Arts

Architecture
2:57 am
Sat September 14, 2013

In Los Angeles, Showcasing A City That Might Have Been

Pereira and Luckman, Los Angeles International Airport Original Plan, 1952
LAWA Flight Path Learning Center

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 8:52 pm

A museum exhibit about buildings that don't exist might not sound all that exciting. But the Architecture & Design Museum in Los Angeles has had its crowds grow to 10 times their normal level for a show called Never Built: Los Angeles. It's on through Oct. 13 – and it's all about projects that were imagined for the city but never constructed.

Let's start with one of the most high-profile: a 1968 proposal that would've dramatically altered the profile of Mount Hollywood.

Read more
Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
6:28 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Not My Job: Writer Mark Leibovich Gets Quizzed On Louis XIV

Ralph Alswang Courtesy Blue Rider Press

Originally published on Sat September 14, 2013 10:32 am

Washington, D.C., has long been thought of as a city filled with corrupt, cynical careerists who care only about themselves. Well, New York Times reporter Mark Leibovich has written a book called This Town that basically proves it.

Read more
Faith Matters
10:04 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Tweeting For Atonement: Sharing Sins On Social Media

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 12:30 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Read more
Economy
10:04 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Recipe For A Great Burger? Fifteen Bucks An Hour

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 12:30 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. It is Friday and back in the day this was payday for most people, so we thought this was as good a day as any to talk about wealth, wages and poverty. In a few minutes we will hear about how poverty seems to be affecting the health of white women in a dramatic way.

Read more
Barbershop
10:04 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Oklahoma State Slammed By Sports Illustrated

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 12:30 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Now it's time for our weekly visit to the barbershop where the guys talk about what's in the news and what's on their minds. Sitting in the chairs for a shape-up this week are writer Jimi Izrael, with us from Cleveland. Here in our Washington, D.C. studios, sports writer and journalism professor Kevin Blackistone, Corey Dade, contributing editor for The Root, and NPR editor Ammad Omar decided to stick around. What do you know?

AMMAD OMAR, BYLINE: Hey, why not?

Read more
BackTalk
10:04 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Is The NFL Weakening Defense Of Redskins' Name?

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 12:30 pm

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

And now it's time for Backtalk, that's where we hear from you. Editor Ammad Omar is back with us once again. What's going on today, Ammad?

Read more
Arts & Life
8:39 am
Fri September 13, 2013

'Wadjda' Is First Feature Film Shot In Saudi Arabia

Wadjda tells the story of a 10-year-old Saudi girl determined to have a bicycle in a culture that frowns on female riding. Writer-director Haifaa al-Mansour says she wanted to put a human face on the situation of women in Saudi Arabia, where driving is not permitted.

Movie Reviews
8:09 am
Fri September 13, 2013

From Nowhere And Everywhere, Death On The Beltway

Tequan Richmond plays Lee Boyd Malvo, the younger of a pair of killers, as he is indoctrinated by his father figure (Isaiah Washington) in Blue Caprice.
IFC Films

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 5:55 pm

Think "Beltway sniper," and what vehicle comes to mind?

Probably not the blue Chevy Caprice actually used by John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo in the random killings that terrorized the nation's capital and its environs in the fall of 2002 — because for most of the investigation, the media's mantra was to be on the lookout for a white van or box truck.

Read more
Monkey See
6:03 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Requested Reboots And 'Duck Dynasty'

NPR
  • Listen to Pop Culture Happy Hour

With intrepid host Linda Holmes trapped in the air-conditioned movie theaters of Toronto, the Pop Culture Happy Hour gang was forced to reconstitute itself yet again for this week's episode — this time with our old pal Tanya Ballard Brown, who returns via the power of popular demand. You talk, we listen, people.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:19 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Book News: National Book Awards' '5 Under 35' Picks Are All Women

Amanda Coplin received her MFA from the University of Minnesota, and now resides in Portland, Ore.
Corina Bernstein HarperCollins

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 6:44 am

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

Read more
Book Reviews
5:03 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Atwood Imagines Humanity's Next Iteration In 'MaddAddam'

With her weird, wistful new novel MaddAddam, Margaret Atwood completes the apocalyptic trilogy she began with Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood. Like its predecessors, MaddAddam is a blend of satiric futurism and magic realism, a snarky but soulful peek at what happens to the world after a mad scientist decimates humanity with a designer disease. That mad scientist is the brilliant bioengineer Crake, whose story is retold in this novel by the Crakers, the post-humans he designed to experience no sexual jealousy, and to eat nothing but plants.

Read more
Book Reviews
5:03 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Death And The Aging Hipster: A Tale Of Intolerable Men

Norman Rush's other books include Mating, Whites and Mortals.
Michael Lionstar Courtesy Knopf

What happens when hipsters grow up? Do they become less insufferable with age? Do they learn to contribute something useful to the society they've long scorned, and in turn were scorned by? Maybe they, like Norman Rush's deceased character Douglas, leave New York City and go live in a castle somewhere, work on secret projects for the Israeli government, get a trophy wife and raise a child who opts to worship Odin and live wild in the surrounding forest.

