Word of Mouth

Word of Mouth airs at 2 pm Monday through Thursday, weeknights at 9 pm, and noon on Sunday.

Word of Mouth is the sound of new ideas, hosted by Virginia Prescott, and produced by Taylor Quimby, and Logan Shannon. Our Senior Producer is Maureen McMurray

You can subscribe to our podcast on iTunes or find us on Stitcher.

We're also on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and YouTube.

Have an idea for the program? Email us

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You can also leave us a message on the Word of Mouth Listener Line anytime. We reserve the right to use your message on the air: (603) 223-2448

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Word of Mouth
2:13 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

Busting Ice Fishing Myths With The Fish Nerds

Credit Word of Mouth

Think ice fishing is old fashioned? Think again! The Fish Nerds are here to tell you that modern ice fishing in New Hampshire incorporates technology, all of the creature comforts you could ever want and a generous helping of fun and camaraderie.

Listen to their conversation, with Virginia, below.

Well, it sure doesn’t have to be. Bob houses and fishing huts can accommodate a heater large enough to keep you warm while you wait for the fish to bite. Dave and Clay told us about a guy who puts a hot tub next to his bob house and stays nice and toasty all season long.

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Word of Mouth
2:13 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

12.23.14: To Friend Or Un-Friend, Ice Fishing In N.H., & Schlocky British Christmas Hits

The Ferguson decision, Eric Garner protests, and immigration are all topics we avoid at the holiday table, but opinions run free on Facebook. On today’s show what do you do when your Facebook friends make racist posts?

Plus, think ice fishing is for people who like to drink and dislike their families? The fishing nerds say the times they have-a-changed…

Also today, bad taste among the British; we’ll review the UK traditions of really bad Christmas number ones.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
2:00 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

The Best Overlooked Books Of 2014

Here at Word of Mouth, we have a tradition of looking for the books that everyone might not be talking about. Joining us to highlight the best of the under the radar books of 2014 is Michele Filgate. She’s written for Salon, Vulture, The Daily Beast, and other publications. Here’s her list, with commentary, and you can also listen to her conversation about the books with Virginia, below.

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Word of Mouth
2:00 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

12.22.14: Let The Online Buyer Beware, Overlooked Books: 2014, & Cuba's Last Tycoon

Sale signs on sale in a shop that sells sale signs.
Credit the justified sinner via flickr Creative Commons / https://flic.kr/p/4NKfhs

With the countdown to Christmas now measured in hours instead of days, the online holiday deals you may have shrugged off a few weeks ago are now looking downright clickable. On today’s show we’ll discuss why those offers are often too-good-to-be-true.

Plus, a literary wrap up of 2014. We’ll venture off the best-seller list for a sampling of the best overlooked books of the year.

And a glimpse of pre-revolutionary Cuba through the story of Julian Lobo, a sugar trader and financier, considered to be Cuba’s last tycoon.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:03 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

The Technicality Show

We’ve all heard of a guilty person getting acquitted of crime because of a “technicality”.  What happens when a law professor discovers a judicial loophole that could make for the perfect crime?

On today’s show, it’s all about the technicalities, the loopholes, artful dodges and escapes. From how to get away with murder, to how to turn the lights off when your religion prohibits it.

Plus, the most expensive typo in American legislative history.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:04 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

Good Gig: Professional Science Geek Howard Eglowstein

Good Gig is a series of conversations with individuals who have landed their dream job.

Howard Eglowstein’s Good Gig involves working to encourage girls in the computer science and math areas for a company called Science Buddies.  They give kids ideas and guidance for science fair projects that deviate from the well-trod robotics and erupting volcano paths. Howard’s background in tinkering started with toy making, but he's always been a creator.

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Word of Mouth
1:04 pm
Wed December 17, 2014

12.17.14: An Icky But Effective Way Of Treating Diseases, A Conversation About Santa, & Good Gig

Credit Amy via flickr Creative Commons

Sometimes considering radical medical treatments require getting over the ick factor. On today’s show, how transplanting fecal matter from one person to another has saved lives, especially for those with antibiotic resistant digestive disorders, such as clostridium difficile, or C-Diff.

