We invited Nick Ripatrazone and Natasha Vargas-Cooper onto the program to discuss their difference of opinions on the traditional High School English reading list. Here in the Word of Mouth pod we have our own take on what those reading lists meant to us, and what we think the future public radio hosts and producers of tomorrow should be exposed to while sitting in High School English.
We all agreed that a good teacher can help create lasting memories of books often thought of as staid and not accessible to the average High School student. It also became apparent that required reading lists vary depending on where you went to High School. Zach, Logan & Virginia wish Catcher in the Rye had been required, and Taylor listed it as one of his favorites.
Remember High School English class? Chances are you were assigned the classics: Shakespeare, The Scarlet Letter, maybe a Hemingway novel thrown in for good measure. Today on Word of Mouth—a debate on the required reading list.
And, Sam Lipsyte joins us to talk about his collection of short stories now out in paper back, The Fun Parts.
Also today, this week marks the one year anniversary of Pope Francis’ election. We consider what his papacy has meant to the image of the Catholic Church.
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Word of Mouth wishes you a happy Daylight Saving Time! (Can you believe it's this Sunday already?) But why exactly does the practice of changing our clocks even exist? We explore the ins and outs of Daylight Saving (without the extra "s") with a guest who wrote the book on it. Then Zach Nugent talks with Marissa Nadler whose most recent album was released in early February. We take an architectural turn with a look at the invention of revolving doors followed by a hot architectural commodity: wood. Finally, producers Logan Shannon and Sam Evans-Brown bring us a story about a wild winter activity. No, not skiing or boarding, but animal tracking.
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While it may be March, it’s still very much wintertime. If you’ve been cursing the snow and ice and desperately longing for spring, you’re not alone. But let’s look at the bright side - all that frozen water offers certain opportunities that just aren’t available in the spring. And I’m not talking about expensive and time consuming snow-sports, I’m talking about wildlife tracking. To give you an introduction to tracking, We headed for the woods of Barrington, New Hampshire with Dan Gardoqui, one of the founders and directors of White Pine Programs, a nature connection non-profit in Southern Maine.
The Boston Globe describes Marissa Nadler's voice as “an intoxicating soprano drenched in gauzy reverb that hits bell-clear heights, lingers, and tapers off like rings of smoke."
On Sunday, March 9th, Marissa Nadler will be performing at the Portsmouth Book and Bar. Producer Zach Nugent spoke with Marissa and asked why her new album is called July, when her music is often described as dark, sparse, and even frosty.
New Orleans Mardi Gras tunes get rolled out like Christmas Carols. You may welcome them as harbingers of the rituals and reverie to come, but by the time Fat Tuesday rolls around, you may not be able to stomach another rendition of "They All Ask'd for You."
Even though it’s Carnival time, I summoned enough discipline to choose 10 (with a little stretching that comes with the local custom of Lagniappe, or a little bit extra) of my most tried and true Mardi Gras favorites -- in no particular order. They span a few of the eras, genres and populations that make New Orleans such a beautiful mess. These are the songs I turned to, long before I could watch Second Line parades on the internet or Treme on HBO, when I found myself marooned from Mardi Gras. These may not all be strictly Mardi Gras songs, but listening to them instantly connects me to the chaos of Carnival.
It’s Mardi Gras – Fat Tuesday – the annual free-for all before the period of deprivation that Catholics call Lent. Today on Word of Mouth, the social and musical history of Mardi Gras, beginning where it was first celebrated in America: Mobile, Alabama. We speak to a filmmaker who reveals that the holiday remains a segregated celebration.
Then we head to the epicenter of American Carnival: New Orleans. Longtime NPR reporter, native New-Orleanian, and music aficionado Gwen Thompkins shares her essential Mardi Gras play list with us.
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B.J. Novak read several stories from his new book One More Thing, during his performance at The Music Hall, and we included a few in our broadcast. However, there was one story that was particularly funny, and probably not safe for work and definitely not safe for public radio. The following audio is presented without edits and may contain language you are not accustomed to hearing on public radio airwaves.
This Sunday marks the zenith of award season spectacle - the 86th Annual Academy Awards. There will be winning speeches, and silent snubs. Triumphant toasts, and whispered words of consolation. Some will openly weep with joy, and others will wipe away tears of another temperment. Today, Word of Mouth turns away from the glam and glitz of the Academy Awards to investigate the crimson underbelly of the red carpet, and the painful truth that for every winner, there are far more losers.
Title sequences have a practical function, sure. They convey the whos, wheresand whens of a production while segueing into the story. They are also the first impression, the opportune moment to set up the tone of a film or show. Through music, imagery, and written or spoken dialogue, title sequences can be the most artistically influenced aspect of a production. Though not always true, title sequences can even be the best part of a show or movie that is otherwise full of overplayed clichés and unoriginal storylines. At Word of Mouth, we searched and sifted for those iconic title sequences we thought packed that extra artistic punch. While most correlate to the quality and success of the production as a whole, others, well, others might not.
Check out some of our favorite film and TV title sequences below. Yours didn't make the list? Share it on Facebook!
Word of Mouth is putting on the glam, rolling out the red carpet, and practicing our best paparazzi poses for the Academy Awards this Sunday. (Isn't everyone?) But first we're preparing with some film history – smear campaigns, artistic title sequences, and controversial kisses in films have been wowing fans and critics for decades. This Sunday marks the 86th Academy Awards, but not all movies are Oscar-worthy. Hence The RAZZIES, whose goal it is to recognize the worst of the worst. So whether you're preparing for the red carpet or a drive to the office, we've got a star-studded show worth that extra time in the makeup chair or pickup truck.
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Nevermind the sentiment “whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”… rejection bites. For writers, it’s also an unavoidable part doing business. In a recent blog post for Graywolf Press, executive editor Jeff Shotts described the “terrible math” behind the publishing industry's notorious tendency of shutting down writers.
Hopeful writers may find some comfort however in learning that even The Diary of Anne Frank was rejected by 16 separate publishing houses. One editor at Knopf went so far as to call it “dull.” Also dismissed were George Orwell’s “Animal Farm,” and manuscripts by Jack Kerouac, Sylvia Plath, and in an infamously mocking rejection letter, Gertrude Stein.