Thoughts, observations and other musings:

So Carl the


is thinking about snapping up some shares of

J.C. Penney

(JCP) - Get Report

. What a Bowser (Penney, that is, though with this word to the wise: The only person who gets rich off Icahn deals is Icahn).

The best part about the Penney at the Garden State Plaza in Paramus (out here in Jersey's Tomatoland, though in my two years here I've neither seen nor eaten one) is that it's the best shortcut to


(JWN) - Get Report


Speaking of which: Heard the Nordy's piano lately? No, that's right, now that you mention it: They're gone (or at least they're going). At the Garden State store, the piano has been replaced by recorded '40s swing music or something like that. Almost drove my wife


(At least they got rid of the bright orange walls ... and replaced them with lime green.

Lime green?!

) No longer your father's Nordy's. (I know guys both long and short; the shorts think the changes will alienate the traditional Nordy's crowd, while at the same time putting the company at the same risk that dogs every specialty retailer that goes after the hip crowd.)

Meanwhile (brain in reverse here), here's the final thought on Penney: It's the

Montgomery Ward

of department stores. Never could find its niche. Been to a Ward lately? (That's the point ... it's nearly extinct.)

Life after


(CSCO) - Get Report

(like we won't see the same angst


quarter?). ... Can't believe how just a few weeks ago


thought a half-point rate increase would be no big deal. "But, Herb," ventured my buddy


on our show on

Fox News Channel

, "isn't that already factored into the market?" Factored into the market.

Factored into the market!

If it's already factored into the market then why is everybody so doggone noivous?... Got in a fabulous shouting match with a


this a.m. (boy, it felt good, but don't call me and


to speak when I'm on deadline). He was yapping about

this morning's item on

Lernout & Hauspie


and wondering why I keep "misrepresenting" the real story and putting such a negative spin on such a fine Belgian company. (At least that was the gist of what I think he was trying to say.) Never mind that a company with flat sequential revs is trading at 100 times expected earnings. This morning, the analyst from

SG Cowen


this year's earnings per share from operations to 23 cents from $1.07 but reiterated his "strong buy" and raised -- that's right,


-- his price target on the stock to a range of 150 to 160 from 80. And you wonder why I keep writing about this thin' (as Ricky Ricardo would say).

Finally, hold onto your wallets and checkbooks:

Planet Hollywood


emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy yesterday, leaving nothing but warrants for existing shareholders to buy what amounts to a fraction of their original investment.

Robert Earl

, the same guy who drove the company into the ground, remains in charge. Like a bad movie ... in reruns!

Herb Greenberg writes daily for In keeping with TSC's editorial policy, he doesn't own or short individual stocks, though he owns stock in He also doesn't invest in hedge funds or other private investment partnerships. He welcomes your feedback at Greenberg also writes a monthly column for Fortune.

Mark Martinez assisted with the reporting of this column.