Then, Christmas is next week, a festival of lights, decorated trees, parties, and for some parents, the Santa conundrum…from to elf on a shelf to carrots for Rudolph, we’ll navigate the magical world of Santa.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:52 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

12.16.14: The Best Of What's New & Hollywood's Pretty Little Secret

Gorilla brand clear repair tape.
Credit Via Popular Science / bestofwhatsnew.popsci.com

For the past 27 years the editors of Popular Science have identified products and technologies designed to change our world. On today’s show we’ll review some of 2014’s groundbreaking technology.

Then, we’ve come to accept retouched images on magazine covers and billboard ads, but now the practice has moved to movies and television. We’ll take a look at the latest advancement in digital-alteration: frame-by-frame beauty work.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
12:00 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Writers On A New England Stage: Anne Rice

Author Anne Rice speaks during a Writers on a New England Stage show at The Music Hall in Portsmouth, NH
© David J. Murray ClearEyePhoto.com

NHPR and The Music Hall present Writers on a New England Stage with author Anne Rice who reinvented a genre when she published Interview with a Vampire nearly 40 years ago. Subsequent novels presented undead characters who experienced love, grief, and longing.

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Word of Mouth
1:50 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

12.14.14: Unruly Presidential Kids, Pitfalls Of Public Wi-Fi, & What's In Your OJ?

Colorado's Mount Sopris serves as the W's backdrop this week.
Credit Logan Shannon / NHPR

Last week, a GOP staffer resigned after political Facebook faux-pas - criticizing President Obama’s daughters for dressing like teenagers. On today’s show, we’ll take a look back at the long and fraught history of judging the President’s kids.

Then, these days just about every coffee shop, bookstore, and restaurant touts a free Wi-Fi hotspot – but at what cost? We’ll find out the hidden dangers of public Wi-Fi.

Plus, the industry secret behind the robust flavor of orange juice.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
11:01 am
Thu December 11, 2014

12.11.14: The First Skiers, How To Talk To Strangers, & This Is Crohn's Disease

A ski trail at Mount Sunapee
Credit Kelsey Ohman via flickr Creative Commons

In New Hampshire, skiing is one of winter’s biggest perks and the best cure for cabin fever. The first skiers put two planks on their feet and slid down a mountain, not as a past time but as a way to hunt. On today’s show, a National Geographic reporter sets out on the trail of the earliest skiers in human history and finds himself elk hunting in the far reaches of western China where he witnesses a skiing tradition thousands of years old.

Also, a couple embarks on a medical odyssey to find relief from a devastating illness. And talking to strangers may be good for your health. The psychology behind interacting with people you don't know.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
11:52 am
Wed December 10, 2014

12.10.14: Ethnic Plastic Surgery, Secret Santa, & A Prosthetic Arm For A Drummer

Credit James Mutter via flickr Creative Commons

In the last decade, cosmetic procedures performed on Asian-Americans, Hispanics and African-Americans have far outpaced those among the white population. The goal? Westernizing ethnic features.  Today we put ethnic plastic surgery on the examination table. Then, NHPR's Sean Hurley brings us the story of a secret Santa with a secret identity.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
11:31 am
Wed December 10, 2014

From 'Mankind' To Saint Mick: Mick Foley's Journey From Wrestling Cage To Santa's Village

Mick Foley as Mankind in 1999, and as Santa Claus in 2014
Credit Courtesy the WWE/Sean Hurley for NHPR

In late November, they begin to arrive. In malls, outside stores, at company parties across the country. A deluge of Santas. We don't often stop to wonder who the men are beneath the red stocking caps. And sometimes, Santa has a secret he wants to keep from us, too. 

Producer's note: While you might be tempted to read this story instead of listening to it, we recommend listening first...and reading and perusing photos later. It's worth it, we promise. 

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Word of Mouth
1:53 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

12.9.14: Junkyard Planet, Cell Phones For The 1%, & TV's Best Openers

Credit Paolo via flickr Creative Commons

From Tesla cars to Louis Vuitton luggage to Philippe Patek watches, luxury brands are selling well. How about a $30,000 cell phone? On today’s show, we’ll learn about the new handcrafted cell phone with optional concierge service that’s become a new symbol of conspicuous consumption.

Plus, Junkyard Planet: following the billion-dollar trash trade from American dumpsters to junkyards across the globe.

