As Lindsay Ess watched the events in Boston unfold last week, she wondered if she could help the victims of the Marathon bombing. When she found out that many had lost limbs in the explosion, she knew she could.
Ess is a quadruple amputee. In 2006, she was diagnosed with Crohn's disease. She underwent surgery for her condition, but it went terribly wrong. She developed septic shock, which lead to complete organ failure. She was in the intensive care unit for five months.
You just don't know (because who's going to tell you?) that when you leave Earth, travel outside its gravitational reach, hundreds and hundreds of everyday things — stuff you've never had to think about — will change. Like ... oh, how about a wet washcloth?
Ursula von Rydingsvard makes huge sculptures out of red cedar. The 70-year-old is one of the few women working in wood on such a scale.
Her pieces are in the permanent collections of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art and Museum of Modern Art. And now they're also part of a new show at Manhattan's Museum of Arts and Design. It's called "Against the Grain" — a phrase that could just as well describe the sculptor's life and career.
In his systematic scrutiny of the modern American food chain, Michael Pollan has explored everything from the evolution of edible plants to the industrial agricultural complex. In his newest book, he charts territory closer to home — or rather, at home, in his kitchen.
Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation surveys how the four classical elements — fire, water, air and earth — transform plants and animals into food. Pollan joins NPR's Rachel Martin to discuss the merits of slow home cooking and his adventures in fermentation.
On-air challenge: Every answer is a familiar two-word phrase or name with the initials "J.R."
Last week's challenge from listener Sandy Weisz: Take a common English word. Write it in capital letters. Move the first letter to the end and rotate it 90 degrees. You'll get a new word that is pronounced exactly the same as the first word. What words are these?
April is National Poetry Month, and NPR is celebrating by asking young poets what poetry means to them. This week, Weekend Edition speaks with Nate Klug, whose poems have appeared in Poetry, Threepenny Review and other journals. Klug is also a master of divinity candidate at the Yale Divinity School and a candidate for ordination in the United Church of Christ. "It's nice to go home from a day of thinking about the church to this whole other world of poetry," he says. "But obviously there are some really amazing ways that they intersect."
Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 6:55 pm
In West, Texas, some of the town's citizens whose homes were damaged by Wednesday night's massive fertilizer plant explosion returned to their homes Saturday afternoon, after authorities declared parts of the area safe. But a curfew is in place, and other areas close to the blast remain off-limits.
From West, NPR's Sam Sanders filed this report for our Newscast unit:
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison knows what it means to be a pioneering female figure in her home state. In 1993, she became the first woman elected to represent Texas in the U.S. Senate.
Now, the former senator has written a book about the women who came before her, Unflinching Courage: Pioneering Women Who Shaped Texas.
In the book, Hutchison profiles several women who broke barriers and made history in the Lone Star State. Many of those women left a life of luxury and "moved to nothing," she tells All Things Considered host Jacki Lyden.
Originally published on Sat April 20, 2013 6:38 pm
The percussionist and bandleader Tito Puente would have celebrated his 90th birthday this weekend on April 20. And the recently released box set Quatro: The Definitive Collection is a great place to start celebrating the once and forever King of Latin Music. It captures the driving sound of big band mambo and cha-cha-cha that launched people onto dance floors for decades.