Mariam Naficy and Varsha Rao tempt Web shoppers with beauty booty
Starting a Web site called Eve was no Garden of Eden for Mariam Naficy and Varsha Rao: A Virginia tot named Eve beat them to the site's name. "It is absolutely impossible to negotiate with a 6-year-old," says Naficy, 29. The elder women triumphed with a bribe of cash, toys and a computer. Now the year-old shop (where the two are copresidents, despite having sold a majority stake to outside backer idealab!) is the Web's most-visited beauty bazaar, selling cosmetics from 209 high-end makers. Chalk it up to the beautiful friendship of Naficy, who as the daughter of a U.N. economist grew up in hot spots including Iran and Lebanon ("Our balcony would be covered with bullets"), and Boston-born Rao, 30, the daughter of Indian immigrants. "Eve came out of the gate," says e-commerce analyst Jenny Barrett, "assuming the role of a leader."
Clicks and Pans
Ah, summer—the perfect time to repaint the bathroom and finally read Tolstoy. Just kidding! It's time to crank up the AC and chill out to TV reruns. Whether you're catching up with The Simpsons or getting nostalgic over The Andy Griffith Show, epguides.com is nearly as handy as a remote control. The lovingly fan-crafted site offers generally spot-on guides to every episode—many complete with plotlines and lists of special guest stars—for more than 1,500 series, from The A-Team (1983-87) to Zorro (1957-59). That Simpsons starring Helen Hunt as a femme fatale? March 1998's "Dumbbell Indemnity."
Is it really rude to shoo other people out of the room when I check my e-mail? I like privacy.
Not only do you ignore your guests (or roommates or siblings) in favor of virtual socializing, you want to give them the boot, to boot? Yes, that's rude. If you absolutely can't live without a quick e-mail fix, try buying a privacy screen (anyone sneaking a sidelong peek won't see anything). Or just ask bystanders not to look—and don't tempt them by giggling or groaning.
Is is okay to send e-mail to my boss to say I'll be out sick that day, or should I call?
If you're sure your boss will check his or her e-mail first thing in the morning, you could give it a shot—best to ask first, though. But in most offices the phone will probably stay the gold standard for sick-day requests. Even the most trusting of supervisors secretly wants to hear just how hoarse, stuffed-up and generally incapacitated (or suspiciously perky) you sound.
Not everyone loved Lucy: Take J. Edgar Hoover, whose FBI opened a file on Lucille Ball when it found she had once registered to vote as a Communist. Now the FBI Web site serves up celebs' files, made public under the Freedom of Information Act, at foia.fbi.gov/famous.htm. Stock up on printer ink for the blacked-out sections.
Tooth-marked Washington pols know Sam Donaldson as journalism's pit bull—but on the Net the ABC newsman is as playful as a puppy. In video chats Webcast weekdays at abcnews.com, he has bantered with the likes of actress Kirsten Dunst, comic Jon Stewart and Metallica rocker Lars Ulrich. "I am the same me," says Donaldson, 66, "but you do not find me playing Mr. District Attorney." True: The more familiar Sam would never have crooned a Limp Bizkit tune to MTV host Carson Daly. "I don't watch MTV much," admits Donaldson, but his staff of five young women ("I didn't hire them, so don't go, 'Oh ho ho' ") urged him to book the "hot" Daly, he explains. On the show, which launched last fall, "I like to have a little fun, but not mean fun," he says. The images may be herky-jerky, but Donaldson likes the laid-back tone: "It's almost like the old days," he muses, "when, at 17, I was a radio disc jockey."