And, the opening sequence of a television show is an art form unto itself. We'll get a rundown of the best ones.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:07 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

12.8.14: Judging The President's Kids, The Dangers Of Public Wi-Fi, The Truth About Orange Juice

Kennedy children visit the Oval Office. President Kennedy, Caroline Kennedy, John F. Kennedy ,Jr. White House, Oval Office
Credit U.S. National Archives and Records Administration

Last week, a GOP staffer resigned after posting a Facebook comment criticizing the President's daughters. Today on Word of Mouth, the history of an unlikely American tradition: publicly judging the children of the White House. Also, the hidden dangers of public Wi-Fi, and the industry secret behind orange juice’s robust flavor.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
5:02 pm
Fri December 5, 2014

12.7.14: Mental Effects Of Space Travel, Bill Littlefield, & Water Taste Test

Credit Logan Shannon / NHPR

The recent disintegration and crash of a Virgin Galactic suborbital space plane raised questions about the safety and viability of space tourism. On today’s show we consider another issue for commercial spaceflight….the psychological effects of leaving earth.

Then, we can all remember our favorite sports movies – but what about our favorite sports-based books? Bill Littlefield of NPR’s Only a Game talks about his favorite sportswriters, and reads from his new collection of athletics inspired poetry. 

Plus, a conversation with America’s only water sommelier. That’s right, water sommelier.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:55 pm
Thu December 4, 2014

Bill Littlefield's Favorite Sports Books...Right Now

If you're shopping for a sports fan this holiday season, Bill Littlefield host of NPR's Only a Game, has some suggestions for new titles that he considers his favorites, right now.

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Word of Mouth
1:53 pm
Thu December 4, 2014

12.4.14: Bill Littlefield Talks Sports Writing & The Intense London Cabbie Test "The Knowledge"

We can all remember our favorite sports movies – but what about our favorite sports-based books? On today’s show, Bill Littlefield of NPR’s Only A Game talks about his favorite sportswriters, and reads from his new collection of athletics inspired poetry. 

Then, we tackle another competition of sorts: passing the knowledge, the notoriously difficult test that every London cabbie has to take before he or she can get behind the wheel of a black taxi.

Plus a look at how and why the basketball shot clock came to be from Roman Mars’ podcast, 99% Invisible.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:30 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Virtual Water Tasting With Sommelier Martin Riese

Credit Martin Riese

Choosing from an expansive wine list can be a challenge, and as a result, many restaurants provide the services of a sommelier to help patrons choose. At Ray’s and Stark Bar, a restaurant at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, you can also enjoy the services of the country’s only water sommelier, Martin Riese.

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Word of Mouth
1:30 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

12.3.14: The Sixth Extinction & America's Only Water Sommelier

Paper triceratops
Credit Emre Ayaroglu via flickr Creative Commons

While the asteroid that killed off the dinosaurs may be most familiar, the earth has experienced five great extinctions, and we may be in the midst of the sixth…right here, right now. On today’s show: a startling account of the planet's biodiversity crisis, and the role humans have played in creating it.

Plus it’s easy to condemn the office gossip – but getting the inside scoop at work might just save your career. We’ll discuss why gossip can be good for you. And, America’s only water sommelier explains why his restaurant features a 44-page water menu.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:52 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

12.2.14: The Mental Impact Of Space Travel & The Cruise Ship Of The Future

Virgin Galactic's Sir Richard Branson shows off his White Knight Two aircraft that will carry Spaceship Two into sub-orbital space.
Credit David Malkoff via flickr Creative Commons

The recent disintegration and crash of a Virgin Galactic suborbital space plane raised questions about the safety and viability of space tourism. On today’s show, we consider another issue for commercial spaceflight: the psychological effects of leaving earth.

Then, touted as the world’s most advanced ship, Royal Caribbean’s cruise-liner Quantum of the Seas is outfitted with virtual balconies, robot bartenders, Bladerunner-esque elevators, and smart apps. While the ship’s technology is impressive, we’ll find out where it all falls short.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
2:17 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

National Geographic: The Covers

All images are from: National Geographic The Covers: Iconic Photographs, Unforgettable stories
Courtesy of National Geographic

The cover of National Geographic magazine is iconic: you can pick the magazine out on the rack from just a glimpse of that particular shade of yellow. A yellow border so iconic that it acts as National Geographic's print and media logo. Inside that yellow frame is often a photographic glimpse into another world, another person's life and those photographs are what makes Nat Geo the icon it is today.

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Word of Mouth
2:17 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

12.1.14: National Geographic's Iconic Covers, Ethics Of Wildlife Photography, & Birds That Stray

A bookshelf full of National Geographic Magazines
Credit heipei via flickr Creative Commons

From the Afghan girl with startling green eyes to the ghostly wreckage of the Titanic, there’s just something about the iconic covers of National Geographic that burns into our collective memory. On today’s show: we get an insider’s view of the cover selection process.

