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Deceptive Cadence
11:18 am
Tue November 13, 2012

Classical Lost And Found: The Versatile Sound Of Vivian Fung

Composer Vivian Fung's new album embraces the influence of John Cage and introduces her own versatile sound.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 4:41 pm

There are those who consider John Cage to be one of America's most important avant-garde composers, and consequently the recent flurry of celebrations and album releases honoring what would have been his 100th birthday continues. On the other hand, many conservative listeners tend to dismiss his pieces as preposterous gimmickry, rendering the performers little more than Foley artists.

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Book Reviews
11:18 am
Tue November 13, 2012

Delicious Deceit Abounds In McEwan's 'Sweet Tooth'

Ian McEwan's other books include Solar, For You and On Chesil Beach.
Eamonn McCabe Courtesy of Nan A. Talese/Doubleday

Originally published on Tue November 13, 2012 1:49 pm

Ian McEwan's 15th book of fiction, Sweet Tooth, is a Tootsie Roll Pop of a literary confection — hard-boiled candy enrobing a chewy surprise at its core. The novel is set 40 years ago, when communism was still perceived as a threat, and takes its title from a fictional clandestine mission by Britain's MI5 intelligence service to sponsor writers espousing the Cold Warrior cause.

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All Songs Considered
11:18 am
Tue November 13, 2012

First Watch: Bjork, 'Mutual Core'

Nick and Warren Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue December 18, 2012 12:02 pm

Which thing is true?

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Political Junkie
11:12 am
Tue November 13, 2012

It's ScuttleButton Time!

Ken Rudin collection

Originally published on Tue November 13, 2012 5:33 am

I know what you're thinking. Same old president. Same old Senate. Same old House.

And yes, same old ScuttleButton.

ScuttleButton, of course, is that once-a-week waste of time exercise in which each Monday or Tuesday 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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The Salt
11:12 am
Tue November 13, 2012

Adventurous Eating Helped Human Ancestors Boost Odds Of Survival

The first prehistoric chef who looked out at a field of grass in Africa and said, "dinner!" may have helped our ancestors use new resources in new locations.
Roberto Schmidt AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 8:38 am

Picture, if you can, a prehistoric Bobby Flay — an inventive 3 million-year-old version of the Food Network star chef. He's struggling to liven up yet another salad of herbs and twigs when inspiration strikes. "We've got grass here, and sedge," he says. "Grass and sedge, that's what this dish needs!"

His pals take a tentative taste of this nouvelle cuisine. Sedges usually aren't considered gourmet fare, after all, by these human ancestors. They're tough grasslike plants that grow in marshes. But wow! Not only is this a new taste sensation, it's found in many places.

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The Two-Way
11:11 am
Tue November 13, 2012

Motor Trend Names Tesla S Car Of The Year, First Electric Car To Receive Honor

Model S Alpha, in black, and the Telsa Roadster behind it.
James Lipman Telsa

Originally published on Tue November 13, 2012 11:40 am

Motor Trend named Tesla's Model S as its Car of the Year. It is the first time in the award's 64-year history the honor goes to a car without an internal combustion engine.

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A Blog Supreme
10:44 am
Tue November 13, 2012

'Treme,' Ep. 29: Heckuva View

Desiree (Phyllis Montana-LeBlanc) takes the initiative to document shady construction projects.
Paul Schiraldi HBO

Originally published on Mon November 12, 2012 7:06 pm

After the musical bonanza that was the Mardi Gras episode, things slow down for some plot development in episode eight of Treme's third season. The writing team sticks to its other strengths: the minutiae of a broken police system, how to run a restaurant, bureaucracy in action and various romantic interludes.

But a few live music scenes do make it to screen. Here's Josh Jackson of WBGO for some analysis.

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The Two-Way
10:42 am
Tue November 13, 2012

'GIF' Beats Out 'YOLO' As Oxford Dictionary Word Of 2012

Fans like her style: Mayor Michael Bloomberg (at right) briefing New Yorkers about Hurricane Sandy on Monday. At left is his sign language interpreter, who the mayor identified as Lydia Callis.
Mayor Bloomberg's YouTube channel

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 11:51 am

"GIF," as in the file type, has been chosen as Oxford Dictionary's American word of 2012.

The runner up? "YOLO," which is short for "You only live once."

"The GIF, a compressed file format for images that can be used to create simple, looping animations, turned 25 this year, but like so many other relics of the 80s, it has never been trendier," Oxford said in its press release. "GIF celebrated a lexical milestone in 2012, gaining traction as a verb, not just a noun."

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The Two-Way
10:42 am
Tue November 13, 2012

Crisis At BBC Spreads As Two News Execs Step Aside

Originally published on Mon November 12, 2012 5:57 pm

The crisis at the BBC is getting worse by the day: Today its top two news executives stepped aside – just days after the broadcaster's director-general resigned over a news program that wrongly accused a former lawmaker of child abuse.

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A Blog Supreme
10:38 am
Tue November 13, 2012

30 Intimate Jazz Concerts In One Gigantic Park

Tuba player Bob Stewart led a quintet at the pond in the southeast corner of Central Park.
John Rogers for NPR johnrogersnyc.com

Originally published on Tue November 13, 2012 9:37 am

What was Jazz and Colors, the outdoor jazz festival in New York City's Central Park on Saturday afternoon?

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