January 26, 2014 |
It's one thing to manage a rental house when it's nearby. But it's another process entirely when the rental is in a distant vacation retreat. Unfortunately, many second-home buyers find that out the hard way. According to a survey by HomeAway, an online marketplace for vacation rentals, owners spend an average of 8.6 hours a week managing their properties. That's one full workday a week. And even then, it's doubtful that the typical owner can market his vacation pad, maintain it and do all the other things necessary to have a successful rental regime.
January 24, 2014 |
A recent effort by Uber to poach drivers from a rival ride-sharing service in New York has backfired, giving media attention to the lesser known service and making Uber come off as a bully. Gett, an Israeli start-up that launched in New York last August, saw its service get flooded with nearly 200 fake ride requests from Uber employees last week. "These individuals ordered cars and then canceled each order after the Gett driver was dispatched or had arrived," Gett said in a statement.
January 19, 2014 |
TORONTO - Canadian journalists gathered around one of their favorite basketball players before the Lakers played the Toronto Raptors. A semicircle at Steve Nash's locker? Try again. Nash was on the other side of the country, trying to rehabilitate his bad back in Vancouver for one last run at playing this season. Robert Sacre was the man of the hour Sunday, holding court with a dozen writers, only some of them American, in returning to his homeland. Sacre, 24, played high school basketball in Vancouver before going to Gonzaga and eventually being grabbed by the Lakers with the 60th and final pick of the 2012 draft.
January 19, 2014 |
SACRAMENTO - It's the time of year again when interest groups flock to the state Capitol steps to promote their causes. Media events with dozens of participants, sometimes hundreds, are staged, competing for attention from TV cameras, radio reporters and even pencil-pushing print journalists. Traditionally, the coveted west steps are ground zero, with the north steps running a close second. "They are a mix of theater and politics. It's groups of people looking for exposure and cameras to leverage the policy or legislation they want," said John Howard, editor of Capitol Weekly.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 17, 2014 |
BAKERSFIELD -- Ricocheting across the state in recent days, Gov. Jerry Brown laid out a case for his reelection in a tour that had all the hallmarks of a campaign rollout. Brown visited the inland heart of California, stopping in Fresno, Kern and Riverside counties to talk about his controversial plans for a costly high-speed train network and massive water tunnels that would move billions of gallons from the northern half of the state to the south. Last week, the Democratic governor unveiled his proposed budget in Sacramento, San Diego and Los Angeles, touting a projected surplus, a push for a rainy-day fund and more money for schools after years of cuts.
January 16, 2014 |
TRENTON, N.J. - A new investigative committee issued subpoenas Thursday for 17 individuals and 3 organizations as it launched a deeper look into the involvement of Gov. Chris Christie's administration in ordering closures that caused a massive September traffic jam on roads leading to the George Washington Bridge. The names on the list weren't immediately released, but they were expected to include Bridget Kelly, Christie's former deputy chief of staff, who weeks before the closures sent an email to a close ally of the governor on the Port Authority, the regional agency that controls the bridge.
January 13, 2014 |
A Texas man is likely to be released from custody Tuesday, nearly 20 years after he was imprisoned for two murders that he and his supporters say he did not commit. Daniel Villegas' case has galvanized support among hundreds of people in El Paso - including two men who survived the shooting and the foreman of the jury that convicted him - and has drawn national attention to the number of suspects who falsely confess to crimes. Villegas, now 36, has been serving a life prison term since a jury convicted him in 1995 of killing Robert England, 18, and Armando Lazo, 17. An appellate court vacated the conviction in December, and on Monday, District Judge Sam Medrano set a bond hearing for Tuesday.
January 11, 2014 |
They are the Dodger Dogs with all the trimmings, the triple cheeseburger with extra bacon, the filet mignon topped with melted butter. At next week's Detroit auto show, half a dozen automakers will be rolling out low-volume, high-performance or specialty vehicles meant to generate buzz for their brands. A Corvette Stingray not fast enough? The Corvette Z06 is on the way, likely with ludicrous levels of horsepower and torque. DETROIT AUTO SHOW: Big trucks, fast cars and more Subaru's WRX wannabe rally racer still too bland?
January 11, 2014
In October, we took a 16-day guided tour of the UNESCO sites in Morocco with Around Morocco Tours. Lahcen Boujouija provided door-to-door service, knowledgeable guides for big cities, and never let a question go unanswered. He guided us to restaurants where we felt as if we were getting royal treatment. The people were welcoming everywhere. The Atlas Mountains were breathtaking, and the monkeys entertaining. The hotels even on the edge of the desert were top-notch. Tour prices vary depending on days of travel.
January 9, 2014 |
A stage, a sound system, musicians and a crowd. That's all you really need to put on a concert. Everything else - $12 beer, nachos, jumbo video screens, light show, 3-D glasses, VIP meet-and-greets, merch, vapor pen for your "medical marijuana" - is gravy. Even the $75-million renovation of the Los Angeles Forum isn't going to guarantee a good show. As a rule in watching musicians at work, a smaller space is usually preferable. This is creative expression, and at its best it's the most intimate nonsexual exchange you can have with a stranger.