Arts

Remembrances
11:03 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Remembering Tom Clancy, 'Faulkner In A Flak Jacket'

Tom Clancy poses next to a tank in his Maryland backyard. Though he never served in the military, his books were renowned for their detail.
AP

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 2:23 pm

The Army rejected him because of his bad eyes — he was nearsighted — but Tom Clancy, who went into the family insurance business instead of the military, turned out to have the greatest vision of modern warfare of any writer of our time. His research into military history and technology led him to create a new form of thriller, and a hero for our time, a man named Jack Ryan whose talents as a spy and technowarrior put a name and a face to the people who battled Russians, Pakistanis, Irish nationalists and Islamists along a constantly shifting front line.

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NPR Story
10:43 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Rick Najera: A Latino In Hollywood Is 'Almost White'

Omar 'Yogi' Torres Courtesy of Shabazz Communications, Inc.

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 9:32 am

Rick Najera doesn't remember his wife Susie dialing 9-1-1. She came home six hours after Najera had taken a fall that left him bleeding on the floor of his home. The Hollywood actor/writer/producer had pneumonia and ended up in an intensive care unit in a coma.

Rick Najera told NPR's Michel Martin that his near-death experience caused him to reflect.

"I really looked at my life and I said I wanted to chronicle it. I wanted to bring it down and talk about it in a very human, honest way," he says.

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The Protojournalist
10:41 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Things Are Getting Ugly

Ugly is everywhere. There are Ugly Dog pageants, Ugly Sweater sites and Ugly Sofa contests. Taking Ugly-Faced selfies is an online phenomenon. Could ugly be the new beautiful?

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Ask Me Another
8:48 am
Thu October 3, 2013

They're Not Booing

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

You're listening to ASK ME ANOTHER from NPR and WNYC. I'm Ophira Eisenberg. Coming up, we'll reminisce about the songs of summer, and we'll take a cinematic tour of New York City. Plus we'll put director David Wain and actor B.J. Novak up to another ASK ME ANOTHER challenge. But first, joining us onstage right now are Allison Kelsey and Sam Denehy.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Allison, you are joining us from Philadelphia.

ALLISON KELSEY: I am.

EISENBERG: And you used to work in Central Park.

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Ask Me Another
8:48 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Five By Five, With Will Shortz

Will Shortz joined Ask Me Another at Central Park's SummerStage.
Steve McFarland NPR

With New York Times crossword puzzle editor Will Shortz as our V.I.P. Puzzle Guru, we knew he'd come up with a doozy of a final round. In this game, recorded at Central Park's SummerStage, contestants are given two five-letter words, and asked to anagram one word to get a synonym of the second. And when the final two standing turn out to be Studio 360 host Kurt Andersen and Wet Hot American Summer filmmaker David Wain, the competition gets even more heated.

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Ask Me Another
8:48 am
Thu October 3, 2013

B.J. Novak: Life After 'The Office'

B.J. Novak joined Ask Me Another at Central Park's SummerStage.
Steve McFarland NPR

Originally published on Thu September 4, 2014 11:16 am

Fresh off the ninth and final season of NBC's The Office, B.J. Novak is keeping busy. He is known both for his portrayal of the bratty temp Ryan Howard, as well as writing some of the show's most beloved episodes, such as "Diversity Day" and "The Fire." In his post-Office life, however, he's working on a book of "Woody Allen-esque" short stories and will appear in Saving Mr. Banks, the forthcoming Walt Disney biopic about the making of the film Mary Poppins.

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Ask Me Another
8:48 am
Thu October 3, 2013

David Wain: Notes On Camp

David Wain joined Ask Me Another at Central Park's SummerStage.
Steve McFarland NPR

Originally published on Thu September 4, 2014 11:15 am

David Wain is part of the comedy troupes The State and Stella, and directed the films Wanderlust, Role Models and They Came Together. But he is perhaps best known for creating one of the quintessential summer movies, Wet Hot American Summer, an absurdist chronicle of last-day shenanigans at a Jewish camp in the 1980s.

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Ask Me Another
8:48 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Kurt Andersen: Literary Romantic

Kurt Andersen.
Steve McFarland NPR

Kurt Andersen has written for film, television and stage, was Time's architecture and design critic, co-founded Spy magazine, curated a Smithsonian exhibit, wrote four books (his third novel, True Believers, was published in the summer of 2012), and now hosts PRI's Studio 360, the Peabody Award-winning radio show on WNYC. In the words of Ask Me Another host Ophira Eisenberg, "How about declaring a major already?"

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Ask Me Another
8:48 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Ants Marching

No summer is complete without a picnic, just as no picnic is completed without a few little annoyances: sunburn, spilled wine or ants. Ants! (Shakes fist.) This game, led by house musician Jonathan Coulton, imagines some heightened picnic scenarios, all of which are clues to words that end with the letters "-ant."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Ask Me Another
8:48 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Songs Of The Summer

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

At this time, let's bring back our VIP, Nellie McKay, to the ASK ME ANOTHER stage.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: And we also have two new contestants, Judy Wolf and Cassidy Brown.

