Yeah, I admit it.

Sometimes when the day just isn’t going my way, I’ll throw out a few moans and groans. Sometimes these “disappointments” are blurted out vocally. When my wife hears these “discouraging words,” she flips me a question, which usually silences me right up.

“Want some cheese with that whine?”>


With those six words, I regain my composure and focus — and then I proceed with a more positive attitude. It works for me.


Now don’t tell me you never complain. I know better. Contrac-tors love to state their disappointments, particularly to each other. At association meetings and conventions, I’ve overheard more than my share of concerned contractors, all huddled together, lamenting about their respective business’ state-of-affairs. “I can’t seem to make ends meet,” is a familiar opening line. And then, depending upon the crowd, another will respond, “Yeah, no matter how hard I try …”

The “Complaintfest” has begun.

I do have to refrain myself. I so much want to jump into that type of conversation with a “Want some cheese with that whine?” My wife would be proud of me, but I don’t want to get knocked down by a potential subscriber. (It’s not a recommended business practice.)


Instead of interjecting words of wisdom, there had to be better ways to help hurting contractors, I thought. Thanks to the grand suggestion from contributing editor Joanna Turpin and the efforts of Ruth King,The Newsis actively trying to help at least one contractor improve his/her business this year.

Our “Do You Want to Grow Your Business?” contest was initiated this year with the aim to give contractors some solid help to boost business. King, the president of the American Contractors Exchange and an “Implementer of Neat Ideas,” has agreed to award six months of consulting service to the winner of our first-ever contest. She definitely has helped her share of contractors since 1987. For complete contest rules, regulations, and entry form, please see page 40.

I bring this to your attention — again — because the deadline to enter is soon upon us: March 31. You can also enter online at www. (And, I encourage those who had difficulty in sending their completed form electronically, to please try again. Yes, a few website glitches surfaced recently, but the Internet folks insist those kinks are ironed out.)

Note: One of the provisions of this contest is that the winner discloses his/her financial books to King (and The News). After all, without viewing the finances, how can a consultant provide guidance? A doctor cannot help a patient without the patient disclosing what is ailing him/her, right?

Did I hear: “But, I don’t want the world to know my finances”?

My best response: “Want some cheese with that you-know-what?”

Skaer is editor-in-chief. He can be reached at 248-244-6446, 248-362-0317 (fax);> (e-mail).

Publication date: 03/26/2001