Arts

Television
3:21 pm
Tue April 28, 2015

Louis C.K. On Life And Stand-Up: 'I Live In Service For My Kids'

Louis C.K. remembers getting "really big laughs" during his third try at stand-up. "I was so excited that I had a little foot in the door," C.K. says. He's pictured above in his FX series Louie.
KC Bailey FX

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 7:01 pm

After years working the stand-up circuit, Louis C.K. is well established as a comic powerhouse; his FX series Louie is in its fifth season, and C.K. also has a new comedy special that's available as a digital download on his website. But the laughs didn't always come easily. C.K. was a teenager when he first ventured onstage at a local comedy club's open mic night.

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Book Reviews
7:03 am
Tue April 28, 2015

What Luck! 'Early Warning' Continues Smiley's Farm Family Saga

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 3:43 pm

It's a good thing we only had to wait six months for Early Warning, the second volume of Jane Smiley's ambitious Last Hundred Years trilogy. Why? Because we were eager to follow up on the members of the Iowa farm family she introduced in Some Luck — while we still remembered all of them.

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Author Interviews
3:49 am
Tue April 28, 2015

'Ashley's War' Details Vital Work Of Female Soldiers In Afghanistan

First Lt. Ashley White was one of some 55 to 60 women selected for cultural support teams that deployed to Afghanistan in 2011. She did not make it home. She was the first woman to die and be honored alongside the Army Rangers with whom she served.
Courtesy of the White Family

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 5:56 pm

The Pentagon says women could be eligible for all combat roles in the military by next year, but some women already have been fighting — and dying — for their country. They're serving right alongside elite special operations units, such as the Navy SEALs or Army Rangers.

It's part of an effort to connect with half of the Afghan population that was off-limits to male soldiers: the women. Some military leaders considered reaching them one of the keys to winning the war.

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The Salt
2:02 pm
Mon April 27, 2015

Sandwich Monday: Deep-Fried Cheese Curds

Deep-fried cheese curds.
NPR

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 2:26 pm

Whenever people from the edges of the country come to visit me in the Midwest, I don't let them leave until they have tried deep-fried cheese curds.

If you're not familiar with them, cheese curds are a byproduct of the cheddar cheese-making process, and "deep frying" is a method by which anything is made into a better version of itself.

You can find deep-fried cheese curds all over the states surrounding Wisconsin. But today we're eating the exceptional beer-battered ones from Farmhouse in Chicago.

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Commentary
1:20 pm
Mon April 27, 2015

From TED Talks To Taco Bell, Abuzz With Silicon Valley-Style 'Disruption'

Martin Starr plays software designer Gilfoyle in the HBO comedy Silicon Valley. In the show's new season, Gilfoyle and his fellow techies attend a startup competition named "Disrupt."
Frank Masi HBO

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 5:22 pm

HBO's Silicon Valley is back, with its pitch-perfect renderings of the culture and language of the tech world — like at the opening of the "Disrupt" startup competition run by the Tech Crunch website at the end of last season. "We're making the world a better place through scalable fault-tolerant distributed databases" — the show's writers didn't have to exercise their imagination much to come up with those little arias of geeky self-puffery, or with the name Disrupt, which, as it happens, is what the Tech Crunch conferences are actually called.

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Mon April 27, 2015

6 Novelists Withdraw From Event Honoring 'Charlie Hebdo' For Free Speech

Stephane "Charb" Charbonnier, the late editor of Charlie Hebdo, is seen in September 2012. PEN American Center's decision to give the French satirical magazine its annual Freedom of Expression Courage Award has prompted six writers to withdraw from the annual event.
Michel Euler AP

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 3:40 pm

Six writers have withdrawn from the PEN American Center's annual gala on May 5 in protest against the free-speech organization's decision to give the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo its annual Freedom of Expression Courage Award.

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Movie Interviews
5:04 am
Mon April 27, 2015

Too Scared To Talk To Police, Stalker's Victims Open Up In 'Grim Sleeper'

A woman walks past a memorial for some of the victims who are said to have died at the hands of the serial killer dubbed the "Grim Sleeper."
Mark Ralston AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 2:05 pm

On Monday, HBO will air Tales of the Grim Sleeper, a documentary about a series of serial killings in South Central Los Angeles that took place from 1985 to 2002. A suspect was arrested in 2010. All these years later, the man accused of the crimes remains in jail and has yet to go on trial. But he — and the L.A. police department — are indicted in this film.

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Author Interviews
7:51 am
Sun April 26, 2015

This Weekend, Investigate The 'Edges' Of Fred Moten's Musical Poetry

Originally published on Sun April 26, 2015 10:47 am

In the latest installment of our occasionial series Weekend Reads, we're celebrating National Poetry Month with The Little Edges, a unique work by American poet Fred Moten. Many of the poems in the book were commissioned, and they focus on real life people and events.

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Sunday Puzzle
7:51 am
Sun April 26, 2015

A Puzzle As Easy As Falling Off A Log

NPR

Originally published on Sun April 26, 2015 10:47 am

On-air challenge: Every answer is a familiar two-word phrase or name in which the first word starts with L-O and the second word starts with G.

For example, a professional organization that seeks to influence legislation is a LOBBYING GROUP.

Last week's challenge: The challenge came from listener Steve Daubenspeck of Fleetwood, Pa. Take the first names of two politicians in the news. Switch the first letters of their names and read the result backward to name something that each of these politicians is not.

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The Salt
7:03 am
Sun April 26, 2015

Who's Behind The Latest Ethnic Food Trend? Maybe It's A Government

The government of Peru is partnering with culinary stars — like celebrity chef Gaston Acurio, shown here in his restaurant Astrid & Gaston in Lima in 2014 — to promote Peruvian cuisine around the world.
Ernesto Benavides AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 28, 2015 6:30 pm

Danny Kou, the executive chef at La Mar, an upscale Peruvian restaurant in San Francisco, says it's a good time to be him.

Kou moved from Lima to the United States when he was 21. It was 2001, and back then, Peruvian cuisine was still unfamiliar in North America.

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