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The Two-Way
7:26 am
Sat July 6, 2013

'Horrific Attack' On School In Nigeria; Dozens Dead

Nigeria.
CIA World Factbook

There's very disturbing news from Nigeria:

"At least 29 pupils and a teacher have been killed in a pre-dawn attack by suspected Islamists on a school in northeastern Nigeria, reports say." (BBC News)

The BBC's Will Ross, reporting from Lagos, adds that "it sounds like a horrific attack." Survivors say the gunmen set fire to buildings. Some of the students were burned alive, he reports, while "others were shot as they tried to run away."

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Fresh Air Weekend
7:03 am
Sat July 6, 2013

Fresh Air Weekend: Questlove, Elisabeth Moss And 'Claire DeWitt'

In his new memoir, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson describes his life in music — and how he mimicked beats at just 10 months old.
Danny Clinch Grand Central Publishing

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 9:54 am

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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The Two-Way
6:26 am
Sat July 6, 2013

If Snowden Tries To Get To Latin America, Cuba Could Be Key

Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, who spilled secrets about the NSA's surveillance programs, has been condemned by U.S. officials. But he's been praised by some people around the world. In Berlin this week, supporters carried his picture at a demonstration.
Ole Spata DPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 7:22 pm

Update at 9:22 p.m. ET. Snowden Reveals Documents On Brazil:

Amid requests and offers of asylum in Latin America, Edward Snowden has apparently released documents showing that the U.S. spied on millions of emails and phone calls of Brazilians. NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro tells our Newscast Desk the report, published in the Rio de Janeiro paper O Globo, was co-written by Glenn Greenwald, who has been covering the National Security Agency's programs.

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Environment
6:25 am
Sat July 6, 2013

One Garden's Climate Struggle (And How To Save Yours)

Many of the flowers at Hillwood are doing well despite the ever-changing local climate.
Emily Files NPR

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 10:44 am

At the Hillwood Estate gardens in Washington, D.C., the new norm is: "Expect the unexpected." So says volunteer coordinator Bill Johnson, who has worked on property belonging to the heiress of the Post cereal fortune for 30 years.

Like home gardeners, the horticulturalists and professional gardeners at Hillwood are confronting an unpredictable climate.

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Political Crisis In Egypt
6:21 am
Sat July 6, 2013

The U.S. Holds The Aid Card, Yet Egypt Still Trumps

Egyptian protesters celebrate in Tahrir Square on Wednesday. The United States has managed to alienate just about every political actor in Egypt.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 7:04 pm

The ouster of Mohammed Morsi puts the U.S. in an awkward position: By law, the administration is supposed to cut off aid to a country after a military coup, but Egypt's military has been a key to regional stability. As the administration considers its next steps, it's come under criticism from all sides in Egypt over how it's handling the situation.

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The Two-Way
5:44 am
Sat July 6, 2013

After Deadly Clashes, Cairo Is Calmer But Still Tense

A poster showing ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi was hanging on barbed wire outside the headquarters of the Republican Guard in Cairo on Saturday. On the other side, guards stood watch.
Khaled Elfiqi EPA/Landov

Originally published on Sun July 7, 2013 11:08 am

(We most recently updated the top of this post at 2:05 p.m. ET.)

The death toll from clashes Friday and into early Saturday in Egypt now stands at 36, authorities say. That estimate, released just before 11 a.m. ET, was up from the 30 deaths that had been reported when the day began.

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Around the Nation
4:24 am
Sat July 6, 2013

With Bullets Scarce, More Shooters Make Their Own

Since the Newtown school shooting in December, gun stores nationwide have had difficulty keeping ammunition, like these .223-caliber rifle bullets, in stock.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 7:05 pm

Gun stores around the country have had difficulty keeping up with demand for ammunition in recent months. Fears of government tightening of gun and ammunition controls have meant that retailers, from Wal-Mart to mom-and-pop gun shops, haven't been able to keep bullets on the shelves.

