Arts

9:54am

Wed March 11, 2015
Monkey See

Pop Culture Happy Hour, Small Batch Edition: 'King Of The Nerds'

Raychelle, Ben, Lily and Kaitlin are among the nerds in tight competition on TBS's King Of The Nerds.
Trae Patton TBS

In something of a companion piece to our earlier segment on nerd culture, Stephen and Glen sit down in this edition to chat about the social dynamics at work and at play on TBS's surprisingly charming competition show King Of The Nerds. Glen carefully distinguishes it from its predecessor Beauty And The Geek, then wonders whether when nerds act like reality show contestants, they're using the tactics of the enemy.

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7:03am

Wed March 11, 2015
Book Reviews

'B & Me' Is Intelligent, Immoderate, And A Bit Belabored

Originally published on Wed March 11, 2015 5:18 pm

Emily Jan NPR

J.C. Hallman's audacious B & Me: A True Story of Literary Arousal, is a textbook example of "creative criticism" — a highly personal form of literary response that involves "writers depicting their minds, their consciousnesses, as they think about literature." Hallman, who has championed creative criticism in two anthologies, has written a wildly intelligent, deeply personal, immoderate — and somewhat belabored — exploration of Nicholson Baker's entire oeuvre, reading in general, and the state of modern literature.

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7:33pm

Tue March 10, 2015
The Two-Way

Got To Give $7.4 Million Up: Jury Finds Pharrell And Thicke Copied Marvin Gaye Song

Originally published on Tue March 10, 2015 8:01 pm

A jury in Los Angeles decided Tuesday that Robin Thicke (left) and Pharrell Williams lifted parts of Marvin Gaye's 1977 hit "Got To Give It Up."
Jamie McCarthy Getty Images

7:18pm

Tue March 10, 2015
The Two-Way

Coming Out In A Galaxy Far Far Away: Star Wars Gets Its First LGBT Character

Originally published on Wed March 11, 2015 1:17 pm

Star Wars Lords Of The Sith will feature the first official LGBT character.
courtesy of the artist

Star Wars is getting its first official LGBT character. Her name is Moff Delian Mors, and she's a character in Paul S. Kemp's upcoming Star Wars: Lords of the Sith novel. Penguin Random House describes Mors as

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5:37pm

Tue March 10, 2015
Architecture

Museum Asks Visitors To Listen To New York's Buildings

Originally published on Tue March 10, 2015 7:16 pm

Karen Van Lengen and James Welty created a multimedia installation to encourage visitors to experience buildings like Grand Central Terminal not only through their eyes, but also their ears.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

When you're walking around New York City, you probably won't find people looking up. Even the majestic main concourse of Grand Central Terminal can rarely stop a native New Yorker in her tracks.

But, tourists like Lidize Mora from Las Vegas are a different story.

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5:37pm

Tue March 10, 2015
The Two-Way

A Day After His Death, Frei Otto Awarded Pritzker Architecture Prize

Originally published on Tue March 10, 2015 6:22 pm

Architect Frei Otto is known for the large-scale roofs on the sports facilities for the 1972 Munich Olympics.
Atelier Frei Otto Warmbronn

German architect Frei Otto is this year's winner of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, a day after his death at age 89.

The prize's jury, in its citation, said Otto had developed "a most sensitive architecture that has influenced countless others throughout the world."

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5:07pm

Tue March 10, 2015
Book Reviews

Shockwaves Of A Kidnapping Echo In 'Barefoot Dogs'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

5:03pm

Tue March 10, 2015
The Salt

Tea Tuesdays: The Scottish Spy Who Stole China's Tea Empire

Originally published on Fri March 13, 2015 11:44 am

Robert Fortune was a 19th-century Scottish botanist who helped the East India Trading Company swipe the secrets of tea production from China.
Apic/Getty Images

Editor's Note: A version of this story originally ran in March 2010.

In the mid-19th century, Britain was an almost unchallenged empire. It controlled about a fifth of the world's surface, and yet its weakness had everything to do with tiny leaves soaked in hot water: tea. By 1800, it was easily the most popular drink among Britons.

The problem? All the tea in the world came from China, and Britain couldn't control the quality or the price. So around 1850, a group of British businessmen set out to create a tea industry in a place they did control: India.

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2:55pm

Tue March 10, 2015
Television

New HBO Now Streaming Service Shows Consumer's Will Is King

Originally published on Tue March 10, 2015 7:40 pm

Richard Plepler, CEO of HBO, talks about HBO Now during an Apple event Monday in San Francisco.
Eric Risberg AP

There's a lesson at the heart of the announcement Monday by HBO that it was finally starting the standalone video streaming service they have been talking about for five months, HBO Now.

In a media world fragmented by digital technology, the consumer's will is king.

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2:25pm

Tue March 10, 2015
The Salt

'Test Kitchen': How To Make Vegetarian Dishes Pop With A Little Umami

Originally published on Fri March 13, 2015 11:46 am

Jack Bishop says it's the soy sauce in the Mushroom Bolognese that really makes it pop.
Joe Keller Courtesy of America's Test Kitchen

Just because a meal is vegetarian doesn't mean it can't be "meaty." One trick to heighten the depth of flavors in plant-based dishes? Use ingredients that offer a pop of umami, say Bridget Lancaster and Jack Bishop of America's Test Kitchen, who have released the new cookbook The Complete Vegetarian Cookbook.

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