Arts

Book Reviews
1:27 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

'Panic In A Suitcase' Puts A Fresh Spin On A Coming-To-America Story

Originally published on Mon July 28, 2014 9:17 am

There's a wonderful 1982 memoir called An Orphan in History by the late Village Voice writer Paul Cowan. It's about Cowan's search for his European Jewish roots, and in it he says something about the sacrifices of older generations of immigrants that's always stayed with me. Cowan says: "Millions of immigrant families . . . left the economically and culturally confining Old World towns where they were raised, and paid for the freedom and prosperity this country offered with their pasts."

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Movies
11:38 am
Thu July 24, 2014

How To Name Your Sequel II: Not Just Roman Numerals Anymore

If you want to move beyond just numbers for your sequel titles, critic Bob Mondello says there are a few informal rules you need to follow.

Originally published on Sun July 27, 2014 6:26 pm

Remember when movie companies just put Roman numerals at the end of titles when they made sequels? Rocky II, Rocky III, Rocky IV. Well, not anymore.

This summer, we've had X-Men: Days of Future Past, with no mention that it's either the sixth or seventh X-Men movie, depending on how you're counting. Also 22 Jump Street, the across-the-street follow-up to 21 Jump Street. And Begin Again (which ought to be a sequel, but isn't).

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Interviews
11:23 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Performer Rita Moreno's Famed Career Was 'Meant To Be'

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

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Ask Me Another
9:36 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Andy Serkis: God Save The Queen's English

Andy Serkis.
Amanda Schwab/Starpix

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 3:45 pm

In his Ask Me Another Challenge, Andy Serkis (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, The Lord of the Rings) helps expand your vocabulary to include a spot of British slang. Any idea what the "collywobbles" are, or what happens when you throw on a "boob tube" before leaving the house? You'll be speaking like a Brit in no time.

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Ask Me Another
9:27 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Random Questions With: Andy Serkis

"I don't know if I'm the best at it, but I have a go." -Serkis on performance capture
David James Twentieth Century Fox

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 4:24 pm

Andy Serkis is a renowned actor, but you may not recognize his face. The most famous of his roles include the "ring-junkie" Gollum in The Lord of the Rings films and Caesar in Rise of the Planet of the Apes and this summer's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Serkis disappears completely into his characters, thanks to performance capture technology that films his face and body movements, and translates them to digitally created avatars.

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Ask Me Another
9:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Fair-Weather Friends

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 11:11 am

There's a trivia storm in the forecast: All the answers in this quiz are celebrities and characters whose names are weather-related. Which poet's travels were blocked by ice crystals? Robert Frost!

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

Ask Me Another
9:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Place That Band

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 11:11 am

Geography rocks! Jonathan Coulton sings songs by classic rock bands named after cities, states, countries and continents, while rewriting the lyrics to hint at the locations.

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

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Ask Me Another
9:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

The Most Unusual Tea Shop In The World

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 11:11 am

At the Ask Me Another tea shop, we don't sell chai, but we do have tea that encourages faith and devotion: "loyal-tea." That's because all answers in this game sound like "tea." Share a cup with us!

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

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Ask Me Another
9:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Patriotic Language

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 11:11 am

Why do we call them "French fries" even though they aren't French? When you're done pondering that question, you'll find that all answers in this final round contain nationalities.

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

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Ask Me Another
9:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

How To Succeed At Trivia

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 11:41 am

Is listening to our show the secret to succeeding at trivia games? And how! In this quiz, the answers are common phrases and titles that begin with "how," such as How I Met Your Mother.

Heard in Episode 322: A Primate Example

Pop Culture
7:35 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Thanks To Backpack's Revival, Lugging Stuff Is Fashionable Again

So trendy. Again.
Shutterstock

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 12:33 pm

Backpacks are making a comeback. Which shouldn't be surprising. We're so obsessed with athletic wear designed to be worn everywhere but the gym, so it would seem inevitable that sports bags would make an appearance, too.