Cliff Poser's gun shop, Cliff's Guns, Safes and Reloading in Boise, Idaho, is one of them. Business has been so crazy lately that he has to keep a special stash of ammunition, just so customers who buy guns from him can also buy bullets.

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Middle East
4:15 am
Sat July 6, 2013

Egypt Remains On Edge After Deadly Clashes

Opponents of Egypt's Islamist ousted President Mohammed Morsi wave national flags as they celebrate in Tahrir Square on Friday.
Amr Nabil AP

Cairo's emblematic Tahrir Square and nearby approaches to the River Nile are largely empty and debris-strewn today and Egypt remains on edge after deadly clashes between supporters and opponents of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi.

The two sides fought overnight street battles that left at least 30 dead across the increasingly divided country.

Ismalists are enraged at Morsi's overthrow by millions of protesters backed by the country's powerful military.

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Code Switch
2:48 am
Sat July 6, 2013

Remembering Birmingham's 'Dynamite Hill' Neighborhood

Three civil rights workers stand guard in front NAACP attorney Arthur Shores' house in Sept. 1963. The house was blasted by dynamite the night before.
AP

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 7:54 am

Long before the Civil Rights marches of 1963 thrust Birmingham, Ala. into the national spotlight, black families along one residential street were steadily chipping away at Jim Crow segregation laws — and paying a price for it. As part of our series looking back at the seminal events that changed the nation 50 years ago, NPR's Debbie Elliott paid a visit to Birmingham's Dynamite Hill.

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Health
2:31 am
Sat July 6, 2013

Growing The Latest In 16th-Century Medicine

The opium poppy is the most common source of opium and morphine.
New York Botanical Garden

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 4:37 pm

The Renaissance Garden at the New York Botanical Garden, a re-creation of a 16th-century medicinal garden, is so lush and colorful, it takes only a stroll through to absorb its good medicine.

The garden, part of a summer exhibit called Wild Medicine: Healing Plants Around the World, is a small-scale model of the Italian Renaissance Garden in Padua, Italy, Europe's first botanical garden.

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Parallels
2:23 am
Sat July 6, 2013

After A Rapid Rise, A Challenge To Political Islam

Egyptian soldiers stand guard outside the Republican Guard building in Cairo on Friday. Egyptian troops clashed with mostly Islamist protesters demanding the restoration of the ousted president, Mohammed Morsi.
Khalil Hamra AP

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 4:58 pm

The Arab uprisings of 2011 produced a clear set of winners — the Islamist parties that were well-organized and prepared to swiftly fill the political vacuum left by toppled autocrats.

But the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood now points to the possibility of a countertrend: the failure of Islamist groups to govern effectively and growing public discontent with their rule.

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Theater
4:29 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

For Hannibal & Co., A Horrifying New Stage

Exorcistic, a rock parody inspired by a certain 1971 novel and the William Friedkin film made from it, showcases Merlin as a rapping priest inspired by Max von Sydow's Father Merrin. Above, the show poster for the musical's Los Angeles fringe production.
David Haverty Hollywood Fringe

Originally published on Wed July 24, 2013 12:26 pm

What do a reanimated deviant surgeon, a cannibalistic serial killer and a demon-plagued, vomit-spattered priest have in common? They're all characters in camp stage musicals inspired by horror films — and they're all played by the same classically trained opera singer.

His name is Jesse Merlin, and he looks a little like a young, untanned George Hamilton. But he has a bass-baritone voice that would be perfect for Gilbert and Sullivan.

Since that's not what Hollywood's looking for, Merlin had to scare up roles elsewhere.

