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New Music: Baths, Jim Jarmusch, Sam Phillips, More (Tuesday, May 14, 2013) — We kick this week’s show off with a lot of noise from filmmaker (and past guest DJ on All Songs Considered) Jim Jarmusch and his gloriously gritty side project called SQÜRL. The band, with Carter Logan and producer/engineer Shane Stoneback, originally formed to score the 2009 Jarmusch film The Limits Of Control. SQÜRL has a new, self-titled EP coming out this month and we’ve got a preview cut called “Pink Dust.” Also on the show: Remarkable new electronic music from Baths; the atmospheric English pop trio Daughter; beautiful, ramshackle pop from singer Sam Phillips; power punk and a healthy dose of humor from The Front Bottoms and the melodic and transfixing rock of Lemuria.
Inside the New York Times Book Review: ‘The Golem and the Jinni’ (Friday, May 17, 2013) — This week, Helene Wecker discusses her novel The Golem and the Jinni; Julie Bosman has notes from the field; David Carr talks about David Sedaris’s Let’s Explore Diabetes With Owls; and Gregory Cowles has best-seller news. Pamela Paul is the host.
NPR: 05-16-2013 Books (Thursday, May 16, 2013) — Stories: 1) Why You Should Give A $*%! About Words That Offend 2) The ‘Curious’ Story Of Robert ‘Believe It Or Not!’ Ripley 3) After Long Wait, Novelist James Salter Shares ‘All That Is’ 4) A Nigerian-‘Americanah’ Novel About Love, Race And Hair 5) ‘Guns At Last Light’ Illuminates Final Months Of World War II
How do big city shell and three-card monte games work? (Friday, May 17, 2013) — Shell games and three-card monte games are common sights in big cities, but did you know they’re scams? Marshall explains the similar principles and tricks behind these “games” — and why you can’t win them — in this episode.
How is wire measured? (Wednesday, May 15, 2013) — In the United States, wires are measured by diameter using a standard called AWG, or American Wire Gauge. Discover how the AWG system works — and where it came from — in this podcast from HowStuffWorks.com.
How can I make artificial snow in my backyard? (Monday, May 13, 2013) — If you live in a cold enough climate, you can make fake snow just like they do for ski resorts. In this episode, Marshall shares two techniques for creating artificial snow in your own backyard — and what to do if you live in a warm climate.
Romantic Road Trips: St. Michaels on the Chesapeake Bay (Friday, May 17, 2013) — How did this 400 year old shipbuilding and fishing town reinvent itself as a tourist haven? How can you stay overnight in a lighthouse? What’s the connection with Frederick Douglass?
Cancellation Blues And Cultural Etiquette (Friday, May 17, 2013) — This week on Pop Culture Happy Hour, NPR Monkey See’s Linda Holmes, Stephen Thompson, Trey Graham and Glen Weldon talk about the cancellation of television shows, from the ones they loved to the ones they forgot existed. Why is the cancellation of our favorite shows so disappointing? They’ll also discuss how shows can have a second life after cancellation, through syndication, video streaming or by jumping to another network. Next, they’ll tackle the contentious issue of pop culture ettiquette. Is talking allowed while watching TV? Can you take photos during live concerts? Is outside food ok in movie theaters? All that, plus What’s Making Us Happy This Week.
Episode 417: The Great Gatsby and Upstream Color (Monday, May 13, 2013) — We get decadent with The Great Gatsby and try to decipher Upstream Color, plus we also discuss new trailers for Gravity and Captain Phillips, along with Moulin Rouge, Last Action Hero, Dark Skies, Texas Chainsaw 3D, Little Fugitive and The Transporter 1 and 2.
Rebroadcast: The Hidden Cost of False Alarms (Wednesday, May 15, 2013) — If any other product failed 94 percent of the time, you’d probably stop using it. So why do we put up with burglar alarms?
InQ Episode 70: “A Discovery of Witches” (Tuesday, April 16, 2013) — All her life, Diana has stuck her fingers way deep into her ears, refusing to accept that she is a witch, and a powerful one of those. But the situation has changed. The discovery of a thought to be lost book is raising interest. On the one hand, there is Peter Knox, a powerful wizard that belongs to one of the oldest group of “peace-keepers” across species, who would love nothing more than to put his hands on the book. And on the other hand, Matthew de Clairmont, the vampire, whose charms Diana can’t resist… But what is it exactly that Matthew wants? As the plot thickens and mystery unveils more mysteries, Diana may be forced to start using her powers if she wishes not only to find out what happened to her parents and what secrets Ashmore 782 holds, but also and simply, to stay alive.
Greatest Hits: My Little Brony (Wednesday, May 15, 2013) — Tracy and Holly are a little late to the “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” party, but now that they’ve started watching the show, they totally see the appeal. Tracy may even be a pegasister. But what makes the ponies so popular with male viewers?
Greatest Hits: PopStuff’s Cuppa Joe (Monday, May 13, 2013) — PopStuff is addicted to coffee. This stimulant seems to have a stranglehold on humanity, and an entire culture has sprung up around it. Where does coffee actually come from, and why is our love affair with it so solid?
Is There a Doctor in the Spaceship? (Tuesday, April 30, 2013) — NASA astronaut and medical doctor Michael Barratt spoke to schoolkids at the Family Science Days event at this year’s meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Boston.
Sound Opinions with Tame Impala (Thursday, May 09, 2013) — Break out your paisley shirt: psychedelic rockers Tame Impala are live in the studio! Kevin Parker and co. perform tracks from their latest album Lonerism. And later, Jim and Greg review the debut album from buzzed-about post-punk band, Savages.
The Status of Flatus (Thursday, May 16, 2013) — What is a fart? What’s the science behind passing gas and why does volume, frequency and stench vary so much from person to person? Answers await, gentle listener, as Robert and Julie discuss the biology behind breaking wind.
Zombie Apocalypse PSA (Tuesday, May 14, 2013) — Atlanta is in shambles. Parasite-infected humans wander the streets, attacking everyone in sight. Robert and Julie hole up in the HSW headquarters to shed light on the “zombie outbreak” by highlighting real-life examples of zombification by parasitic organisms.
China’s Empress Dowager Cixi (Wednesday, May 15, 2013) — After becoming a concubine for Emperor Xianfeng at the age of 16, Cixi rose to power when he died and her young son inherited the throne. She governed China from behind a screen for more than 45 years, and eventually sealed the fate of the Qing Dynasty.
Cannibalism at Jamestown (Monday, May 13, 2013) — On May 1, 2013, forensic evidence confirmed what survivors had reported: Colonists at Jamestown resorted to cannibalism during the winter of 1609-1610, known as the Starving Time. But the colony of Jamestown was troubled from the start.
How Aerosol Cans Work (Thursday, May 16, 2013) — In the 87 years since they were invented aerosol cans have protected soldiers, temporarily fixed flat tires, killed a boy who used too much deodorant and had their contents banned by most countries for wrecking the ozone layer. Tune in to learn more.
How Electroconvulsive Therapy Works (Tuesday, May 14, 2013) — With the exception of lobotomies, no other psychological treatment has a worse reputation. But thanks to some thoughtful tweaks, ECT has lately emerged from the dark ages and toward the respectable forefront of treatment for major depression.
Shorts: The Septendecennial Sing-Along (Tuesday, May 14, 2013) — Every 17 years, a deafening sex orchestra hits the East Coast — billions and billions of cicadas crawl out of the ground, sing their hearts out, then mate and die. In this short, Jad and Robert talk to a man who gets inside that noise to dissect its meaning and musical components.