The Boston Citgo sign, all 3,600 square LED feet of which has served as the backdrop to Red Sox games since 1965, is now officially a "pending landmark."

Spanish Surrealist Salvador Dalí spent much of the 1940s in the U.S., avoiding World War II and its aftermath. He was a well-known fixture on the art scene in Monterey, Calif. — and that's where the largest collection of Dalí's work on the West Coast is now open to the public.

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The middle of summer is when the surprises in publishing turn up. I'm talking about those quietly commanding books that publishers tend to put out now, because fall and winter are focused on big books by established authors. Which brings us to The Dream Life of Astronauts, by Patrick Ryan, a very funny and touching collection of nine short stories that take place in the 1960s and '70s around Cape Canaveral, Fla.

When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.


International Culinary Competition Gold Eludes Americans Again

Jan 30, 2013
Originally published on January 31, 2013 12:29 pm

Americans may have perfected food television and exported our fast-food tastes around the world, but we still haven't made it to the podium in the so-called Olympics of Cooking. The prestigious Bocuse d'Or chef competition, held in Lyon, France, on Tuesday and Wednesday, saw Team USA unable to break its dry streak, with a seventh-place finish behind winners France, Denmark and Japan.

The competition is a two-day event that's part Top Chef with a dash of World Cup. Each team of two chefs has about six hours to prepare a meat dish and a fish dish that will wow judges with their taste, creativity and presentation.

This year the U.S. team got serious about winning and holed up for months in a nuclear bunker, prepping for their big moment. Richard Rosendale, head chef at the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulfur Springs, W.Va., battled it out in 2012 to win the honor of representing his country, along with commis, or assistant chef, Corey Siegel. For the past year, the two have been coached by luminaries including Thomas Keller, Daniel Boulud and Jerome Bocuse, son of the competition's namesake, Paul Bocuse.

This year's competition was streamed live online and drew a wide following on Twitter. Representatives from 24 countries competed in front of a rowdy audience. Each team had to make two dishes based on Irish beef, European blue lobster and turbot (a flatfish), ingredients chosen in advance by the judging panel.

The U.S. has always been an underdog at the event and no American chef has ever placed higher than sixth, as Andrew Friedman chronicled in his 2011 book, Knives at Dawn. Fans this year were optimistic, though, chanting "USA-USA-USA" and waving signs. Fans from other countries rallied with marching bands and vuvuzelas.

Rosendale had reason for hope after the fanfare following the remarkable dish that won him a spot on the team. The platter was inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater house, located near his hometown in Pennsylvania. Rosendale created a similar platter for the meat portion in Lyon. American coach Gavin Kaysen says Rosendale tried to mimic the best parts about the iconic house.

"His plate has that inspiration and that flow, and he included foods they have there, like wild mushrooms," Kaysen says.

At the international competition, chefs are required to present a dish that's emblematic of their country. It's posed a problem for some U.S. competitors in the past, as American cuisine can be hard to define.

Rosendale decided to stick with what he knew and focused on Appalachia. For the fish portion, he poached and glazed the turbot with au jus. Beside it, he added cider-poached butternut squash, lobster mousse with cider, Virginia ham, black truffles and a "wild mushroom explosion" that was wrapped in consomme gel. His "Fallingwater" beef was a twist on pot roast with a hickory-grilled fillet that included asparagus, potato dumplings infused with beef broth and slow-roasted carrots.

His menu was crafted over the course of a year. Rosendale and Siegel also prepared themselves for the chaos of competition by piping in recorded sound of the crowd. They worked in a custom kitchen that was built inside a former Cold War bunker designed for Congress at the Greenbrier.

"We actually took chalk and chalked out on the floor basically exactly where everything was going to be," Rosendale told CBS.

There were also new challenges this year, as the competition started to resemble a reality show. For the first time, chefs weren't allowed to bring all of their own ingredients; instead, they were given a short time to shop at a local French market for their side dishes. Teams also had to plate their fish on 14 separate dishes to mimic the actual restaurant environment.

Despite finishing off the medal stand, adviser Keller said he was happy with the team's performance.

"We increased three positions from the competition in 2011 so we are moving in the right direction," he said.

There's always 2015.

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