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as seen on phillyBurbs.com 

My last blog for phillyBurbs.com
This is it. My 1,542nd and final post in “Home Turf,” the blog I started here as the online sports editor for three years and finished after 1 1/2 years as the News and Money content editor. In short, I was one of a handful of folks who got up before ...
Service economy here we come
By 2016, how many U.S. workers will be in service, rather than goods-producing, jobs? More than 3/4 Source: 2008-2009 Occupational Outlook Handbook
The drug dealer next door
They live in comfortable, upper-middle-class communities where BMWs are commonplace, swimming pools dot many backyards, and the school system is top-notch. And they accumulate the kind of luxury items - authorities found nearly 100 Rolex watches and 100 pairs of Prada shoes in their home - that separate the really wealthy ...
Real-life Slowskys
Call them cheapskates. Call them luddite lights. Call them the real-life Slowskys, those turtles in the Comcast commercials who prefer to do everything as slowly as possible. Only 14 percent of dial-up users say they’re stuck with the older, slower connection technology because they can’t get broadband in their neighborhoods, the Pew Internet ...
Top 5 reasons UFOs are buzzing Bucks County
The Mutual UFO Network said it will dispatch “field investigators” to Lower Bucks after four reports of strange craft hovering over the county between January and June. Here’s the top five reasons I can think of for our visitations: 1. They’re still looking for a good Mexican restaurant now that Don Pablos ...
I won’t ever be able to retire
According to the Associated Press - not The Onion - it is now nearly mathematically impossible for me to be able to retire in the same style I’ve become accustomed, which ain’t exactly lavish, without having 126 percent of my current income stashed away. In other words, I now have to ...
How not to dig a financial hole
Wachovia, the nation’s fourth-largest bank, has decided that given the mortgage crisis, it no longer makes sense to hand customers a shovel and tell them to dig their own financial graves. The bank will no longer offer a mortgage payment option that allowed borrowers to pay less each month than ...
How much is your life worth?
Is it your salary? Is it the amount of insurance your beneficiaries stand to inherit (unless Clarence the Angel comes to your rescue)? Is it how much money you have in the bank and investments, owe in credit cards, and in the equity in your home? Is it your weight in gold? Ian Usher, ...
Ex-anthrax suspect now a near $6 million man
Former Army scientist Steven Hatfill, who was named as a person of interest in the 2001 anthrax attacks, will receive $5.8 million to settle his lawsuit against the Justice Department. The deal requires the government to pay Hatfill $2.83 million up front and then buy him a $3 million annuity that ...
Welcome to the real world, kid
My neighbor’s kid is working at a factory this summer in Philly until he returns to college for a class next month. Listening to him talk last night, I was reminded how sheltered most Bucks County kids are. He thinks the repetitive tasks he’s being paid to perform with a machine ...
Tie died
What percentage of men say they never wear a tie to work? 67 Source: American Magazine/Gallup Organization survey
Hard sell for turnpike lease
I was a bit stunned to receive an e-mail last night from Pennsylvania Transportation Partners espousing the virtues of leasing the state’s turnpike away to a Spanish company for $12.8 billion. It wasn’t the obviously mass e-mail that surprised. Or who was paying for the campaign, namely CitiBank and Abertis Infrastructures ...
Sallie Mae shows her pink slip
I feel sorry for the 160 workers who will lose their jobs at Sallie Mae, but it doesn’t exactly break my heart that the nation’s largest student loan company is halting its loan collection operation at its Mount Laurel branch. I mean, who really sympathizes with collection agents? The Mount Laurel employees ...
Philly sales of flavored cigar wrappers ‘blunted’
Head’s up pot smokers, the city fuzz is on to your game. A divided Commonwealth Court has upheld part of Philadelphia’s city ordinance banning the sale of hollowed out and flavored cigars known as “blunts,” ostensibly because they can be used to roll really fat joints. However, the state appeals court struck ...
Beast of an unbalanced tax burden
Philly may be next in line for a city-wide reassessment of properties. A three-part Philadelphia Inquirer series that started Sunday says fewer than 5 percent of the 400,000 homeowners in the city receive property tax bills based on the true value of their real estate and, on average, the rest of ...
Bear Stearns arrests tip of the economic iceberg
How in the face of the arrests of two Bear Stearns hedge fund managers can the Bush Administration justify the unprecedented bailout/sale of that investment bank, but not help homeowners stuck in adjustable rate mortgages? In case you missed it, Ralph Cioffi and Matthew Tannin were hauled to jail Thursday accused ...
GPS should stand for goofy, painful she-devil
I have always had a terrible sense of direction, so naturally, my brother gave me a TomTom for my 40th birthday in December. The device is designed for people like me, who couldn’t find their way with a compass, a roadmap and clearly lit street signs. Heck, I still get ...
Did Tony devour Dawn?
Well, tie a yellow ribbon around my big fat ass and call me Tony. As in Tony Orlando. As in Tony Orlando and Dawn. You know, from the ’70s? The once-svelte 64-year-old crooner has breathed new life into his career - and himself - by dropping 100 pounds while on NutriSystem ...
Firefox 3 available for download
Hey Firefox users, your upgrade is done and will be available for download after 1 p.m. If you’re as big a fan of Internet Explorer 7 as I am - and who doesn’t love a built-in popup blocker in Vista’s version that blocks incoming e-mail in Outlook no matter the settings ...
You can’t catch a break from inflation
U.S. producer prices soared in May at their fastest pace in six months, led by higher energy and food prices while pressures accelerated deeper in the production pipeline, a sign inflation remains a threat, a government report obtained by the Wall Street Journal showed. Still, prices generally stayed under wraps outside ...