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Ben Popken
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274 followers
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I got curious about how layaway was working for people this year. Then I got sick of how various smart experts were trash-talking layaway -- in a way that had a strong odor of classism -- without hearing from the shopper's side. So I went out and met them in the Bronx and Pennsylvania and wrote this. http://www.nbcnews.com/business/layaway-last-christmas-hope-consumers-burned-credit-cards-2D11591132
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My latest: ShamWow guy takes responsibility for hooker fight, launches new product that cleans "persistent stains." A profile of an infomercial star. http://nbcnews.to/13XFoeG
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2013-09-13
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My latest http://on.today.com/14BdjKF - For parents, renting a car seat with your car rental can be sketchy and expensive. Despite assurances, Lori landed and found none at Avis. Instead they told her to drive to Walmart, with her kid not in a car seat, and they would refund the purchase. Nathaniel went through four seats with Dollar and found them all dirty, flimsy or lacking safety features. And at $8-$13/day, in a few days of renting you could just buy a new one. That's why The Car Seat Lady instead recommends a few of these more travel-friendly car seats: Wheeling devices: GoGoBabyz Travel Mate, Brica Roll N' Go.
Forward facing kids up to 65 lbs: Safety 1st Go Hybrid - weighs 10 lbs, comes with travel bag, fits into overhead bin
Kids in boosters: Bubble Bum booster, (1lb) or Safety 1st Boostapak, a booster that can be worn as a backpack

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Shopaholic? Shop to relieve loneliness? Felt sadder post shopping? Looking to chat w/ folks about this study http://bit.ly/11Snjh2 (warning, that's a PDF!) email me! ben.popken@nbcuni.com
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In vibrant comments section on my latest story, telco rep says fired for breaking protocol to help customers even tho his metrics rocked http://nbcnews.to/13MsEHV 
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Fed-up consumers 'email bomb' execs, get results. When all else fails, blast your way to the top. http://nbcnews.to/1cQOQ71 EECB, baby.

Pictured: one President who reads every email a consumer sends him, and two consumers who like to send EECBs.
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Anyone sent a good EECB lately? How did it go?
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“Are you kidding?” she shouted into her phone, after secretly making it ring. “Yankee Candle is giving away those big candles for free for the next 10 minutes?!” Most of the hour-long line in front of her fled the J.Crew store at the outlet mall to dash over to the candle store. She checked out in 15 minutes. “I'm on a schedule,” she told TODAY.

You think you're going to get a deal this Black Friday? You'll have to get through these diehards first!

http://on.today.com/10lCwV9
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How to exploit your company-assigned outplacement counselor for max gain. New article I wrote for the new PBS site NextAvenue.org that's officially launching on Wednesday:
http://nextavenue.org/article/2012-04/how-use-outplacement-maximum-advantage
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