(Horacio Riveros)

Rent-To-Own Stores Are Like Blockbusters For Couches

It’s not a good sign for the prospects of the American working class when the president of a rapidly-expanding rent-to-own household goods company observes that items are coming back to his stores so quickly that it’s “like a Blockbuster.” Yes, it could be that a family just wanted to rent a big-screen TV for a special event, but items are more likely to come back because a customer couldn’t make their payments. [More]

Debt Collection Is A Great Line Of Work For Ex-Cons

When a debt collector calls you, there’s a good chance that he or she might be an ex-convict calling you from a strip mall in Buffalo, New York. Buying and collecting debt is a lucrative business, and some people who had a rough upbringing have a real gift for it. Learn about the “Buffalo Talk-Off” and the Excel Spreadsheets of Doom. [NPR] [Planet Money]

(SimonQ錫濛譙)

Apple Surprises No One By Removing Bose Products From Online Store

With the fairly recent acquisition of Beats Music and Electronics it probably doesn’t come as a huge surprise that Apple has ceased the sale of Bose products, including headphones and soundbars. [More]

(John Kittelsrud)

7 Habits Of Highly Obnoxious Travelers

Traveling is supposed to bring joy and relaxation into one’s stressed-out life, but not all of us can fly in private planes with only those people we know we won’t want to beat senseless with a swim noodle before the jet lands. Since we all want to land without resorting to fisticuffs or threats of forcible early deplaning, there are certain behaviors from which we’d all be wise to abstain while traveling. [More]

UPDATE: National Car Rental Bus Driver Not Fired For Kevin Hart Photo

There’s a happy ending to the story of the National Car Rental shuttle driver who was suspended after being caught snapping a photo with actor/comedian Kevin Hart. According to Inside Edition, the employee has been reinstated, effective immediately. [More]

Kmart Clarifies Layaway Rules For Closing Stores, No One Tells Kmart Employees

Kmart Clarifies Layaway Rules For Closing Stores, No One Tells Kmart Employees

Earlier this week, we shared with you the complaint of some Kmart customers in Ohio who placed items on layaway before learning that the store they had visited was about to close. This affected their payoff date and payments, but a Sears Holdings representative contacted media outlets sharing this story and explained that this is not Kmart’s policy. Unfortunately, nobody bothered to tell people who work at this Kmart. [More]

Pizza Hut Creates Crusts Stuffed With Jalapeños And With Dessert

Pizza Hut Creates Crusts Stuffed With Jalapeños And With Dessert

In their ongoing quest to stretch the boundaries of pizza crust-stuffing science, Pizza Hut uses their international outlets as test kitchens for new and exciting meals. In the United Arab Emirates and in Korea, the chain is testing two ideas that sound quite appealing. Or maybe I should have eaten lunch today. [More]

(So Cal Metro)

Even If You Spend Your Career Driving For FedEx, You Might Not Be An Employee

Each day thousands of delivery drivers get behind the wheel of FedEx Ground trucks and set out for a long day of work. While those workers must follow the company’s rules and regulations about delivery times and working hours, FedEx contends they aren’t actual employees, but independent contractors. That distinction is at the core of a series of class action lawsuits filed against the company in which former workers are seeking compensation for unpaid overtime and paycheck deductions. [More]

These pink and white stripes are not pretty.

Thousands Of MacBooks Made In 2011 Have Self-Immolating Graphics Cards

Models of Apple’s higher-end portable computer, the MacBook Pro, have come to the end of their three-year extended warranties. That leaves their owners at the mercy of Apple when something goes wrong, and at minimum thousands of the computers have had the same computer-killing problem with their graphics processing unit. Apple has not publicly admitted that the machines have a problem. [More]

Woman Sent To Jail For Failing To Mow Lawn

Woman Sent To Jail For Failing To Mow Lawn

If you’ve ever looked a lawn that needed trimming and said to yourself, “I’ll get around to it. What are they gonna do, arrest me?” this story of a woman in Tennessee might have you dusting off the mower and hedge clippers. [More]

(Eric Arnold)

Volkswagen Recalls More Than 441,000 Beetles, Jettas To Inspect Rear Suspension Issue

Did you ever play the road trip game where you got to punch your sibling if you saw a Volkswagen Beetle? No? Okay, well then, neither did I. For those thinking of playing “slug bug” (or punch buggy, punch bug, punch dub, piggy punch, beetle bug) on the next long drive, there may be fewer cars to spot now that VW is recalling some 441,000 Beetle and Jetta vehicles for possible suspension issues. [More]

Kevin Hart Begs National Car Rental To Not Fire Driver Who Took Photo With Him

Kevin Hart Begs National Car Rental To Not Fire Driver Who Took Photo With Him

Even during my darkest days of working in the celebrity news trenches (a time in my life I’d like to forget), I still found myself occasionally starstruck, posing for poorly snapped cellphone photos with celebrities like Salma Hayek and Love Boat’s Jill Whelan. Thank heavens I wasn’t a bus driver for National Car Rental, or I’d have been suspended from my job. [More]

Amazon Fresh has expanded to a very select area of New York City.

Amazon Fresh Reaches East Coast But Only For Select Group Of Brooklynites

Residents of New York City jealous of their West Coast counterparts for receiving sometimes-fresh grocery deliveries from Amazon should pine no more. The e-tailer began deliveries of Amazon Fresh in a very concentrated area of the Big Apple today. [More]

Michigan May Be Latest To Ban Direct Sales Of Teslas

Michigan May Be Latest To Ban Direct Sales Of Teslas

Because car dealerships don’t want to move beyond an era of gladhanding salesman upselling customers on unnecessary add-ons — and because they apparently want to give electric car company Tesla as much free advertising as possible — they are pushing for Michigan to enact legislation preventing carmakers from selling directly to consumers in the state. [More]

(Mike Cook Foto)

The Future Will Be Online TV, But That Might Come With Online Blackouts

It’s been a heck of a week for anyone who’s been waiting for all their TV to go online. HBO, CBS, and Univision have all announced online streaming subscription packages this week, which is big news for consumers. But the future, while different, may not be rosy. You can’t watch streaming video without internet access, after all. So what happens to your show when your TV network and your ISP get mad at each other? [More]

(Raymond Bryson)

McDonald’s Franchisees Pinning Hopes On Monopoly & McRib

Sales at McDonald’s have been slipping in recent years, and the company has done everything from making major changes in leadership to revamping the Dollar Menu to offering chicken wings that largely sat uncooked in franchisees’ freezers. Facing forecasts of another down quarter, franchisees are hoping that a couple of old favorites will help point sales in the positive direction. [More]

(frankieleon)

Honda To Audit Reporting Inaccuracies After Third Takata Airbag Death Linked To Company

Car manufacturers are required under law to report death and injury claims to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Those figures allow the regulatory agency to identify potentially fatal and dangerous defects. New reports show that might not have been the case for Honda Motor Corp., whose vehicles have  now been linked to three fatalities related to defective airbags. [More]

One of the suspects caught on camera allegedly stealing a bag from the Sea-Tac baggage claim.

Couple Accused Of Stealing $45K Worth Of Luggage From Airport

Did you have a bag go missing at the airport last spring? If the airport was Sea-Tac International in Washington, we have a pretty good idea what might have happened to it. [More]