When Alex Abraham finally upgraded from the big machine used by his father and grandfather, he noticed an immediate difference using the newer tool—namely, "how much more of an angrier beast it was." In a good way. The 22-year-old owner of Lenox, Mich.-based Abraham Hardwood Flooring bought the Hummel second-hand, and the previous owner had refurbished it using an odd turquoise color. Abraham decided to make it his own, airbrushing it in the style of WWII-era fighter planes, complete with a fierce set of shark teeth. With five uncles who also own hardwood flooring businesses, he had plenty of people telling him he was crazy. "When I pull this frickin' green monster machine out of my truck, clients are just like, 'What the heck,'" he laughs. But the fascination with the fearsome-looking machine—dubbed "Bertha"—has only helped Abraham's business. Clients he's been referred to are always excited to see it. "It's a conversation piece; it gets you engaged with your clients," he says. The newer machine also saves him a ton of time compared with his old one. So while the snarling Bertha may be "angry," Abraham's thrilled.


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Ryan Kushner signed on as assistant editor at Wood Floor Business in February 2018 after a year and a half as a staff writer at The Smithfield Times in Southern Virginia. He grew up in Pennsylvania and graduated with a degree in English and Communication from Mercyhurst University. He is constantly in search of wood floor stories and terrible puns and wood love to hear suggestions floor either.