Reality flights

airlineReality flights: There is no truth those rumors that I’m a participant in that A&E documentary “reality series” Airline, that goes behind (and in front of) the scenes at Southwest Airlines. Actually there are no rumors yet, but anyone who knows me will suspect I’m in the series as I spend a few days each month aboard Southwest flights. Believe me, this is a reality I know all too well. For the most part, I have positive and predictable experiences with the carrier’s people. I bring the topic up as I will be on Southwest in a few hours (at 6:25 a.m. cst) and will be blog-free for most of Wednesday (unless I run into some wi-fi in DC). After reading this message, please remember to return your computer screen to its upright and locked position.

Keeps on ticking

Keeps on ticking: Last month, I wondered how there could be so many expensive watch ads in the Robb Report. The NY Times today picks up on the trend:


“Jewelry, especially fancy, high-priced watches, rose 35 percent over last Christmas,” said C. Britt Beemer, chairman of America’s Research Group, which polls both shoppers and retailers. “For corporate executives, C.E.O.’s and Wall Streeters, the watch is now as much a status symbol as the car they drive. It was the big gift they gave themselves this Christmas.”

Go figure. My Timex Ironman is all I need.

Relaunched to sell

Relaunched to sell: is reporting that Honey and Savoy magazines, published by Vanguarde Media which is currently under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, are set to resume publishing while being sold.


Keith Clinkscales, Vanguarde’s founder and chairman, won’t be part of the reorganization but will pursue his own independent bid for the company’s assets.

Clinkscales, who co-founded Vibe magazine before starting Vanguarde in 1999, says the magazines were approaching the breakeven point when he was forced to shut them down.

“We just ran out of runway,” he says. “Each was fairly close to being marginally profitable. We had good support from the ad community. We just couldn’t close the cost gap quickly enough to get ourselves to profitability.”

Indeed, unlike so many titles that have folded over the past three years, Vanguarde’s magazines had been gaining, not losing, advertising. 

Fortunately, potential investors will have access to real due diligence, not answers to reporter’s questions.

Introducing the Not Free Mini Pod

Introducing the Not Free Mini Pod: Just watched 2 hours of Steve Jobs and didn’t hear him announce the product I want: An iSight/iChat compatible with Windows. And, excuse me, but I don’t understand the marketing logic of offering a 1,000 song iPod mini that is only $40 less than an iPod maxi that holds 7,500+ 3,700+ songs. The audience seemed very disappointed as the rumors had predicted an iPod priced less than $100. On a positive note, I share the enthusiasm for GarageBand (seemed not to resonate with the crowd there, however) and can’t wait to purchase and use it. It will be BIG in Nashville.