3:43pm

Mon December 31, 2012
Shots - Health News

Parenting, Mental Illness And Bodily Functions: 2012's Most Read

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 4:07 pm

One of the year's most popular posts examined the evolutionary pull of running and high-aerobic activities on our brains. Above, a man runs past the Sydney Harbour Bridge in April.
Ryan Pierse Getty Images

There are some people who believe you can tell a lot about a person from what they read. By that measure, judging from the year's most popular posts on Shots, you might think our readers include plenty of depressed parents obsessed with diet and excrement.

Luckily for you, dear readers, we here at Shots know that Web traffic isn't a scientific measure of personality or of quality — just of virality. Plenty of powerful, public service stories failed to make our Top 10 list for the year. That caveat delivered, here's a look at the stories that kept you clicking in 2012.

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2:50pm

Mon December 31, 2012
The Two-Way

White House Website Draws Petition To End All Petitions

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 3:32 pm

The White House

Jeff Jarvis has had enough of the White House's petition site.

The 1-year-old site, We the People, is meant to be a place for Americans to directly entreat the president. Any petition that gathers more than 25,000 signatures in its first month is supposed to generate an official response from the Obama administration.

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2:46pm

Mon December 31, 2012
Around the Nation

Peace Pilgrim's 28-Year Walk For 'A Meaningful Way Of Life'

Originally published on Tue January 8, 2013 2:19 pm

Peace Pilgrim acknowledged that some may have considered her "kooky." But, she once said, "pioneers have always been looked upon as being a bit strange."
Carla Anette Courtesy of Friends Of Peace Pilgrim

In 1953, Mildred Norman set off from the Rose Bowl parade on New Year's Day with a goal of walking the entire country for peace. She left her given name behind and took up a new identity: Peace Pilgrim.

When Peace Pilgrim started out, the Korean War was still under way, and an ominous threat of a nuclear attack was on the minds of many Americans. And so, with "Peace Pilgrim" written across her chest, she began walking "coast to coast for peace."

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2:18pm

Mon December 31, 2012
Africa

Congo Fighting Leaves A Fragile City On Edge

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 8:16 pm

Congolese women wait for food to be distributed at the Mugunga III camp for displaced people outside the eastern town of Goma on Dec. 2.
Jerome Delay AP

Goma, a city on the eastern border of the Congo, has been a magnet for war refugees for nearly two decades. And in an expanding camp for displaced people, called Mugunga I, school principal Emmanuel Kibanja Miteso holds up a three-ring binder that reflects the history of war here.

The pages are a logbook for parent-teacher conferences. Every time fighting flares in the region, people flood into the displacement camps and the roster of names swells in the principal's binder.

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1:49pm

Mon December 31, 2012
Music Interviews

Miguel: An 'Honest Introduction' To An R&B Star

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 7:55 pm

Miguel, whose album Kaleidoscope Dream was released in 2012, is nominated for five Grammy Awards.
Courtesy of the artist

1:22pm

Mon December 31, 2012
The Two-Way

Deal To Avert 'Fiscal Cliff' Appears Likely

Originally published on Tue June 4, 2013 10:01 am

The Capitol is illuminated in Washington, where the House and Senate remain in session. The two chambers will miss a deadline to avoid the "fiscal cliff" tonight, as 2013 begins.
Drew Angerer Getty Images
  • NPR's coverage of President Obama's comments on the "fiscal cliff" talks

Update at 9:45 p.m. Deal Reached

Vice President Joe Biden was meeting late Monday with Senate Democrats to brief them on a proposed deal to stop sharp tax increases and spending cuts. A source told NPR the deal with congressional Democratic and Republican leaders includes a mix of both.

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1:00pm

Mon December 31, 2012
The Salt

Why We Toast: Uncorking A New Year's Tradition

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 1:42 pm

A happy-looking 1930s couple toasts.
Fox Photos Getty Images

The act of toasting feels natural: You lift your arms in affirmation and drink in honor of an occasion or a loved one.

It's what millions will do this week as they ring in the New Year, but why? Like shaking hands or saluting, toasting is a habit with incredibly foggy beginnings, so we here at The Salt decided to dig into it, for the sake of science.

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12:53pm

Mon December 31, 2012
It's All Politics

Arizona Democrat Kirkpatrick Making Capitol Hill Comeback

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 7:55 pm

Rep.-elect Ann Kirkpatrick, D-Ariz., enters a room full of supporters on Election Day, Nov. 6, in Flagstaff, Ariz.
Ralph Freso AP

She won. She lost. She won again.

Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick will represent Arizona's 1st Congressional District when she returns to Washington this week after sitting out a term. This time around, Kirkpatrick hopes to strengthen her foothold in a swing district, but she's dealing with a tricky electorate.

First elected to the House in 2008, Kirkpatrick turned a red district blue. Then in 2010, the backlash against President Obama and his health care plan hurt her. So, a Republican dentist from Flagstaff took her seat for a term.

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12:51pm

Mon December 31, 2012
The Two-Way

China Kicks Out 'New York Times' Reporter

Originally published on Mon December 31, 2012 1:56 pm

China has effectively expelled a reporter working for The New York Times by refusing to extend his media credentials, the newspaper said Monday.

The reporter, Chris Buckley, has been forced to leave China, New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson said in a statement.

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12:26pm

Mon December 31, 2012
Krulwich Wonders...

Another Year And I'm Still Here: A New Year's Meditation

Originally published on Tue January 1, 2013 12:17 pm

Rogier Wieland Vimeo

Updated Jan. 1, 2013: I've added a postscript to this post. You can find it at the bottom of this page.

Look at yourself. Right now.

You are muscle,skin, bone, brain, blood, warmed by energy, and all of you, every cell, even the subsets of those cells, all trillions and trillions of them, are going to tire, waste and depart. In 10 years almost every bit of you will have been replaced by new bits.

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