Wednesday, April 15th, 2009

Just One Word… “Plastics”

President's Post

It never ceases to amaze me how visionary some people were. And at the same time, how so many people can be wrong about something.

I was reminded about this again two weeks ago at the SPI Spring National Board meeting. We had a wonderful speaker, Steve Hildebrand, the former deputy campaign manager for Barack Obama’s successful bid for President. During Steve’s presentation he showed this clip from The Graduate where Dustin Hoffman is told that one word…”PLASTICS.”

Steve and I spoke before the meeting and he told me he was going to use the clip. I asked him if he knew what movie plastics was actually mentioned in first. As The Graduate is his favorite movie of all time, he was surprised to learn that it was not this movie. I told him it was actually in my favorite movie of all time, It’s a Wonderful Life — released in 1946!

I reminded Steve of this scene from the movie: Sam Wainwright’s dad was making airplane cockpit covers during the war out of plastic and made a fortune. At one point, Sam is on the phone with George Bailey (played by Jimmy Stewart) and tells George to invest everything that he has in PLASTICS!

The cockpit covers could have been on display at this year’s NPE in the Bioplastics area of the Emerging Technology Pavilion…the plastic Sam’s dad was using was made from soybeans! Amazing how things always seem to go full circle, isn’t it? Sixty-three years later, and here we are putting extensive resources into these, not so new, materials.

One Response to “Just One Word… “Plastics””

  1. Hi Bill…there is a third movie, that I know that has a theme of PLASTICS. I both versions of the movie Sabrina. They develop a “plastic” screen.

    In the first movie (Bogart/Hepburn) Ellen Ryan and the secretary pool stand on a piece of plastic “suspended” between 2 chairs.

    The 2nd movie (Harrison Ford/?/Greg Kinnear), I think ,was large TV screens. A hammer was used to show durability.

    Where would we be without plastic!

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