November 1, 1997

Four Off-Beat Sites Worth Checking Out


We’re not panicking over El Nino. We’re keeping a cool head. Still, like any good weather weenie, we do keep an occasional eye toward the sky just, you know, to see whether we’ll need a jacket or not. Which prompts us to revisit one of the Web’s greatest spots, the incredibly useful Weather Channel site (http:/ /

Stormwatchers can track the apocalyptic weather pattern via all manner of maps and charts, including the made-for-TV Doppler radar maps, satellite images and just plain, old-fashioned weather maps with arrows.

Terminal snoozers

If you’re traveling on something less than a gold card and happen to get stuck in an airport - or maybe you’re simply a cheapskate - you should check in with the Budget Traveller’s Guide to Sleeping In Airports (http:/ / airports.htm).

“Sleeping” compiler Donna McSherry has organized airports’ snoozibility in alphabetical order, ranking them from Good to Hell. A report from Atlanta’s international terminal tells us that it has “soft, squishy leather couches with adjacent tables with telephones.”

Hallmark’s Hall of Shame

The powerful and ruthless Greeting Card Cartel has succeeded in creating enough holidays over the years that there seems to be a holiday almost every week.

It’s no wonder that the grandaddy of them all, Hallmark, has to continuously bat out new cards. The good ones make it to a Hallmark shop near you, the bad ones make it to the reject pile.

And you can forage around in that reject pile with Hallmark’s Funny But No … (http:/ / at Hallmark’s feature-packed Web site.

It’s almost needless to say that most of these rejects are in the pile for a darned good reason, though you might find a few that you’d like to use. We sort of like “Get Well right this minute! … The guilt from not visiting you is becoming unbearable.”

Sticker check

Here’s another one useful site: Carprices.Com will let you determine what you should pay for a new or used car, as well as help you decide how much to charge for yours when it comes to peddling it.

It’s a terribly easy-to-use site (Carprices.Com:, utterly clickable all the way through. You’re given a variety of menus and led through to the end: First, the year, then make, model, body style and options. Just type in the mileage. When you’ve finished, you get the suggested wholesale and retail prices.

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