Read more
The Salt
1:05 am
Fri September 13, 2013

The Secret To Making It Through A Yom Kippur Fast? Kreplach

Kreplach, a special Jewish holiday dish that can be made essentially out of leftovers.
Courtesy of Caren Alpert

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 10:11 am

To mark the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, Jews fast from sundown to sundown. But before the sun sets, friends and family gather to enjoy one final meal. And for the Jews of Eastern Europe, that meal traditionally includes kreplach.

Read more
Movie Reviews
5:03 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

Meet Brandon Darby, Grass-Roots Activist (And FBI Rat)

Brandon Darby, a onetime leftist activist who eventually became an FBI informant, has had his share of both detractors and admirers — many of whom appear in a new documentary about his life and work.
Music Box Films

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 8:13 am

For a while in Jamie Meltzer's mesmerizing documentary Informant, I wondered whether subject Brandon Darby, the lefty activist turned FBI informer, was being played by an actor.

But no: It's Darby, and he's a handsome fellow, with haunted eyes blazing out of a bone structure to die for, and with a Montgomery Clift dimple in his chin. Staring straight into the camera, he testifies with the intense calm of a messiah or a madman, which all too often comes to the same thing. Among other things, this powerfully confused man is a study in American extremity.

Read more
Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

A Marriage, A Mother, A Move From Culture To Culture

The Iowa-born, Zimbabwe-bred actress Danai Gurira (The Walking Dead) stars as half of a Nigerian couple living in Brooklyn and coping with culture clash in Mother of George.
Oscilloscope Laboratories

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 4:51 pm

From the start, Mother of George looks at its two protagonists, Adenike (Danai Gurira) and Ayodele (Isaach de Bankole), across distinct gender lines. The film opens at their traditional Yoruba wedding with two contrasted, tightly framed, straight-on shots of the groom and bride's parties.

Later, after the ceremonies, the differences between the two groups become more defined: We watch the women give Adenike child-rearing advice, while the men talk about how best to hide their infidelities.

Read more
Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

From A Saudi Director, A Familiar Story Made Fresh Again

All Wadjda (Waad Mohammed) wants is her own bicycle — but as Haifaa Al Mansour's film illustrates, that's a tricky proposition for a young girl living in Saudi Arabia.
Tobias Kownatzki Razor Film/Sony Pictures Classics

Wadjda is the sort of lovable young hustler we've seen in scores of films — a 10-year-old who wants something and will lie, threaten and cajole to get it.

But Wadjda's familiar premise is transformed by its unexpected location: The movie's protagonist lives in Saudi Arabia, and what she wants, even if she doesn't exactly realize it, is freedom.

Read more
NPR's Backseat Book Club
3:01 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

How One Unkind Moment Gave Way To 'Wonder'

Random House

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 4:16 pm

In Wonder, R.J. Palacio tells the story of Auggie, a tough, sweet, 10-year-old boy, who was born with distorted facial features — a "craniofacial difference" caused by an anomaly in his DNA.

Palacio tells NPR's Michele Norris that the book was inspired by a real-life encounter with her own kids six years ago. They were at an ice cream store and sat next to a little girl with a severe facial deformity. Palacio's 3-year-old son cried in fear, so the author grabbed her kids and fled. She was trying to protect the girl but also avoid her own discomfort.

Read more
Book Reviews
12:03 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

Filmmaker Turns To Education Reform, Gets 'Schooled'

While researching his buoyant, impassioned (and thoroughly subtitled) new book about education, I Got Schooled: The Unlikely Story of How a Moonlighting Movie Maker Learned the Five Keys to Closing America's Education Gap, M. Night Shyamalan suddenly found himself at the head of an inner-city school English classroom. And he was terrified. "Time stopped," he writes, "similar to when you are on a plane with turbulence that's supposed to last thirty seconds, but it feels like much, much longer."

Read more
Monkey See
10:52 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Toronto 2013: Some Film Festival Highs And Lows

Julianne Nicholson, Meryl Streep, and Julia Roberts in August: Osage County.
Toronto International Film Festival

Tastiest Scenery To Chew: August: Osage County, the John Wells-directed adaptation of the Tracy Letts stage play, stars Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts, Juliette Lewis, Chris Cooper, Margo Martindale, Benedict Cumberbatch, and a generally very impressive cast. But Streep is cranked up to 11 as the miserable, pill-popping matriarch. I expect her to win an Oscar for this role, simply because it's so over-the-top and because she is compelling in it.

Read more
The Protojournalist
10:09 am
Thu September 12, 2013

How It Sounds To Be 28

Andrew Crago

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 11:12 am

Andrew Crago, 28, is an in-house designer for a nonprofit group in Chicago. He wears hearing aids and has tinnitus, so he is especially attuned to certain sounds.

