February 8, 2016
Rock, paper, scissors. Amazon always seems to win. Is there any sector that the Internet juggernaut isn't taking down? Its latest target is office supplies. Essentially, if you sell paper products, or anything that uses paper - say, notebooks or books - you're facing challenging times. No wonder that Staples, Office Depot, and Barnes & Noble are all "streamlining" operations and closing hundreds of stores. As it awaits a federal judge's ruling on its proposed merger with Office Depot, Staples just announced it was downsizing nationwide, with store closures, reduced hours, and layoffs.
September 18, 2014 |
As principal at John Wister Elementary School in East Germantown, Donna Smith is used to stretching scant resources. But this year is different. "Bare necessities are difficult," she said. "During the 13 years I've been here, it's never been as bad as it is right now. My entire budget for basic supplies is a little over $3,000 for the school year. " That's less than $7 per student, making things like copy paper unaffordable luxuries. As Philadelphia public schools reopened last week in the face of an $81 million deficit and the prospect of 1,000 layoffs if a cigarette-tax hike isn't approved, supplying paper was the least of Smith's worries - which include deep cuts to crucial supportive teaching staff.
March 5, 2012
It's been a good week for Aileene Halligan. The social studies teacher at Kensington Urban Education Academy just got funding for five cases of paper, enough to last her school through the end of the academic year. Sounds like no big deal, right? It's actually a major deal. Ask any teacher, especially any Philadelphia School District teacher, how much they have to spend out of their own pockets to keep their kids in paper and notebooks and other supplies, and the answer is usually in the hundreds.
August 15, 2010
By Allegra Goodman Dial Press. 394 pp. $26 Reviewed by Jeffrey Ann Goudie Allegra Goodman's enchanting and sensuous new novel operates in pairs and opposites. Two sisters, one of them with two suitors. Two worlds, separate, even as they coalesce. In The Cookbook Collector , Goodman has written a romance that dissects ambition with a jeweler's precision and a culinary novel with a collection of rare cookbooks at its core. She also has produced a novel of ideas peopled by full-blooded characters.
July 15, 2010 |
Allegra Goodman's enchanting and sensuous new novel, "The Cookbook Collector" (Dial Press, $26), operates in pairs and opposites. Two sisters, one of them with two suitors. Two worlds, separate, even as they coalesce. Goodman has written a romance that dissects ambition with a jeweler's precision as well as a culinary novel with a collection of rare cookbooks at its core. She also has produced a novel of ideas peopled by full-blooded characters. This taxonomy of dot-com ambition is a narrative about the turning of the wheel of fortune, the one that the ancients and medievals believed in, not the one co-opted by television.
September 13, 2009 |
Clark Linderman of Swarthmore, a self-employed contractor, has had a home-equity line of credit from Chase for nearly four years, about as long as he and his wife have owned their house. "It's proven to be a valuable financial tool for us," Linderman says. Although they have run up what he calls a "decent balance," a lot of untapped equity remains. The original intent was to finance adoption of their youngest son. Because Linderman is self-employed, however, the credit line has been a safety net in lean times.
January 9, 2007 |
I recently attended my high school reunion. They had sent out a questionnaire and one of the questions was, "What was your greatest accomplishment in the last five years. " People put stuff like "ran a marathon" and "climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro. " Kid stuff. I did something much harder than that very recently: I got my New Jersey driver's license renewed. I had heard rumors about the state Motor Vehicle Commission's tough, new six-point system - requiring various documents in three categories, each worth a certain number of points that had to total six. I read the brochure carefully and was sure I had the requisite points.
May 16, 2006 |
Five would-be owners of The Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News have until 5 p.m. today to deliver signed bids for the newspapers. A sixth potential buyer, MediaNews Group Inc., of Denver, is standing by a bid it submitted last month, according to people familiar with the company's plans. Seller the McClatchy Co. says it will announce the new owner once it picks a buyer and cuts a deal, probably later this month. The sale is likely to return Philadelphia's major dailies to private control after 35 years as part of publicly traded Knight Ridder Inc. and its predecessor, Knight Newspapers Inc. Knight Ridder went on the auction block last fall under pressure from shareholders disappointed by the chain's failure to boost profits.
February 8, 2004
Maybe you had to be on line at 10 p.m. in a Philadelphia polling place last election day. Then you'd grasp the lunacy of a federal mandate for ATM-style printouts of every citizen's vote. Anything that would have delayed or further complicated voting that day - when Philadelphians already faced hour-long waits due to a lengthy list of candidates and ballot questions - would have made voters boo louder than fans at the Linc. Yet that's just what mandating paper printouts would mean.
March 11, 2000 |
In perhaps one of the strangest big-city press events in recent history, Mayor Street gathered members of his numerous transition committees together yesterday afternoon for a brief ceremony to mark the delivery of their reports. However, the details of the reports were not announced. What was announced is that the reports have been turned in, or at least most of them. The ceremony lacked pomp, circumstance or substance. The documents - ranging from thick bound reports to a few sheets stapled together - were pulled from a box and piled on a side table like homework turned in to a teacher.