Engaging the Enigmatic Ceramic Mechanic
Anyone can go out and spend thousands of dollars on the finest imported tiles, tiles handcrafted by monks living in vast caverns of previously untapped veins of the richest stone who labor for years to assure the unique sameness of each and every piece. But if you're going to quibble over paying a professional installation mechanic to install them, you may as well have a six-year-old cut 12-by-12-inch cardboard squares out of a refrigerator box and paste them on the floor with Elmer's Glue.
Vision 2002, Coverings' educational conference, continues to grow in both size and stature. This year the TCA explains how to approach "Decorative Tile Installations"; the director of technical services & regulatory affairs at Mapei is offering "Time Saving Technologies: Equipment and Materials"; the CTDA is putting on a three-part seminar for those interested in "Learning Tile Basics"; the folks at TEC Specialty Products are looking for installers interested in "Closing the Gap: Methods for Addressing Crack Isolation"; Custom Building Products is examining "Porcelain Installations and Large Body Tiles", and FCI Publisher Dan Lipman is taking charge of "Installation as Competitive Advantage: Why the Installer Should be the Retailer's Best Friend."
Obviously, that's not every seminar out there. There are a wide variety of business and management-related topics such as "Mobile Commerce" and "Stress Management in Today's Busy World." In my case, what little commerce I engage in isn't very mobile, and management is the source of my stress, but hey, that's me.
You don't have to go outside of FCI to get all of your ceramic and stone education. Joe Grady is addressing crack isolation and floor protection in his "From the Technical Expert" column, page 24, while Michael Byrne examines "Three Basic Steps for Layout" on page 28.
Switching gears for a moment, some of you may be looking at this issue of FCI and wondering "Where's the /June part of the May/June issue?" Next month you should be receiving the FCI Directory & Buying Guide, a comprehensive collection of manufacturer, school and product listings available specifically for the floor covering installation professional.
Elmer's not included.