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Around the Nation
11:22 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Extra Vaccination Push Underway In Ohio As Mumps Outbreak Spreads

Health officials are making an extra push for vaccination against mumps in Columbus, Ohio, in the wake of an outbreak that started at Ohio State University.
iStockphoto

Health officials in Columbus, Ohio, are calling the city's mumps outbreak the biggest since the development of the mumps vaccine in the 1940s.

Columbus generally gets an average of one case of mumps a year, but since February, there have been 244 cases reported in an outbreak that began on the Ohio State University campus. Most had already been vaccinated.

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The Two-Way
11:13 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Pakiastani TV Journalist Hamid Mir Wounded In Attack

A Pakistani policeman points to the damaged car that was carrying Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir when he was attacked in Karachi Saturday. Mir is reportedly out of immediate danger.
Asif Hassan AFP/Getty Images

Prominent TV anchor Hamid Mir is in a Karachi hospital after gunmen opened fire on his car Saturday afternoon. Mir's car was ambushed by attackers, at least some of whom were riding motorcycles, according to local media reports.

Details about the attack are still emerging. Mir's broadcast network, Geo TV, says he arrived at a hospital in critical condition after being shot three times in the leg and torso, citing police. Mir's driver reportedly escaped injury; the gunmen remain at large.

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Fresh Air Weekend
11:00 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Fresh Air Weekend: 'Missing Microbes,' 'The Both,' And Mike Judge's 'Silicon Valley'

According to Dr. Martin Blaser, the overuse of antibiotics has contributed to killing off strains of bacteria that typically live in the gut.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

Modern Medicine May Not Be Doing Your Microbiome Any Favors: In Missing Microbes, Dr. Martin Blaser argues that the overuse of antibiotics, as well as now-common practices like C-sections, may be messing with gut microbes.

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The Two-Way
10:01 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Ancient Landscape Is Found Under 2 Miles Of Ice In Greenland

A new study suggests the Greenland Ice Sheet did not fully melt during previous periods of global warming — and that it preserved a tundra beneath it.
Joshua Brown University of Vermont

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 10:25 am

In a surprising discovery, scientists have found evidence of a tundra landscape in Greenland that's millions of years old. The revelation goes against widely held ideas about how some glaciers work, and it suggests that at least parts of Greenland's ice sheet had survived periods of global warming intact.

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Environment
9:07 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Telltale Rainbow Sheens Show Thousands Of Spills Across The Gulf

The 300,000 wells drilled in Louisiana are connected by tens of thousands of miles of pipelines that are vulnerable to leaks, like this one in a coastal marsh.
Gulf Restoration Network

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

Jonathan Henderson of New Orleans-based Gulf Restoration Network is flying Louisiana's coast looking for oil. As usual, he's found some.

"I just noticed something out of the corner of my eye that looks like a sheen that had some form to it," he says. "We're going to go take a closer look and see if there's a rainbow sheen."

It's a target-rich environment for Henderson, because more than 54,000 wells were planted in and off this coast — part of the 300,000 wells in the state. They're connected by thousands of miles of pipelines, all vulnerable to leaks.

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Krulwich Wonders...
9:03 am
Sat April 19, 2014

So This Is How They Do It! Zebras Getting Stripes

Ricardo Solis

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 10:42 am

How did it happen? How'd the zebra get its stripes?

In Rudyard Kipling's version, a gray, horsey-looking beast went into "a great forest 'sclusively full of trees and bushes and stripy, speckly, patchy-batchy shadows," stayed there awhile, and after a "long time"... got stripy.

OK. Not bad.

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Sports
8:09 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Top Teams Sitting Out Of NBA Playoffs

Some of the NBA's hottest teams missed the cut for this year's playoffs. And to what lengths will Cuban athletes go for a chance to play in the MLB? ESPN.com's Howard Bryant tells NPR's Wade Goodwyn.

The Two-Way
7:41 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Ukraine Calls An Easter Truce In Clash With Militants

Masked pro-Russian activists guard a barricade at an occupied regional administration building in Donetsk, Ukraine, Saturday. Ukraine says it is suspending an "anti-terrorist" operation for Easter.
Efrem Lukatsky AP

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 10:14 am

Citing progress in diplomacy and this weekend's Easter holiday, Ukrainian officials say they've suspended an "anti-terrorist operation" that is aimed at pro-Russian forces who have occupied government buildings in eastern Ukraine.

