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  • China: A Capitalist's Dream Come True

    Every good businessperson has a favored statistic about China. I remember meeting the son of a vineyard owner in Napa Valley, who was helping his parents take their modest business global. "Think about it," he told me. "If we sold a bottle of wine to every Chinese millionaire, we'd run out of wine before we ran out of millionaires!"I haven't kept in touch with the oenophile, so I don't know how his well-laid plans played out, but Dan Gross has been keeping tabs on how some major American brands have been doing in China. His take? "Thanks to macroeconomic upheaval in the U.S. and China, the promise of the China market finally seems to be within reach." In his column this week, he walks you through the three premier exhibits--Citigroup, General Motors, and fast-food-owner YUM Brands--and explains that, even though these companies are now (or are close to) making more money in China than at home, there's still plenty of room for growth...
  • Berlin Is Cheap

    In Paris, laid-off factory workers have taken to kidnapping their bosses. London riots in early April left one man dead outside the Bank of England. In laid-back Berlin, the global economic crisis has, so far, been just another reason to party. On May 1, the International Workers' Day holiday that brings anticapitalist street fights to Europe's capitals, the Berlin air smelled not of burning tires but of fresh-grilled kebabs and cannabis, whose use the city's courts stopped prosecuting in the 1990s. A multicultural street fair in the heavily immigrant Kreuzberg district has long replaced the traditional riots with musical attractions such as Turkish-German rap stars and three bands billed as "trash metal gore." The protest was best summed up by a guy holding a placard that read ARBEIT NERVT—work sucks.It's not just Berlin's protest crowd that couldn't care less about the worst global downturn in 70 years. As the days get longer and temperatures warmer, Berliners do as they always do...
  • Palin's Book Deal

    Governor Sarah Palin is the latest politician to mint a sweet book deal. She's signed a deal with Harper Collins who will co-release the book with its subsidiary, Christian publishing house Zondervan (the company that published Rick Warren's mega-seller "The Purpose-Driven Life"). Reporters have been chattering about the inevitability of a Palin book for months. The deal was negotiated by DC lawyer Robert Barnett, whose literary client list includes Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. The financial arrangements haven't been disclosed, but your Gaggler is thinking big bucks. (And probably more than Bush scored.)  Palin, who will work with an as yet unnamed writer, has agreed to talk about the Katie Couric interviews, Bristol's pregnancy, family, religion and politics.  "There's been so much written about and spoken about in the ...
  • Viral Round-Up: The Weekend in YouTube

    The Kentucky Derby!  If you missed this thrilling one, an historic run that New York Times is calling downright restorative to a sport that's seen scant good news, watch above. The best part is that the announcer -- longtime race caller Tom Durkin -- seems to be caught unawares by the Mine That Bird win, and never alludes to his massive charge up the inside rail.In a performance in Connecticut, a "crazed" fan of Britney Spears' ambled up on stage and toward the blonde performer, in the middle of her rendition of "Womanizer." A bit funny that Spears was, at the time, attired like a police officer and wielding a club."American Idol" David Cook, who was an emcee on Saturday for D.C.'s Race For Hope, to benefit brain cancer research, announced in an emotional speech to the crowd that his brother Adam had passed away on the previous day, due to his long struggle with the disease. 
  • For Hotels, Breakfast is the Most Important Meal

    Even guests who never eat breakfast when they're home have trouble resisting a well-appointed breakfast buffet on the road. A recent survey of business and leisure travelers in Asia by Le Méridien hotel group showed that 60 percent of leisure travelers and 40 percent of business ones eat more than usual when traveling, and more than 80 percent favor the buffet breakfast. However, only 38 percent of travelers said they were extremely or very satisfied with what hotels are offering.Some hotels are trying to differentiate themselves by offering new takes on the breakfast classics. The St. Regis Bali offers guests Wagyu beef tenderloin and fried egg as an upmarket alternative to the traditional bacon and eggs, while the Cascade Café at ANA InterContinental Tokyo will start offering in July new breakfast items with a "Japanese" flavor, such as a buckwheat burger with deep-fried foie gras in tonkatsu sauce.Le Méridien has partnered with Jean-Georges Vongerichten to create a few Signature...
  • Why I Froze My Eggs

    I had just turned 35 when I started thinking about freezing my eggs. I'd always thought I'd have a husband and a kid or two by 35—that's the ominous year when doctors start stamping women's medical charts with the words "advanced maternal age" if they are pregnant, and some warn that fertility starts to drop off a cliff if they are not. But instead I was single, with an adventurous career, and concerned about my eggs. So in 2005, when I heard about a free seminar offered by a company called Extend Fertility, I thought this was exactly what I needed: a way to safeguard my eggs so I can relax until I meet Mr. Right. Extend had just begun marketing egg freezing as the newest choice among women's options: preserve your fertility and wait to have a child.Egg freezing is more technically known as oocyte cryopreservation, a technology by which a woman's eggs are surgically removed from her ovaries and frozen until she is ready to use them. It's still considered an experimental technology...