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.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.


Unwrap 'Christmas' For Your Gift

Dec 23, 2012
Originally published on December 23, 2012 12:41 pm

On-air challenge: Every answer is a word that can be formed from the letters of "Christmas." You'll be given two words as clues. The first one can precede the answer word, and the second one can follow it — in each case to complete a compound word or familiar two-word phrase. For example, given "forward" and "madness," the answer would be "march" (as in "forward march" and "March Madness").

Last week's challenge from listener Henri Picciotto of Berkeley, Calif.: Name a two-word geographical location. Remove the first letter. Move one of the other letters to the front of what's left. This will result in a single word that names what you are most likely looking through when you see that geographical location. What is it?

Answer: North Pole, porthole

Winner: Dan Ezekiel of Ann Arbor, Mich.

Next week's challenge: Take the last name of a famous actor. Drop the first letter, and you'll get the last name of a famous artist. Drop the first letter again, and you'll get the name of a god in classical mythology. What names are these?

Submit Your Answer

If you know the answer to next week's challenge, submit it here. Listeners who submit correct answers win a chance to play the on-air puzzle. Important: Include a phone number where we can reach you Thursday at 3 p.m. Eastern.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.



This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. Put down that eggnog and step away from the mistletoe because it is time for the puzzle.


MARTIN: And joining me now is WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle-master Will Shortz. Good morning, Will.

WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Rachel.

MARTIN: OK. So, catch us up. What was our challenge last week, Will?

SHORTZ: Yes. It came from listener Henry Picciotto of Berkeley, California. And it said name a two-word geographical location. Remove the first letter and move one of the other letters to the front. What's left is a single word that names what you are most likely looking through when you see this geographical location. What is it? Well, the geographic location is the North Pole. If you drop the N and move the P to the front, you get a porthole.

MARTIN: OK. I'm fairly sure Santa Claus probably figured that out pretty quick. Besides, Santa Claus, about 570 of our listeners sent in the correct answer. And our randomly selected winner this week is Dan Ezekiel of Ann Arbor, Michigan. And he joins us on the phone. Congratulations, Dan.

DAN EZEKIEL: Thank you. I am just happy and excited to be on the show.

MARTIN: We're excited to have you. So, what do you do in Ann Arbor?

EZEKIEL: I'm a science teacher at a middle school.

MARTIN: Great. Do you ever use puzzles in your classroom?

EZEKIEL: I coach an academic team also called Knowledge Master, and sometimes I read them the Sunday puzzle and let them work on it.

MARTIN: You're a puzzler. You've been doing the Sunday puzzle on our show for a long time?

EZEKIEL: I think as long as you've been doing it.

MARTIN: Wow. That's postcard days. That's a long time.

EZEKIEL: I used to send in my answers on postcards.

MARTIN: Wow. Well, we're happy to have you with us this week. I like your persistence. And now we'll see if you can perform under pressure, Dan.


EZEKIEL: I hope so. I'm happy and excited to try.

MARTIN: All right. Well, without further ado, Will, let's play the puzzle.

SHORTZ: All right, Dan. Every answer today is a word that can be formed from the letters of Christmas. I'll give you two words as clues. The first one can precede the answer word and the second one can follow it, in each case to complete a compound word or a familiar two-word phrase. For example, if I said forward and madness, you would say march, as in forward march and March Madness. And the word march can be formed from the letters of Christmas.

MARTIN: Dan, do you have it?


MARTIN: All right. Let's do it, Will.

SHORTZ: All right. Number one: polo, sleeve.

EZEKIEL: Polo and...

SHORTZ: Polo blank and blank sleeve.


SHORTZ: Polo shirt and shirt sleeve, and shirt can be formed from the letters of Christmas, good. Number two is rocking, lift.

EZEKIEL: What was the second one?


EZEKIEL: Rocking and lift. Chair.

SHORTZ: Rocking chair and chair lift, good. Critical, market.


SHORTZ: That's fast. Lucky, bracelet.


SHORTZ: Lucky charm, charm bracelet. Grudge, stick.


SHORTZ: That's good. Computer, course.

EZEKIEL: Computer and course. Do you see this one, Rachel?

MARTIN: Oh sure. Now you ask me for the hard one, man.


EZEKIEL: Computer and what's the second word?

SHORTZ: Course C-O-U-R-S-E.


SHORTZ: Computer crash and crash course, good.

MARTIN: Great.

SHORTZ: Johnny, register.


SHORTZ: Johnny Cash, cash register, good. Golf G-O-L-F and wheel W-H-E-E-L.

EZEKIEL: Golf and wheel?

SHORTZ: Right.

EZEKIEL: OK. Golf cart.


SHORTZ: Golf cart, cartwheel, good. Type - that's T-Y-P-E - type and iron.


SHORTZ: Oh, that's fast.

MARTIN: That was quick.

SHORTZ: Filthy and little.


SHORTZ: Filthy rich and Rich Little. And your last one is street and aleck.

EZEKIEL: Street and aleck - smart.

SHORTZ: Street smart and smart aleck.

MARTIN: Smart, which is what you are, Dan. That was really great. You did that very quickly. Good job.

EZEKIEL: Thank you, Rachel.

MARTIN: And, of course, for playing the puzzle today, you'll get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin and puzzle books and games. And you can read all about it at npr.org/Puzzle. And before we let you go, Dan, what's your public radio station?

EZEKIEL: Oh, Tina and I are members of WEMU in Ypsilanti and WUOM, Michigan Radio, in Ann Arbor.

MARTIN: Great. Dan Ezekiel of Ann Arbor, Michigan. Thanks so much for playing the puzzle, Dan.

EZEKIEL: Oh, it was a lot of fun. Thanks for having me.


OK, Will. What's the puzzle present for this coming week?

SHORTZ: Yes, take the last name of a famous actor. Drop the first letter and you'll get the last name of a famous artist. Drop the first letter again and you'll get the name of a god in classical mythology. What names are these?

So again, last name of a famous actor. Drop the first letter. You get the last name of a famous artist. Drop that first letter again and you get the name of a god. What names are these?

MARTIN: OK, when you have the answer, go to our website, npr.org/puzzle and click on the Submit Your Answer link - just one entry per person, please. And our deadline for entries is Thursday, December 27th at 3 P.M. Eastern Time.

Please include a phone number where we can reach you at about that time. And if you're the winner we'll give you a call, and you'll get to play on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle-master, Will Shortz.

And next week's puzzle will be our annual Names in the News Quiz, so be sure to brush up on your news.

And thanks so much, Will. And Happy Holidays to you.

SHORTZ: Thank you, Rachel, Merry Christmas.

MARTIN: Merry Christmas.

(SOUNDBITE OF THEME MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.