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‘Tis the Season to . . . Oops

IKEA Stores promises an Emergency Thanksgiving Service this year. If you find that you’re out of something, just call the emergency number and along will come an “Oops Van” stocked with nonperishable Thanksgiving-related food items, cooking utensils and more remotely relevant stuff such as folding chairs for last-minute guests. No charge for the ingredients; for the other items, it’ll be sort of like shopping at IKEA at home.

The vans will patrol in local communities with IKEA stores: Burbank, City of Industry, Carson, Tustin, Fontana. To get their cellular numbers, you pick up a “Thanksgiving Emergency Packet” at one of those IKEA locations before Nov. 23.

The packet also gives a number for calling Tommy Tang (yes, the Thai chef), who’ll be on standby from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day to talk callers through Turkey Day cooking fiascos. He might be willing to answer questions about Thai cuisine too.

Monkey Shortage

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When you grow up, you realize that those “sea monkeys” in the comic book ads were simply tiny saltwater creatures known as brine shrimp. Silly.

But brine shrimp are serious business to shrimp farmers; they’re one of the main foods of eager, growing regular shrimp. That’s why the unusually wet weather of the past year has created a panic in the shrimp world. The rains have reduced the salinity of the Great Salt Lake, which produces 95% of all the brine shrimp eggs on the market. Together with overfishing and other factors, the Great Salt Lake is turning out only 40% as many sea monkey eggs as usual.

Wait Till They Add Sushi and Chardonnay

Business Trend Analysis and The Leading Edge Group have released the 1995 edition of their U.S. Motion Picture Theater Industry Report. Last year, says the report, theater income from concessions such as food was up 10% (almost $2.5 billion), partly because of new items such as nachos and cappuccino.

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