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.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

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.


Office Depot Announces Plans To Merge With OfficeMax

Feb 20, 2013
Originally published on February 20, 2013 6:11 pm



From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block, with this accounting of the rapid pace of deal making in corporate America. This month alone, U.S. Airways and American Airlines merged, Comcast bought up NBC Universal, Warren Buffett teamed up with a Brazilian firm to buy the Heinz Company, and Michael Dell helped take the public company that bears his name private.

More on that in a few minutes. First, to today's deal in the world of office supplies. Office Depot and Office Max are planning to merge. NPR's Yuki Noguchi has more on that.

YUKI NOGUCHI, BYLINE: The two companies would have over 2,500 stores worldwide, nearly 70,000 employees and about $18 billion in sales. Ravi Saligram, the CEO of Office Max, said joining forces was necessary for the two to be on stronger financial and strategic footing.

RAVI SALIGRAM: This combination will create a stronger, more global, efficient competitor able to meet the growing challenges of a rapidly changing industry.

NOGUCHI: Both companies' sales have been declining and they say consolidating sales, distribution, advertising and employees will save 400 to $600 million annually. But regulatory approval remains an open question. Office Depot once tried to merge with another firm, Staples, back in 1997. The Federal Trade Commission challenged the deal in court and won.

But as Office Depot CEO Neil Austrian noted in a conference call, the market has changed a great deal since then.

NEIL AUSTRIAN: The Internet changed everything and I think all you had to do in '97 was walk into Wal-Mart and they may have had 100 to 200 square feet of office supplies and today they've got thousands of square feet of office supplies.

NOGUCHI: Online rivals like Amazon have also grabbed substantial marketshare, as has big warehouse stores like Costco. Plus, a merged Office Depot and Office Max would still be smaller than the industry leader, Staples, which is why BB&T Capital Markets managing director Anthony Chukumba says he doesn't think regulators will stop this deal.

ANTHONY CHUKUMBA: I'm not terribly concerned about this deal passing muster with the FTC. While the FTC did strike down the Staples/Office Depot deal in 1997, the competitive landscape has changed dramatically since that time.

NOGUCHI: Chukumba says brick and mortar office supply retailers have a very stable business, from small to large business clients who want one-stop shops that can deliver supplies quickly in a single delivery. Office Depot and Office Max said they will continue to compete as rivals until the deal closes, which they expect to happen by the end of the year.

An executive search firm will name the new head of the company and the new company's name and brand will be determined after the deal closes. Yuki Noguchi, NPR News, Washington. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.