Category Archives: News

New and Unusual Ways to Show the World You’ve Made It


Some people like yachts, others like watches. Diamonds are a girl’s best friend, and a luxury sports car can compensate for a lot. But what if you’ve got the money, but you are also looking to assert your unique, individual, crazy rich self? Here are a few bizarre ways you can flaunt your success.

A 1960 Michigan, USA, license plate. Courtesy
Absecon 49


Out in Silicon Valley the high-techies have taken to adopting chickens, which they keep as pets in their backyards. There’s a rumor that some even come in the house, with diapers on, of course, and are fed gourmet chicken feed. Go figure.


We know it can get bone-chilling cold in Chicago, so we do expect the outerwear to be high-quality, warm, and water-proof, too. Lucky for those with a few extra thousand dollars laying around, it is possible to purchase a $1,000 Canada Goose parka and keep your buns warm while telling the world you are ready for a vacation at the North Pole.


In Washington DC it seems it is trendy to wait on lines, most notably to visit overpriced restaurants and bars that serve boutique cocktails.


Americans are quite fond of their vanity license plates, but in New England this fad has been taken to a whole new level. Massachusetts is the first state in the USA to issue license plates for cars, back in 1903, with, of all things, Number 1. As you might imagine, low numbered plates are quite the rarity, and if its dear, the filthy rich will pay for the privilege of driving around with a low numbered plate. It has been estimated that some people will pay upwards of $100,000 for a low-numbered plate, and the much-desired plates are being passed down to the generations to come.


In Texas the filthy rich are going for luxury pick-up trucks, while in New York City big families have become a trend. And what could be pricier than several tuitions for private school?

Canadian and US Businessmen Fretful of Trips to China


North American businessmen have long been aware that traveling to China had its risks: executives with cellphones and laptops feared the theft of intellectual property and cyber attacks when in the biggest of all Asian nations.


But now the level of fear has been notched up to the next level.


Ever since the arrest of Meng Wanzhou on December 1st, traveling to China for business people hailing from the West, and especially North America, has been a nail-biting experience. Wanzhou, the head of giant cellphone maker Huawei, was arrested in Canada and her extradition was requested by the USA. She is charged with fraud because her company has allegedly had business dealings with Iran, a violation of US sanctions against the middle eastern country. Then the atmosphere intensified when Chinese officials stopped two Canadians, saying the pair was suspected of national security violations.


It is supposed by observers that the self-destructive mutual suspicions will not spiral out of control since neither side has any interest in provoking the people they want to do business with, and therefore will not publicly change their travel policies.


Unfortunately, sometimes mistakes are made. Last week the US tech company Cisco sent an email to their employees telling them that all non-essential trips to China would be suspended. The company caught the mistake and issued an apology stating that their travel policy to China had not changed.


American diplomats and businessmen will say in private that the two Canadians being held in China now is in retaliation for Meng’s detention, according to Craig Allen, the president of the US-China Business Council.


“If we don’t recognize that as a possible signal to American interests and to American businesses, then we would be willfully blind,” he says.

US Demands Extradition of Huawei Exec for Violating Sanctions Against Iran


In an unusual and controversial move, the Canadian government detained Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer to electronics giant Huawei. The arrest took place as Meng was changing planes on December 1st, in Vancouver, at the request of the United States.

Washington is requesting the extradition of Meng so she can face charges of Huawei using a shell company to sell electronic equipment to Iran, against the terms set forth by the US sanctions against Iran. The US also alleges that Huawei, under Meng’s leadership, misled American banks about the business it conducts with Iran.

The Chinese government called the US ambassador to Beijing to register its anger over the detention, insisting that Canada release Weng and the US cancel the order for her arrest.
The official Chinese news agency Xinhua News Agency said that Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng “lodged solemn representations and strong protests” with Ambassador Terry Branstad. The Chinese government also summoned the Canadian Ambassador John McCallum, telling him that there would be “grave consequences” if Meng is not released.
One of Canada’s provinces, British Columbia, said it was cancelling a trade mission

scheduled to visit China due to the detention of Meng. There is a fear that the Chinese will retaliate against Canada and arrest Canadians in kind.

New President Inaugurated in Mexico

Andrés Manuel López Obrador, Mexico’s new president. Photo courtesy of Flickr.

Within only 48 hours of his inauguration as the new president of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador held his first news conference, confirming that he will be running things very differently than his predecessor, Enrique Pena Nieto.

The first news conference is only the opening of what Obrador promises will be a weekly event. Taking questions from the press was not Nieto’s strong suit, preferring to inform the public with highly prepared speeches.

During the press conference, the 65-year old emphasized his goal to end drug-related violence in Mexico instigated by cartels that have left over 200,000 people dead.

“It is so important to guarantee peace and tranquility in the country that I am not going to delegate this responsibility, I am going to attend to it directly,” Obrador announced.

He also said that he will pursue commitments from the US and Canada to invest in Mexico to reduce immigration, and to talk about ways the US can help Mexico deal with the drug cartels.

The former mayor of Mexico City also discussed his plan to stop building a new airport there at a cost of $13 billion. Obrador said the country will protect investments.

After the news conference Obrador put Nieto’s nearly new luxury Dreamliner presidential jet up for sale. He is also planning on selling the majority of the federal government’s planes and helicopters. When Obrador flies for work, he prefers to travel coach. He is also turning the ostentatious Los Pinos residence, used by all of Mexico’s presidents since the 1930s, into a cultural center. Obrador says he will find a more modest living space.

Popular Costume Rental Store Closing After 40 Years in Vegas

After 40 years of supplying costumes to customers in Las Vegas, Martin Sadowitz, owner of American Costumes, announced that he is shutting down his business.

Sadowitz, who is now 71 years-old, opened his business in the 1970s after he was asked numerous times to rent out the outfit he wore to disguise himself as a “singing telegram.”
Today the store boasts three thousand costumes, 700 hats and 500 wigs to rent out of his 4,000 square-foot premises located in a strip mall. The owner of the strip mall, the Gold & Beyond consignment shop, is taking over American Costume’s space.

Conventions, film crews, themed corporate events have relied on Sadowitz for their costumes. Participants of Burning Man, an outdoor, counter-culture arts festival in the desert, come to him for goggles to protect their eyes from the dust and wind prevalent at its north Nevada location.

Sadowitz explained that when famous people pass away there is a surge in costume rentals. For instance, when Michael Jackson died in 2009, and Prince in 2016, business boomed. He is expecting his John McCain masks to become popular also in the after math of the death of the late senator from Arizona.

Some of his more well-known costumers include Las Vegas regulars like Siegfried & Roy, and the Penn & Teller television show, which rented gorilla outfits and Elvis costumes.

Sadowitz says Elvis and Madonna are among his most popular costumes.

“Every man should be Elvis at least once in a lifetime,” he said.