NPR Staff



Sun April 5, 2015
Author Interviews

Explosive Protests: U.S. Bombings During 'Days Of Rage'

Originally published on Mon April 6, 2015 7:00 am

New York City firefighters work to put out a fire caused by explosions at 18 W. 11th St. on March 6, 1970. It was later discovered that the Weathermen, a radical left-wing organization, had been building bombs in the building's basement.
Marty Lederhandler AP

In the early 1970s thousands of bombings were taking place throughout the country — sometimes up to five a day. They were targeted protests, carried out by a multitude of radical activist groups: The Weather Underground, the Symbionese Liberation Army, the FALN, the Black Liberation Army.

According to author Bryan Burrough, there were at least a dozen underground organizations carrying out these attacks at the time. He writes that the bombings functioned as "exploding press releases."

Read more


Sun April 5, 2015
Book News & Features

Brattling After The Pacifire: 'That Should Be A Word'

Originally published on Sun April 5, 2015 11:19 am

Emily Jan NPR
Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit



Read more


Sat April 4, 2015
Shots - Health News

When It Comes To Insurance, Mental Health Parity In Name Only?

Originally published on Mon April 6, 2015 4:02 pm

Mental health care advocates say patients face challenges in insurance coverage.

By law, many U.S. insurance providers that offer mental health care are required to cover it just as they would cancer or diabetes care. But advocates say achieving this mental health parity can be a challenge.

Read more


Sat April 4, 2015
Author Interviews

Florida Teen, War Criminal: The Life Of An 'American Warlord'

Originally published on Wed April 8, 2015 3:33 pm

Chuckie Taylor in Liberia at an unknown date and location.
Courtesy of Johnny Dwyer and Lynn Henderson

Only one American in history has ever been convicted of torture committed abroad: Chuckie Taylor, the son of former Liberian President Charles Taylor.

His father led militants to take control of Liberia in the late '90s, went in exile after Liberia's Second Civil War and was found guilty of abetting war crimes in Sierra Leone. But young Chuckie Taylor seemed far removed from that warlord life — he lived in America with his mother and stepfather, just another teenager listening to hip-hop and watching TV in his room.

Read more


Sat April 4, 2015
My Big Break

Salad Ties And Breadsticks: Star Chef Started At The Olive Garden

Originally published on Sat April 4, 2015 6:25 pm

Stephanie Izard says the Olive Garden helped to reignite a childhood passion for food. She went to Scottsdale Culinary Institute in Arizona and later moved to Chicago where she opened up her first restaurant.
Jonathan Robert Willis Courtesy of Stephanie Izard

As part of a 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.

Stephanie Izard is the rock-star chef behind Chicago's award-winning Girl and the Goat restaurant, as well as Little Goat.

But the chain of events that brought her there started at, well, a chain.

"I got my first job at the Olive Garden," Izard says.

Read more


Sat April 4, 2015
Strange News

Pondering The Popularity Of The Pet Rock — And Other Fads

Originally published on Sat April 4, 2015 10:30 am

Pet Rock creator Gary Ross Dahl became a millionaire from his rock sales in the 1970s. Each rock came in a special box (bottom left) with a detailed instruction manual.
San Francisco Chronicle AP

The Hula Hoop. The pogo stick. The Tamagotchi.

Fads, crazes and must-have toys all sweep the country from time to time. But in the annals of faddish toys, one achievement stands tall — or rather, sits small: the Pet Rock.

It was exactly what it sounds like: a rock (a Mexican beach stone, to be precise) marketed in the mid-'70s as a pet. Each came in its own box with air holes and a detailed owner's manual.

Read more


Sat April 4, 2015
Author Interviews

Just 'Between You & Me,' Here Are Some Handy Grammar Tips

Originally published on Sat April 4, 2015 2:37 pm

In radio, we don't punctuate — at least, not on the air. Nevertheless, we're honored to meet a woman who is at the pinnacle of punctuation. Mary Norris is a copy editor at The New Yorker, a magazine justly famous for the care it takes with words. The work of very well-known authors has felt the authoritative pressure of her pencil since 1978 — and after a lifetime of improving the words of others, she has written her own book, Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen.

Read more


Fri April 3, 2015
The Salt

Straight Out Of Brooklyn: 'Encyclofoodia' Pokes Fun At Foodies

Originally published on Mon April 6, 2015 12:55 pm

Bloomsbury Publishing

If you're trying to feed some of the lumberjack hipsters of Brooklyn, you might try serving up some Huevos Machismos. And if you're seeking the next cleanse trend, look no further than the Ultimate Gushy Protein Sewage Blast. Like any balanced smoothie, it incorporates one ounce of "pure, uncut cocaine (for the boost)."

These are the recipes and advice you'd receive from the Mizretti brothers, two fictional restaurateurs who just published an "encyclofoodia" and cookbook called FUDS.

Read more


Thu April 2, 2015
Author Interviews

In Bhutto's 'Crescent Moon,' Pakistan 'Demands A Sacrifice From Its People'

Originally published on Thu April 2, 2015 10:22 am

Fatima Bhutto is also the author of Whispers of the Desert, Songs of Blood and Sword and 8.50 a.m. 8 October 2005.
Paul Wetherell Courtesy of Penguin Press

Fatima Bhutto is a member of one of the most famous families in Pakistan — a family that produced two prime ministers, her aunt Benazir Bhutto and her grandfather Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. And yet her latest book explores the lives of people who feel alienated from her country.

The Shadow of the Crescent Moon is about Pakistan's remote tribal regions. The country's national flag includes a white crescent moon against a green background.

Read more


Wed April 1, 2015

Centenarian Poet Was A Fearless Guide To 'The Country Of Old Age'

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 8:00 pm

Margaret Howe Freydburg — seen here at 104 — was still writing and publishing well past her 100th birthday.
Mark Lovewell Vineyard Gazette

Old age is in the news today — very old age. According to media reports, a 117-year-old Japanese woman has died; she was said to be the world's oldest person.

So we're going to take a moment to remember poet and author Margaret Howe Freydberg, who died last week at the age of 107. She was was young at heart — but also very honest about her thoughts on aging. "I think growing old, I think old age is disgusting," she told a historian in 2009.

Read more