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Author Interviews
11:04 am
Wed February 27, 2013

'Behind The Scenes' At The Vatican: The Politics Of Picking A New Pope

In his new book, The Vatican Diaries, John Thavis draws on his nearly 30 years of reporting on the Vatican.
Viking/Penguin Group

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 12:54 pm

The years of his papacy had seen "moments of joy and light, but also difficult moments," Pope Benedict XVI told some 100,000 spectators gathered in St. Peter's Square Wednesday during his final address. "There have been times when the seas were rough and the wind against us ... and the Lord seemed to sleep."

As Benedict becomes the first pontiff to resign in nearly 600 years and cardinals gather in Rome to choose his successor, a series of scandals — child sex abuse, mismanagement at the Vatican bank, the leaking of secret church documents — has left the Vatican reeling.

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The Two-Way
11:01 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Man Killed By Shark Off New Zealand Beach

People grieve outside New Zealand's Muriwai Surf Lifesaving Club after the fatal shark attack at Muriwai Beach on Wednesday.
Phil Walter Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 10:06 am

Authorities think it was a great white shark that was responsible for a fatal attack on a swimmer Wednesday off a beach near Auckland, New Zealand — the first such incident in at least four years.

Adam Strange, a 46-year-old filmmaker, was swimming about 650 feet off Muriwai Beach on Wednesday afternoon when witnesses on shore saw the attack by what authorities estimate was a 12- to 14-foot great white.

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Political Junkie
11:01 am
Wed February 27, 2013

It's ScuttleButton Time!

Ken Rudin collection

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 9:33 am

Has anyone figured out how the sequester would affect ScuttleButton?

I didn't think so.

ScuttleButton, of course, is that once-a-week waste of time exercise in which each Monday or Tuesday (or, as they call today, "Wednesday") I put up a vertical display of buttons on this site. Your job is to simply take one word (or concept) per button, add 'em up, and, hopefully, you will arrive at a famous name or a familiar expression. (And seriously, by familiar, I mean it's something that more than one person on Earth would recognize.)

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Krulwich Wonders...
10:56 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Close Your Eyes And Imagine A Protein. See Anything? A Housefly, Maybe?

Courtesy of Maja Klevanski

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 9:09 am

Pay no attention to this housefly. We'll get to it later, but first, how about a "Do You Recognize This?" quiz.

If I say "DNA," what do you see? Well, instantly, you see one of these:

But what if I say "protein"? What comes to mind? Anything?

Well, for many people, "protein" is what you find on a plate ...

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Mountain Stage
10:56 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Alejandro Escovedo On Mountain Stage

Alejandro Escovedo performs on Mountain Stage.
Brian Blauser Mountain Stage

Originally published on Wed June 18, 2014 2:13 pm

Austin, Texas, singer-songwriter Alejandro Escovedo makes his fifth appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live on the campus of West Virginia University in Morgantown. Known for mixing rock, punk, country and folk, Escovedo was named Artist of the Decade by No Depression magazine at the end of the '90s.

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Politics
10:56 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Is There Really A 'Line' For Immigration?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, it's been 100 years since thousands of women marched on Washington to demand the right to vote. We are heading into the Beauty Shop - that's our diverse panel of women commentators - to look back at that moment in history and talk about where the women's movement stands today.

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The Two-Way
10:54 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Top Stories: Pope Bids Farewell; U.S. May Help Syrian Rebels

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 7:21 am

Good Wednesday morning, here are our early stories:

Sometimes 'The Lord Seemed To Sleep,' Pope Says In Farewell.

Reports: U.S. Eyeing 'Direct' Aid to Syrian Rebels, Though Not Weapons.

And here are more early headlines:

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Deceptive Cadence
10:54 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Benedict And Beethoven: The Outgoing Pope's Musical Life

Pope Benedict XVI addresses the audience at Milan's La Scala opera house where he heard a performance of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 conducted by Daniel Barenboim.
Daniel Dal Zennaro AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed February 27, 2013 8:18 am

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Book Reviews
10:53 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Hamid's How-To for Success, 'Filthy Rich' In Irony

Originally published on Tue March 5, 2013 5:20 pm

Novelist Mohsin Hamid lives in Lahore, Pakistan, quite some distance from the Long Island of Jay Gatsby. But his new novel — his third and, I think, best so far — reminded me of F. Scott Fitzgerald's quintessential American work. As I read this novel about the dark and light of success in a world of social instability, I kept asking myself how much I might be inflating the value of Hamid's novel by rating it so highly. After all, this story takes the form of a gimmick, and gimmicks usually work against real quality.

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Kitchen Window
10:52 am
Wed February 27, 2013

In Praise Of The Humble Lentil

T. Susan Chang for NPR

Originally published on Thu February 28, 2013 9:01 am

The year I discovered lentils, I was broke and lonely and didn't know how to cook. Lentils, it turned out, would have gone a long way toward providing the solution to some of these problems. However, when I first had them, they were a mystery.

They also were the cheapest thing on the menu at the Middle Eastern deli around the corner. The dish was mudardara, I was told. "What's that again?" I said, unable to untangle the knot of plosive consonants. It was repeated.

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