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7:14 am
Sun September 8, 2013

'Memory Pinball' And Other Reasons You Need A Nap

On the surface, sleep may seem like an evolutionary disaster, but its benefits have come to outweigh its potential downsides.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun September 8, 2013 1:40 pm

We spend about one-third of our lives sleeping, but much of that function remains a mystery. Weekend Edition Sunday is asking some pretty fundamental, yet complicated, questions about why we do it and why we can't seem to get more of it.

Dr. Matthew Walker says the question of why we sleep remains "that archetypal mystery."

Walker, the principal investigator at the sleep lab the University of California, Berkeley, works with patients who suffer from sleep abnormalities. He says the complexity of sleep makes the research that much more fascinating.

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Pop Culture
7:14 am
Sun September 8, 2013

Arsenio Hall Returns To Late Night

Originally published on Sun September 8, 2013 1:40 pm

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin.

In the late 1980s and early '90s, success in the competitive world of late-night television sounded like this.

(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING AND DOG POUND NOISE)

MARTIN: That, of course, was the signature shout out from "The Arsenio Hall Show." Arsenio interviewed everyone from Muhammad Ali to Madonna and, of course, there was that seminal pop culture moment when then-presidential candidate Bill Clinton played the sax on the Arsenio stage.

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Music Interviews
7:14 am
Sun September 8, 2013

Estefan Sings The American Songbook — With A Latin Twist

Originally published on Mon September 9, 2013 9:10 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Gloria Estefan, the poster girl of the Latin music scene in the 1980s and '90s, the frontwoman for the Miami Sound Machine and the singer who made Middle America get up and conga...

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG MEDLEY)

GLORIA ESTEFAN: (Singing) Doctor, I've got this feeling inside of me, deep inside of me...come, shake your body, baby, do that conga. No, you can't control yourself any longer. Come on, shake your body, baby...the rhythm is gonna get you tonight.

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Sunday Puzzle
5:40 am
Sun September 8, 2013

Close, But No Cigar

NPR

Originally published on Mon September 9, 2013 2:09 pm

On-air challenge: Each of the following answers is a made-up, two-word phrase in which the two words are homophones, and both words start with the letter C.

Last week's challenge from listener Henry Hook of Brooklyn: Think of a well-known celebrity who goes by a single name — the last two letters of which are alphabetically separated by only one letter (like A and C, or B and D). Replace this pair of letters with the one that separates them, and you'll have a common, everyday word. What is it?

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Environment
5:32 am
Sun September 8, 2013

Climate Change Leaves Hares Wearing The Wrong Colors

A white snowshoe hare against a brown background makes the animal easy prey.
L.S. Mills Research Photo

Originally published on Sun September 8, 2013 1:40 pm

The effects of climate change often happen on a large scale, like drought or a rise in sea level. In the hills outside Missoula, Mont., wildlife biologists are looking at a change to something very small: the snowshoe hare.

Life as snowshoe hare is pretty stressful. For one, almost everything in the forest wants to eat you.

Alex Kumar, a graduate student at the University of Montana, lists the animals that are hungry for hares.

"Lynx, foxes, coyotes, raptors, birds of prey. Interestingly enough, young hares, their main predator is actually red squirrels."

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The Mix
4:07 am
Sun September 8, 2013

The Mix: Britpop At 20

Members of Suede in 1993, left to right: Simon Gilbert, Bernard Butler, Brett Anderson, Matt Osman.
Steve Jennings Corbis

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 7:22 pm

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Author Interviews
3:14 am
Sun September 8, 2013

The 'Wild' Story Of Cheryl Strayed And Her Long-Lost Half-Sister

In addition to Wild, Cheryl Strayed is also the author of Torch and Tiny Beautiful Things.
Joni Kabana Courtesy Knopf

Originally published on Sun September 8, 2013 1:40 pm

Back in 1995, Cheryl Strayed hiked 1,100 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail along the West Coast of the United States. After the three-month journey, she came out on the other side stronger in every way: better able to cope with her divorce, her past drug abuse and her mother's death.

Strayed described the life-changing trek in her 2012 bestselling memoir Wild, and received countless emails from readers describing how connected they felt to her story. But there was one message that stood out in particular:

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Code Switch
1:15 am
Sun September 8, 2013

The Internal Debates That We Don't See

Roiling debates and criticism within minority communities don't often bubble up into the mainstream media, which is most focused on the fascinations of the majority.
iStockPhoto

Note: This post discusses and includes a racial slur. Be warned.

At a church near Charlotte, N.C., a pastor recently sent out a note to her congregants asking for greeters — but only greeters of a certain kind.

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Shots - Health News
6:55 pm
Sat September 7, 2013

E-Cigarettes May Match The Patch In Helping Smokers Quit

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 10:18 am

Electronic cigarettes are sparking lots of skepticism from public health types worried they may be a gateway to regular smoking.

But the cigarettes, which use water vapor to deliver nicotine into the lungs, may be as good as the patch when it comes to stop-smoking aids, a study finds.

Smokers who used e-cigarettes in an attempt to quit the old-fashioned kind of cigarettes did about as well at stopping smoking as the people who tried the patch.

After six months, 7.3 percent of e-smokers had dropped cigarettes, compared to 5.8 percent of people wearing the patch.

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Author Interviews
5:10 pm
Sat September 7, 2013

'Be Mine': Love And Identity Tangled In Tehran

Originally published on Sat September 7, 2013 5:33 pm

How far would you go for love? In Sara Farizan's debut novel, a studious 17-year-old girl named Sahar finds herself deeply, head-over-heels in love with her childhood best friend and neighbor — another teenage girl named Nasrin.

Their story takes place in Iran, where homosexuality is illegal, making their love that much more forbidden. When Nasrin is engaged to be married to a man, Sahar is crushed. In order to openly be with Nasrin, Sahar considers gender-reassignment surgery, which is more accepted in Iran than homosexuality.

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