They say that hindsight is 20-20, and Leslie H. Wexner, chairman of the Limited, seems to have a different view these days about his past runs on the Los Angeles-based parent of the Broadway. At a recent New York investment forum, Wexner said that "going after Carter Hawley Hale was the dumbest thing I ever did, and going after it a second time was even dumber." With specialty stores off Wall Street's hit parade, the Limited now seems to be content to mind its own store rather than buy someone else's.
Atlantic on the Pacific
Atlantic Monthly, the magazine responsible for taking David A. Stockman to the woodshed, may soon be taking the "laid back" image out of Los Angeles.
In a special January issue that will devote more than half of its editorial space to five stories on Los Angeles, the magazine will peg Los Angeles as the world's emerging economic capital.
The cover story, which will closely focus on the Pacific Basin influence, is tentatively titled, "Los Angeles Comes of Age." "This will not be a puff piece about things to do in Los Angeles," promised Publisher Robin Johnson. Added Editor William Whitworth, "It won't be an attack on Los Angeles, either."
Gee, It's GTE
It's not yet official, but word is that by the first of the year General Telephone Co. of California will have a new name. The state's second-largest local phone company will adapt the name of its parent firm and be known as GTE California.
Hospitals as Hostages
Since being freed from captivity in Lebanon last year, David P. Jacobsen of Huntington Beach has worked on a book, made speeches and promoted efforts to improve health care in Beirut.
And the former director of the American University hospital isn't shy about invoking his status as a victim of terrorism--in unexpected ways. Jacobsen, 56, recently lectured private hospital administrators in a magazine article: "If you don't already know it . . . hospital directors rapidly are becoming hostages to a bureaucratic system obsessed with reducing the federal deficit."
The article for the Federation of American Health Systems continues: "Without your personal involvement, you will never regain your 'freedom' to concentrate on providing quality health care to those in need of it . . . like the hostages, you also have more than a handful of allies within Congress and the Administration who would lead the fight if you will give them the incentive and support."
Hot Fun in the City
They're calling them "California Classics." Out at LAX, National Car Rental has 100 "classic" convertibles, including a bright red 1957 Chevy, a 1962 Chrysler 300H, a 1960 dark brown Cadillac once owned by David Janssen, a red 1954 Buick Skylark, a turquoise Chevrolet Bel Air and a red 1964 Thunderbird Special Roadster with black interior.
Available only at the airport and only to members of the company's $50 frequent renter club, these babies cost National about $3.1 million to buy. They rent for $49.95 a day, plus 30 cents a mile. And if you think nostalgia is dead, the company has 50 "Pacific Coolers"--1988 Corvette convertibles and removable hardtops at $69.95 plus mileage.
Next stop, San Francisco International. Starting Dec. 1, National expects to offer 35 classic roadsters, probably at $59.95 per day plus mileage. On a ship from Europe, a 1954 Alpine green Hillman Minx, a 1947 black Morgan with red upholstery, Jaguars, Triumphs, MGs and others. All convertibles; all right-hand drive.
So guess which Southern Californians were knocked off the Forbes 400 list when the 1987 list came out last week? Five were dropped from the list because their estimated fortunes didn't make the new cutoff of $225 million.
They included Motown's Berry Gordy of Los Angeles, Occidental Petroleum's Armand Hammer of Los Angeles, oilman William Myron Keck II of Los Angeles, philanthropist Max Palevsky of Beverly Hills and former Carnation President Dwight Lyman Stuart of Beverly Hills. Three show-biz types were dropped, the magazine said, because their fortunes declined. They are Dick Clark, Norman Lear and Aaron Spelling.