MUNICIPAL BONDS

If you expect long-term interest rates to head back up, this could be a better time to be selling long-term municipal bonds than buying them. And it is on the sale that your broker may be most tempted to take advantage of you. How do you know what they should sell for?

This site gives you a sense of what the prices of thousands of the more widely traded issues should be. Your broker will count on your inertia, figuring you will not likely go to the trouble of selling the bonds elsewhere. But at least this site may give you an argument to get a better price.

And here are two municipal bond specialists you could call for a competing bid: Stoever Glass and Lebenthal. You might find your broker will to match it to keep from losing a chunk of your assets.

SMELLY CAT

This is Phoebe’s song, most of you know, from ‘Friends.’ But what if you are a smelly cat? Or you have smelly dogs? (Feet, that is.) I was trying to have a serious conversation with you about global climate change and the hole in the ozone layer – which 25 years of global cooperation in banning chlorofluorocarbons* seems now to be mending – and all you can think of is RightGuard.

Kathryn Lance: ‘With regard to CFCs and deodorants, check out nomoreodor.com, which offers a completely natural, extremely effective way to eliminate underarm and foot odor without any impact on the environment. You have to pay some trivial amount for the formula and promise never to reveal the secret. I tried this two years ago and have not had to spend a cent on deodorant since.’

☞ I feel the need to tell you that, as your faithful correspondent, I clicked the link and even paid the $19.95 to learn the secret and make sure I wasn’t turning you on to some sort of Satanic odor-eater cult. I came to the site looking to save hundreds of dollars a year on deodorant. But what I took from the experience (because it occurred to me that a year’s supply may not cost me more than $10), is that this site would be of interest primarily to those who have a problem – as when, for example, removing their shoes at airport security the guards faint dead away. In which case, incidentally, you will learn how to fix not just your feet but also the smelly shoes they inhabit.

*I can see but one way to use this word in Scrabble, and now that you have raised the issue, I think I will spend the rest of my life hoping someday to do so. Terminating flush right on the triple word score if possible, you play the word CARBONS – 92 points. Then, at some point, you or your opponent lays down FLU on the same row, the requisite number of spaces to the left. Later, to the left of that, OR. So now you have _ _ _ O R _ F L U _ _ _ C A R B O N S. Note there are seven letters left and you have seven tiles on your rack. It’s your turn. Down go those seven letters, and you’ve done it! Although actually, if you really want to take a gamble, you could lay down CARBONS to terminate one short of the triple word score. This could be 86 points, nearly as good, if you began on the top or bottom ‘center’ triple word score. Then, when you laid down your triumphant seven letters to complete the word, it would start on a triple word, for a score, I am immensely please to tell you, of . . . oh, no! The Scrabble board is only 15 spaces wide! We need a shorter molecule!

 

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