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Author Interviews
12:26 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

A Cartoonist's Funny, Heartbreaking Take On Caring For Aging Parents

Roz Chast Bloomsbury

It's never easy to talk with aging parents about the end of life, but it was maybe particularly difficult for Roz Chast and her parents, which is why her new graphic memoir is called Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?

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Movie Reviews
12:26 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Two Italys Take A Road Trip In 'Il Sorpasso'

Courtesy of the Criterion Collection

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 7:33 pm

If the road movie has a home, it's surely the United States. After all, the settling of America was itself a kind of humongous road picture — all those wagons rolling across the new continent's spectacular vastness. And with our ceaseless love of movement, we became the first people to be transported — in every sense — by the automobile. Small wonder, then, that so many famous Hollywood films, from It Happened One Night to Thelma & Louise, are all about hitting the road.

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Mountain Stage
12:11 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Gregory Alan Isakov On Mountain Stage

Gregory Alan Isakov.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 3:25 pm

Gregory Alan Isakov makes his first appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va.

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Movies
12:00 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

The Arab Activists Who Refuse To Bow To The Giant

A protest during the Arab Spring
We Are The Giant

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 1:59 pm

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Books
12:00 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Rat Pack's Sammy Davis Jr. Lives On Through Daughter's Stories

Frank Sinatra performing with Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr.
Photo: David Sutton MPTV.net RatPac Press & Running Press (The Perseus Books Group)

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 1:59 pm

In his own words, Sammy Davis, Jr. was "the only black, Puerto Rican, one-eyed, Jewish entertainer in the world."

His daughter, Tracey Davis, shares memories and details of his life in her new book, Sammy Davis Jr.: A Personal Journey with My Father. It's based on conversations Davis had with her father as he battled throat cancer near the end of his life.

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NPR Story
12:00 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

Listening On The Road With Brazil's Maria Rita

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 1:59 pm

Transcript

CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST:

Now we're going to talk to another daughter of a musical legend. Brazilian singer Maria Rita has seven Latin Grammys to her name - not a surprise considering she's the daughter of superstar songstress Elis Regina. Maria stopped by recently, and we asked her to tell us what music gives her comfort at home and on the road.

MARIA RITA: Hello, everyone. This is Maria Rita, and this is what's been playing in my ear.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "SURPRESA")

CAETANO VELOSO: (Singing in Portuguese).

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NPR Story
12:00 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

International Outrage Grows Over Nigeria Kidnapping

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 1:59 pm

Nigerian officials are offering a $300,000 reward for anyone who can help locate the more than 200 girls who were kidnapped from school. BBC journalist Tomi Oladipo shares the latest from Nigeria.

Shots - Health News
11:44 am
Thu May 8, 2014

If Polar Bears Can Eat A Ton Of Fat And Be Healthy, Why Can't We?

Lots of swimming in icy seas may have helped bears evolve to eat a high-fat diet yet remain healthy.
Sebastien Bozon AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 5:20 pm

If you were a bear and wanted to make a go of it in the frozen North (think polar bear, of course), what would you need to survive?

White fur would help, to help you sneak up on prey. Also plenty of body fat to stay warm. And you'd need great stamina to swim many miles from one ice floe to the next.

And there's another important trait, researchers reported Thursday: Polar bears have genes that help them live on a diet that's overloaded with fat — without suffering the sorts of human diseases that typically come with a diet of that sort.

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Shots - Health News
11:18 am
Thu May 8, 2014

HealthCare.Gov Looks Like A Bargain Compared With State Exchanges

Peter Lee (left), executive director of Covered California, greets employees at a call center in Fresno, Calif., in February.
Scott Smith AP

Sometimes there really are economies of scale. And the nation's health insurance exchanges may be a case in point.

As rocky as the rollout of HealthCare.gov was, the federal exchange was relatively efficient in signing up enrollees. Each one cost an average of $647 in federal tax dollars, an analysis finds. It cost an average of $1,503 – well over twice as much – to sign up each person in the 15 exchanges run by individual states and Washington, D.C.

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Mountain Stage
10:12 am
Thu May 8, 2014

The Steel Wheels On Mountain Stage

The Steel Wheels.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 3:25 pm

The Steel Wheels' members make their second appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Culture Center Theater in Charleston, W.Va.

