This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. It is August. Chances are where you are it's hot. So, maybe you want a drink to cool off. Will it be fruity or fizzy, maybe boozy? Whatever it is, Dan Pashman, host of the Sporkful podcast, thinks you may be overlooking one key ingredient: the ice. He joins us now from our New York studios. Hey Dan.
DAN PASHMAN, BYLINE: Hi, Rachel.
MARTIN: So, ice. This seems like a fairly forgettable part of a beverage experience. You say, no. Why?
On a hot summer afternoon in Albuquerque, N.M., the setting for the hit TV show Breaking Bad, a trolley that resembles a roving adobe house is packed with tourists.
The series follows Walter White, a chemistry teacher who turns to cooking methamphetamine to provide for his family after he gets cancer. The show, which begins its final season Sunday, has attracted critical acclaim, a slew of awards and rabid fans — some of whom have crammed onto the trolley for a tour of Breaking Bad filming sites.
There are numbers all around us. They are in every word we speak or write, and in the passage of time. Everything in our world has a numeric foundation, but most of us don't see those numbers. It's different for Daniel Tammet. He's a savant with synesthesia, a condition that allows him to see beyond simple numerals — he experiences them.
Tammet drew attention around the world about a decade ago when he recited, from memory, the number pi. It took him five hours to call out 22,514 digits with no mistakes.
By the loading dock of Seattle's downtown library, librarian Jared Mills checks his tire pressure, secures his iPads and locks down about 100 books to an aluminum trailer the size of a steamer trunk. The scene is reminiscent of something you'd see in an action movie, when the hero is gearing up for a big fight, but Mills is gearing up for something very different.
"If you're not prepared and don't have a lot of experience hauling a trailer, it can be kind of dangerous," Mills says, especially when you're going downhill. "The trailer can hold up to 500 pounds."
If a LEGO lion can take pride of place at the New York Public Library, why not video games in the reading rooms? The NYPLarcade program is a kind of book club for gamers, inviting participants to dive deep with discussions of strategy, game structure and more.
Credit Sollers Point Branch, Baltimore County Public Library
Baltimore County's Sollers Point library is one of many in the U.S. using video games to spur curiosity and otherwise keep teens engaged.
There's a battle going down at the Sollers Point Branch of the Baltimore County Public Library system. It's a one-point game in the fourth quarter with only seconds left on the game clock. Huddled around a big screen in a small room, 10 or so teenagers cheer on their joystick-wielding buddies. The ball is snapped, the kick is up ... no good. It's wide right, and the crowd goes wild, trash talk flying.
If you like mysteries, thrillers or zombie flicks, you'll probably like Abigail Goldman's art.
Goldman takes the fake grass, dirt and tiny plastic people used in model railroad layouts, and turns them into imaginary crime scenes. She's been making the macabre art for four years, and it's become so popular there's a waiting list for her work.
On-air challenge:Every answer is an anagram of a word that has the letters A-B-C in it.
Last week's challenge: Name a foreign make of automobile. Cross out several letters in its name. The remaining letters, reading in order from left to right, will spell a food that comes from the country where the car is made. What is the country, and what is the food?
This is WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Jacki Lyden.
Coming up, we have a remembrance of actress Karen Black who made a name for herself in Hollywood during the 1960s and '70s. First, though, we turn to the silver screen for a look at another actress of the 1970s, Linda Lovelace.
Arpeggios ricochet through three speakers and envelop us. We're on the modernist Bauhaus staircase at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, listening to techno-inspired electronica. This piece is part of a new exhibit, "Soundings: A Contemporary Score," that opens today.
BARBARA LONDON: I wanted work that pushed limits, pushed boundaries.
And if you're just joining us, this is WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Jacki Lyden.
In the winter of 2012, I came across a story on a drive through central coastal Florida in the town of Fort Pierce. Route 1 is now dominated by strip malls and fading condos, but the Florida of the 1950s and '60s was a candy-colored Eisenhower, Kennedy space-age dream of flaming red Poinciana trees and untamed beaches.
Last week, we featured a segment on the People's Short Doc Award, a competition for the best short radio documentary - short - under three minutes. The competition was curated by the Third Coast International Audio Festival and the theme was appetite. We played a bit from the doc that won third place then the runner-up, and finally with a drumroll and much fanfare, introduced the winning documentary.
UNIDENTIFIED CHILDREN: (Singing) Four and 20 blackbirds baked in a pie...
For four decades, William Ferris tracked down some of the most inspirational artists and historians of the American South. He sat down with Eudora Welty, Alice Walker, Pete Seeger, Bobby Rush and Alex Haley, capturing their reflections on tape and their images on camera.
Unless you've been hiding under a burger bun for the past week, you've probably heard the story about the lab-grown burger. The test-tube piece of meat took three months and cost more than $300,000 to grow, but its makers hope the experiment might help feed the world someday.
