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

Want to get an email when we publish a new podcast episode? Click to subscribe.

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
12:00 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

11.11.14: Veteran's Day

Credit jpellgen via flickr Creative Commons

Ron Capps served in five wars in ten years, and was left with severe PTSD. On today’s show, he talks with us about founding the Veterans Writing Project to harness the power of prose for coping with the hidden wounds of war. Plus, we’ll find out how one mother of three dealt with her husband’s prolonged absence during military deployments: by asking guests to fill his empty seat once a week.

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

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Word of Mouth
1:51 pm
Mon November 10, 2014

Good Gig: Fire Rappeller Jess Crump

Courtesy of Jess Crump and Siskiyou Rappellers

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

Jessica Crump is a fire rappeller, or officially, a wild land firefighter for the United States Forestry Service based out of Grants Pass, Oregon. Her job is to rappel into places that most of us would run from.

This is definitely not an easy gig, but Jess finds it incredibly rewarding and the perks, for her, make it a great gig.

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Word of Mouth
1:50 pm
Mon November 10, 2014

11.10.14: America In 36 Stamps, Separated @ Birth, & Good Gig

Credit Mike Rodriquez via flickr Creative Commons

Since they were first introduced in 1847, postage stamps have become a staple of American life and taste. On today’s show,  a look at America’s most memorable stamps, and why some were beloved, while others were surprisingly contentious. 

Also today, we continue our series Good Gig: conversations with people who have landed their dream job. We’ll talk to a wildfire fighter who rappels from helicopters into raging infernos, and feels lucky!

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

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Word of Mouth
12:18 pm
Fri November 7, 2014

11.9.14: Apple Pay, Big Brother In Your Car, & Historic Concessions

Credit Logan Shannon / NHPR

“Apple Pay” came out of the gate with great fanfare and claims that the mobile-payment system will make purchasing easier and more secure.  On today’s show, a closer scan of Apple Pay and find out who is set to benefit – and who is not.

And, from traffic cams to EZ Pass, big brother is riding along with us more than we think. But just how much are drivers being monitored? And, after a week of historic wins and losses, we’ll sample the art of the concession speech.

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

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Word of Mouth
3:08 pm
Thu November 6, 2014

Writers On A New England Stage: E.O. Wilson

Biologist and author Edward Osborne "E. O." Wilson
David J. Murray, ClearEyePhoto.com

NHPR and The Music Hall present Writers on a New England Stage with biologist, ecologist and two-time Pulitzer prize-winning author E.O. Wilson. Wilson has spent decades researching some of the biggest scientific riddles of our time - from the origins of human social behavior to saving disappearing species of plants and animals. He’s out with a bold new book that takes on nothing less than The Meaning Of Human Existence. He’ll discuss his ideas on where we came from, what we are and where we’re going.

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Word of Mouth
1:33 pm
Tue November 4, 2014

Political Losers: The Concession Speech

Credit born1945 via flickr Creative Commons

No politician wants to write a concession speech, but in politics there can only be one winner. We spoke to Brady Carlson about what happens after the race is called. Here are a few memorable political concession speeches and even an inside look into how a candidate goes about writing one.

Nixon's 1962 California Gubernatorial concession speech.

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Word of Mouth
1:33 pm
Tue November 4, 2014

11.4.14: Winners & Losers

Credit Garry Night via flickr Creative Commons

While we can’t predict the outcome of the midterm elections, two things are certain: there will be winners and there will be losers.  Today’s show is all about winning and losing, starting with the brain chemistry of champions. And we’ll examine the victors and the vanquished in the natural world through the parasite-host relationship.

Plus, we’ll take a look back at political losers throughout history, including Samuel Tilden, who never got over his loss to Rutherford B. Hayes in 1876.

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

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Word of Mouth
2:15 pm
Mon November 3, 2014

Apple Pay: Yea Or Nay?

Credit Modified photo Bart via flickr Creative Commons

For those who have wallets bursting at the seams with payment and loyalty cards, this scenario may sound familiar: You’re out shopping, you bring your items to the cash register and face the quick mental calculus of which card to use? Visa? Mastercard? Debit? The store issued credit card? Well, Apple proposes to solve all that with a swipe, provided you have an i-Phone 6, or 6 Plus that is. Two weeks ago today, Apple unveiled its latest creation: Apple Pay, a mobile payment system it claims will make purchasing easier and more secure. Some major retailers aren’t having it, but why?

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Word of Mouth
2:15 pm
Mon November 3, 2014

11.3.14: Who Stands To Gain From Apple Pay & German Words For The Human Condition

Credit Modified version of Chris Harrison photo via flickr Creative Commons

Two weeks ago Apple Pay was unveiled with great fanfare and claims that the mobile-payment system will make purchasing easier and more secure. On today’s show, a closer scan of Apple Pay to find out who is set to benefit from it.

