Sowmiya: ‘Why is Revlon named REVLON when though the founder’s name is Revson?’

☞ Early partner Charles Lachman was the L in Revlon. After the first year or two, when Charles Revson forced Lachman out – but could not wrest away his third of the stock – people asked Charlie Lachman what he did. For decades they would ask him this. ‘What do I do?’ he reply. ‘I rake.’ ‘You rake?‘ ‘Yes. I have a rake, and I rake it in.’

(To read the whole book – which long ago in a distant galaxy people paid cash money to do – just click on BOOKS, above, and then on FIRE AND ICE.)


Peter Kaczowka: ‘You mentioned auto accidents in your column, and asked ‘Have you seen how people drive in Boston?’ Before your readers decide it’s not safe to drive here, they should note that Massachusetts has the lowest fatality rate due to auto accidents in the US, and has for several years. The Massachusetts rate is around 1.5 fatalities per 100 million passenger miles; lower than any other state’s, and less than half the national average.’

☞ Sure, Massachusetts – but have you seen how people drive in Boston?

(OK, I’m basing this on how they drove around those rotaries 30 years ago. It may have improved – if only because traffic has come to a complete halt, which makes fatal accidents all but impossible.)

(OK, the truth is, all this is said in fun. I love Boston, and Massachusetts. If there are finer places in the world, I have never found them. Except for November thru April, when it is fit for only for penguins and walrus.)

Peter continues:

‘You are correct however in pointing out how dangerous driving an automobile is. Assuming that a person drives or rides a million miles in a lifetime – e.g. 20,000 miles a year for 50 years – and given the national average of 3 fatalities per 100 million miles, the odds of that person dying in a car accident in his or her lifetime is 3%. Predictions are that auto accidents will be the third leading cause of death (worldwide!) by 2030, after heart disease and cancer if I remember correctly. And that’s not including pedestrians and bicyclists killed by cars.’

Wear your seatbelts.


The Honda Insight gets 50-60 miles to the gallon, or about twice the average on America’s roads today. A safe, comfortable, affordable car thet gets even better mileage is not far behind. So in 10 years, if we wanted, we could about double the fuel efficiency of the US automotive fleet, about halve our gasoline consumption, dramatically decrease our reliance on imported oil, decrease emissions, and slash our balance of trade deficit. How could this not be good? The next car I buy will get 50 miles to the gallon – or more – even if I have to swallow hard and buy a new, rather than a used, one.


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