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Space
3:20 am
Sun June 3, 2012

Look Up, Stargazers: June 5 Is The Transit Of Venus

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To learn more about the Transit of Venus and to get tips for observing this rare astronomical event, visit the NASA website.
Joerg Koch AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun June 3, 2012 7:37 am

It's been a good season for stargazers, a veritable meteor shower of astronomical goodies, from a supermoon to a solar eclipse. Next up? On Tuesday, June 5, astronomy enthusiasts can witness the Transit of Venus — one of the rarest astronomical events.

During the six-hour transit, Venus moves in between the Earth and the sun. It's a daytime phenomenon: "Instead of seeing Venus as the brightest object in the night sky, you see Venus as a tiny black dot crossing the burning disc of the sun," explains Andrea Wulf, author of Chasing Venus.

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Art & Design
3:17 am
Sun June 3, 2012

Blacksmiths Forge A New Kind Of Artisanal Future

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun June 3, 2012 4:37 pm

Adam's Forge is a dark, high-ceilinged warehouse space in Los Angeles. It's set up with anvils, medieval-looking tools and black ovens that breathe fire.

Recently, about a dozen people gathered for an advanced class taught by master blacksmith Mark Aspery.

Blacksmithing is an ancient trade that, like other crafts, saw a downturn during the Industrial Revolution, when machines took over jobs that humans once did. Now, blacksmithing is having a small revival as smiths build new ways of connecting with customers.

'This Is My Craft'

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It's All Politics
3:16 am
Sun June 3, 2012

Congress May Not Be As Bad As All That

Flowers bloom at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., though the same can't be said of bipartisanship.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Sun June 3, 2012 2:24 pm

Washington isn't working. With control of the government divided between the parties and every political incentive working against bipartisan cooperation, Congress can barely pass the minimum amount of legislation needed to avoid a government shutdown, let alone address the most pressing issues of the day.

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Sunday Puzzle
9:03 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

That's Jakarta, With A Capital 'J'

NPR Graphic

Originally published on Sun June 3, 2012 7:37 am

On-Air Challenge: Every answer is the name of a world capital. You'll be given clues to its phonetic parts, and you name the capital. For example, given the clues "person from Bangkok" and "salary," the answer would be Taipei ("Thai" plus "pay").

Last Week's Challenge From Listener Jack Lechner: Name two different kinds of wool. Take the first five letters of one, followed by the last three letters of the other, and the result will spell the first and last name of a famous actor. Who is it?

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Middle East
2:05 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

Life Sentence For Ex-Egyptian Leader Hosni Mubarak

Protesters hold Egyptian flags during the demonstration in Tahrir Square.
Khaled Desouki AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 2, 2012 3:49 pm

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was sentenced to life in prison Saturday for his role in killing protesters during the revolution that ousted him from power.

A hushed courtroom listened as the head judge read the verdict: guilty of accessory to murder and attempted murder. Mubarak lay motionless on a hospital gurney inside a courtroom cage, his only noticeable emotion being the slight quivering of his lips.

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Remembrances
2:05 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

A Life's Promise, Tragically Broken

Marina Keegan, 22, graduated from Yale University just days before she died in a car crash.
AP

Originally published on Sat June 2, 2012 3:59 pm

Marina Keegan had just graduated from Yale University with a degree in English and was headed off to a job at The New Yorker. On May 26, she died in a car crash near her family's summer home in Massachusetts.

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Music Interviews
2:05 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

The Beach Boys: The Harmony Is Endless After All

The Beach Boys' new album — the first collaboration in decades between founding members Brian Wilson (third from left) and Mike Love (second from right) — is called That's Why God Made the Radio.
Guy Webster Courtesy of the artist

The Beach Boys are in harmony again. The group is recording and performing together, after years of disputes and estrangement.

Brian Wilson and Mike Love tell Guy Raz, host of weekends on All Things Considered, that they're not surprised at the reunion.

"We've had 50 years' practice," Wilson says, "not just in music but in being guys."

Love says once they got back in the studio and started writing again, it felt like they had never left.

"It was nuts," Wilson says. "It was a nutbuster."

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NPR Story
1:44 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

New Jobs Can't Keep Up With Population Growth

Originally published on Sat June 2, 2012 2:05 pm

Among the more than 12 million Americans out of work, almost half have been out of work for more than six months. In its latest issue, Bloomberg Businessweek magazine profiles 12 people among these long-term unemployed who have managed to get back into the workforce. Host Guy Raz talks with Josh Green, senior national correspondent with Bloomberg Businessweek.

NPR Story
1:44 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

'Edible Landscaping' On The Rise

When the economy entered its downward spiral in 2008, most everything related to housing hit the skids, including the lawn and garden industry. But one sector escaped the pinch — food gardening. In fact, sales spiked 20 percent and stayed there. While many households started growing food to be more budget-conscious, some are deciding vegetables and fruits can be beautiful, too. Blake Farmer

NPR Story
1:44 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

Why Do Humans Crave Crispy Food?

Originally published on Sat June 2, 2012 2:05 pm

John S. Allen, a research scientist at the University of Southern California, explores our draw to crispy foods in a new book called The Omnivorous Mind: Our Evolving Relationship With Food. He speaks to host Guy Raz.

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