Monthly Archives: October 2009

Heathrow named worst airport again

Copy of DSC06160The fliers have spoken: London’s Heathrow Airport sucks.

A poll of 14,500 frequent fliers, all participants in the Priority Pass airport lounge program, has again ranked the best and worst of the airport world, with Heathrow hitting rock-bottom for the second year in a row. Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris landed second from the floor.

Los Angeles International Airport was third worst, despite having poured $1 billion into a recent overhaul. Frankfurt International and Miami International round out the lowest five. In the United States, voters reserved their venom for Chicago, Atlanta and JFK, along with those awful enough to make the global list.

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Where I Write

working1A friend of mine e-mailed me last week to ask where I write. He can’t sort it out through all the tweets and links and so on. I can understand; I’m all over the place. So, if you’re interested in following my work, see the following links:

Gadling (travel): http://www.gadling.com/bloggers/tom-johansmeyer (If you want to read about hostels and backpacking, go read someone else. I tend to roll upscale)

Luxist (art and cigars): http://www.luxist.com/bloggers/tom-johansmeyer/ (Occasionally, I do a luxury travel or real estate story here, too)

BloggingStocks (finance, economics and markets): http://www.bloggingstocks.com/bloggers/tom-johansmeyer (I do a bit on the clean technology sector, venture capital, private equity, hedge funds and social media for this blog, in addition to all my work as a generalist)

DailyFinance (finance and economics): http://www.dailyfinance.com/bloggers/tom-johansmeyer (I don’t have a specific beat, though I do write a lot about cleantech, social media and the alternative investment space)

Envy (travel): http://envymags.com/index.php?s=johansmeyer (It’s not a regular gig, but I am starting to do more with this magazine)

Gotta Love the Ayn Rand Crowd

lens1521675_resizejohngaltThe so-called “Objectivists” are easy to manipulate. All you need to do is post a story with the slightest dig at Ayn Rand, and they mobilize online, rewarding your rudeness with plenty of traffic and comments. Whenever one of my sites needs a little surge, I write about Ayn Rand (as I’m doing now). So, when I had the chance to cover a private equity fund named for Howard Roark for DailyFinance, I jumped at the opportunity.

It didn’t take long for me to pick up a few Ayn Rand-related followers on Twitter, and several comments materialized on the website almost immediately. Fun stuff.

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Help the North Korean Children

koreancharityI know, I know, it’s hard to imagine donating money to anything involving North Korea. I mean, hell, just look at the regime-endorsed Twitter-stream! But, when I saw the appeal from Koryo Tours for donations, I found it impossible to take issue. This is an independent organization run by a Brit that’s trying to raise a mere $6,700 for two humanitarian projects in the isolated Communist state.

Click here to donate to the Koryo Tours project >>

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Best … Spam … Ever

 

freezelight via Flickr

freezelight via Flickr

I just found this message in my inbox — twice. It is sent to the sender’s e-mail address, obviously with the recipients BCC’ed. I just found it pretty funny that spammers are now trying to make a personal connection.

Hi Dear,

how are you today I hope that everything is ok with you as it is my great pleasure to contact you in having communication with you starting from today, please i wish you will have the desire with me so that we can get to know each other better and see what happens in future.

I will be very happy if you can write me through my email for easy communication so that we can know each other, I will give you my pictures and details about me upon hearing from you. waiting for your response as i wish you all the best.

Your New Friend

Ms Rama Djirama

Foreclosures up 5% from season to season

Even though there are signs that the recession is ending (or even finished), the foreclosure rate is a constant reminder that we aren’t out of the woods. From the second quarter to the third, foreclosures increased 5%, with 938,000 properties sucked in. The previous quarter, 890,000 homes went into foreclosure. And, RealtyTrac forecasts 3.5 million foreclosures by the end of the year — up from around 2.3 million last year.

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Carmel Limo: Customer Service Failure

Photo by Bryce Longton

Photo by Bryce Longton

I used to use Carmel Limo fairly regularly when traveling. I prefer to schedule my ride to the airport rather than hope like hell that I can get a cab (either at rush hour or in the absurd hours of the morning). But, their record wasn’t all that hot, especially when picking me up at the airport. So, when they absolutely blew it this summer upon my return from Curtain Bluff in Antigua, I’d had enough. I wrote to the company to let them know how upset I was.

Brace yourself for some horrible customer service: the correspondence is after the jump. To put the moral of the story up front: Carmel Limo’s only response to a problem with customer service is to have you call customer service. Ugh.

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