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, Zach Nugent, and Logan Shannon. Our Senior Producer is Maureen McMurray. Check out a playlist of music used on the program on Spotify. You can 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
8:59 am
Wed July 10, 2013

A New Life For Retired Race Horses

Credit sufw via filckr Creative Commons

Horseracing is a rough trade for horses and handlers. There are plenty of sad endings for horses who get injured, or grow too old or too slow for the track. A more pastoral life awaits some standard breeds – those who race pulling those chariot-like carts thanks to Joel Brenneman. He’s a member of the old order Amish community who buys end-of-career racing horses and sells them to the Amish as buggy-pullers.  Freelance writer Andrew Jenner accompanied Brenneman to the Meadows Racetrack outside of Pittsburgh, and wrote about the experience for Modern Farmer.

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Word of Mouth
8:58 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Studying Slang With An Etymologist

Credit teachernz via flickr Creative Commons

For four decades, Dr. Gerald Cohen has pored over documents, texts and pop culture to study etymology--the history and origins of words and how their meanings change over time. Working with the world’s top language historians, Dr. Cohen publishes “Comments on Etymology,” a journal of the peculiar origins of words and phrases like ‘brainstorm’ and ‘hot dog’. The journal cannot be found online, or even at university libraries…its circulation is under one hundred, and it’s published on paper. Gerald Cohen is professor in the Department of Arts, Languages and Philosophy at the Missouri University of Science and Technology.

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Word of Mouth
3:17 pm
Mon July 8, 2013

Frozen In Time: 7 Celebrities Who Are Taking Steps to Live Forever

Credit Daniel Y. Go via Flickr Creative Commons

When we spoke with Josh Dean, author of the long form article, “Inside the Immortality Business,” he noted that you have to have both a lot of money and a pretty large ego to seriously consider cryonics as a substitute for any end of life plans. Since it is only legal to freeze someone after they have been declared medically deceased, there are some pretty tricky logistics involved in being cryogenically frozen. Aside from having your estate settled and making sure there is a team waiting at your death bed to put you on ice as soon as possible, people who choose to be frozen also have to make sure their accounts have been paid in full – or risk having their bodies sit around until the bank transfers go through. Despite all this, there are still plenty of people who are willing to bet hundreds of thousands of dollars that someday science will have progressed far enough to bring them back from the dead. Among this eccentric bunch are some well known celebrities.

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Word of Mouth
10:00 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Summer Reads 2013 Edition

Credit stevec77 via flickr Creative Commons

There’s nothing more tempting than a day off spent soaking up the sun on a hot beach with a good read. Summer reads don’t have to be mindless, though. Michele Filgate likes to find the perfect book for every occasion, and isn’t afraid to add some substance to the usually light fare offered by summer reading suggestions — Michelle is a writer, book critic, and independent bookseller at Community Bookstore in Brooklyn.

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Word of Mouth
9:25 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Keep On Food Truckin'

Credit afagen via flickr Creative Commons

With names like “Fork in the Road”, “Viva La Waffle” and “Truckin’ Good Food”, colorful food trucks have proliferated across American cities over the last decade. Thanks in part to the explosion of social media, which is rapidly changing the way we buy, cook, and learn about food.  Baylen Linnekin is the founder and executive director of the advocacy group ‘Keep Food Legal.' He also created and taught the class “Foodways 2.0: Social Media, Food Trucks and Underground Food”, at American University. AU first offered the course last fall.

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Word of Mouth
9:23 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Looking For The Perfect Public Beach? Of Course There's An App For That

Credit Boston Public Library's flickr

New Hampshire only has eighteen miles of coastline - but even in sunny coastal California, arguments over property rights have made finding that perfect beach spot harder than ever before. From California to the New England coast, there is a swelling debate over who the beach belongs to.

Jenny Price is an environmental writer who has been fighting for more open public access to Malibu’s twenty-seven miles of beach. She co-created an app, “Our Malibu Beaches”, with app developer Ben Adair. It aims to show precisely where the public can enjoy parts of the California coast normally restricted to beach-front property owners.

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Word of Mouth
9:22 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Online Poker's Big Gamble

Credit Mr. L via flickr Creative Commons

More than two years have passed since the Department of Justice seized and shut down three major American online-gambling websites, charged site executives with bank fraud, and froze millions of dollars in player funds. Since then, social gaming from Zynga and the like has been thriving on social media sites, attracting millions of players to their digital tables, using only fake money. At the same time, real money gambling is also back on the internet - on April 30th, Station Casinos in Nevada became the first site to offer real online poker since the 2011 shutdown.  The questions are: will the for-profit sites draw millions of social players and will they put real money on the line?  Michael Kaplan is a contributing editor for Cigar Aficionado and has been covering the return of online gambling.

