Blue light special
``Did you know there is also collector's value to your stock certificate as well as the market value of one share?''
The statement caught our eye, as the phrase ``unlucky in love-and the stock market'' came to mind, sticking like peanut butter in a parched gullet. Sheer poetry-much like the come-on we saw on a Web site ballyhooing the idea that one share of stock is a great gift idea. Actually, it went so far as to call it the ``perfect gift.''
``The reason why is that there are so many different kinds of values that you get with one share of stock,'' proclaimed an e-mail heralding the OneShare.com site. In all the talk alluding to one share being a possible shrewd investment strategy, the site was very careful to note that ``this is one gift that can (stressing the word `can') pay for itself one day!''
What really piqued our interest was the e-mail's subject line, which stated: ``Own one share of Disney stock or Kmart stock-the perfect gift.''
Perfect? Because of the historical and financial significance of Kmart Corp. and its recent filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the e-mail said ``this means that the stock certificate alone can become a valuable collectible.''
Apparently someone's finally figured out how to make some money on Kmart's stock. OneShare.com was promoting a single share of that stock, in a collector frame, for 29 bucks plus shipping-a discount, it said, from OneShare's normal price. The last time we checked, Kmart stock was trading at $1.77. Why not just buy one along with a cheap frame and be done with it?
This, that 'n the other
Call today, don't delay-``Action is worry's worst enemy,'' says a supposed American proverb.
Fast, loose and free-As observed by someone named J.B. Kidd: ``Election year is that period when politicians get free speech mixed up with cheap talk.''
Growing up-The following quote, attributed to ``unknown,'' is a pithy rejoinder to Peter Pan's ``I won't grow up'' philosophy: ``A youth becomes a man when the marks he wants to leave on the world have nothing to do with tires.''
Splitting hairs-The North Carolina Tire Dealers & Retreaders Association's newsletter recently published answers to some common questions about hiring employees, ``including questions about discrimination, job advertising, citizenship and interviews that may help you in your hiring practices.''
One particular question struck a chord: ``Am I allowed to ask someone if they are an illegal alien?'' The answer stated, ``Not in so many words,'' but rather pointed out that you may ask if the worker is legally authorized to work in the U.S. on a full-time basis.
Other than that, keep in mind that it's simply illegal to discriminate against illegals.
Name game-Skimming through the Fast Facts newsletter of the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), we spotted an interesting company name (and perhaps company philosophy): A Phoenix-based manufacturer of brakes and hoses calls itself Gotta Show All Tubes 'N Hoses. Honest, we're not hosin' you.
...And another-Let's suppose for a moment that there was a major merger of two corporate giants: Put together Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing Co.-also known as 3M-and Goodyear and what might you get? MMMGood.
Got that goin'-to-work blues
The stats from a Fast Company-Roper Starch Worldwide survey indicate something perhaps many employers have recognized in their workforces: The job's not everything to everybody.
Sam Geist, sales and marketing expert who conducts training seminars, noted in his Quick Bites newsletter that there's growing evidence of ``disappointment, disaffection and disengagement'' as far as one's career goes. The answers indicate some of the natives are indeed restless. The survey asked what employees felt their job would be when they began working for their current employer:
a. Mostly just a way to make money-12 percent.
b. Meaningful, but not as meaningful as the rest of your life-37 percent.
c. Just as meaningful as family life and other activities-46 percent.
d. The most meaningful thing in your life-5 percent.
When employees were asked how they viewed their job today as opposed to when they first started, the same categories elicited the following responses: a. 18 percent; b. 52 percent; c. 26 percent; and d. 4 percent.
In the same Quick Bites was a productivity study by Accountemps in which 150 execs noted when they believed their employees were most productive. The view from the top: Monday-26 percent; Tuesday-48 percent; Wednesday-9 percent; Thursday-5 percent; and Friday-1 percent (big surprise there, huh?).
Since workers are obviously so unproductive on TGIF, why not just go to four-day work weeks and have Fridays off. The only problem, though, is that Thursday then becomes Friday...so we'll be forced to go to three-day weeks. On second thought, the heck with this day-to-day grind. Boss, just send the paychecks to the house and we'll show up periodically to pick up mail.
What goes around...
If you're a fan of poetic justice-or perhaps biblically based references-you'd have been intrigued by a recent news story from www.WardsAuto.com and PRNewswire that said Ford Motor Co. was ``throwing Firestone to the Lions.''
What it meant was that ``Ford Field,'' the new domed-stadium home for the Detroit Lions, will feature an artificial playing surface composed partly of rubber reclaimed from recalled Firestone tires manufactured by Nashville, Tenn.-based Bridgestone/Firestone. The National Football League's Lions are owned by William Clay Ford Sr., the auto maker's former vice chairman and father of current board boss and CEO, Bill Ford Jr.
You may recall that Ford and BFS have been locking horns over who's to blame for the spate of rollover accidents that involved Ford Explorers shod with Firestones: Was it the tires or the sport-utility vehicle? Adding to the irony, of course, is the historical tie-in of the two companies, since Bill's great grandfather is Harvey Firestone, founder of the old Firestone Tire & Rubber Co.
Installation of the new football field-being done by FieldTurf, a Montreal-based firm-will cost in the range of $600,000 to $1 million. According to the story, the Lions had a special request of FieldTurf: only Firestone products be used. And the company said it was able to comply.
In light of how the team performed last season, it's anyone's guess whether playing on Firestone turf will now race the lowly Lions into contention.