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Monkey See
8:21 am
Fri April 13, 2012

I Died On The Titanic

The cast and crew of Titanic, as pictured in my 2001-2002 yearbook. I'm standing in the third row back on the right side, in front of the "captain."
Courtesy of Dana Farrington

I died on the Titanic — in the musical, that is. Titanic opened on Broadway in 1997 and won five Tony Awards, including Best Musical.

My small California middle school performed the show in grand fashion. Goodness knows why it hadn't been done before at the school, but the curtains rose on our stage in February 2002.

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The Two-Way
7:45 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Today's Hero: Newark Mayor Cory Booker, For Going Into A Burning Building

Newark Mayor Cory Booker.
Mel Evans AP

Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 10:11 am

  • Mayor Cory Booker on 'Tell Me More'

"When Chuck Norris has nightmares, Cory Booker turns on the light & sits with him until he falls back asleep."

That's just one of many funny tweets showing up this morning attached to the hashtag #corybookerstories.

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The Two-Way
7:05 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Tame Inflation Report Gives Federal Reserve Reason To Stay Easy

Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 7:08 am

The news that consumer prices rose a relatively modest 0.3 percent in March from February supports "the view the U.S. Federal Reserve has room to provide more support for the economy if needed," Reuters concludes. It adds that:

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Poetry
6:52 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Poet Marie Howe Reflects On The 'Living' After Loss

Marie Howe is the author of three collections of poetry. She has received a Guggenheim Fellowship and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship.

Brad Fowler courtesy of the author

This interview was originally broadcast on October 20, 2011.

A few years after her younger brother John died from AIDS-related complications in 1989, poet Marie Howe wrote him a poem in the form of a letter. Called "What the Living Do," the poem is an elegiac description of loss, and of living beyond loss.

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The Two-Way
6:30 am
Fri April 13, 2012

It's Friday The 13th, So Say It All Together: 'Paraskevidekatriaphobia'

There's one more Friday the 13th this year, in July.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 6:52 am

You can't say we haven't warned you about Friday the 13ths, and offered a tip for how to get over any fear of such supposedly scary days.

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The Two-Way
6:15 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Syrian Activists Claim Regime Is Using Force To Break Up Demonstrations

On Day Two of the fragile ceasefire in Syria, activists say that government forces have fired on some anti-Assad regime demonstrators in various parts of the nation.

Reporting from Beirut, NPR's Grant Clark tells our Newscast Desk that activists say security forces began massing outside mosques during Friday prayers, just before the start of protests.

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The Two-Way
5:45 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Holy Hail! Photos, Videos Show Texas Storm's Fury; Drifts 4-Feet Deep

This photo provided by the Amarillo/Potter/Randall Office of Emergency Management shows Potter County firefighter Matt Dryden standing next to a wall of hail on Wednesday near Amarillo, Texas. The hail was pushed into drifts of up to 4-feet.
AP

Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 5:46 am

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History
5:39 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Utah Man Has Titanic Interest In Ship's Sinking

Jeff Jensen got interested in the Titanic when he was just nine years old. Later, his father bought him a replica of the ship that was made from 50,000 matchsticks.

Around the Nation
5:19 am
Fri April 13, 2012

La. Town Named 'Boudin Capital Of The World'

Boudin is a Cajun specialty — sausage filled with rice, pork and herbs. And since Scott, La., is starting a Boudin festival, the state legislature crowned it the "Boudin Capital of the World." Nevermind there are two other Boudin capitals of the world. But Jennings, La., trumps them all. Years ago, it was crowned the "Boudin Capital of the Universe."

The Two-Way
5:00 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Failed Missile Test May Make North Korea More Belligerent

Prior to today's launch, a North Korean soldier stood guard.
Pedro Ugarte AFP/Getty Images
  • Louisa Lim on 'Morning Edition'

The disintegration of North Korea's latest long-range missile shortly after liftoff today may just make that communist nation even more belligerent and more likely to test a nuclear weapon or take other provocative actions, NPR's Louisa Lim reports from Seoul.

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It's All Politics
5:00 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Voters Who Rejected Romney Now His Most Certain Votes

Mitt Romney must now appeal to voters beyond his party's base. On Wednesday, he criticized President Obama's record on women in the workforce during a campaign stop in Hartford, Conn.
Brian Snyder Reuters/Landov

Throughout the GOP primary season, Mitt Romney struggled among voters who make up many of the party's key constituencies, including Southerners, evangelicals, those living in rural areas and members of the white working class.

