Starbucks in Seoul: How the Seattle Chain Flooded South Korea

Posted by on Jun 27, 2014 in Words | 0 comments

This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com. You can check it out here.

Travelers to Seoul can sample a wide range of delicacies – bibimbap, kimchi, bulgogi – and wash it down with something to drink. And chances are the drink they will turn to is a Starbucks Frappuccino.

Seoul, South Korea beats out major cities worldwide, including New York City and London, for the distinction of having the most Starbucks locations in a single city, according to a report by Quartz. Seoul’s prominence in the coffee shop industry is no surprise to anyone familiar with Korean culture.

Well, except for Starbucks maybe. When the caffeinated giant opened its Seoul location in 1999, by the prestigious Ewha Womans University, the company was caught off-guard by the strong response, according to Starbucks spokeswoman Jaime Riley.

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Wonka Would Approve: In Japan, KitKat Bars as Train Tickets

Posted by on Jun 23, 2014 in Words | 0 comments

This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com. You can check it out here.

In Japan, KitKat bars just got a whole lot sweeter.

The popular chocolate bars can now be used as train tickets for those traveling on the Sanriku Railway network starting this month, according to a press release from Nestlé S.A. The promotion will last through the end of May 2015.

This new chapter in the partnership between Nestlé Japan and the rail company commemorates the resuming of rail service in Iwate Prefecture, the northern region of Japan devastated by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami that led to the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear power plant.

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Quick-Thinking Woman Who Saved Missing Florida Girl Has No Regrets

Posted by on Jun 21, 2014 in Words | 0 comments

This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com. You can check it out here

The Louisiana truck stop cashier who tipped police off to the whereabouts of a wanted sex offender traveling with a missing 16-year-old girl is still getting used to being called a hero.

Following her quick thinking, which led to the arrest of suspect Steven Myers and the recovery of Ashley Lyon, Tiger Truck Stop cashier Fawn Lasseigne Domingue said that people continue to congratulate her for her help in the incident. But it’s her boyfriend and 5-year-old son’s kind words — and the gratitude of Lyon’s family — that she thinks of first.

“My little boy’s first reaction, he said, ‘Mama, you’re a hero. You saved that girl’s life,’” Domingue, 28, told NBC News on Saturday. The boy also said he wants to meet Lyon.

“It makes me feel good that he is proud of what his mama did,” she added, choked up.

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Florida Cities Aim to Ban Sales of Dogs and Cats

Posted by on Jun 17, 2014 in Words | 0 comments

This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com. You can check it out here

“How much is that doggy in the window?” That’s a question residents of Palm Beach Gardens, Florida may not be asking if a regulation aimed at shutting down puppy and kitten mills goes into effect following a city council vote in July.

The South Florida suburb isn’t the first municipality in the state to ban the retail sale of dogs and cats. Over the past three years, 20 cities in Florida have adopted similar bans, according to Melanie Kahn, senior director the Humane Society of the United States’ Puppy Mills Campaign. More than 10 of these ordinances were enacted this year, and between six and eight more Florida cities are considering their own bans.

Roughly 30 other municipalities nationwide, including Los Angeles and Chicago, have enacted restrictions on the sale of dogs and cats. But Florida is spearheading the charge.

“Florida in particular has become the epicenter of all this activity,” Kahn said. “To the point where it’s a little overwhelming for us because it’s all over the state.”

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Check out my best political reporting.

Posted by on Jun 12, 2014 in Words | 0 comments

This past semester I had the good fortune of being a part of Peter Beinart’s class in political reporting at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. Throughout the semester, I reported and opined on Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and the role she plays in the House of Representatives, among other issues. To check out the fruits of my scholarly labor, please visit my political blog here.

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Maya Angelou Memorial Service: Bill Clinton, Michelle Obama Honor Icon

Posted by on Jun 7, 2014 in Words | 0 comments

This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com. You can check it out here.

A crowd of family and friends gathered for a memorial service in North Carolina to honor Maya Angelou and her indelible voice as an author, activist and luminary.

Among those who called Angelou a “mentor, mother/sister and friend” was Oprah Winfrey, who joined dignitaries, including former President Bill Clinton and first lady Michelle Obama, to reflect on the renaissance woman’s prolific legacy. The service was held at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, where Angelou taught for three decades.

Winfrey wiped tears as she recalled Angelou’s guidance throughout her career. She first met Angelou as a budding TV reporter in Baltimore. Impressed during the interview, the iconic poet took Winfrey under her wing — just as she had done for so many.

“She taught me the poetry of courage and respect,” Winfrey said. “She was always there holding me up to know myself.”

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Poultry demand takes flight as red meat prices spike

Posted by on May 25, 2014 in Sounds, Visuals, Words | 0 comments

By Jacob Passy

Thanksgiving is over six months away. But that’s not stopping American consumers from breaking out the turkey – and chicken and eggs, to boot.

More people are flocking to poultry to fulfill their protein needs as the prices of beef and pork hit all-time highs. This wave of customers is adding to the high tide of demand that the poultry industry has experienced for years now.

The demand for chicken increased 8 percent year-over-year in March, according to USDA data cited by Steve Meyer, president of Paragon Economics and author of the Daily Livestock Report. This figure is expected to grow in April, as chicken prices continued to drop despite continued increases in beef and pork. And as Meyer sees it, we have only just seen the tip of the iceberg when it comes to growing demand for poultry.

“We’re going to have very higher prices for beef and pork for the foreseeable future,” Meyer said. “With these alternatives going up I think you’re going to see chicken have more featuring and have some real opportunities in the marketplace.”

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