It's Morgaine Gaye's job to think about what we'll be eating in the future. She's a food futurologist, and she joins me now from our London bureau and she joins me now from our London bureau. Welcome.
During the opening scene of Broadchurch, a new drama on BBC America, the camera lingers on a sign that reads "Love Thy Neighbour." But it must be pretty hard to 'love thy neighbor' when you know there's a murderer in your midst.
Broadchurch is also the fictional name of the idyllic looking English seaside town where the show is set. From afar, it looks like the perfect vacation spot — but up close the picture is quite different.
Late summer is high season for delicious, juicy fruits, from Georgia peaches to Maine blueberries. Naturally, that gets many bakers thinking pie. But taking a big, drippy pie on a picnic can be a pretty sloppy prospect.
Kim Boyce, a baker in Portland, Ore., has solved this problem. For picnics, she bakes up hand pies: Sturdy little fruit-filled turnovers that don't require a knife and fork. Boyce makes 60 or 70 a day at her bakery.
Originally published on Tue August 13, 2013 8:56 am
Babies come in pretty cute packaging — we're pretty sure it has something to do with Mother Nature wanting you to coo over a burping, pooping little freeloader. But now Chinese Internet users have found a way to one-up nature: They're wrapping those already adorable babes in watermelons.
Originally published on Sat August 10, 2013 11:35 am
I cannot begin to fathom the number of snapshots that have been produced between the first Kodak camera (circa 1888) and now. Let alone how anyone could begin paring it down into a collection.
And yet for years, Seattle-based businessman Robert E. Jackson has been sifting through discarded memories, searching for that certain something — nothing in particular — found in vintage, vernacular photography. He knows it when he sees it. And he now owns about 11,000 one-of-a-kind prints.
Originally published on Sat August 10, 2013 9:26 am
When winemakers crush the juice from grapes, what's left is a goopy pile of seeds, stems and skins called pomace. Until several years ago, these remains were more than likely destined for the dump.
"The pomace pile was one of the largest problems that the wine industry had with sustainability," says Paul Novak, general manager for WholeVine Products, a sister company to winemaker Kendall-Jackson in Northern California.
Tiffanie Drayton's mother moved her family to the U-S for a better life. But it wasn't all it was cracked up to be. Now back in her native Trinidad, Drayton tells host Michel Martin what inspired her to share her story in the Salon piece 'Goodbye to my American Dream.' Byline: Michel Martin
For one more week, our host and pal Linda Holmes has been roaming the desolate plains of Los Angeles at the Television Critics Association press tour, with only catered lunches and lavishly appointed meet-and-greets to provide sustenance.
So the rest of the Pop Culture Happy Hour gang must soldier on in her absence, with the aid of a scrappy young newcomer who'd been waiting for her big break in front of a microphone: All Things Considered co-host Audie Cornish. We predict big things for Audie at NPR!
The typical romantic comedy might end with the wedding, but for Josh (Rafe Spall) and Nat (Rose Byrne), that's just the beginning of the story of I Give It a Year.
Credit Giles Keyte / Magnolia
In addition to their own doubts and dubiosity, Josh and Nat's marriage faces an external challenge or two in the persons of Nat's smooth-talking repeat flirtation (Simon Baker) and Josh's agreeably sensible ex (Anna Farris).
Originally published on Thu August 8, 2013 4:55 pm
I Give It a Year is about what you'd expect from the warped mind of Dan Mazer — Sacha Baron Cohen's close collaborator on Da Ali G Show, Borat and Bruno. Which is to say: a raucously funny comic romance that's deaf and blind to the blithe spirit of romantic comedy.
Ramin Iremadze, 13, is one of a dozen Georgians who responded to a filmmaker's call for young people with compelling stories to tell. His tale takes us to a rural mountain village, and deep within the culture of the former Soviet republic.
Considered in pieces, The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear is poignant and often hard to watch. Tinatin Gurchiani's documentary takes an episodic look at contemporary youth in her home country of Georgia, weaving together a series of vignettes featuring young people Gurchiani found by putting out a casting call for anyone ages 15-25 who thought their lives were suited for film.
Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 9:25 am
Cinema routinely peddles images of beautiful people in romantic situations, not to mention gauzily idealized visions of passion and intimacy. So it's a little counterintuitive when filmmakers depict sex as perilous — even when that's exactly what they've signed up to do.
This month, NPR's Backseat Book Club goes snooping in Nikki Maxwell's "private and confidential" Dork Diaries. But the secret's already gotten out; the series launched four years ago, and there are already 12 million books in print in 34 different languages. The sixth in the series — Tales From a Not-So-Happy Heartbreaker — was just published in June.
Basil is growing thick and leafy in many backyard gardens throughout the U.S. right now, which means many people are thinking about pesto. It's one of the more basic sauces you can make — in addition to basil, all you need is Parmesan or Romano cheese, a little garlic, some extra virgin olive oil and Italian pine nuts.