BARBRA Streisand is no slouch when it comes to belting out...


March 19, 1994

BARBRA Streisand is no slouch when it comes to belting out a song. Now it turns out, she's no slouch in knowing how to profit -- heavily -- in the art world.

Recently, Ms. Streisand auctioned off her Art Deco and Art Nouveau collections. The take: a staggering $5.8 million, nearly 50 percent higher than what the auctioneer, Christie's, thought the art would bring. Her biggest coup came on the sale of a 1932 painting by Art Deco artist Tamara de Lempicka for $2 million. The entertainer paid $135,000 when she bought the work 10 years ago.

Sure, it helped that this was a big celebrity's personal art on the auction block. But give Ms. Streisand most of the credit. She apparently learned to distinguish between the mediocre and the hidden gem at art galleries. She also knows her lamps. A Louis Comfort Tiffany cobweb lamp brought $717,500 -- more than 100 times what she paid for it originally.

Not bad for a little girl from New York. She's got a glowing career ahead of her when she decides to stop entertaining. In the world of art auctions, a star's been born.

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READY to fill out your federal income-tax forms? Here's what lies ahead, according to the Internal Revenue Service.

It should take your 3 hours, 8 minutes to get all your records together. Allot 2 hours, 47 minutes to learn about the IRS form. Carve out 3 hours, 44 minutes to actually prepare the form. And set aside 53 minutes to copy, assemble and send the form to Uncle Sam.

In case you're not keeping count, that comes to 10 hours, 33 minutes. But count your blessings. If you itemize and have to list dividends and bank interest and capital gains, add another 8 hours, 37 minutes. That brings the grand total to 19 hours, 10 minutes.

And that's what IRS says is the "estimated average times." If you goof by adding up the wrong columns or can't comprehend the instructional booklets, count on spending an extra weekend at it.

Any questions, class?

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CAMDEN YARDS is a name that harks back to the bygone era when railroads kept America moving. When that name was first suggested for a new baseball stadium and then adopted in tandem with Oriole Park, some liked it while others thought it was a stark reminder of Baltimore's gritty smokestack past.

Now hear this story. At the corner of Carey and Fayette streets in West Baltimore, pretty much where the original Franklin Square Hospital once stood, a nursing home called Lincoln Convalescent Center took its place. It now has a new name -- Camden Yards Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.

Can Oriole Park Nursing Home be far behind?

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