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The Salt
3:53 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

What Is Farm Runoff Doing To The Water? Scientists Wade In

Scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey sample water in Goodwater Creek, Mo., for pesticides and other chemicals that may have run off from the surrounding land.
Abbie Fentress Swanson Harvest Public Media

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:37 am

America's hugely productive food system is one of its success stories. The nation will export a projected $139.5 billion in agricultural products this fiscal year alone. It's an industry that supports "more than 1 million jobs," according to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

But all that productivity has taken a toll on the environment, especially rivers and lakes: Agriculture is the nation's leading cause of impaired water quality, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Around the Nation
3:48 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Vacation Horror Stories: Battling Snow And Broken Transmissions

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

The search for true relaxation can be a taxing one. You take some time off to get away thinking of paradise and then harsh reality sets in. That's the sort of experience we're chronicling this summer in a series we call...

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Vacation...

(SOUNDBITE OF SCREAM)

SIEGEL: ...Horror Stories.

JIM MCLAUGHLIN: Hi, my name is Jim McLaughlin, and I live in Hershey, Pennsylvania. My wife, my sister, and our combined four children...

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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Parallels
3:48 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Gatsby-Like Extravagance And Wealth ... In Communist China

A waiter delivers glasses of wine to guests at a luxury hotel bar near the Bund in Shanghai, on Sept. 8, 2012.
Aly Song Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:37 am

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Economy
3:00 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Jobs Keep Growing. How Soon Should The Fed Stop Helping?

Many economists are encouraged by the latest jobs report because the stronger growth doesn't appear to be just a one-month blip.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:37 am

The latest employment report is encouraging to many economists because the stronger job growth doesn't appear to be just a one-month blip. But some worry that it's so strong the Federal Reserve may pull back efforts to boost the economy.

The Labor Department's newest data released Friday shows the U.S. added 195,000 jobs in June. The prior two months were also revised upward — above 190,000 for both April and May.

That's three months of more-robust job growth.

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Book Reviews
2:54 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

'Five Star Billionaire' Shows The Human Cost Of Progress

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:37 am

The plot of Five Star Billionaire, with its multiple protagonists, may seem deceptively familiar: a neglected boy claws his way from rags to riches; a country girl tries to make her way in the city; a city girl tries to prove her worth in a man's world of business; a rock star falls victim to the fame machine; and a rich man tumbles from grace.

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Social Entrepreneurs: Taking On World Problems
2:25 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

At Cambodia Hotel, The Workers Are The Boss

Traffic passes in front of the Soria Moria Boutique Hotel in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
Will Baxter for NPR

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:37 am

This story is part of NPR's ongoing series about social entrepreneurs — people around the world who are dreaming up innovative ways to develop communities and solve social problems.

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NPR Story
1:50 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Summer Songs: Since You Can't Escape Them, Hope To Enjoy Them

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 3:49 pm

It's the time of the season when love for pop music runs high. Summer is officially here, and an unofficial competition is underway to crown 2013's "Song of the Summer." We're talking about those unavoidable pop anthems that are played over and over again on the radio, at the beach and out the window of passing cars. You can't escape them — you can only hope to enjoy them. NPR Music curated a list featuring more than 100 of the hits from the last 50 years.

NPR Story
1:50 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Two Former Popes Approved For Sainthood

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:37 am

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. Two of the most beloved popes in recent memory - John Paul II and John XXIII - have been formally approved for sainthood. NPR's Sylvia Poggioli reports that in his first four months as pope, Francis has shown great personal and spiritual affinity with these two predecessors.

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NPR Story
1:50 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Morsi's Ousting Prompts Strong Reactions Around Middle East

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 3:49 pm

The immediate reaction to the military overthrow of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi reveals how political and religious fault lines have shifted in the region. Saudi Arabia, an Islamist theocracy, quickly praised the ouster of the Muslim Brotherhood, a group Riyadh sees as a rival. Also cheering was Syria's Bashar al-Assad, whom the Saudis are trying to help force from power.

