Let's Do Lunchables

Marisa Bowe and Ken Kurson

Let's Do Lunchables

Marisa Bowe and Ken Kurson

Let's Do Lunchables
An email conversation about the news of the day.
June 26 2000 1:17 PM

Marisa Bowe and Ken Kurson

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Funny you should ask, Marisa. My thing is to walk from 11th Avenue to my office near Madison--it's about three-quarters of a mile. This is "exercise." And those who have walked around Manhattan in summer know that dark sunglasses are not only an affectation but also a leering device. Who they're fooling is no one, but I keep the whistling and "ah-woooo ... ruff, ruff" to a bare minimum. Anyway, I'm built something like the Michelin Man so when it's hot out I tend to sweat like Nixon in the Kennedy debates. So I wear my walking outfit and carry my real outfit, which I slip into in the men's room after I've basked in the air conditioning. To answer your question, I have on a patterned brown Armani shirt, lovely red tie (also Armani), and a pair of olive Slates that I was given when I made an appearance at a Washington, D.C., Hecht's to talk about "Investing and Fashion." Mostly about investing, really.

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And speaking of things that go together, Philip Morris is buying Nabisco Foods. On the walk I referred to above, I head through Bryant Park. There's often a field trip visiting, and if there is, more than 80 percent of the kids can be relied upon to be eating Lunchables (made by Oscar Mayer, a Kraft brand, and thus a Philip Morris product). This disgusts me, for all the obvious reasons--gross food, too expensive, overly seductive packaging, lazy or overworked parents. But adding Nabisco's $8 billion in junk-food sales to Kraft's $26.8 billion means Philip Morris will derive more than a third of its revenue from food sales (and plenty from beer, too). Is it even still a cigarette company? What I'd prefer is if instead of a miniature Crunch bar, every Lunchable came with an after-meal cigarette, filtered since it's for kids.

But it's a good deal for Nabisco's shareholders and a better one for Philip Morris shareholders, so I'm not complaining. And if you're thinking ahead, investing in Lilly (NYSE: LLY) might be the smart play here. They sell a lot of insulin. What does LOL mean? Is that a stock I should investigate?

BRB,
KK

Marisa Bowe is the editor-in-chief ofWord, the executive producer of Sissyfight.com, and a co-editor of Gig: Americans Talk About Their Jobs at the Turn of the Millennium (click here to buy it). Ken Kurson is the editor ofGreenMagazine.com, writes the "Green" column each month in Esquire, and is the author of The Green Magazine Guide to Personal Finance (click here to buy it).