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5:31pm

Sun March 29, 2015
Author Interviews

Searching For Buried Treasure In China, A Writer Discovers Himself

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 10:18 am

Writer Huan Hsu's great-great-grandfather Liu Feng Shu was a scholar in China's Qing dynasty during the late 1800s and early 1900s. As a patron of the arts, he built up an immense porcelain collection.

During the Second Sino-Japanese War, the Japanese landed near his village on the Yangtze River. As the army approached, Liu and one of his workmen dug a giant hole in their garden, to keep the collection safe.

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5:31pm

Sun March 29, 2015
My Big Break

For 'Dexter' Star David Zayas, Acting Was A Long Shot Away

Originally published on Sun March 29, 2015 5:43 pm

Zayas is best known for his role as Sergeant Angel Batista on the Showtime drama Dexter. "The one through line of all 8 years of that character was his integrity and honesty," Zayas says.
Randy Tepper Showtime

As part of a series called "My Big Break," All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

David Zayas used to dream of being an actor. And he made it: he played Enrique Morales, the infamous inmate on HBO's Oz, as well as his most notable role, Sergeant Angel Batista on the Showtime drama Dexter.

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8:05am

Sun March 29, 2015
Afghanistan

Afghan Chief Executive: Leaders Set Aside Egos To Rally For Nation

Originally published on Sun March 29, 2015 10:33 am

Afghanistan's Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah (left) stands with President Ashraf Ghani, Vice President Joe Bidden, Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan at a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns on Tuesday.
Andrew Harnik AP

Afghanistan's leaders were in Washington last week asking for more assistance from the U.S. They got what they wanted: President Obama announced he would postpone the withdrawal of thousands of U.S. troops this year. Those forces are needed to help Afghanistan troops battle the Taliban as the spring
fighting season heats up.

President Ashraf Ghani was accompanied on this trip by Abdullah Abdullah, the chief executive of the Afghan government. They were bitter rivals in Afghanistan's presidential election last year and are now sharing power in a unity government.

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6:35pm

Sat March 28, 2015
Sports

The Cautionary Tale Of A Big-Time Bracket Bust

Originally published on Sun March 29, 2015 10:57 am

Oklahoma's Buddy Hield, right, and Denzel Valentine of Michigan State played in Friday's East Regional Semifinal of the 2015 NCAA tournament in Syracuse. If you've got money riding on this year's NCAA tournament, you might want to hear about what happened to John Bovary's football pool.
Maddie Meyer Getty Images

About 25 years ago, John Bovery started a modest football pool out of his home in New Jersey. It had 57 participants, all friends and co-workers.

But thanks to word of mouth — and the multiplying factor of email — Bovery's pool grew to staggering proportions. At one point, it got too large for Bovery to handle himself, so he contacted a software company to custom-build something suited to his needs.

By 2009, it included more than 8,000 entries from people around the globe, with a total payout of more than $800,000.

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5:02am

Fri March 27, 2015
The Salt

Was Your Seafood Caught By Slaves? AP Uncovers Unsavory Trade

Originally published on Fri March 27, 2015 4:04 pm

A 3,000-ton cargo ship at Thajeen Port in Samut Sakhon, Thailand, 15 days after it set sail from Benjina, Indonesia. The company that owns the ship said it is not involved with the fishermen. "We only carry the shipment and we are hired, in general, by clients," said owner Panya Luangsomboon. "We're separated from the fishing boats."
Wong Maye-E AP

Some of the seafood that winds up in American grocery stores, in restaurants, even in cat food may have been caught by Burmese slaves. That's the conclusion of a yearlong investigation by The Associated Press.

The AP discovered and interviewed dozens of men being held against their will on Benjina, a remote Indonesian island, which serves as the base for a trawler fleet that fishes in the area.

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5:02am

Fri March 27, 2015
Goats and Soda

Her Instagram Feed Finds The Fun In Long-Suffering Somalia

Originally published on Fri March 27, 2015 10:23 am

Ugaaso Boocow is back — and instagramming — in her homeland of Somalia.
Courtesy of Ugaaso A. Boocow

Ugaaso Abukar Boocow has become an Instagram sensation by sending out stunning visual messages from an unlikely place: poor, suffering Somalia.

She was just a toddler when her grandmother fled with her to Canada to escape Somalia's civil war, leaving her mother behind.

Then last year, she decided to go back, moving to the capital, Mogadishu, and reuniting with her mother, whom she hadn't seen in over two decades.