(APPLAUSE)

CASSIDY BROWN: Hello.

EISENBERG: Hello, hi. Judy, Cassidy, what is a song that I might find on your soundtrack.

BROWN: I think I have to download it still, because...

EISENBERG: OK, Cassidy?

BROWN: ...But the (singing) hot town, summer in the city, the back of my neck getting dirty and gritty.

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Monkey See
8:40 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Fitz That Time Again: The Consolidated Rules Of 'Scandal'

Kerry Washington (Emmy nominee!) plays Olivia Pope on Scandal.
Danny Feld ABC

Scandal returns Thursday night on ABC after two seasons of delicious, ridiculous, addictive total nonsense that made it a pop-culture preoccupation. (OK, obsession. But hey, we can quit any time we want.)

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The Two-Way
6:05 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Book News: Tom Clancy Remembered As The Father Of A Genre

Author Tom Clancy, seen in 2004, was an insurance agent before publishing The Hunt For Red October in 1984.
Brendan Smialowski Getty Images

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

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Thu October 3, 2013

'The Rosie Project' Will Charm You With Science

Promo image
iStockphoto.com

He's a socially inept scientist who's tone deaf to irony. She's an edgy young woman whose fallback mode is sarcasm. Put them together, and hilarity ensues in Australian IT consultant Graeme Simsion's first novel, The Rosie Project. It's an utterly winning screwball comedy about a brilliant, emotionally challenged geneticist who's determined to find a suitable wife with the help of a carefully designed questionnaire, and the patently unsuitable woman who keeps distracting him from his search.

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Thu October 3, 2013

'Darling' Makes Unfussy Peace With Religion And Sexuality

Originally published on Fri October 4, 2013 9:55 am

Richard Rodriguez begins his latest book, Darling, with an unfussy dedication to the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, a Catholic women's group committed to helping the sick and destitute. This Baptism, if you will, is the first and surely the most straightforward indication within the book that Rodriguez intends to delve into his complex relationship with religion. The path that lies beyond that dedication is weird and wonderful, and readers will find that it's far from a direct route.

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Remembrances
4:51 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Tom Clancy Dies, Left 'Indelible Mark' On Thriller Genre

Tom Clancy, seen here in 2010, was an insurance agent before publishing The Hunt For Red October in 1984.
David Burnett

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 6:56 pm

Best-selling author Tom Clancy has died. He was 66 years old. Beginning with the publication of his 1984 megahit The Hunt for Red October, Clancy wrote a string of blockbuster thrillers inspired by his fascination with military hardware and history.

Clancy didn't mince words when he talked to would-be writers. "If your objective is to write a book, get a computer and write the damn book," he told members of the military at a 2004 writing workshop. "Yes, you can do this if you try hard enough. It's a lot easier than you realize it is."

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The Salt
3:45 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Fish Guidelines For Pregnant Women May Be Too Strict, Study Suggests

In a study of 4,000 pregnant women, fish accounted for only 7 percent of blood mercury levels.
JackF iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 4:22 pm

The health benefits of eating fish are pretty well-known. A lean source of protein, fish can be a rich source of healthful omega-3 fatty acids and has been shown to benefit heart, eye and brain health.

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The Salt
1:57 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Is It Time To Cool It On Kale Already?

Are we putting too much pressure on this little superfood that could?
Peet Sneekes Flickr

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 1:23 pm

Let's start by agreeing to this premise: Kale is very good for you.

And yes, we here at The Salt have been known to indulge in — nay, crave — kale chips and kale salads on a not infrequent basis.

Still, when we found out that Wednesday is National Kale Day — featuring a kale dance party (we kid you not) — we couldn't help but think: Come on, people, the kale love has officially Gone. Too. Far.

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Sports
11:57 am
Wed October 2, 2013

At 49, Jamie Moyer's Pitching Career Goes Into Extra Innings

Jamie Moyer, shown above pitching for the Colorado Rockies in May 2012, made his major league debut back in 1986. He says that after decades in the major leagues, he'd occasionally have to remind himself that "in baseball terms, I really was old, but in everyday life, I really wasn't."
Andy Lyons Getty Images

We don't often think of professional athletes improving with age, but Jamie Moyer was a better pitcher in his 40s than he was in his 20s. Moyer became the oldest pitcher to win a Major League Baseball game when, in April 2012, at the age of 49 years, 150 days, he pitched the Colorado Rockies to a 5-3 win over the San Diego Padres.

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The Protojournalist
11:12 am
Wed October 2, 2013

The 1,000-Year Calendar: Mark These Dates

In the futuristic books, movies, songs and video games that abound, there is an overabundance of speculation about the distant future.

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The Two-Way
10:12 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Tom Clancy, Master Of Military Techno-Thrillers, Dies

Author Tom Clancy in 2003.
Ralph Lauer MCT/Landov

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 12:45 pm

Tom Clancy, the best-selling writer of such "techno-thrillers" as The Hunt for Red October, Red Storm Rising and Patriot Games, has died.

He was 66.

