August 28, 2009

Searching for the story

A couple of years ago a student filed a story about the growing trend of hookah use. The story came from the assigned theme: "The World and your backdoor."

Of course I knew about Alice in Wonderland and Jefferson Airplane ("And a hookah smoking caterpillar..."). And -- as a child of the 60s -- the American version: The bong.

I discovered from my student's article there was a growing hookah scene in the DC area. This meant more than a bunch of kids getting together on a street corner or in a backyard smoking shisha in a hookah (as my sons did). There were hookah bars and a whole social network that went with it.

It was a well done story and I suggested she try to sell it to a local magazine. She never followed through on it.

THis week I received a copy of Fortune Small Business. One of the major stories was all about the hookah movement and how a few guys figured out how to make money in it.

The article looks at the building of the business as well as the growing trend among young people to go to hookah bars.

Maybe your students might want to look into this phenom in the GMU/Fairfax community.

Booming hooka biz links China, Iran, Egypt -- and Texas

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