Saturday, January 2, 2010

Sudden Death

Boston 2, Philadelphia 1 OT

It's a "tradition" that's only three years old, but so far outdoor hockey on New Year's Day seems to be living up to the NHL's billing of the event as the "Winter Classic."

The game started with the kind of physical play you might expect from teams nicknamed "Broad St. Bullies" and "Big Bad Bruins." But the physicality of play around the net cost Bruins goalie Tim Thomas dearly as he left the crease to retaliate against a Flyer who had bumped him earlier... And the puck whizzed into the net through the space he should have occupied.

For all but the final two minutes, it remained the only score. Until the Bruins rallied to tie on one deflection in front of the net and then won on another early into 4 on 4 overtime... Precisely the kind of goal Thomas was trying to avoid having scored against him when he launched his ill-timed retaliation

Boston's Marco Sturm celebrates his game-winning goal in overtime of Friday's Winter Classic at Fenway Park. (AP)But as the shadows grew long across Fenway Park, it reminded all of their youth.... From the thousands who had paid hundreds to be present at a spectacle they would have seen better at home, to the players both on the ice and off who remember pickup games in frozen over back yards or local ponds... When sudden death meant getting called to dinner.

Melting Stone

Scientists tell us there's a supervolcano beneath Yellowstone National Park.

Not the kind that builds a great mountain, but a caldera, the kind which can melt or burst through thin spots in the earth's crust. That's what provides the heat that powers all the geothermal features within the park, including "Old Faithfull," the geyser that made the place famous.

Well, it turns out that supervolcano is super indeed!

According to geophysicist Robert Smith of the University of Utah who is conducting research on the volcanic system beneath Yellowstone, it's both bigger and deeper than scientists had previously known.

Audio: NPR's All Things Considered, December 27, 2009, Host: Guy Raz.

1 2 3 4

Leslie's On Letterman

And Sesame Street

On the Road

with Charles Kuralt

The "On the Road with Charles Kuralt" series began in 1967, and ran on CBS for more than 20 years. In that popular program, the veteran journalist rode across America, meeting "regular" folks and telling their stories.

A collection of On The Road episodes has now been released on DVD. Many were shot by Izzy Bleckman, Kuralt's cameraman for most of those years.

Audio: NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday, December 19. Host: Scott Simon.

and Willie Nelson

Picturing The Problem

Happy Foo Year

Friday, January 1, 2010

Benched at Half-Time?

According to Wikipedia: Townshend, scooped up within a probe of a website alleged to advertise child porn, stated in the press and on his website that he had been engaged in research for "A Different Bomb" (a now-abandoned book based on an anti-child pornography essay published on his website in January 2002).

"After four months of investigation by officers from Scotland Yard's child protection group, it was established that Mr. Townshend was not in possession of any downloaded child abuse images." In a statement issued by his solicitor, Townshend said, "I accept that I was wrong to access this site, and that by doing so, I broke the law (in 1999), and I have accepted the caution that the police have given me." As a statutory consequence of accepting the caution, Townshend was entered on the Violent and Sex Offender Register for five years... Which expired in 2008, without further controversy.

Although many erroneously and retroactively read a scenario of gay prostitution into "Rough Boys" (1980) in light of the accusations, the video and lyrics tell a different story, mocking misbehaving street punks as lightweights...

Among Townshend's staunchest defenders was Who lead singer Roger Daltry, who made an entire career of understanding and interpreting Townshend's words... He believed he knew what to believe.

And during the years Pete was compiling material for his solo album "Empty Glass" (1980) and the Who's final two studio albums 1981's "Face Dances" and "It's Hard" (1982), he definitely had women on his mind... Specifically American actress Theresa Russell (only 12 years his junior), the inspiration for "Athena."

The Elfish Gene

"The Elfish Gene: Dungeons, Dragons, and Growing Up Strange."

It's a memoir of adolescence in England in the mid-1970’s and early 1980’s, when Mark Barrowcliffe dedicated just about all of his free time to role playing games. Now, with years of adult life experience under his belt, Barrowcliffe takes a comic look back at the obsessive hobby of his ultra-geeky youth.

Audio: NPR & WBUR's Only A Game. Host: Bill Littlefield.

Games People Play

Alan Parsons Project
lead vocals: Lenny Zakatek
Turn Of A Friendly Card (1981)

Joe South
Introspect (1968)

George Takei: Not My Job

Live long and prosper.George Takei is best known for his portrayal of Hikaru Sulu in the classic Star Trek TV series and movies, but in recent years he's been an activist supporting public transit and was among those to enter a same sex marriage during the brief period it was allowed in California.

Since this portion of the show questions guests on something far afield of one's expertise, Takei will attempt to answer three questions about modern childbirth.

Audio: Wait Wait Don't Tell Me.
Host: Peter Sagal
Judge & Scorekeeper: Carl Kasell
Panelists: Adam Felber, Mo Rocca and Roxanne Roberts
George Takei photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Ella Fitzgerald - Blue Skies

A Personal Resolution for Optimism


You'll miss me... If not yet, soon.

Via: Unique Daily

Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Decade of 9/11

A Decade of Rules Changes

Willie's Year in Review

For a broader perspective, explore the entire playlist.

