Arts & Life

Sunday Puzzle
5:18 am
Sun August 25, 2013

It's All Greek To Me

NPR Graphic

Originally published on Sun August 25, 2013 11:22 am

On-air challenge: You're given some sentences. Each sentence conceals the name of a language in consecutive letters. Name the language. Each answer has five or more letters.

Last week's challenge: The Roman numeral for 38 is XXXVIII. What is special or unusual about this Roman numeral that sets it apart from every other Roman numeral that can be written?

Answer: If every possible Roman numeral were listed in alphabetical order, XXXVIII would be last.

Winner: Joseph Kuperberg of Pittsford, N.Y.

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Author Interviews
5:07 pm
Sat August 24, 2013

'The Blessing Cup': Polacco And Her Family Of Storytellers

Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing

Originally published on Sun August 25, 2013 11:17 am

Patricia Polacco has written and illustrated more than 90 picture books. Her young readers are drawn to her stories about family and growing up. She has won many awards for her illustrations, which are done in gorgeous, full watercolor. Polacco's latest book is called The Blessing Cup.

Polacco tells NPR's Jacki Lyden that early life had a profound effect on her work. Many of her books feature her grandmother, called "Babushka" in Yiddish, and take place on her grandmother's farm in Michigan.

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Music Interviews
12:03 pm
Sat August 24, 2013

Franz Ferdinand's Alex Kapranos On The Importance Of Structure

Franz Ferdinand's latest album is titled Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun August 25, 2013 11:17 am

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
11:24 am
Sat August 24, 2013

Not My Job: Tony Danza Plays Our Version Of 'Who's The Boss?'

Mary Altaffer AP

Originally published on Mon August 26, 2013 10:51 am

Just after he graduated from college, Tony Danza was working out at a boxing gym when somebody said to him: you ever think about being on TV? Since then, he's been a fixture on TV with the hit series Taxi and Who's the Boss?, not to mention his own talk show, his own song and dance stage show, and now a new movie called Don Jon.

We've invited Danza to play a game called "Who's The Boss?": We'll tell him about three companies and three people who might be the head of those companies. He'll have to guess who's the boss.

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Book Reviews
7:03 am
Sat August 24, 2013

Stripe-Torn Tigers, Fake Nazis And Magic Cake In 'The Color Master'

colored powder
iStockphoto.com

Aimee Bender is no longer the whiz kid of the American short story. The Color Master is her fifth work of fiction, and along with the idiosyncratic George Saunders she now stands as one of the reigning masters of the eccentric American short story. Fortunately, she's showing no signs of growing up. This latest collection offers a goodly number of one-of-a-kind stories, beautiful in their dreaminess and imaginative vision, a vision that ranges — you'll discover as you read — from stories about the origin of things to stories with an apocalyptic flavor.

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Author Interviews
6:23 am
Sat August 24, 2013

Sisterly Conflict Against A Great War Backdrop In 'Daughters Of Mars'

Topical Press Agency Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 24, 2013 11:39 am

Naomi and Sally Durance are heroes of the Great War, that war which was supposed to end all wars. It didn't, but it did help these two Australian sisters overcome sibling suspicion and grow closer to each other.

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Books
6:22 am
Sat August 24, 2013

'Bummers, Blisters And Boondoggles': A Jokester Joins The Army

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 2:59 pm

In a time when recollections can be reduced to just a few words, Jean Shepherd delivered monologues, soliloquies and musings. He was a raconteur.

Shepherd served in the Army during World War II — that same Army that stormed the beaches on D-Day, though Shepherd and his unit would never see the front lines. They were the homefront Army: stocking, re-stocking, sending, schlepping and training for a war they helped win — but only at a distance.

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The Salt
5:26 am
Sat August 24, 2013

Wine Has Sommeliers. Now, Beer Has Cicerones

Ray Daniels inspects a glass of beer. A Chicago brewer, Daniels started the Cicerone training program five years ago.
Johnny Knight Courtesy of Ray Daniels

Originally published on Sat August 24, 2013 8:08 pm

If you've been to a fancy restaurant, you've probably seen a sommelier — those wine experts who make sure you get the best possible match for your meal. But what if you don't want a chardonnay or pinot? What if you want a nice cold beer?

A new program is working to bring this same level of knowledge to the world of malt and hops by turning out batches of certified beer experts known as Cicerones.

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Theater
5:25 am
Sat August 24, 2013

Bread And Puppet Marks 50 Years Of Paper Mache And Protest

Bread and Puppet Theater performs during a protest in New York in June 1982.
AP

Originally published on Sat August 24, 2013 11:39 am

Bread and Puppet Theater has been a familiar presence at political demonstrations since the anti-war protests of the 1960s. Its giant puppets and raucous brass band also marched against wars in Central America, Afghanistan and Iraq. In 1982, Bread and Puppet led a parade in New York that, according to police estimates, consisted of more than a half-million anti-nuclear protesters. Though massive street protests may be a thing of the past, Bread and Puppet's work is still unapologetically political as it celebrates its 50th anniversary.

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Movies
5:49 pm
Fri August 23, 2013

Batman Fans Howling After Ben Affleck Casting

Originally published on Fri August 23, 2013 9:12 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

There's a new Caped Crusader coming to the movie screen and legions of Batman fans are howling about the choice. Filling out the bat-suit will be Ben Affleck who most recently directed and starred in the Oscar-winning film "Argo." So why the Affleck backlash? To answer that, I'm joined by Glen Weldon. He blogs about pop culture for NPR. And Glen, you are steeped in this world, right? You're actually working on a book about Batman's allure in popular culture.

GLEN WELDON, BYLINE: I certainly am, yes.

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