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Shots - Health News
1:46 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Genes May Reveal When Aspirin Won't Reduce Heart Risk

Aspirin has been prescribed for decades as a simple way to reduce heart disease risk, but doctors still aren't sure how it works.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon July 8, 2013 11:18 am

People are often told to take low-dose aspirin to reduce the risk of heart attacks and stroke. But that preventive remedy doesn't work for a lot of people.

Researchers say they've found genetic variations that might be used to identify people who don't respond well to aspirin. If the results prove out, there could soon be a blood test to tell who benefits from aspirin, and who needs to look for other treatments to reduce cardiovascular risk.

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The Two-Way
1:44 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

40 Years Of Disco Duds Prove A Teacher Can Be Awesome, Too

Dale Irby in 1973 (left) when his streak began, and in 2012, when the last of his 40 wonderful school photos was taken.
Courtesy of Dale Irby and The Dallas Morning News

One word came to mind this week when we saw the stories about Texas physical education teacher Dale Irby and how he had worn the same "groovy shirt and sweater vest" for every school photo in the past 40 years:

Awesome.

Before we explore his awesomeness, though, here's some background.

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
12:36 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

NIH Director Francis Collins Plays Not My Job

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 9:41 am

Transcript

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Francis Collins is a pretty good scientist. He unraveled the human genome, among other parlor tricks and now he's the head of the National Institutes of Health. We started our visit with him by asking him what the heck that is.

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
12:36 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Smithsonian's Wayne Clough Plays Not My Job

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 9:41 am

Transcript

CARL KASELL: From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell. And here again is your host, at the Chase Bank Auditorium in downtown Chicago, Peter Sagal.

(APPLAUSE)

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
12:36 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Astrophysicist Adam Riess Plays Not My Job

Originally published on Sat July 6, 2013 9:41 am

Transcript

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Winning a Nobel Prize, that's not cool. You know what's cool? Winning a MacArthur Grant and then winning a Nobel Prize.

CARL KASELL: Astrophysicist Adam Reiss did just that, winning the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2011. And he joined us that very week, along with P.J. O'Rourke, Paula Poundstone and Luke Burbank.

SAGAL: I started by asking him if he could explain what his award was for.

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The Two-Way
12:27 pm
Fri July 5, 2013

Djokovic And Murray Win, Advance To Wimbledon Final

Serbia's Novak Djokovic (left) embraces Argentina's Juan Martin Del Potro after their match on day 11 of the 2013 Championships at Wimbledon.
Carl Court AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 3:32 pm

Novak Djokovic, the top seed in the Wimbledon men's draw, advanced to Sunday's singles final in a record-setting 4 hours, 43 minutes. The longest semifinal in tournament history, his five-set match fell only five minutes shy of the time set in a marathon 2008 five-set final between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

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The Two-Way
11:39 am
Fri July 5, 2013

Florida Family, Historic Yacht Presumed Lost Off New Zealand

This undated photo provided by the St. Andrews Historic Seaport and Commercial Marina in Panama City, Fla., shows American David Dyche, skipper of the 70-foot (21-meter) vessel Nina.
AP

Originally published on Fri July 5, 2013 11:55 am

The search for six Americans and one British man lost in the seas between New Zealand and Australia was called off Friday after extensive aerial searches failed to turn up any sign of the 85-year-old wooden sailing boat they were traveling on.

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Planet Money
11:26 am
Fri July 5, 2013

How To Spend $442 On A 15-Minute Cab Ride

Don Emmert AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:37 am

Say you're in Midtown Manhattan at rush hour. You need to go a mile uptown, and you can't find a cab. A pedicab, a taxi-bicycle hybrid (like the one in the picture) may not be a bad option.

Riding through the middle of Manhattan on the back of a bike, dodging buses and cabs, feels like the Wild West of transportation options. The pricing feels that way too: Unlike buses or cabs, pedicabs don't charge a set fee. It's whatever the rider and the driver agree to. And, like in the Wild West, innocents often get fleeced.

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