Volume 38, Issue 10, October 2003


A Conspiracy Theory … 
    Or Are We Getting the Business?

by John Linder

Like many readers, I have been reading USGlass magazine for many years. In fact, USGlass is one of the very few trade magazines that I religiously read from cover-to-cover each month. And, like many of you, I typically begin at the end of the issue to check in with this character named “Hill.”

During the past two years I have written an article or two for USGlass. In one article I even went so far as to refer to this Hill character. I thought that this simple act of male bonding might even possibly solicit a telephone call, or some minor recognition from the great oracle himself. No such luck.
Hill Hill no more
Then, about a year ago it occurred to me that perhaps something might be amiss. I noticed that the same two or three routine photographs of Hill were always inserted at the end of Hill’s articles … never anything new. It started me thinking. I also noticed that there seemed to be a preponderance of Hills’ older articles being re-printed. I was a little worried. Maybe Hill had acquired some horrible, protracted illness and had become incapacitated. Not being one to beat around the bush, I called MTH Industries to check things out. I was told that everything was fine with Mr. Hill, and in fact he was in the office earlier in the week for a bit, but at the moment was unavailable. Being the trusting soul that I am, I thanked the young lady and said goodbye. But I still had an uneasy feeling.

Then, late last year one of our sales managers was in the Chicago area. I made it a point to ask Ray Cooper to stop by MTH Industries and congratulate Hill on his recent move and new building. When he arrived at MTH and mentioned Hill’s name he got many funny looks and was told that Mr. Hill was a very busy man and unavailable. Where there is smoke, there is usually a fire.

Some years ago I saw this Mel Gibson movie called “Conspiracy Theory.” This Hill situation reminded me of the movie and I suspected a conspiracy of sorts might be at play here. Maybe I should contact the Perilstein clan. Surely a member of the Perilstein clan would be willing to rat out on Hill. Guess what—no one in the clan was willing to discuss Hill … good, bad or indifferent. Very suspicious indeed!

Now my worry became well grounded in suspicion. I have a good friend whose uncle suddenly died. The family hushed it all up and kept the old guy alive on paper so that the aunt could continue collecting his Social Security. Is it possible that Debra Levy and Ellen Chilcoat are now doing the same with Hill? This makes a lot of sense to me. After all, Hill does draw a lot of readers to their magazine.

All it would have taken was that one simple telephone call two years ago and all of this would have been unnecessary. 

Be sure and look for Lyle Hill at Glass Expo Northeast, November 20-21 at the Wyndham Wind Watch Hotel in Hauppauge, N.Y., where he will be appearing … or will he? 


John Linder is executive vice president and chief operating officer of International Door Closers Inc. located in Anaheim, Calif., and Nashville, Tenn.


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