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The Picture Show
9:52 am
Wed October 2, 2013

A Long-Standing Love Affair With Myanmar

Woman smoking cheroot, Mandalay
Courtesy of Geoffrey Hiller

Photographer Geoffrey Hiller made his first foray into Myanmar — also known as Burma — when he was traveling around Southeast Asia in 1987. At the time, he could only get a seven-day tourist visa, and the best method for changing currency was to arrive with two cartons of cigarettes and two bottles of Johnnie Walker, then trade them for cash outside the airport.

"I'll never forget flying in from Bangkok — there were no lights at all, and all you could see was the Shwedagon Pagoda," he says of his initial arrival.

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UIS Visual Arts Gallery
7:00 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Artist Explores Vachel Lindsay's 'Golden Springfield' With Installation

Vachel Lindsay is one of Springfield's most well known historical figures, considered the father of "singing poetry" - he was known as the Prairie Troubadour and was one of the most celebrated poets of his time. But a lesser known aspect of the writer is the utopian vision he had for the future - influenced by his own political brand of socialism. These ideas became a novel called 'The Golden Book of Springfield.' 

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The Two-Way
6:15 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Book News: Forward Prize For Poetry Goes To Michael Symmons Roberts

Michael Symmons Roberts, pictured in 2004, has been described as "a religious poet in a secular age."
Gareth Cattermole Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 8:52 am

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

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Margaret Drabble Spins A Mother-Daughter Yarn Into 'Gold'

Mark Rose iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun October 20, 2013 7:02 pm

When I think of the writers I worshiped when I was starting out in life, I always think of Margaret Drabble. She was 20 years older than I, but the serious, hip, intellectual British novelist whose black-and-white photo appeared on the front cover of some of her paperbacks seemed permanently young. Reading her was like having an extremely brainy and fashionable best friend who'd been educated at Cambridge and had really lived.

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Arts
2:23 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Sandburg Statue In Galesburg To Be Unveiled Soon

Carl Sandburg
Credit nps.gov

Work is almost done on a massive, nine-foot-tall bronze statue of Carl Sandburg.  
The (Galesburg) Register-Mail reports (http://bit.ly/1hhDqZx ) the statue of the Pulitzer-winning author and Galesburg native will be set up in the western Illinois community's public square.  
The piece depicts Sandburg with a guitar on his back and his books in one hand, along with his pet goat.  
The statue was commissioned by the Galesburg Public Arts Commission and is being designed by artist Lonnie Stewart.  

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Author Interviews
5:38 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

'Thank You For Your Service' Follows America's Soldiers Home

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 1:58 pm

In the pages of David Finkel's new book, you'll meet a veteran who has recurring nightmares in which a fellow soldier asks, "Why didn't you save me?" You'll also meet a veteran who sees images of dead Iraqis floating in his bathtub, and another who tries to kill himself by biting through his right wrist — the only wrist he can raise to his mouth since his left side is paralyzed.

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Arts & Life
4:53 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

Congressional Impasse Leaves Museums Empty, Monuments Shut

Shutdown signs have been posted at the National Museum of American History and other Smithsonian Institution museums, which will remain closed as long as the government is.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 5:38 pm

Federal bureaucracies aren't the only ones scaling back operations during the government shutdown. It's also meant that kids couldn't take field trips to the Smithsonian.

In fact most of the popular Washington attractions funded by the government are closed. That includes the Smithsonian's 19 museums and the National Zoo, plus Ford's Theatre and the National Gallery of Art.

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The Salt
2:04 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

These Folks Went Vegetarian Back When It Was Way Uncool

This gang founded Zurich's Vegetarians' Home and Teetotaller Cafe in 1898. Ambrosius Hiltl bought the joint and changed the name in 1903.
Courtesy Hiltl

Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 3:09 pm

These days, many people wear their vegetarianism as a badge of honor — even if it's only before 6 p.m, as food writer Mark Bittman advocates. (Actually, he wants us to go part-time vegan.) There's even a World Vegetarian Day, which happens to be today, FYI.

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Author Interviews
11:58 am
Tue October 1, 2013

Chris Matthews Looks Back On A Time 'When Politics Worked'

Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 1:49 pm

Before Chris Matthews grilled politicians and their surrogates on his MSNBC show Hardball, he was a top aide to House Speaker Tip O'Neill, advising him on how to deal with the press. Now Matthews has written a new book drawing on those experiences, called Tip and the Gipper: When Politics Worked.

It's a look at how Speaker O'Neill and President Reagan managed to work together and reach compromise in spite of the fact that they disagreed not only on policy, but also on the role of government.

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English & Writing
10:47 am
Tue October 1, 2013

UIS Writing Series Kicks Off

"The first public reading by Matt Rasmussen will take place on Thursday, October 3 at 7 p.m. in the Lincoln Residence Hall Great Room at UIS."

A mix of established and emerging poets and writers will make their way to Springfield this month for the UIS Creative Writing and Publishing Series. The series, free and open to the public, kicks off on Thursday at 7pm with a reading from an author whose poetry explores feelings about his own brother's suicide. Meagan Cass is with the English department at the university and helps organize the series, she joined us for this interview: 

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