Now that he has the Republican presidential nomination all but sewn up, such voters are the least of Romney's worries.

In fact, the type of Republican voters who were most skeptical about the former Massachusetts governor may end up being among his most certain supporters.

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Your Money
2:00 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Why Tax Day Falls On April 17 This Year

Tax day falls on April 17 this year, due to a little-known holiday in the District of Columbia.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 9:25 am

Every year, millions of Americans scramble to file their income taxes before the filing deadline — ordinarily April 15.

But procrastinators get a reprieve this year: The 2012 deadline falls on Tuesday, April 17.

This year, April 15 falls on a Sunday. One might expect that would make Monday, April 16, the 2012 filing deadline.

But not so this year. Monday is the District of Columbia's Emancipation Day — a local holiday unfamiliar to most Americans.

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Asia
2:00 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Chinese Political Scandal Evolves Into Murder Mystery

A scandal in China has led to the ouster of a powerful political player, who was once a rising star in the Communist Party. Richard MacGregor, a former China bureau chief for the Financial Times, talks to Renee Montagne about the scandal. MacGregor also authored The Party, a book about China's political system.

The Salt
1:07 am
Fri April 13, 2012

Advice For Diet Soda Lovers: Skip The Chips

It's not clear if diet soft drinks are the healthiest choice.
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Mon April 16, 2012 5:47 am

Got a Diet Coke or Diet Pepsi habit? Lots of Americans do. Consumption of all types of diet soft drinks has been on the rise. And as a nation, we drink an estimated 20 percent more of diet drinks now than we did 15 years ago.

So, is it good for us? A new study finds the answer to that question may depend a lot on, well, what you eat.

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Movie Reviews
9:16 pm
Thu April 12, 2012

An Inspiring Teacher, Exactly When He's Needed

Mohamed Fellag, an Algerian comedian and humor writer, plays the title character in the Oscar-nominated Monsieur Lazhar, who steps in to teach a class of middle school students at exactly the right time.
Music Box Films

Originally published on Tue January 29, 2013 3:55 pm

At the start of a bright, sunny day that seems otherwise like any other day, a popular teacher is found dead in her classroom. It was suicide.

The school is traumatized, especially that teacher's students. By the next day, the principal is at her wits' end trying to find someone willing to take the class. So when Bachir Lazhar (Mohamed Fellag) offers to teach, it comes at just the right moment.

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Asia
6:00 pm
Thu April 12, 2012

North Korean Rocket Launch Reportedly Fails

Robert Siegel talks to Louisa Lim in Seoul about North Korea's rocket launch on Friday morning.

The Two-Way
5:18 pm
Thu April 12, 2012

In Interview, Zimmerman's Lawyer Says Trial Won't Happen In 2012

Defense attorney Mark O'Mara (left) stands with his client, George Zimmerman, at a hearing related to second-degree murder charges in the killing of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla.
Pool Getty Images

When he appeared in court on second-degree murder charges in the shooting death of teenager Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman was accompanied by his new defense attorney, Mark O'Mara. Hours after the hearing, O'Mara told NPR that he doubts the case will go to trial in 2012.

But in the meantime, O'Mara tells Tell Me More host Michel Martin, he'd like to get his client out of jail.

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Latin America
3:55 pm
Thu April 12, 2012

Some Latin Leaders Want New Approach To Drug War

Some Latin American leaders want to talk about the possibility of legalizing some drugs, a move the U.S. strongly opposes. Here, a Mexican soldier stands guard at a huge marijuana plantation that was uncovered in San Quintin, Baja California state, near the U.S. border, last year.
Antonio Nava AFP/Getty Images

When President Obama travels to Colombia this weekend for the Summit of the Americas, he'll be stepping into a vigorous debate about the drug war that could be awkward for the United States.

Some Latin American leaders, who also happen to be strong U.S. allies, say the American-sponsored war on drugs is failing and that new options need to be considered.

One proposal they want to discuss is legalizing some drugs — a move the U.S. strongly opposes.

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Law
11:00 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Legal Strategies And 'Stand Your Ground' Cases

Transcript

JENNIFER LUDDEN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Jennifer Ludden, in Washington. Neal Conan is away. The man who Florida police first declined to arrest now faces second-degree murder charges for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. George Zimmerman claims he is not guilty under Florida's Stand Your Ground law, which allows for the use of force in self-defense.

