Yet another visit from St. Nicholas

HomeColumnYet another visit from St. Nicholas
(Back by popular demand, round 5)

’Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the town,
Not a creature was stirring; they’d all been locked down.
Much to our chagrin, 2020’s still here,
The governor has stuck us in some sort of tier.

The FCNews team on one last Zoom before bed,
While visions of live events danced in their heads.
Krystal behind plexiglass, Dustin in N95,
They killed it all year, as we continued to thrive.

Instead of hanging stockings, Megan chose to hang masks,
Reggie cleaned all the doorknobs, if anyone asks.
Ken disinfected the light switches, counters and phones,
I truly think Lysol resides in my bones.

Then out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my Teams call to see what was the matter.
Followed by Megan and Reg, Frank and Ken,
Something else to go wrong in 2020 again?

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
Eight socially distanced reindeer and a man bellowing “whoa!
”The white-bearded driver dressed in full PPE
I knew in a moment he was COVID free.

Of course, it was St. Nick, in whom I’m a believer
Still took his temperature to make sure no fever.
I immediately told him there would be no snack
You see, outdoor seating is something we lack.

Couldn’t shake his hand, had to be smart.
We live in a world that requires 6 feet apart.
He nodded and assured me that he understands,
But told me, right now, I must wash my hands.

I knew he would ask, who’s been naughty and nice?
But unlike years past, no need to ask twice.
“You ask every year and I usually pass,
But this year I want to kick some (never mind).”

Let’s start with Cuomo and his self-serving book.
6,000 nursing home deaths he seemed to overlook.
He’s ascended to dictator of New York state,
Where another day means another mandate.

Then there’s Newsom, who makes my blood boil,
This Democrat was once married to Kimberly Guilfoyle.
Maybe it’s me, but I find this peculiar,
That she is now the partner of Donald Trump, Jr.

How about Mayor Wheeler of that Oregon city?
The way he handled looters was pretty darn s#%&ty.
His lack of leadership is pretty well known,
As he failed to dismantle that autonomous zone.

“OK, OK,” Santa said with a smile,
I can see why judging people is not your style.
You’re right, I said, there’s a lot to get through,
Let’s just move on to the year in review.

As 2020 began to take shape,
We said goodbye to the retiring Tom Lape.
Instrumental at Mohawk in establishing the brand,
His claim to fame will forever be SmartStrand.

We traveled to Vegas once again for TISE,
Hung out at Eye Candy maybe once or twice.
Saw Indusparquet’s Flavia, who you know is Brazilian,
Fears of COVID killed the Chinese pavilion.

Innovation once again took center stage,
The Mohawk space was all the rage.
The latest and greatest all under one roof,
Seemed wherever you looked there was something waterproof.

Dal-Tile unveiled a solution they call RevoTile,
One of the best intros we’ve seen in a while.
The tiles lock together via something like hooks,
With a great marketing team led by Paij Thorn-Brooks.

Mannington as always offered plenty of sizzle,
Led by the tandem of Zehner and Grizzle.
Launched a high-fashion brand called Adura Apex,
Won a Best of Surfaces for the shape of a hex.

Our friend Piet Dossche gained rightful acclaim,
As the 50th inductee to WFCA’s Hall of Fame.
The flooring industry he would forever reshape,
As WPC and COREtec changed the landscape.

Shaw invited me to Lauderdale for its Circle of Distinction,
Then live events went into extinction.
Good thing that fun was certainly aplenty,
Given it was basically the end of 2020.

First night I bellied up to get a Corona,
Met this cute sales rep from Arizona.
Selling hard surface is her forte,
Things like hardwood, laminate, tile and Floorté.

Upon arriving home, I heard something obscene,
That we were being forced to quarantine.
Cuomo said New York was going on “pause,”
All of a sudden, he was making the laws.

While sitting at home I got kind of bored,
Got on a plane to see my friend Katie Ford.
COVID could never squelch her style and flair,
Her eclectic wardrobe nor platinum blonde hair.

Couldn’t go to the Bahamas and stay at Atlantis,
But had fun in Florida thanks to Gov. DeSantis.
Sat at bars and ate past 10,
I felt like it was 2019 once again.

This Cuomo set restrictions, which I found to be silly,
So when I flew home to New York, I’d just land in Philly.
Then I’d rent a car or take the train,
Efforts to quarantine me clearly went in vain.

Decided to visit dealers and report the good word,
Combatting the media’s negativity, which was downright absurd.
Business was strong, consumers were spending,
As opposed to hospitality where businesses were ending.

So I went to the airport and got on a plane,
First saw Jim Mudd, then Jason McSwain.
Drove to Columbus then on to Indy,
Drank with ICC’s Cam Haughty on a day that was windy.

Next was Lewis in Chicago and Nonn in Wisconsin,
Found my way to Chattanooga, where I saw Casey Johnson.
In Florida it was Capitol, Dolphin and the Maccos,
Saw Ashlie Butler in Tampa and dined at Rocco’s Tacos.

One of the stories that made the news,
Were governors getting sued by Christians and Jews.
Tried to limit religious gatherings to groups of 10,
But the Supreme Court said no, to which they all said “amen.”

As business rebounded, dealers were nervous,
As some manufacturers could not provide service.
They couldn’t get product delivered to stores,
One exception was Engineered Floors.

At the end of the day, dealers averted a crisis,
Although manufacturers were forced to raise prices.
They cited increases on things like freight,
Raw material inflation and labor rates.

The one thing we’re seeing more and more,
Are domestic facilities being erected for rigid core.
Wellmade, EF, CFL and Novalis,
Got a glimpse of Huali, which is gonna be a palace.

Received an email, worse news it could not bring,
Informing of the passing of FEI’s Dave Gheesling.
The tributes came from far and near,
No one could have had a more distinguished career.

On Armstrong stock I made a small bet,
Because I believe unequivocally in Michel Vermette.
In March for $58 I could’ve owned Mohawk stock,
Last week it was $136, which had to please Paul DeCock.

And with that St. Nick gathered his crew,
And with a spritz of Purell away they all flew.
I heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight,
“A COVID-free Christmas to all, and to all a good night.”

You know with this poem I’m just having fun,
The vaccines are here—humanity has won.
For us in flooring worries are small and blessings aplenty,
Happy holidays to all and good-bye 2020.

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Dec. 21/28, 2020

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