This—the dawn of the last half of the '80s — probably finds many builders still living in the '70s or the '60s. This is only natural. Most of us tend to lag behind the times, particularly if we're well established. But while the start of the last half of any decade is not particularly monumental, it does mark a point in time—like New Year's Day or the day we got our first mortgage (or burned it). As such, it's a good time to take stock of the tremendous proliferation of choices we enjoy today in building materials. This proliferation has occurred in all phases of construction, from cast-iron pipes to PVC, and from logs