Volume 38, Issue 3, March 2003


The One-Two Punch
Will Lyle Hill Give Arch Aluminum a Try?
by Max Perilstein

Just when I thought things were mellowing out in my life, they began to get crazy again. I was planning on this column to be about the fire-rated glass controversy, but now that will get moved to May because I have to reply to an article that appeared in “The Business” in the January issue of USGlass.

A Flurry of Phone Calls
When the issue hit the street, I started to get phone calls and e-mails. I hadn’t received my copy yet, so I thought it had to be because the online chat I wrote about was a huge success and maybe (with enough interest) I could do it again. But that wasn’t the case. 

Evidently my writing hero, Lyle Hill, mentioned me in his column. At first the details were sketchy. I was hearing that Lyle was congratulating me on my new job and for that I was touched. Now my name would be included in such legendary company as Johnny “Mooch” Rago, Old Man Vitucchi, Jungle Jim Bruney and Koziac the Polish Accountant.

After a while even more people chimed in. My current coworkers were furious, my former coworkers got a chuckle out of it, my mom wanted to write Lyle and give him a piece of her mind and my brother, while waiting for a plane in Philadelphia, showed the column to none other than Hulk Hogan. Yes, the professional wrestler and movie star actually read the article at my brother’s urging and said, “That’s cold brother … cold.” Bizarre. 

I was torn, because like I said, it was an honor to be mentioned by Lyle, but on the other hand, I was amazed by the reaction. I read and re-read the article, and then I struggled to write this column.

Aluminum vs. Glass Guys
Anyway, the key of Lyle’s column was that he’s had some un-fun times with the ol’ aluminum gang. Wow! Coming from a predominantly glass background everyone knows that the glass fabricator rarely has problems, few back orders, no issues with color consistency, back charges once per decade and so on. Glass guys are pretty much perfect. Yep, that’s the ticket! And while a good percentage of Arch’s business is aluminum maybe we’re different than the jackals that Lyle and his folks have evidently dealt with bitterly in the past.

Before the column came out I originally was going to ask in print for Lyle to order some mirror from my new company. I figured, “what the heck? Maybe it will work and maybe I can prove the naysayers wrong.” By the way, when I joined Arch I was pretty much told there was no way I’d be able to get any business from Lyle. I guess they must have meant an aluminum order.

Anyway, Lyle, it is true; I am here at a company that does both glass and aluminum and hope you’ll give us a shot. I appreciate the kind words and am honored to be mentioned in your column. Who knows, maybe in both glass and aluminum, maybe we’ll be better than you thought? If you give us a chance and we fail, then I’ll write an article about it (which will make my former coworkers really chuckle.) Plus, I’ll have my brother call his pal Hulk and ask him not to crush your car with his bare hands. 


Max Perilstein
Max Perilstein
serves as director of marketing for Arch Aluminum and Glass. His column appears bimonthly.


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