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All Songs Considered
9:32 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Song Premiere: Braid, 'Bang'

Braid.
Mitchell Wojcik Courtesy of the artist

We're now at the point where there's a good possibility that any of your most favorite (or most hated) '90s bands will give it another go. The shows can be great for fans new and old, but we sometimes grit our teeth when that band wants to hit the studio again. It's OK to be hesitant because, to update a parable, do we really want to pour new PBRs into old, skunked tallboys?

Well, the emo OGs in Braid have returned with their first full-length album in 16 years, No Coast, and "Bang" is our first sip.

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Ask Me Another
8:42 am
Thu May 8, 2014

House Of Games

It's the home stretch in this final round, a game in which all the answers contain the word "house." For example, a popular spy-themed restaurant in Milwaukee is "Safe House."

Heard in Episode 316: Meet Me In Milwaukee

Ask Me Another
8:42 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Hidden Vegetables

Your parents might have snuck your veggies into unexpected dishes, but we got clever and hid the names of vegetables in the answers of this game. What German composer was a fan of red, edible roots?

Plus, hear Jonathan Coulton lead the crowd in a rowdy rendition of "Blister In The Sun" by the Milwaukee-bred rockers Violent Femmes.

Heard in Episode 316: Meet Me In Milwaukee

Ask Me Another
8:42 am
Thu May 8, 2014

The Both: The Newly-Formed-Band-Game

Aimee, presumably wearing the leather shorts she would save from a fire. No word on where Ted's giraffe-print cardigan is.
Christian Lantry

Musicians Aimee Mann and Ted Leo play together as The Both, but how well do these new bandmates know each other's quirks? To find out, we quiz them in the style of The Newlywed Game, where each must figure out how the other would answer questions such as "What's the worst piece of clothing you brought on tour?" and "What one item would you rescue from your burning house?"

Plus, hear a live version of "No Sir," from the duo's eponymous debut album as The Both.

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Ask Me Another
8:42 am
Thu May 8, 2014

My-My-My-Clues

Was The Knack's "My Sharona" stuck in your head for all of 1979? We hope you're not sick of it. In this game, Jonathan Coulton sings rewritten lyrics about things that rhyme with "Sharona." My-my-my-my Corona!

Heard in Episode 316: Meet Me In Milwaukee

Ask Me Another
8:42 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Shark Jumping

Inspired by a famous episode of Happy Days, this game is about "jump the shark" moments: that point when a TV show's quality starts to go downhill. We'll give you the moment, you tell us the show.

Heard in Episode 316: Meet Me In Milwaukee

Ask Me Another
8:42 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Play Ball!

Swing for the fences in this game. Answers are the names of MLB teams, but here's the twist—the clues have nothing to do with sports. What 2013 Pixar film shares its name with the team from Atlanta?

Heard in Episode 316: Meet Me In Milwaukee

Business
7:32 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Advocates Back Paid Sick Leave, But Opponents Won't Cough It Up

Activists hold signs during a rally on Jan. 18, 2013, at New York's City Hall to call for immediate action on paid sick days legislation in light of the continued spread of the flu. Last month, New York City began requiring employers to provide paid sick days, joining the ranks of other cities such as Washington, Seattle and San Francisco.
Mary Altaffer AP

Originally published on Wed May 14, 2014 1:03 pm

If you've ever seen your waiter sneeze, you may have asked for a different server. If you've seen one sneeze repeatedly, you might wonder why he's still at work, serving tainted food.

See, most restaurant workers don't get paid when they stay home sick. But, some go to work anyway, when they've got the sniffles or worse, because they need the paycheck.

For labor advocates, that's a problem.

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Business
6:58 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Drug Industry Moves To Cut Costs, Banks On Future Big Sellers

Originally published on Sun May 11, 2014 5:32 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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Research News
6:58 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Study: Time Away Can Hurt Surgeons' Job Performance

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

This next story begins with an old saying among musicians: If I miss one day of practice, I notice it. If I miss two days, the critics notice it. If I miss three days of practice, the audience will notice. A study found evidence that saying applies to surgeons, and lives may be at stake.

NPR's Shankar Vedantam has been looking at the results of that study. He's in our studios. Hi, Shankar.

SHANKAR VEDANTAM, BYLINE: Good morning, Steve.

INSKEEP: What was the research?

