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How Not to Get Sucked in by Times Square Electronic Stores

Times Square Billboard

Up to 70% off all cameras, the sign screamed, its bright red letters unmistakable against the white background. It could have been there for months but on that day late last year, it drew me in.

I’d heard about them before I even moved to New York – these stores around Times Square that pull you in with the promise of good deals on electronic items. For years, I never even looked their way. Then, on an impulse, and thinking I was immune to the hard sell, I walked in.

Yes, young lady. What can I help you with today?

Just looking, I said, in my best I’m-not-interested voice.

You looking for a phone? camera? We’ve got the iPhone, iPad and all the cameras, all on sale. Seventy percent off. You looking for a camera?

At this point, I thought, what the heck?

Yes, I’m looking for a camera, I replied nonchalantly.

What kind of camera?

Canon, I told him.

Well, the Canon’s a good camera, but you’ve got to try this one.

[Read more…]

Staying Safe While on the Road

Screen shot 2012-07-28 at 1.13.27 AM

We rarely think about staying safe while on the road but consider what happened to me on a recent trip. While it wasn’t serious, it had me rethinking safety while I travel.

It was a few minutes before 3 a.m. I pulled the shower curtain back and suddenly, as if I had also hit the lights, I was plunged into darkness. I flipped the switch but nothing happened. Maybe the bulb blew, I thought.

The hallway was dark when I exited the bathroom and there were no lights in any of the adjacent buildings. [Read more…]