Try JibJab Sendables® eCards today!

Year 1 for Barack

Each year, Time Magazine columnist Joe Klein hands out annual “Teddy” awards for political courage... An honor named after the former president, Theodore Roosevelt.

Although he's not the only winner, this interview concentrates on why President Obama gets one of Klein’s awards this year... And Klein reviews why his first year in office, and conflict, merits his award.

Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now. Host: Robin Young.

Klein's article includes links to Times various year end summations.

The Year In Sports

And Sports Books

Bill Littlefield, host of NPR’s weekly sports show “Only A Game” talks about some of the best sports books he’s read and reviewed in 2009.

Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now. Host: Robin Young.

The Year Down the Tubes

2009 on TV

Along with other advertising media, the economy hit commercial broadcasting hard. And attempting to transplant Jay Leno to prime time has been a self-inflicted ratings disaster for the NBC network on both sides of their affiliates' late night news.

But TV critic David Bianculli says networks may yet find a brighter future by looking toward cable's approach toward quality drama in shorter seasons. He joins Terry Gross to talk about the best and the worst television of '09 and what we can look forward to in '10 on NPR's Fresh Air.

TV 2009: David Bianculli On The Best ... And The Rest

Time's TV Critc Weighs In, Too

Movies That Should Die With The Decade

NPR's movie critic Bob Mondello, looked back at the big screen, and came up with a list films that, based on poor critical and audience reception, shouldn't gain any wider audience over time.

Audio: NPR's All Things Considered, Host: Guy Raz.

And a Few Good Things , Too

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Decade of the Recount

The Decade of Change

Dumb 911 Calls of the Decade

The Year Tiger Fell

The Year in Pictures

The New York Times Review section, normally covering books and news of the week, has compiled a slide show of memorable photographs from the news of 2009. In addition, articles mark:
  • The Obama Inaugural: He swept onto the world stage with his hand on Abraham Lincoln’s Bible and his voice ringing with yes-we-can hope and promise.
  • Hitting Bottom: If the Great Recession were ae editorial cartoon, February and March are the months we staggered around with anvil-flattened heads, little birds tweeting above our X-ed out eyes.
  • Troubled Lands: The fighting in Afghanistan spilled into Taliban controlled Pashtun tribal areas within the borders of Pakistan, and the violence drove an estimated 1.9 million people from their homes.
  • Health Care: From progessive policy wonks, to corporate backed faux populists, excited partisans lobbed inflamatory & contradictory charges at a moving target, igniting a furious political firestorm.
  • A Lion Is Lost: After a Senate career longer than his presidential brother's life, forty years after Chappaquiddick and 15 months after doctors found a malignant tumor in his brain, Edward M. Kennedy died.
Photo Collage: The Year in Pictures from the NY Times.

The Economy in Cartoons

Although it doesn't seem at all funny while happening, "Tragedy plus time equals comedy.”

Perhaps laughter is the best medicine for economic ill health.

That's the perspective offered by New Yorker cartoon editor Bob Mankoff, who has compiled the new book “On the Money: The Economy in Cartoons 1925-2009.”

Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now. Host: Robin Young.
See more selected cartoons from the book.

The Year's Winners & Losers

Monday, December 28, 2009

The Decade in Political Blunders

The Decade of Financial Failure

Tehran In Chaos

Al Jazeera Still Has Access

Distinctly western news organizations may offer reports, but they often come with disclaimers about Iran's crackdown on journalists making it hard to confirm details.

This video depicts the streets of Iran today...

School of Rock

High School video warfare from the Seattle suburbs...

Shorecrest HS

Shorewood HS

The World in Lights

A slide show of cities around the world.

Photo of Curving Northern Lights via Picture of the Day Archives (02/09)
Source: T3 library project at the University of the Pacific

The Year In Lies

Politifact Points the Finger

Sunday, December 27, 2009

The Decade of Angry Voters

The Decade of Powerful Women


Past: iPod

It wasn't the first portable MP3 player. But it was the first to integrate internet commerce (iTunes) into a world dominated by online file swapping (Napster). No bigger than a pack of cards, the iPod made a huge impact.

Audio: NPR's Morning Edition, December 22.

Future: iTV

As part of their current revamping of  iTunes, which already offers television content for a price, Apple Inc. is aggressively courting broadcast and cable networks.

The Wall Street Journal's Sam Schechner reports they're hoping to form deals that would offer consumers alternatives to cable or satellite TV subscriptions with bundles of unwanted channels you'd never watch.

Audio: BBC, PRI & WBUR's Here & Now, Host: Meghna Chakrabarti.
Apple Globe Photo: Kevin Van Aelst, via Guilford Art Center, 2007.

Zam Champs

Chicks Dig the Zamboni

A rinky dink video from See Our Shorts.

Holy Baboon!

Sharing a Mystical Moment

Biologist Barbara Smuts, who spent years in East Africa studying baboons, shares an experience she can't explain with Robert Krulwich and Jad Abumrad of WNYC's Radiolab.

Audio: NPR's Morning Edition, December 22, Host: Rene Montagne.
American RadioWorks is the national documentary unit of American Public Media.

The Year in a Tiara