But it's not the bag filled with American history books that kids heave to school. Nor is it the rugged, nylon thing athletes carry around. These backpacks are clever examples of fashion following function.

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The Two-Way
7:19 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Book News: Amazon Exec Says Hachette Is Using Authors 'As Human Shields'

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 7:44 am

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

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Book Reviews
6:04 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Can I Get A Do-Over? Shadow Selves And Second Chances

Originally published on Thu July 24, 2014 11:01 am

Two remarkable graphic novels being released this week are themed around shadow-selves, legacies and second chances: Bryan Lee O'Malley's Seconds is about a woman given the opportunity to magically undo past mistakes, while Gene Luen Yang and Sonny Liew's The Shadow Hero revises a mysterious golden-age superhero called the Green Turtle by fleshing out his Asian-American origins.

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Animals
2:25 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Cat PDA Vs. Human PDA, And Other Animal Behavior Explained

Veterinarian Vint Virga says that animals in zoos, like this lion, need to have a bit of control over their environment.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 4:40 pm

From feisty kittens to pacing cheetahs, Vint Virga knows animal behavior.

A veterinarian who specializes in behavioral medicine, Virga has treated many household pets in his clinic. But for the past five years he has been working mostly with leopards, wolves, bears, zebras and other animals living in zoos and wildlife parks. He deals with such issues as appetites, anxiety and obsessive behavior.

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Movie Reviews
2:15 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

'A Hard Day's Night': A Pop Artifact That Still Crackles With Energy

The Beatles perform one of their songs while filming A Hard Day's Night in 1964.
Evening Standard Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 4:19 pm

Back in 1964, movie audiences were treated to three hit musicals. Two of them — Mary Poppins and My Fair Lady — won scads of Oscars. But it was the third that announced the future, and it did so from its opening chord.

What followed from that chord was what we call The Sixties.

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Wisdom Watch
11:24 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Two Prominent Museum Directors Encourage 'New Ways Of Thinking'

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

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Arts
10:47 am
Wed July 23, 2014

"The Civil War" Becomes A Downtown Musical

Credit alplm

You may know the story of the war between the states.  But what is often overlooked is the emotional drama the period had on those who lived through it.

The musical "The Civil War" brings that part of the story to the stage in downtown Springfield starting Thursday night. 

"It's not a history lesson, although you learn a lot," Co-director Phil Funkenbusch said. "It's really a concert theatre piece."

"Instead of telling the story of the Civil War, it's really telling the stories about the people involved in the war."

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The Two-Way
8:53 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Book News: Booker Prize, Now Open To U.S. Authors, Longlists 5 Americans

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

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Wed July 23, 2014

'Rocket Girl' Is A Jetpack-Powered 21st Century Angel

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 12:17 pm

One word: jetpack. You perked up, right? When most of us dream of the future, jetpacks are one of the first things we dream about. And yet, even now that the future is indisputably here, we continue to be denied the ultimate sci-fi accessory. With all the 21st-century tech we've got these days — maps that talk, hand-held videophones — why aren't we all flying through the air with the greatest of renewable-energy-fueled ease? Maybe jetpacks need a special kind of power, an explosive force the average adult just can't muster. Maybe they need a teenager instead — say, a teen girl.

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Business
5:10 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Happy 30th Birthday, PG-13!

Ruth Black iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 11:21 am

The PG-13 movie rating celebrates its 30th birthday this month. Until 1984, the Motion Picture Association of America rated films as G, PG, R or X. But that year a couple of gory scenes in PG-rated movies raised concerns.

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Book Reviews
4:47 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Book Review: 'Angels Make Their Hope Here'

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 7:17 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDRED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. Now to 19th-century New Jersey and a new novel. It set among unusually tolerant people. A racially mixed community that offers refuge to independent souls. Alan Cheuse has this review of the novel "Angels Make Their Hope Here" by Breena Clarke.

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Author Interviews
2:34 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

How Scientists Created A Typhus Vaccine In A 'Fantastic Laboratory'

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 4:23 pm

When Germany invaded the Soviet Union during World War II, Nazi commanders had another worry besides the Red Army. Epidemics of typhus fever, which is transmitted by body lice, killed untold numbers of soldiers and civilians during and after World War I.