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Around the Nation
11:00 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Cities — But Not Their Citizens — Really Are Meaner

Transcript

JENNIFER LUDDEN, HOST:

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On Aging
11:00 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Couples Can Conflict Over When To Retire

Transcript

JENNIFER LUDDEN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Jennifer Ludden, in Washington. Neal Conan is away. Baby boomers are the first generation with large numbers of dual-earner couples heading into retirement. That means negotiating the golden years is all the more complicated. Now there are two careers, two hard-earned nest eggs and quite possibly two competing visions of how and when to retire.

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Around the Nation
11:00 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Do I Freak You Out? Living With Physical Scars

Approach a person with an obvious physical difference like a child might — openly, and with compassion, says writer Mary Elizabeth Williams.
iStockphoto.com

"Do I freak you out?" It's a question that haunts writer Mary Elizabeth Williams and others whom she describes as "physically different, in ways both small and large."

Williams' surgery to remove cancer more than a year ago left a 5 centimeter bald spot on the back of her head. She doesn't mind it — it's a badge of survival — but her daughter, Beatrice, fusses about it from time to time.

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Movie Interviews
9:01 am
Thu April 12, 2012

'Chico & Rita': An Animated Film With A Cuban Beat

Chico's story mimics the stories of many Cuban musicians who left Havana and arrived in New York City in the 1940s — a time when musicians like Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie were starting to emerge.
Luna Films

The animated film Chico and Rita is set in 1940s Havana, at a time when Cuban musicians were starting to leave the country and join the jazz scene in New York. It was also a time when musical styles were fusing — and changing the Afro-Cuban jazz scene entirely.

The film tells the story of Chico, one of the best piano players in Havana, and Rita, his sultriest singer. They're lovers, and eventually their migration takes them past New York to Paris — criss-crossing continents to make music while struggling to keep themselves and their relationship afloat.

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The Two-Way
8:35 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Trayvon's Mother Wants Justice, But Also Believes Death 'Was An Accident'

Originally published on Fri April 13, 2012 11:17 am

Update at 1:15 p.m. ET, April 13: Since we first published this post, Sybrina Fulton has gone on other news programs to clarify her comments. We have a new post here, headlined "Trayvon's Mother: Encounter Was An Accident, Shooting Was Not."

Our original post:

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Around the Nation
8:31 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Sue Me? Not A Chance This Year

In Iowa, cutbacks in the state's judicial staff have led to long waits for retrieving documents from courthouses like this one in Muscatine.
Shen Hong Xinhua /Landov

If you feel like suing somebody, you'd better be patient.

Due to state budget woes, courts all across the country are cutting back on personnel and the number of hours or even days that they're open. That's causing long delays, especially when it comes to civil litigation.

"There's no question that there's been a pretty devastating impact in lots of states in how we deliver services," says Kevin Burke, president of the American Judges Association.

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U.S.
8:24 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Where Does America Get Oil? You May Be Surprised

The U.S. now imports far more oil from Canada than from any other country. Persian Gulf imports now account for less than 15 percent of the oil consumed in the U.S. This photo shows the Syncrude oil sands extraction facility near Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada, in 2009.
Mark Ralston AFP/Getty Images

Since the Arab oil embargoes of the 1960s and 70s, it's been conventional wisdom to talk about American dependence on oil from the Persian Gulf. But the global oil market has changed dramatically since then.

Today, the U.S. actually gets most of its imported oil from Canada and Latin America.

And many Americans might be surprised to learn that the U.S. now imports roughly the same amount of oil from Africa as it does from the Persian Gulf. African imports were a bit higher in 2010, while Persian Gulf oil accounted for a bit more last year.

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Politics
8:16 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Welfare Overhaul's Impact On America's Poorest

In August 1996, President Clinton prepares to sign legislation overhauling America's welfare system in the Rose Garden of the White House.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Sun April 22, 2012 7:03 pm

The welfare program that operated in the United States between the Franklin Roosevelt administration and the Clinton administration offered poor families assistance with few requirements or time frames. States could enroll as many people as they wanted in the program, and the federal government would match their funds.

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The Two-Way
8:00 am
Thu April 12, 2012

'Fox Mole' At Gawker Is Revealed, Suspended

The Fox Mole, before his suspension.
Gawker

Originally published on Thu April 12, 2012 8:56 am

We had steered clear of this topic the past few days because his posts certainly haven't been family-friendly material.

But now "The Fox Mole" who was filing dispatches for Gawker from inside Fox News Channel's operations in New York City has been uncovered.

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The Two-Way
7:35 am
Thu April 12, 2012

Reporter's Dream: A Mansion Straight Out Of 'Please Don't Eat the Daisies'

Originally published on Thu April 12, 2012 9:26 am

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