August 1, 2011 |
In calmer times, the true blue Dodgers fan might decide whether to buy a Matt Kemp T-shirt for his wardrobe or a Clayton Kershaw jersey. In these turbulent times, the discerning Dodgers fan can decide whether to buy a shirt that supports a player or maligns the owner. As Frank McCourt has expanded his two-year legal battle to retain ownership of the team from divorce court to bankruptcy court, the opportunities for fans to share their discontent have expanded as well. And, for a few entrepreneurs among those agitated fans, those frustrations have turned into business opportunities.
March 13, 2011 |
Nidal Sharif joins the Libyan revolution every day ? in the fabric district. The scraggly young man with a short, patchy black beard often has to scout out more than one shop to get what he needs. These days, everyone seems to be short on red, black or green fabric. He buys at least one roll of each color every morning and takes them to a Sudanese tailor, who makes hundreds of the new (actually the old, pre-Moammar Kadafi) Libyan flag. He then takes them to a printer, who stamps the white star and crescent in the middle.
February 3, 2010 |
'We have your daughter." Those chilling words, the worst nightmare of any parent, came over the telephone, spoken by a man planning to demand money for her safe return. One catch: We have no daughter. So the call, for us, was easy enough to ignore. But thousands of Mexicans receive these calls every week. Sometimes they are real; a child or spouse or other relative has been kidnapped, and a ransom is demanded. Often, they're bogus. A cottage industry has exploded alongside the skyrocketing kidnapping rate in Mexico that could be called "extortion on spec": telephoned shakedowns that play on fears, in which the perpetrators scamming for pesos make random calls.
April 10, 2008 |
What pushed Priscilla Maddox was the relentless smell of vanilla. Maddox was toying with launching a cookie line after retiring from her 36-year hospital care job, but was overwhelmed by the vanilla smell in her apartment. When she couldn't find a kitchen to rent, she started a rent-a-kitchen that has become a small-business incubator for entrepreneurs including a fudge maker and a twosome baking gourmet dog food.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 9, 2007 |
Hollywood rehab can produce unhappy endings, even when the patient isn't named Lindsay or Britney. That's what Kelly Logan learned when he sought treatment for a methamphetamine addiction at Promises Malibu, detox destination to the stars. Logan's brother, Garfield, says he paid $42,000 up front to admit the former professional surfer for a month at Promises' canyon-top Mediterranean-style home. Five days later, he says, Promises kicked Logan out for belligerent behavior but kept all the money.
August 21, 2007 |
Bosses are really mean these days, or employees are really thin-skinned. Lawmakers across the country are considering legislation that would give workers grounds to sue their superiors for being, basically, jerks. Bookstores are stocking bad-boss advice tomes, including "Snakes in Suits" and "Was Your Boss Raised by Wolves?" Today the AFL-CIO will name the worst boss in the country, based on the results of an online contest.