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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, March 14, 2010

Short on work, take in the hem

By John MacIntyre

Percentage of the U.S. workforce that was underemployed during January, translating to close to 30 million Americans who are working less than they want, according to Gallup's daily measure of U.S. employment: 19.9%

Average spent per day by the underemployed: $48

Average spent per day by the employed: $75


Since the old adage holds that "hemlines go up when the economy improves," the percentage of respondents who predict that this year's hemlines will go to just below the knee (cautious optimism), according to a survey commissioned by Taubman Centers: 44%

Percentage who predict they will go to above the knee (light at the end of the tunnel): 38%

Percentage who say "ankle duster" (uncertain times ahead): 14%

Percentage who say "cheesecake" (good news ahead), as in classic pinup photos: 4%


Month and year of the birth of Theodor Seuss Geisel, a Pulitzer Prize winner better known as Dr. Seuss, according to the U.S. Census Bureau: March 1904

Estimated number of his books that have been sold around the world: 200 million

Even with electronic competition, annual revenue still generated by his books: $3.3 billion


Percentage decline in U.S. ad spending in 2009, according to preliminary figures released by Nielsen Co.: 9%

Estimated money this represents: $11.6 billion


Percentage of Americans who wrongly believe the Humane Society is an "umbrella group" for America's local humane societies, according to Center for Consumer Freedom: 71%

Percentage who falsely believe the Humane Society "contributes most of its money" to local organizations that care for cats and dogs: 59%

According to its federal income tax filing for 2008, percentage of the Humane Society's budget that went to grants to pet shelters: 0.5%


In a survey of 32 state departments of transportation, number that are now using Twitter to communicate with travelers when traffic incidents or severe weather conditions lead to road closures or detours, according to the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials: 26

Ranks of Twitter (65%), RSS feeds (56%), podcasts (18%) and Facebook (13%) as the most effective methods to reach that audience: 1, 2, 3, 4