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Around the Nation
6:58 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Calif. Boy Enjoys Homemade Roller Coaster

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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Around the Nation
6:58 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Businessman Buys 'Born To Run' Draft

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep, with a rough draft of Bruce Springsteen, a single sheet of paper with the original version of the lyrics to "Born to Run." It includes random references to rebels, but no mention of Wendy, the girl he falls in love with.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "BORN TO RUN")

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN: (Singing) Wendy wrap me in, I wanna be your friend...

The Two-Way
6:52 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Book News: New York Public Library Scraps Controversial Renovation

The main branch of the New York Public Library in New York City.
Seth Wenig AP

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Avant-Garde Madness, Seen Through 'My Dog-Eyes'

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 2:45 pm

Oftentimes, madness breeds the finest art. It's factual. Some of the most historic and well-regarded pieces of literature have come out of a sort of psychosis. From the works of Edgar Allan Poe to Tennessee Williams and a host of others, the evidence is there. And I find it celebratory — the way the mind overcomes itself to render something beautifully charged.

"God? A surface of ice anchored to laughter."

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The Seams
5:13 am
Thu May 8, 2014

The Art Of A Lost American Couturier, On Display At The Met

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 3:32 pm

Thursday in New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art officially reopens its fashion galleries after a $40 million, two-year renovation.

Named for Vogue magazine's editor, the Anna Wintour Costume Center features an inaugural exhibit of the work of Charles James, a flamboyant designer considered America's first couturier. This caps days of glamorous events at the Met, including the Costume Institute's benefit gala, presided over by Wintour — with Hollywood stars.

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Africa
5:13 am
Thu May 8, 2014

U.S. Team To Assist Nigeria In Locating Kidnapped School Girls

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 6:58 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. Good morning. Let's talk through what the United States may be able to do in searching for kidnapped girls in Nigeria. The U.S. has promised assistance, Nigerian officials have now accepted. This would involve the United State more overtly than before in fighting Boko Haram, the extremist group that says it took the girls.

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The Salt
3:21 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Less Nutritious Grains May Be In Our Future

Wheat fields like this one could yield wheat with less zinc and iron in the future if they are exposed to higher levels of CO2, according to the journal Nature.
Zaharov Evgeniy iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon May 12, 2014 8:26 am

In the future, Earth's atmosphere is likely to include a whole lot more carbon dioxide. And many have been puzzling over what that may mean for the future of food crops. Now, scientists are reporting that some of the world's most important crops contain fewer crucial nutrients when they grow in such an environment.

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Law
1:17 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Legendary D.C. Law Firm To Pay Chevron In Ecuador Pollution Case

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 8:04 am

A long-running legal battle between a legendary Washington law and lobbying firm and a major oil company has been settled.

D.C.-based Patton Boggs has agreed to pay Chevron $15 million to settle a case that centers on pollution from drilling activity in the rainforests of Ecuador.

The case has gone on for more than four years, and the stakes were enormous for the two powerhouses.

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The Two-Way
6:19 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Congress Holds Former IRS Official Lois Lerner In Contempt

Former IRS official Lois Lerner, during March 5 testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Lerner has repeatedly invoked the Fifth Amendment during congressional appearances on the scandal.
Lauren Victoria Burke AP

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 5:45 am

House Republicans on Wednesday voted to hold former IRS official Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for repeatedly refusing to answer questions about her alleged involvement in targeting conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status.

The vote was 231 to 187, with all Republicans voting in favor of the measure and all but a few Democrats voting against it.

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Code Switch
5:57 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

After 6 Decades, 'Jet' Magazine Decides To Go All-Digital

Jet magazine founder John H. Johnson started the publication to spotlight black achievements and report on events that he thought were important to black communities. But as the media and political landscape around Jet changed, the magazine struggled.
Ted S. Warren AP

Originally published on Wed May 7, 2014 7:33 pm

When I was growing up, my aunt used to stack dozens of magazines high on a side table at the top of her stairs. It was an accidental library of black magazines — lots of Ebony and Essence, the stray Black Enterprise here and there, but especially the digest-sized Jet. When I was at that age where kids want to consume every written word, I would blow through those old issues of Jet by the pile. That's probably the only real way to "read" Jet, since every article seemed to be shorter than 300 words. It was black news, bite-size.

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