Then, from microscopic lenses to compact cameras, the digital age has upped the ante for nature photographers and opened the door for whole new levels of disruption and manipulation. We’ll ponder the ethics of wildlife photography.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
12:30 pm
Fri November 28, 2014

11.30.14: Nuclear Tourism, Computers That Deceive, & M.C. Escher

Credit mbeo via flickr Creative Commons

Some people spend their vacations relaxing on a beach, others visit museums and fine restaurants. On today’s show we go off the beaten path to look into nuclear tourism. A science writer visits the site of the Chernobyl disaster, and finds it not the wasteland you may expect.

Plus, from walk sign buttons that don’t reflect reality to digital signs over-estimating wait times at amusement parks, we’ll consider why technology is sometimes designed to give us the illusion of control.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
1:04 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Spatchcocking 101 & Cranberry Salami: New Techniques For The Classics

Credit RoadSidePictures via flickr Creative Commons

When Thanksgiving rolls around every year, do you stick to the script, or do you like to experiment to make the feast a little more memorable? With the big day looming, J.M. Hirsch joined Taylor in studio to talk about some new ways to cook the time honored tradition of roast turkey plus, ways to satisfy all of your guests without too much extra effort.

If you've got some great tips for making Thanksgiving great, let us know in the comments or join the conversation on our Facebook page. Bon appétit!

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Word of Mouth
1:04 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Good Gig: Photographer David Murray

I had the honor of photographing US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor at her appearance at a Writers on a New England Stage show at The Music Hall in Portsmouth, NH. At the end of the evening she grabbed ny camera and thrust it into TMH's Executive Di
© David J. Murray ClearEyePhoto.com

Photographer David Murray started his career as a professional photographer after he retired from his 30-year career in Silicon Valley. As the principal house photographer for The Music Hall in Portsmouth he has photographed musicians, dancers, and writers among others.

Much of his work involves capturing candid moments, moments when performers don’t even know he’s looking at them through the lens of his camera

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Word of Mouth
1:04 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

11.26.14: Spatchcocking 101, Saving A Dying Language, & Good Gig

Collage and modifications by Sara Plourde & Logan Shannon
Credit Turkey: Steve Voght Snowy Scence: ingrid eulenfan / via flickr Creative Commons

For many, Thanksgiving is a time to pull out those tried-and-true family recipes, but why not try something new this year? On today’s show,  new approaches to thanksgiving dinner, from dry brining your turkey to spatchcocking 101. And our series Good Gig, conversations with people who have landed their dream job, continues with a professional photographer who has captured the live performances of everyone from Herbie Hancock to Tony Bennett. Plus, a look at efforts to bring an endangered Native American language back from the brink.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
2:01 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

A Photographer's Quest To Capture America's Vanishing Rest Stops

Near Organ, New Mexico - US 70
© Ryann Ford - All Rights Reserved

Last year we interviewed photographer Ryann Ford about a project she was working on: traveling the country to preserve the humble American rest stop through a series of photographs. These are relics of a time when most people traveled by car on vacations, and as new super stops pop up along highways, the simple rest stop is becoming extinct.

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Word of Mouth
1:58 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

11.25.14: The 100 Most Cited Scientific Papers, The Postdoc Glut, & Megan Amram

Credit Driek via flickr Creative Commons

A postdoctoral appointment, commonly known as a “postdoc”, was once considered an apprenticeship position to help scientists hone their skills before one day running labs of their own. On today’s show, has the postdoc appointment become a temporary purgatory? And colonial history, one panel at a time.  As kids we’re taught the basics about the Mayflower, the Salem witch trials, and the first Thanksgiving. A new collection aims to broaden our perspective on the period, through an unusual medium.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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Word of Mouth
2:19 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

11.24.14: The Empathy Deficit, Mountain Dew Gambles on Oculus Rift, & The Password As Keepsake

Credit associés via flickr Creative Commons

Empathy, the ability to share in the emotions of another, has been on the decline since the 1980s, with the steepest drop occurring in the past ten years. So what’s the big deal?

On today’s show, how to become a more empathetic human being. 

Then, from birth dates as ATM pins to jokey answers to security questions, a look at the surprisingly deep tales our passwords tell.

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

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