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The Two-Way
6:57 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Captain Apologizes As Death Toll Rises In S. Korea Ferry Accident

A South Korean navy frogman dives into a water to search passengers believed to have been trapped in the sunken ferry Sewol in the water off the southern coast near Jindo, south of Seoul, South Korea, Saturday.
Lee Jin-man AP

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 10:21 am

Divers searching a sunken South Korean ferry have found three more bodies, bringing the number of victims to 32. Since the ship sank Wednesday, difficult conditions have complicated recovery efforts; heavy cranes have arrived that can shift the ferry, but officials say they'll wait to use them until they're sure none of the hundreds still missing managed to survive.

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Sports
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

NCAA Beats 'Strategic Retreat' On Food Rules For Student Athletes

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:38 am

The NCAA is facing scrutiny for how it treats student athletes. NPR's Wade Goodwyn talks to New York Times columnist Joe Nocera about changes the organization made this week.

NPR Story
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Bringing Poetry And High Culture To Sao Paulo's Periphery

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

Poetry in an unlikely place: In a grim urban shanty town in the middle of Sao Paulo, budding poets from the poorest sections of Brazilian society get together weekly to compose and recite poetry.

Television
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

'House Of Cards' Threatens To Ditch Baltimore For Chicago

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

Tax credits have long been used to attract film and TV productions. But with the loss of revenue, critics of the practice say those investments are not worth it.

Code Switch
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

In Silicon Valley, Immigrants Toast Their Way To The Top

Engineer Mit Shah gives a speech at a meeting of the "ArtICCulators" Toastmasters Club in Milpitas, Calif.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 10:18 am

Public speaking can be nerve-wracking whatever your native tongue. It can be especially difficult for immigrants who speak English as a second language.

In California's Silicon Valley, some immigrant tech workers strengthen their voices by joining public speaking support groups like Toastmasters clubs.

Members usually meet once a week to practice giving speeches, which are timed to the second and judged for grammar and presentation. There's even a designated counter of ums and ahs.

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Asia
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Captain, 2 Crew Members Arrested In S. Korea Ferry Sinking

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

The search continues for hundreds of people, mostly students, who were on board a South Korean ferry when it sank this week. Correspondent Anthony Kuhn shares the latest with NPR's Wade Goodwyn.

Asia
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Obama Adds Malaysia To His Asia Itinerary

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:32 am

Obama travels to Malaysia next week, where the government is under fire for the handling of a missing airliner. NPR's Wade Goodwyn talks to Joshua Kurlantzick of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Around the Nation
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Training Could Avert Another Fertilizer Plant Disaster

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 8:09 am

A year ago, a fertilizer plant explosion in the town of West, Texas, killed 15 people and wounded 160. NPR's Wade Goodwyn reflects on how to avoid a future catastrophe.

Technology
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Watch For The Blind Lets You Feel Time Passing

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 8:09 am

A new watch allows the blind to feel time on their wrists. Designer Hyungsoo Kim tells NPR's Wade Goodwyn his watch allows users to tell time accurately without revealing their disabilities.

Europe
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Putin Tries To Sell Ukraine's Muslims On Russian Rule

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

Russian President Putin is reaching out to Muslims in Crimea. Professor Robert Crews tells NPR's Wade Goodwyn that Putin is trying to build alliances in the Muslim world to weigh against the West.

Middle East
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Syrian Rebel Stronghold On The Verge Of Government Takeover

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

The Syrian city of Homs has been a rebel stronghold since the anti-government uprising began. But one rebel tells NPR that they're low on ammunition and medical gear.

Asia
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Avalanche Sweeps 12 Sherpas Off Mt. Everest

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

Twelve sherpas died in a recent avalanche on Mount Everest. Climber Conrad Anker explains that the guides were helping prepare a route for hundreds of climbers expected for the coming summer season.

Africa
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Polio Threatens To Spread Through Central Africa

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

A polio outbreak in Cameroon has spread to Equatorial Guinea and threatens to move throughout Central Africa. Before the outbreak, Equatorial Guinea had been free of polio for nearly 15 years.

Author Interviews
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

How A Music Writer Learned Trust Is The Ultimate Backstage Pass

Lisa Robinson interviews a young Michael Jackson at his family's house in Encino, Calif., in October 1972.
Andrew Kent Courtesy of Riverhead Books

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

Lisa Robinson has done just about every kind of music writing there is.

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Movie Reviews
6:12 am
Sat April 19, 2014

'Say Anything,' Still Full Of Guileless Affection

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 8:26 am

Monday marks the 25th anniversary of Cameron Crowe's Say Anything. A look back at the seminal teen flick reveals a surprisingly deep and romantic story.