As World War II raged, typhus reappeared in war-torn areas and in Jewish ghettos, where cramped, harsh conditions were a perfect breeding ground for lice.

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Author Interviews
1:03 pm
Tue July 22, 2014

Despite Disability, One Mountain Climber Reflects On His Advantages

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Monkey See
11:28 am
Tue July 22, 2014

'Audience Measurement': How Networks And Critics Are Wrestling With Numbers

iStockphoto

If the Television Critics Association press tour of 2014, wrapping up Tuesday and Wednesday with presentations from PBS, has had a catchphrase, it's "audience measurement."

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Commentary
7:03 am
Tue July 22, 2014

What 'The Golden Girls' Taught Us About AIDS

In true kick-ass Golden Girls fashion, Rose (Betty White, from left) Dorothy (Bea Arthur) and Blanche (Rue McClanahan) showed us how utterly human we all are at any age.
AP

"Dammit, why is this happening to me? I mean, this shouldn't happen to people like me."

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Book Reviews
6:37 am
Tue July 22, 2014

London Through The Eyes Of Dickens In 'The Victorian City'

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 12:20 pm

In September 1777, Samuel Johnson declared to his friend James Boswell, "When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life."

Johnson actually was referring to his hectic social calendar, but he did have a point. The city he was discussing was on course to become the largest metropolis the world had ever seen. In 1800, London was home to 1 million residents. By 1911 that number had grown to a staggering 7 million: a population far greater than Paris, Berlin, St. Petersburg and Moscow combined at that time.

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The Two-Way
6:31 am
Tue July 22, 2014

Book News: Thomas Berger, Author Of 'Little Big Man,' Dies

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

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Fine Art
4:25 am
Tue July 22, 2014

With Swirls Of Steel, These Sculptures Mark The Passage Of People And Time

Albert Paley's iron and steel gates, archways and free-standing sculptures are eye-catching landmarks. His 2010 steel work Evanesce stands in Monterrey, Mexico. "American Metal: The Art of Albert Paley" is on display at the Corcoran Gallery of Art until September.
Agencia para la Planeacióndel Desarrollo Urbano de Nuevo León Courtesy Paley Studios

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 12:13 pm

Growing up in Philadelphia in the 1940s, Albert Paley played with blocks and Legos. And he loved wandering the streets, scavenging bottle caps, matchbook covers, cigar bands and "picking up pebbles that I thought were interesting," he recalls.

Now 70, the American sculptor has moved from pebbles to monumental gates. His iron and steel works adorn Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, St. Louis, Chattanooga, Tenn., and Rochester, N.Y. His gates, archways and free-standing sculptures are eye-catching landmarks.

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Movies
4:25 am
Tue July 22, 2014

Piano Made Famous In 'Casablanca' Goes On Auction Block

Originally published on Tue July 22, 2014 12:13 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And that brings us to today's last word in business. You must remember this - the most famous piano in film history is going up for auction.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "CASABLANCA")

INGRID BERMAN: (As Ilsa Lund) Play it, Sam. Play "As Time Goes By."

DOOLEY WILSON: (As Sam, singing) You must remember this, a kiss is just a kiss. A sigh is just a sigh.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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The Salt
5:01 pm
Mon July 21, 2014

Sandwich Monday: The Menage A Trois

Urban Dictionary will misinform you about the ingredients of this sandwich.
NPR

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 5:38 pm

We're in San Francisco this week, and despite an exhaustive search, we have yet to find anywhere serving a Rice-a-Roni sandwich. We're told the next best thing is the Menage A Trois from Ike's Place.

It gets its name from the fact it's chicken bathed in three sauces — barbecue, honey mustard and honey — and three cheeses: cheddar, pepper jack and Swiss.

Seth: If I only had three wishes I might wish for this sandwich three times.

Ian: The sandwich so good they named a sex thing after it.

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