What does your life sound like? Please send four sounds that tell the story of your life — at this moment in time — to protojournalist@npr.org. Please include your name, age, phone number and a list of your sounds. You may be contacted for an interview.

Read more
Ask Me Another
7:54 am
Thu September 12, 2013

We're Not Gonna Bake It

Professional competitive eaters Eric "Badlands" Booker (left) and Crazy Legs Conti.
Josh Rogosin NPR

Professional competitive eaters Crazy Legs Conti and Eric "Badlands" Booker join Ask Me Another for a round that'll make you hungry. House musician Jonathan Coulton quizzes them about different types of baked goods, with clues sung to the tune of the Twisted Sister anthem "We're Not Gonna Take It." Plus, find out how many pounds of quiche Crazy Legs can put away, and get a taste of Badlands' other talent—competitive eating-themed hip-hop.

Read more
Ask Me Another
7:54 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Minimum Sentence

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 10:03 am

Some people have a last name that is also a verb, so their full name forms a complete sentence--like George Burns and Stevie Nicks. (If you're one of these people, we salute you.) In this game, house musician Jonathan Coulton gives contestants clues about famous people whose names also tell a story--a very short story.

Ask Me Another
7:54 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Isn't It Ironic?

Rest assured, this game contains no ironic t-shirts or mustaches. Here, irony is defined as an "incongruous yet appropriate juxtaposition that highlights the discordant, revelatory nature of the universe." Deep. Play along as host Ophira Eisenberg asks contestants about certain ironic situations, like how the best-selling holiday song of all time, "White Christmas," was written by Irving Berlin--who was Jewish.

Plus, Jonathan Coulton tops off this game with a rendition of the pop standard "Everything Happens To Me."

Read more
Ask Me Another
7:54 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Sensational Spelling Bee

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

On our stage right now, we have Virginia Roberts and Grant Roberts. Welcome to ASK ME ANOTHER.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: You guys are visiting from Seattle, and I take it perhaps you are married with the same last name?

VIRGINIA ROBERTS: We'll see how it goes.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Virginia, you are an online dating coach, is that correct?

ROBERTS: That is correct.

EISENBERG: But what's the number one tip you give people when writing their online ad?

Read more
Ask Me Another
7:54 am
Thu September 12, 2013

The Last Film I'd Want To See

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Now it's time to crown this week's grand champion. Let's bring back from Isn't It Ironic, Jessica Morello; from Minimum Sentence, Whitney Reynolds; from Sensational Spelling Bee, Virginia Roberts; and from Nursery Rhyme News, Kevin Maroney.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: They'll be playing our Ask Me One More final round, and I'm going to ask puzzle guru Mary Tobler to lead our final game.

Read more
Ask Me Another
7:54 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Adam Rapoport: Good Eggs, Bad Apples

Bon Appétit magazine editor-in-chief Adam Rapoport." href="/post/adam-rapoport-good-eggs-bad-apples" class="noexit lightbox">
"I don't want a waiter to lecture me, and have to explain to me how to eat something. It's like, 'Dude, stop.'" Bon Appétit magazine editor-in-chief Adam Rapoport.
Courtesy of Adam Rapoport

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 11:33 am

Read more
Ask Me Another
7:54 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Nursery Rhyme News

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Let's say hello to our next two contestants, Amy Passiak and Kevin Maroney.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Amy, you are a classics major, and you work in art conservation. Kevin, you publish the New York Review of Science Fiction.

KEVIN MARONEY: It's true.

EISENBERG: Here is my first question for you, Amy. This is not a quiz, just curious. What is your favorite nursery rhyme?

AMY PASSIAK: Jack be nimble, Jack be quick. It's really the first one I can think of.

Read more
Monkey See
6:42 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Nothing Personal, But I'm Not Reading Your 'Breaking Bad' Analysis

Aaron Paul and Bryan Cranston as Jesse and Walt on AMC's Breaking Bad, which will have its finale in a few weeks.
Frank Ockenfels AMC

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 7:12 am

The closer we get to the end of Breaking Bad, the less I want to read about it.

I'm not calling for a moratorium on Breaking Bad content from now until the finale (and not only because of ... you know, futility.) From now until then, I expect an avalanche of recaps, interviews, think pieces, retrospectives, speculations and so forth. That's exactly as it should be with any show coming to a close, let alone a show as great as this one.

Read more
The Two-Way
5:13 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Book News: Lance Armstrong's Lies Are Protected, Judge Says

Lance Armstrong talks to the media after the 2011 Xterra Nationals triathlon in Utah.
Jim Urquhart AP

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 5:32 am

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

Read more
Book Reviews
5:03 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Mary Beard 'Confronts' The Classics With Wit And Style

iStockphoto.com

Early on in Confronting the Classics, Mary Beard tells the story of the Roman Emperor Elagabalus, who "used to seat his dinner guests on cushions that, unbeknownst to them, were full of air. As the meal progressed, a slave secretly let the air out, so Elagabalus could enjoy the sight of his companions subsiding, until they slid beneath the table."

Read more

Pages