As part of a new series called "My Big Break," All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.
On Jan. 18, 1990, Washington, D.C., Mayor Marion Barry was arrested for possession and use of crack cocaine in a hotel room during an FBI sting.
Meanwhile, at The Washington Post, intern Bill O'Leary was waiting for his first real assignment.
Originally published on Sun January 19, 2014 2:06 pm
Rep. Mike Rogers made some strong allegations against former NSA contractor Edward Snowden on NBC's Meet the Press Sunday.
Rogers, a Republican from Michigan, implied that Snowden received helped from Russia's security service both to steal the highly classified documents and then to travel to Russia, where he received temporary asylum.
Those close to a powerful elected official, like a governor or the president, may owe their success to the boss. Yet there are times when the interests of the person on top and those who serve will diverge, and the outcome is predictable.
"When you're a staffer or consultant, at some level you have to understand that you're a bit like a milk carton and at some point you'll reach your expiration date," says Chris Lehane, a Democratic consultant. "There could always be a time when the principal is going to have to effectively throw you under the bus."
Chilean soap actress Paulina Sanchez is another performer who understands that success can take a long time. Ms. Sanchez has worked on stage and appeared in soap operas in Chile since the 1980s. This year, she stars in the title role of her very first feature film. It's called "Gloria," directed by Sebastian Lelio. The director keeps the camera close on Sanchez as she portrays this hardworking divorced mother of two in her late 50's, who's trying to navigate her life, a life full of unmet expectations.
Back in the U.S., while there were complaints that some of the recommendations were vague, reactions have been nonetheless swift, especially in Congress. Joining us to talk about the political fallout at home is NPR's political correspondent Mara Liasson. Good morning, Mara.
MARA LIASSON, BYLINE: Good morning, Rachel.
MARTIN: So, the president's NSA proposals, how are they going over on Capitol Hill?
We're going to turn our attention now to piracy. There have been a string of pirate attacks off the coast of Somalia over the past few years. One was the basis of an Oscar-nominated film starring Tom Hanks.
The deal is only an interim one, but it is the first step in yet another effort to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. NPR's Rachel Martin talks to Danielle Pletka of the American Enterprise Institute, who does not believe that this deal is a good one. Pletka is the co-author of Containing and Deterring a Nuclear Iran.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. In a close vote, Syria's political opposition agreed to attend peace talks this week in Switzerland. The U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry hailed the decision as courageous. The vote clears the way for the first face-to-face negotiations in a war that has devastated Syria and destabilized the region. NPR's Deborah Amos has been following the latest developments from Beirut. Good morning, Deb.
Last year, revelations that the U.S. had tapped German Chancellor Angela Merkel's cell phone soured relations between the two allies. In Europe, President Obama's recommendations to reign in the NSA when it comes to listening to foreign leaders was met with a lukewarm reaction. NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson reports that Germans are especially skeptical that the changes will mean an end to American eavesdropping.
Time now for another episode of archrival series, Wingin' It. This week, we introduce you to an 87-something-year-old British sailor who has racked up approximately 300,000 nautical miles; sometimes with no crew, just him and his 42-foot yacht, Fiona.
As the U.S. government has militarized the California and Arizona segment of the Southwest border over the last two decades, illegal crossers have moved to another area. South Texas has become the new border hot spot.
The Rio Grande Valley is also the closest route to Central America. Two-thirds of those caught crossing are from that troubled region.
The Border Patrol and local authorities are straining to keep up.
We all know talking on the phone or texting while driving is dangerous. More than 41 states have laws that make it illegal to text while driving. Most have laws that forbid new drivers from using their cell phones at all. But that doesn't stop drivers of all ages from talking and typing away. In December, reporter Alisa Roth rode along with a New York state trooper to see how the ban is working there. Here's an encore broadcast of her story.
On-air challenge:Name a word that, when combined with three words beginning with the letter B, completes a compound word or a familiar two-word phrase. For example, given "brew," "body" and "base," you would say "home" (home-brew, homebody, home base).
Last week's challenge:Name a familiar form of exercise in two words. Switch the order of the two words, then say them out loud. The result, phonetically, will name something to wear. What is it?
Plenty of college courses delve into the big philosophical questions of life, but Norma Bowe's class was different. For years, the nurse and college professor taught a class that forced students to confront death head-on — there were poems about death, trips to cemeteries and funeral homes, and "goodbye letter" writing assignments. At its core, the class became an opportunity for students to try to come to grips with the death or pending death of a loved one in their own lives.
Poems dwell in an ambiguous space, shelved somewhere between fiction and fact, imagination and experience. Even when poems seem wholly authentic, we can't assume they're accurate — after all, "poetic license" is the catch-all excuse for blurry lines between truth and fabrication.
Originally published on Sun January 19, 2014 12:50 pm
Even if you've never read Kenneth Fearing's noir novel The Big Clock, it's likely you already know its basic story and its biggest twist: the book was (very) loosely adapted as the popular (and pretty excellent) 1987 thriller No Way Out, starring Kevin Costner, Gene Hackman and Sean Young.
Originally published on Wed January 22, 2014 11:17 am
If you still have your Christmas tree up in your living room because you just can't bear the thought of throwing out all that fine pine scent, then you may be an evergreen addict. If you still have it up because you're too lazy to take off the ornaments, then you may be a hoarder, but that's another post.
Fear not, conifer connoisseurs. You don't have to wait for the holidays to surround yourself with spruce. American chefs from coast to coast are using evergreens to develop unique flavors in dishes, from white fir and sorrel broth to pine needle vinegar to smoked mussels.
Today, the voices of Roebuck "Pops" Staples and his four children — Cleotha, Mavis, Pervis and Yvonne — are woven into America's DNA. As the Staple Singers, the family created a sound that was part blues, part gospel and part folk, breaking down musical walls and inspiring civil rights leaders.
If you're a football fan, Sunday is kind of like Christmas.
Two conference championship games will determine the teams that advance to the Super Bowl, and the matchups couldn't be more exciting: Denver vs. New England (Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady). And some would say the other game, pitting San Francisco against Seattle, might just feature the two best teams in the league.
America shows its love for the sport in many ways beyond breathless anticipation of big games. It also gives back to the National Football League with tax breaks and publicly funded stadiums.