Arts & Culture

The Salt
2:16 am
Mon December 29, 2014

Ladies Lead Whiskey Renaissance As Distillers And New Tipplers

Women at a whiskey tasting at the W South Beach Hotel & Residences on May 3, 2012 in Miami Beach, Fla.
Aaron Davidson Getty Images for W South Beach Hotel & Residences

Originally published on Mon December 29, 2014 6:39 am

What do Lady Gaga and Rihanna have in common with founding father George Washington? Whiskey.

Yes, our first commander-in-chief distilled the popular spirit. And these pop icons are helping to fuel a new female-driven whiskey renaissance.

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Remembrances
4:42 pm
Sun December 28, 2014

He Turned Classic Books Into Oscar Winners — And Hit-Singer Into Nemesis

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 5:02 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Health
4:42 pm
Sun December 28, 2014

Mae Keane, The Last 'Radium Girl,' Dies At 107

Employees of the U.S. Radium Corporation paint numbers on the faces of wristwatches using dangerous radioactive paint. Dozens of women, known as Radium Girls, later died of radium poisoning. The last radium girl died this year at 107.
Argonne National Laboratory

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 9:05 pm

Before turning the page on 2014, All Things Considered is paying tribute to some of the people who passed away this year whose stories you may not have heard — including Mae Keane.

In the early 1920s, the hot new gadget was a wristwatch with a glow-in-the-dark dial.

"Made possible by the magic of radium!" bragged one advertisement.

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Author Interviews
4:42 pm
Sun December 28, 2014

From Her Dad To Her 'Jamish' Roots, A Poet Pieces Her Story Together

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 5:02 pm

Growing up in 1970s England, Salena Godden stood out. Her mother was Jamaican and her father was an Irish jazz musician who mysteriously disappeared from her life when she was very young.

In her memoir, Springfield Road, the writer, poet and musician tells the story of finding her personal identity, beginning with the word she made up to describe her race: Jamish.

"It's kind of ... a mix of being Jamaican, Irish, English," she tells NPR's Arun Rath. "It's the name I gave myself."

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Television
4:42 pm
Sun December 28, 2014

If You've Ever Looked For Faces In Your Potato Chips, Thank Myrtle Young

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 5:02 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Music
4:42 pm
Sun December 28, 2014

From 'Shaft' To Von Trapp, The Musicians We Lost in 2014

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 5:02 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Two-Way
2:54 pm
Sun December 28, 2014

Pope John Paul II's Would-Be Assassin Lays Roses At His Tomb

In this image taken from a video provided by Adnkronos International, Ali Agca stands in front of St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican, on Saturday. Agca, who tried to assassinate Pope John Paul II in 1981, laid flowers at the late pontiff's tomb.
AP

The Turkish man who tried to kill Pope John Paul II and subsequently spent three decades in jail, has laid flowers at the tomb of the former pontiff.

Mehmet Ali Ağca shot John Paul twice at close range on May 13, 1981 as the pope was traveling in an open car through St. Peter's Square in Vatican City, an attack that left the pope in critical condition.

The gunman was quickly arrested. John Paul recovered and later met Ağca in prison, where the pontiff forgave his would-be killer.

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Food
8:40 am
Sun December 28, 2014

A Cuppa Matcha With Your Crickets? On The Menu In 2015

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 10:07 am

It's time to set the table for 2015. What will be the next kale? Has the cupcake breathed its last?

We're headed for high times. As states legalize marijuana, cannabis comestibles are coming. Pot brownies — so 1960s — are joined by marijuana mac 'n' cheese and pot pesto. There's a new cooking show called Bong Appetit.

Another crushed leaf is this year's super drink. Matcha is made from green tea and promises a calmer energy boost than Red Bull. The Japanese have been drinking it for centuries.

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History
8:18 am
Sun December 28, 2014

Fleeing To Dismal Swamp, Slaves And Outcasts Found Freedom

Great Dismal Swamp, in Virginia and North Carolina, was once thought to be haunted. For generations of escaped slaves, says archaeologist Dan Sayers, the swamp was a haven.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 2:50 pm

Most Americans know about the Underground Railroad, the route that allowed Southern slaves to escape North. Some slaves found freedom by hiding closer to home, however — in Great Dismal Swamp.

The swamp is a vast wetland in southeastern Virginia and northeastern North Carolina. In George Washington's time, it was a million acres of trees, dark water, bears, bobcats, snakes and stinging insects. British settlers, who first arrived in 1607, believed the swamp was haunted.

By 1620, some of their slaves may have overcome that fear to find freedom there.

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Remembrances
6:39 am
Sun December 28, 2014

Remembering Joe Cocker, One Of Rock's Most Distinctive Voices

Originally published on Sun December 28, 2014 9:20 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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