Shots - Health News
5:03 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Mental And Physical Toll Of Bullying Persists For Decades

The longitudinal British study checked in with 8,000 families across 40 years to trace the trajectory of a bullied child.
iStockphoto

What doesn't kill us only makes us stronger, right? Well, not when it comes to bullying.

Some may still consider bullying a harmless part of growing up, but mounting evidence suggests that the adverse effects of being bullied aren't something kids can just shake off. The psychological and physical tolls, like anxiety and depression, can follow a person into early adulthood.

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Theater
3:20 am
Sat April 19, 2014

For Chris O'Dowd, 'Of Mice And Men' Is More Than An American Story

Of Mice and Men. Leighton Meester plays the wife of Curley, the son of Lennie's boss." href="/post/chris-odowd-mice-and-men-more-american-story" class="noexit lightbox">
"Any time you're playing someone with a cognitive disability of any kind it's dangerous territory," says Chris O'Dowd, of playing Lennie, in John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men. Leighton Meester plays the wife of Curley, the son of Lennie's boss.
Richard Phibbs Polk and Co.

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 9:40 am

John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men — about George and Lennie, two laborers and unlikely friends during the Great Depression — may seem like a quintessentially American story. But Irish actor Chris O'Dowd, who plays Lennie in a new Broadway production the novella, says Steinbeck is "quite oddly" very popular in Ireland.

There's something about Of Mice and Men that appeals to the Irish people, O'Dowd tells NPR's Wade Goodwyn. "All of us have chased the American dream so there's something very universal about it," he says.

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All Tech Considered
3:08 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Tech Week: Earnings, A Heartbleed Arrest And Digital Distraction

Google and other tech companies reported earnings this week, amid fears of another tech bubble bursting.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

There was really only one tech story last week — the potentially disastrous Heartbleed bug. This week, we return to more of a panoply of tech-related news, starting with NPR stories in the ICYMI section, the broader topics in the industry in The Big Conversation and fun links you shouldn't miss in Curiosities.

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The Salt
3:07 am
Sat April 19, 2014

Can Wal-Mart Really Make Organic Food Cheap For Everyone?

Wal-Mart is promising to drive down the prices of organic food by bringing in a new company, WildOats, to deliver a whole range of additional products.
Wal-Mart/Flickr

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 8:09 am

It could be another milestone in organic food's evolution from crunchy to commercial: Wal-Mart, the king of mass retailing, is promising to "drive down organic food prices" with a new line of organic food products. The new products will be at least 25 percent cheaper than organic food that's on Wal-Mart's shelves right now.

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Parallels
5:13 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

A Journey Of Pain And Beauty: On Becoming Transgender In India

Abhina Aher was born a boy biologically and is now a hijra, a member of an ancient transgender community in India. Of her painful physical and psychological transformation, Aher remembers now: "I just wanted to become a beautiful butterfly."
Julie McCarthy NPR

Originally published on Sat April 19, 2014 10:44 am

The signs came early that Abhina Aher was different.

Born a boy biologically and given the male name Abhijit, Aher grew up in a middle-class neighborhood of Mumbai, India. The son of a single mother who nurtured a love of dance, Aher would watch enthralled as she performed.

"I used to love to wear the clothes that my mother used to wear — her jewelry, her makeup," Aher, now 37, recalls. "That is something which used to extremely fascinate me."

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This Week's Must Read
4:50 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

A Love Letter To Literature: Reading Gabo In 'The Paris Review'

Writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez, who won the Nobel Prize in 1982, died Thursday at 87.
Paco Junquera Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 18, 2014 5:13 pm

Everyone has a favorite Gabriel Garcia Marquez book, and mine is Love in the Time of Cholera. It's the story of a romance that lasts decades, unwinding through the pages of the book. It's verbose, vibrant and full of love.

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It's All Politics
4:31 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

Are Democrats Trying To Energize The Base With The Race Card?

Attorney General Eric Holder (right) recently expressed outrage at the treatment President Obama and he have received from conservatives. He stopped just short of saying it was race-related, leaving that for the African-American audience at the recent National Action Network convention to decide.
Seth Wenig AP

Originally published on Fri April 18, 2014 5:46 pm

Few mixtures in American life are more emotionally combustible than the one formed by the combination of politics and race.

That helps explain why Democrats, in general, and President Obama, in particular, have tended to steer clear of overtly raising race as an issue to explain some of the opposition to Obama's presidency and agenda.

There seems to be a shift in recent days, however.

Top Democratic party officials have either directly or indirectly blamed race for some of the hostility to Obama, his policies, or both.

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