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4:41pm

Thu March 26, 2015
Shots - Health News

Critic Faults Alcoholics Anonymous For Lack Of Evidence

Originally published on Mon March 30, 2015 9:34 am

Founded by two men in Akron, Ohio, in 1935, Alcoholics Anonymous has since spread around the world as a leading community-based method of overcoming alcohol dependence and abuse. Many people swear by the 12-step method, which has become the basis of programs to treat the abuse of drugs, gambling, eating disorders and other compulsive behaviors.

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5:37pm

Wed March 25, 2015
The Salt

Heinz And Kraft: Before They Were Food Giants, They Were Men

Originally published on Wed March 25, 2015 8:00 pm

Henry J. Heinz
Library of Congress

Heinz and Kraft.

When we hear those names we think ketchup and Velveeta, right?

But before they were products and companies that will merge to become a giant with $28 billion in revenue, Heinz and Kraft were men.

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4:49pm

Tue March 24, 2015
It's All Politics

Lessons In Moving Forward On Race From A 40-Year Mayor

Originally published on Wed March 25, 2015 12:40 pm

"It's an intense job, you give it all, everyday, and I just don't want to get into another term where I say 'Gee, it would be nice to take it a little bit easier,'" Mayor Joe Riley says.
Richard Ellis Getty Images

It might not sound newsworthy that Charleston, S.C., is getting a new mayor next year. But the last time the city elected a new mayor was 40 years ago, in December 1975.

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6:58pm

Mon March 23, 2015
Author Interviews

'Cheated' Out Of An Education: Book Replays UNC's Student-Athlete Scandal

Originally published on Tue March 24, 2015 10:47 am

UNC basketball fans storm the court after a win over Duke in 2014.
Grant Halverson Getty Images

March Madness is college basketball's annual shining moment, and few schools have shone as bright or as long as the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels have been in 18 Final Fours and won the national championship five times, most recently in 2009.

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6:15pm

Sun March 22, 2015
SXSW Music Festival

From Kate Tempest To Torres, Female Artists Shone At SXSW

Originally published on Tue March 24, 2015 8:16 pm

The crowd was all smiles during NPR Music's showcase at this year's South By Southwest music festival. We can't send you back in time to hear the shows, but you can listen to some of Bob Boilen's favorite performers from the festival.
Adam Kissick for NPR

5:23pm

Sun March 22, 2015
U.S.

Understanding Skid Row's Tensions After A Fatal Police Shooting

Originally published on Mon March 23, 2015 11:15 am

Many of LA's Skid Row residents live in makeshift tents.
Kelly McEvers

Skid Row, in downtown Los Angeles, has long been known for its high concentration of homeless, drug- or alcohol-addicted and mentally ill residents. They live on the streets, in boxes and tents or in subsidized one-room apartments.

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5:23pm

Sun March 22, 2015
Author Interviews

'13 Men,' No Clear Answers: Digging Into An Indian Gang Rape Case

Originally published on Mon March 23, 2015 1:26 pm

In 13 Men journalist Sonia Faleiro chronicles the real-life case of "Baby" — a 20-year-old woman from the tribal village of Subalpur in West Bengal, India. Baby falls in love with a Muslim outsider and, she tells police, is gang-raped as punishment. Villagers maintain that Baby's story was fabricated.
Picasa Sonia Faleiro

Last year, a 20-year-old woman left the Indian capital city of New Delhi and returned to the rural village where she grew up so she could take care of her sick mother.

The woman's name isn't public, but Sonia Faleiro — a journalist who's been investigating her case — calls her "Baby." She says Baby was known as a high-profile figure in her modest village.

"She became a somebody," Faleiro tells NPR's Kelly McEvers. "A landowner. An employed young woman. She had money to spend. And she refused to accept that she needed to be like everyone else."

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6:27pm

Sat March 21, 2015
Author Interviews

Thanks To Chance (And Craigslist), A Writer Becomes A Carpenter

Originally published on Mon March 23, 2015 3:22 pm

131Pixfoto iStockphoto.com

Nina MacLaughlin always knew she wanted to be a writer. She studied English and classics in college, and after graduation, she landed a great job with Boston's weekly alternative newspaper, the Boston Phoenix.

But after a few years of editing the newspaper's website, the drudgery began to hit her. It involved so much clicking, she says, and so many empty hours scrolling through the Internet. It didn't feel like how she wanted to spend her life.

And then came the low point: web producing a "listicle" of the world's "100 Unsexiest Men."

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6:27pm

Sat March 21, 2015
Music

'We Wanted To Entertain': Jon Spencer On 25 Years In New York

Originally published on Tue March 24, 2015 8:21 pm

Jon Spencer Blues Explosion.
Courtesy of the artist

The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion's new album, Freedom Tower: No Wave Dance Party 2015, is all about New York City. As leader Jon Spencer explains, it was time to pay homage to the city the band has called home for almost 25 years, even though his love for the place is complicated.

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