m keeping my promise.”

I was stunned! Yes, I told her when I stamped her card that I expected a cut if she won. I said that to anyone whose card I stamped, and I stamped a lot of them. You see, the attendees got a bingo-type card when they came to the show, and each exhibitor had a stamp at their booth. If the attendee got all of the booths to stamp their card, they could put their card into a drawing for a chance to win a $500 cash prize. Over the years, I have stamped similar cards at dozens of shows, and I have always said to the person whose card
I stamped that I expected a cut if they were the winner. But no one, in all these years, has ever given me even a dime. But here was this woman and her husband seeking me out to keep a promise she had made. I then found out they were Sandy and Dan Wasson of Marchuska Glass. Moreover, perhaps the biggest surprise of all … they are from New York. My view of New Yorkers has now completely changed.

One last thought on all of this. You previous winners of cash prizes from years gone by … and you know who you are … it is not too late. You can still send me the money you know you owe me. I mean, seriously, are you going to let New Yorkers make you look cheap? I truly hope not!

Lyle R. Hill is president of Glass.com®, an information portal and job generation company for the glass industry. Hill has more than 50 years’ experience in the glass and metal industry and can be reached at lhill@glass.com

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