Get Off That Couch

Seven-year-old Skyler Moran of Carlisle, Pa., loves spending weekends playing soccer and basketball, or just tossing a ball around with his parents. But when the school bell rings, Skyler's schedule is dominated more by books than by ball games.

A Season Of Shows

It's a familiar dilemma over summer vacation. You're in Houston to visit Grandma, and the non-natives (i.e., the kids) are restless. Don't despair. Almost every metropolitan area (and many rural ones) now have museums where youngsters can do everything from creating a map of their own heads to building a 50-foot-high fountain of water. "Children's museums bring out the genius in every child," says Lou Casagrande, president of the Association of Youth Museums, which represents approximately 200...

'Your Room Is A Pigsty'

To hear Kelly Bartling tell it, her 15-year-old daughter Lacey's bedroom should qualify for disaster-relief funds. "Wads of paper on the floor. Clothes under the bed.

They're Home Alone

Kevin Edwards is only 12, but he already has an adult-size schedule. After school lets out at 3 p.m., he catches the bus and lets himself into his house in Wetumpka, Ala.

The Infertility Challenge

It has been 20 years since Louise Brown, the world's first test-tube baby, was born--20 years in which microchip technology has transformed the computer industry, scientists have almost mapped the entire human genome and Brown herself grew up to become a healthy, well-adjusted day-care worker.

How To Choose A Doctor At Your Hmo

WHEN YOU THINK about it, it's ridiculous. "We demand every conceivable statistic on baseball players, but when it's time to get our chest opened up for heart surgery, we don't know the first thing about a doctor's track record," says Dwight McNeill, vice president of AccessHealth in Rancho Cordova, Calif.

Just Doing It

Insiders call it "The Swoosh"--their term for the symbol of winged victory that appears on Nike products. And anyone who turned on their TV set during the last few weeks could hardly escape the check-mark-like symbol.

The Rogue Trader Speaks

Two Questions Have Remained Since rogue futures trader Nicholas Leeson singlehandedly sank Barings PLC earlier this year: Would he be shipped back to Singapore, where he worked for the bank?

The New Facts Of Life

The fashion industry buzzed about it. Journalists discussed it behind closed doors. And for weeks, it remained a secret that everyone seemed to know but no one was willing to publish: Jann Wenner, Rolling Stone founder and self-appointed poster boy for evolving social mores, had left his wife for a man.

Only 340 More Days...

THE TREES ARE DOWN, THE LIGHTS ARE packed away and the kids are already ignoring the toys they were begging for just a few weeks ago. Christmas may seem like a distant memory, but toy execs-reeling from a less than jolly 1994 shopping season-aren't wasting time crying in the eggnog.

They're Flying In Fear

It was the Sunday after Thanksgiving -- one of the busiest days of the year at O'Hare International Airport. But on top of the usual holiday congestion, the airport had another problem.

An Even Hipper Way To Get Wired

Wired magazine jump-started a few modems on the Infobabn last week with the unveiling of HotWired, its free Web-based online service. About 5,000 took notice and became charter members of what's been heralded as the Net's first "cyberstation." It's a one-stop shop for all your virtual needs, brought to you by the techno set's arbiter of hep and its blue-chip pals (AT&T, Volvo, IBM, etc.).

Pc Apartheid?

The controversy over Integration in South Africa has flared up on the Net. In recent weeks, the newsgroup soc.culture.african has been the center of arguments over the proposed formation of two new newsgroups: soc.culture.south-africa and soc.culture.afrikaans.

A Good Deal Or Mango Madness?

They were unlikely candidates for multimillionaire status. Hyman Golden and Leonard Marsh were window washers. And Arnold Greenberg ran a food store on New York's Lower East Side.

All The News That's Not Fit To Print

Infomongers aren't always the serious types they're often made out to be. They ow what the rest of us ow that the news can be pretty funny. Of course, only infomongers distill it and put it on the Net.

Captain Outrageous

Donny Deutsch, clad in blue jeans, T shirt and cowboy boots, is huddling with his staff in the eighth-floor conference room of Deutsch Inc., his New York advertising agency.

Family Values

It looked like your typical office party. Some 80 people milled about with drinks in hand, trading jokes and gossip about their old employer. But this was no ordinary office fete.

Make It A Lemon Light Ice, Please

When six-foot, 210-pound Kevin Branigan bellies up to the bar, he wouldn't be caught dead asking for a strawberry daiquiri or any of those froufrou concoctions with umbrellas hanging off the side. "I'm a Bud man," he says flatly.

Ads Of Our Lives

It looks like a promo for a new fall TV series. A pretty receptionist named Darlene and several harried-looking co-workers crowd together in an office elevator. "See these people," says Darlene, turning to the camera. "They work for Gramercy Press.

A Shopping Trip To Paradise

THE SOUND YOU MAY HAVE BEEN hearing from New England lately--in the media at least--is the citizens of smalltown America whining about the evils of discount retailing.

What Do You Do With $1 Billion?

At a management retreat in 1987, Craig McCaw cryptically told subordinates how he hoped to be viewed in the business world. "I want to be the Wizard of Oz," he said.

A Deal That's Fit To Print

The union sparked almost as much interest as Japan's royal wedding. There was a persistent suitor, a reluctant partner and a discreet if much-anticipated consummation behind closed doors.

Shufflin' At The Shack

At first glance, Tandy Corp.'s new growth strategy seems like a case of corporate schizophrenia. Only months after heralding its Incredible Universe megastore as the shop of the future, the venerable merchant announced last month that it will open mini electronics and computer stores in several big cities.

Picture This Executive Battle

The timing couldn't have been more ironic. Last Wednesday The Wall Street Journal published a page-one article about Christopher Steffen, the new chief financial officer recruited to help free Eastman Kodak Co.

All's Fair In Toyland, U.S.A.

For Gale Jarvis, it was just an ordinary day on the job. Greeting her at the door were a 35-foot Tyrannosaurus rex, a dog that talks back to the TV get and a hyperactive prehistoric ape named Stink. ("I Stink," he says, introducing himself. "Come right in.") And that was just the first five minutes.Before the day was over she would visit a talking house, play pinball with a robot, assist in the birth and feeding of several babies and do battle with troll-like warriors-all while wearing...

Feel Like A Wreck?

It's known in the toy industry as the "crash 'n' bash" theory: give a 6-year-old boy a toy car and he's guaranteed to smash it against a wall or careen it off his little sister's bunk bed.

Shooting the Messenger?

Talk about having a beef with corporate management. There, splashed across TV screens throughout America, was a blistering expose accusing Food Lion Inc., the nation's fastest-growing supermarket chain, of dipping old meat in bleach and disguising tainted chicken with barbecue sauce.

The Selling Of Jil Sander

For years German designer Heidemarie Jiline Sander couldn't get any attention on the French fashion circuit. French designers shunned her androgynous, minimalist creations.

He Reaps What He Sows

It's just the sort of tale a publisher of inspirational literature would love to print: a college student named Salim Ziady sees a sign on campus reading EARN $100 A WEEK and takes a job selling Bibles.