A "Monday Morning" item Jan. 3 mischaracterized the ownership of the now-closed Neam's Market. The market was owned by persons affiliated with Capital Restaurant Concepts Ltd., not by the corporation itself. (Published 01/17/2000)

DID YOU HEAR? . . .

"His cult following grows each day."

-- Mark Ein, chief executive of the D.C-based venture incubator Venturehouse Group, on MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor's growing profile.

NEAM DROPPING

On Christmas Eve, a small institution that loomed large in the hearts of well-heeled Georgetowners for nearly a century closed its doors for the last time.

Neam's Market, founded in 1909 by Lebanese immigrants, served up high-priced groceries, great meat and rare cheeses -- much of it delivered from the Wisconsin and P Street corner store that's been its home for 90 years.

Officials with the market's owner, Capital Restaurant Concepts Ltd. of Washington, could not be reached for comment.

Jack Neam, one of three of the founder's sons who sold the market to Capital Restaurant in 1981, said he had decided not to renew the lease to Neam's owners. He and his brothers Edmund and George own the property.

"Of course, I hate to see it go away like this," he said. "But the owners and us didn't see eye to eye."

He said he'd like to rent the space to another grocery establishment, but doesn't have one lined up.

Neam's became an epicurean icon in Georgetown in the 1930s and a favorite of politicians and various celebrities, not to mention anyone who wanted some of the best cuts of beef in town.

Newsweek once called it "the most expensive grocery in the world," and Art Buchwald introduced it to America in 1978 when he joked in his syndicated humor column about Jack Neam retrieving fresh strawberries from a vault.

Jack Neam, 78, who worked at the grocery from the time he could walk until he retired 10 years ago, said he remembered serving everyone from Myrna Loy to John F. Kennedy in his time there. "We could have published a who's who," he said.

-- Terence O'Hara

(oharat@washpost.com)

LOST ADVANTAGE

Last week five employees of the U.S. Army Military District of Washington were caught violating a tenet of the Army's ethics code forbidding them from using government equipment for personal gain -- because they had installed on their office computers copies of software created by a Hayward, Calif.-based company called AllAdvantage.com.

AllAdvantage and similar companies pay people for the time they spend on the Web, and users can earn commissions if they recruit other users. While most participants receive monthly checks of around $25, the top earners have taken in several thousand dollars.

"A colleague had been soliciting others to join and it made me uncomfortable," reported one Army worker.

When a Washington Post reporter two weeks ago called a spokeswoman for Fort Myer/Fort McNair, the largest installations in the military district, the spokeswoman said she was unaware of the problem.

But it didn't take long for officials to find out about it. As of late last week, about 1,700 of the district office's more than 2,000 computers had been checked for the AllAdvantage software, according to central office spokeswoman Patty Heard. She said the district is still trying to determine if and how to discipline the workers whose computers had AllAdvantage software. The Army has now blocked access to AllAdvantage.com and the Web sites of more than a dozen similar services.

-- Ariana Eunjung Cha

(chaa@washpost.com)

$29,491,875

Based on Friday's close, that's the amount Omnipoint founder, chairman and CEO Douglas Smith will reap when he sells 245,000 shares of his company's stock, something he told the Securities and Exchange Commission he intended to do last week. Smith owns 14 percent of Omnipoint, the best-performing regional stock of 1999.