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Word of Mouth
9:20 am
Mon July 8, 2013

The Cold Hard Truth About Freezing Yourself

Patient storage at Alcor.
Credit Arenamontanus via flickr Creative Commons

Human beings have long worked to prolong life and cheat death – but few efforts have been as ambitious, and speculatively optimistic, as the nearly fifty year-old field of cryonics. The scientific pursuit of preserving human bodies at sub-zero temperatures was once regarded with public disgust, but is now gaining new traction ­­­– in Silicon Valley.  Our guest is Josh Dean, author of Showdog, and contributor to Buzzfeed, where his long-form article “Inside the Immortality Business” was featured earlier this month.

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Word of Mouth
9:19 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Misogyny On The Web

Credit skippyjon via flickr Creative Commons

In May of 2012, feminist blogger and pop culture critic Anita Sarkeesian launched a Kickstarter campaign called “Tropes Versus Women in Video Games.” 

Anita asked for $6000 to make a video series analyzing gender roles in video games; identifying and exploring tropes like “the sexy sidekick” and “the mercy killing.” She raised the money in one day – and eventually raised $158,000. The project’s first video, “Damsel in Distress Part One” hit YouTube in March.

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Arts & Culture
10:46 am
Wed July 3, 2013

The Audio Orchard For July (Portsmouth Edition)

1.The Relatives, It’s Coming Up Again

July 14, The Music Hall, Portsmouth, NH

2.The Defibulators, Let Me See That Ponytail Run

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Writers On A New England Stage
9:06 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Joseph Ellis

Credit Courtesy of The Music Hall

“As usual, Ellis combines powerful narrative with convincing analysis. His tale of the crucial summer of 1776 shows how political and military events wove together to create a new nation. Read this book and understand how America was born.” –Walter Isaacson, author of Steve Jobs

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Word of Mouth
10:10 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Restoring Digital Art In A Digital Age

Credit Douglas Davis via Whitney Museum

A conservation conundrum, that’s what the Whitney Museum of American Art faced recently when it set out to restore a piece of early digital art…it was uncharted territory for the cadre of conservationists who are typically tasked with matching paint colors and cleaning centuries-old sculptures. But in 1995 when the Whitney acquired Douglas Davis’s digital creation: “The World’s First Collaborative Sentence,” there wasn’t a conservation plan in place for the restoration of digitally created work. In 2011 the Whitney began the complicated process of restoring Davis’s piece, which lay dormant since a server switch in 2005. Melena Ryzik is culture reporter for the New York Times and joined us to talk about the Whitney’s process of restoring a relic from the early days of the internet.

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Word of Mouth
9:59 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Rattling In The Summer Solstice

Credit found_drama via Flickr Creative Commons

Last weekend was the first actual weekend of summer…an event barely noticed by many who’ve been barbequing, swimming and gardening since Memorial Day. Plenty of people do celebrate the longest day of the year in a more traditional way…and we’re talking traditions that stretch back thousands of years -- Carol and Clay Young hosted a fire ceremony to welcome in the solstice in the backwoods of Wentworth, New Hampshire, with a small, but diverse group of revelers. Word of Mouth’s Molly Donahue was there and brought us back this audio postcard.

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Word of Mouth
9:45 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Debo Band Comes To New Hampshire

Credit Deboband.com

One of NPR’s Fifty Favorite Albums of 2012 was the self-titled debut album from Debo Band. The eleven member band, based in Boston, blends 1960’s Ethiopian music with American funk, brass band music, and rock. Tonight, the Debo Band is playing on the Dartmouth Green in Hanover. Band leader and saxophonist is Ethiopian-American Danny Mekonnen, who we spoke with about the band and their unique sound.

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Word of Mouth
9:32 am
Thu June 27, 2013

Restraint and Seclusion: Hear Our Stories

Credit Franz Nicolay

Brianna Hammon was in the second grade when she was first restrained and secluded, strapped into a bolted down chair, in a segregated classroom for physically disabled students.  Now in her late twenties, Brianna told her story with the help of a speech-generating device at the 2012 TASH Summit in Long Beach, California – one of five testimonies that were recorded for the new film “Restraint and Seclusion: Hear Our Stories”.  The film’s director is Dan Habib - former photo editor for the Concord Monitor, now filmmaker-in-residence at the institute on disability at the University of New Hampshire. 

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