Best Laid Plans

I had planned to tell you all about this week’s GlassBuild America show, which was held in Las Vegas. I thought you’d like to hear about how excited so many of the exhibitors were to tell us how busy they’ve been. I was going to tell you about the overall optimism and happiness from companies who said many attendees were there to buy—and machinery manufacturers especially. These companies were selling lines right off the show floor. Doug Mangus with Salem Distributing told me, “Things have been late-90s busy.” If people are buying, I’d say that’s a good sign that buildings are being built. Good news for everyone. But like I said, that’s what I’d planned to tell you.

My plans changed last night (or rather this morning) when I was sitting in the Las Vegas airport waiting to board a redeye home. I was doing what most of us all do when we’re sitting and waiting: playing around on my phone, when I looked up to see a somewhat familiar face heading toward my gate.

Now, before I go any further, let me take a step back. Those of you who know me well know about my love for UNC basketball; I’ve also mentioned it before in blogs and columns from time to time. I grew up in North Carolina and learned from dad when I was about 5 years old that Carolina Blue is really the only blue that matters. Many, many (many) years ago I once thought I saw UNC coaching legend Dean Smith in the Raleigh-Durham airport. I was with my dad and we pondered whether it was him, not knowing for sure.

So now back to last night—scratch that—this morning. The familiar face. I had to look twice, three times even. Taking in the Carolina blue plaid jacket, catching a quick glimpse at his hand to see the big ring, that I assumed had to indicate time spent playing or coaching something … was it really? Yes, it was: Roy Williams, UNC’s head basketball coach. Wow! Really? This was so exciting for me. I wanted to speak … I really did … but by the time I realized it truly was him he had walked away.

Talking basketball with Roy Williams, UNC's head coach, while waiting for a plane in Las Vegas.
Talking basketball with Roy Williams, UNC’s head coach, while waiting for a plane in Las Vegas.

I was bummed! I wanted to tell him … something … I didn’t know what. And now it didn’t matter. He was gone.

However, that quickly changed when it came time to board, as he then returned to the gate. That’s it. I’m going for it. I didn’t really know what I would say, but I thought of my dad and all the games we’ve watched together over the years, both at home and in the “Dean Dome,” home of the Tar Heels.

“Mr. Williams,” I said, “I don’t mean to interrupt, but I grew up in North Carolina and ever since I was a little girl, my dad taught me to be a Carolina fan and I just wanted to say how much I love Carolina basketball.”

He smiled and was very nice and asked me where I grew up. It didn’t seem as though it was at all a bother. It meant a lot to me and when I told my dad this morning … (uhm, right, it was still morning) … I could tell he was excited to hear it, too.

Like I said before, best laid plans. So you can still see our show coverage online at And keep looking to your™ daily e-newsletter for more show reports from Las Vegas.

Do you have a similar story to share? I’d love to hear it. Tell me about it below or email me at