Strange News
12:36 pm
Fri April 20, 2012

Strange Time To Be A Governor

Originally published on Fri April 20, 2012 3:06 pm

If the rule of threes holds, it's a strange time to be a U.S. governor. From bears in bird feeders to snoozing to Springsteen, Melissa Block recounts a trio of oddball things governors from Vermont, North Dakota and New Jersey have had to deal with in the last week or so.

Around the Nation
12:36 pm
Fri April 20, 2012

Shooter Apologizes To Trayvon Martin's Family

Originally published on Fri April 20, 2012 3:06 pm

It was supposed to be a routine and quick bond hearing for George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who killed teenager Trayvon Martin. Friday's court hearing was anything but routine; Zimmerman took the stand and apologized to Martin's parents.

Deceptive Cadence
12:36 pm
Fri April 20, 2012

To Russia, With Musical Love — After 22 Years' Absence

An advertisement in Moscow for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's first concerts in Russia in more than two decades.
Todd Rosenberg Courtesy of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra

Originally published on Fri April 20, 2012 3:06 pm

This week, music is bringing Americans and Russians together in a way that policy discussions never can. And don't call that a cliche in front of the music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

If U.S. relations with Russia have hit a sticky patch over Syria and other issues lately, that didn't stop the Chicago Symphony from thrilling a Russian audience this past Wednesday night, just as it did on its last visit — to the then-Soviet Union in 1990.

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Asia
12:34 pm
Fri April 20, 2012

Slowly, Myanmar Dares To Believe Change Is Real

Girls perform a traditional dance while celebrating Thingyan, Myanmar's new year water festival, in Yangon, on April 15. The new year has brought new hope as the country undergoes rapid political change.
Soe Zeya Tun Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Fri April 20, 2012 3:06 pm

In Myanmar, there are signs in the most unlikely places that people are starting to believe recent political reforms are for real, and aren't just a trick.

Take a recent performance of the Moustache Brothers vaudeville troupe in the northern city of Mandalay.

The troupe performs in the family home — it's not allowed to perform in public. Its biting political satire, aimed at the generals and their cronies, has made the troupe a favorite of Western tourists and diplomats.

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The Salt
11:53 am
Fri April 20, 2012

For Most Of Human History, Being An Omnivore Was No Dilemma

Gorillas are fine with being herbivores, like this one at a Seattle zoo. But humans evolved as omnivores. Is diet destiny?
Ted S. Warren AP

If diet is destiny, then modern humans should thank our ancestors for their ability to eat just about anything.

Two new studies peek into the distant past to try to figure out just how big a role food played in human evolution. One says that eating meat made it possible for early human mothers to wean babies earlier and have more children.

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Science
11:50 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Exploring The Deepest, Darkest Spots On Earth

Transcript

IRA FLATOW, HOST:

This is SCIENCE FRIDAY. I'm Ira Flatow. We're here in California, broadcasting from the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. And just outside the Golden Gate, of course, is the Pacific Ocean. It is the largest body of water on Earth, and its trenches are also the deepest. You could put Mount Everest into some of them, and the top would not even peek out.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:42 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Dutch Government Set To Reconsider Restrictions On Bird Flu Study

Chickens were killed in Hong Kong last December in an effort to halt the spread of the deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu.
Aaron Tam AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 7:08 am

A Dutch virologist is considering his full range of legal options if his government refuses to lift the restrictions it has put on his controversial bird flu research, and matters could quickly come to a head after a meeting next Monday that will be attended by U. S. observers.

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The Two-Way
11:16 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Bus Crash In Mexico Leaves 43 Dead

There's another bit of tragic news to report today: 43 people are dead after a truck crashed into a passenger bus in eastern Mexico today. Authorities told the AFP that the incident happened after a trailer came loose and hit a bus carrying agricultural workers headed to work.

The AP reports:

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Europe
11:08 am
Fri April 20, 2012

In France, Fiery Leftist Candidate Strikes A Nerve

Jean-Luc Melenchon, the Left Front presidential candidate, draws huge crowds, rivaling those of mainstream candidates Nicolas Sarkozy and Francois Hollande. Here, he delivers a speech during a campaign meeting on April 1 in Grigny, outside Paris.
Bertrand Langlois AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri April 20, 2012 3:06 pm

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Shots - Health Blog
10:46 am
Fri April 20, 2012

Exercising Even A Little Bit Makes It Easier For Smokers To Quit

A competitor stops for a cigarette after he broke down during the Enduropale race at Le Touquet Beach on February 22, 2009 in Le Touquet, France.
Paul Gilham Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 23, 2012 7:16 am

Smoking is bad. Quitting smoking is hard. But exercising can make quitting easier, and make sliding back into smoking less likely.

That's the word from a big new study, which tracked the health and habits of 434,190 people in Taiwan from 1996 to 2008. Smokers who got just 15 minutes of exercise a day were 55 percent more likely to quit than were people who weren't active at all. And those active smokers were 43 percent less likely to relapse when they did quit.

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