Then, if you’re at a loss to describe something in English, why not turn to the language that brought you zeitgeist and schadenfreude?  We’ll explore compound German words uniquely outfitted for life’s everyday pleasures, pains, and unnamed oddities.

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

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Word of Mouth
5:37 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

11.2.14: Mt. Washington's Hidden Perk, The Power Of Sound, & YouTube Mash-up Artist Kutiman

When it comes to rigid safeguards against the Ebola virus, New York’s governor says “Better safe than sorry”. But what happens when panic inflates the price of public safety? On today’s show, calculating the cost of over-reaction.

We’ll also explore how the power of sound can make or break an experience. When the ad agency for Royal Caribbean chose a lively, catchy tune for a series of commercials for the cruise line, it didn’t exactly match the wholesome, fun loving image they were trying to promote. 

Then, we’ll speak with the Israeli musician known as Kutiman, about crafting an album made entirely of unrelated sound samples from YouTube videos.

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

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Word of Mouth
2:12 pm
Thu October 30, 2014

Dana G(h)ould's Six Picks For Spooky Flicks

Dana Gould doing some research for this year's Halloween costume. He told us he's going as The Doctor!
Credit via DanaGould.com

We had the pleasure of speaking with Dana GoOoOoOuld about his favorite Halloween movies. If you haven't solidified your spooky viewing schedule for tomorrow night, here's a list of his recommendations with links for where you can watch them.

Listen to the full interview:

WEB EXTRA: After the interview, Dana and Virginia talked about a few more scary movies and Dana gave us his best spooky laugh. Listen below:

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Word of Mouth
2:12 pm
Thu October 30, 2014

Mount Washington Observatory: Ultimate Zombie Fortress?

: Map by Steve Bushey and Angela Faeth, with added notes by Taylor Quimby

In 1934, a weather observer stationed at the peak of Mount Washington recorded a, then record, wind gust of 231 miles per hour. As a point of reference, that’s in the same neighborhood as an F5 tornado.

Even on hot summer day, conditions at the peak can drop below freezing in a matter of minutes – which is just one reason more than 135 people have died in the shadow of Mount Washington since 1859.

And yet, Mount Washington isn’t just Home of the World’s Worst Weather--as a sign at the summit famously boasts--it’s also home to a weather station, where a team of researchers are able to safely live year-round.

Which begs the question: would the Mount Washington Observatory be the perfect place to survive a zombie apocalypse?

Listen to this radio story to find out:

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Word of Mouth
2:12 pm
Thu October 30, 2014

Haunted Hillsboro: Trip To Haunted Pond In Francestown

Author Eric Stanway
Virginia Prescott NHPR

It was a sparkling fall day with trees ablaze in Francestown, New Hampshire.

Senior Producer, Maureen McMurray and I, met historian Eric Stanway on the town green in Francestown just as the bells of the white clapboard community church pealed noon. From there we then followed him to a small beach at Haunted Pond; a lovely, shallow pond rimmed with summer cottages, birches and pines -- the picture of serenity despite the number of people who met their ends there. Listen to the spooky story below.

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Word of Mouth
2:12 pm
Thu October 30, 2014

10.30.14: The Cost Of Overreacting, Dana Gould's Spooky Film Picks, & Haunted Hillsboro

Transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of the RNA filovirus that causes Ebola hemorrhagic fever. Photo courtesy CDC/Cynthia Goldsmith.
Credit Phil Moyer via flickr Creative Commons

When it comes to rigid safeguards against the Ebola virus, New York’s governor says “Better safe than sorry”. But what happens when panic inflates the price of public safety? On today’s show, calculating the cost of over-reaction.

Then, comedian Dana Gould, writer for The Simpsons and a B horror movie aficionado, shares his picks for the best Halloween schlock, including the Vincent Price vehicle, The House on Haunted Hill

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

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Word of Mouth
2:11 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

10.29.14: Polling The Pollsters, The Early Days Of Playboy Centerfolds, & The Film: "Laggies"

A polling center in Exeter, New Hampshire. November 7, 2006.
Credit nshepherd via flickr Creative Commons

When an unrecognizable number shows up on your phone during election season, chances are pretty good that the caller is someone taking a poll. On today’s show, turning the tables on pollsters. We’ll find out how they view polling accuracy and ethics for Election 2012.

Also today, the aging bunnies –  a group of Playboy centerfold models now in their 60s and 70s, reject the idea that they victimized, and remember a more tasteful time for the men’s magazine.

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

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