Weekend Edition Saturday

Saturdays at 7 a.m. on IPR News and News/Studio One
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From civil wars in Bosnia and El Salvador, to hospital rooms, police stations, and America's backyards, National Public Radio's Peabody Award-winning correspondent Scott Simon brings a well-traveled perspective to his role as host of "Weekend Edition Saturday."

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Book Reviews
5:12 am
Sat September 1, 2012

'Headbangers' And The New American Pastime

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 9:24 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.

Baseball is still called the national pastime, and poets still compose paeans to its subtlety and gentle pace. But in the 1970s, pro football began to become America's defining game, and it was about as subtle as a kick in the head. As Kevin Cook suggests in his new book, the '70s - the days of Mean Joe, "Mad Dog" John Madden, buttoned-up Tom Landry and Howard Cosell - the days when football was raw and unfiltered.

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Presidential Race
5:12 am
Sat September 1, 2012

Romney Visits Storm-Stricken La. Ahead Of Obama

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 2:31 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. And there are a little more than 60 days left until the presidential election. Democrats are gearing up for their nominating convention, in North Carolina next week. Republicans, of course, held their convention this week, in Florida. And in a moment, we'll hear a report on President Obama's visit to a U.S. military base.

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'Weekend Edition's' Taste Of Summer
4:47 am
Sat September 1, 2012

Swimming And Snacking On Egypt's North Coast

Freska are small, sweet treats β€” thin, crispy wafers sandwiching patties of sesame, peanuts or coconut, often held together by honey or sugar.
Kimberly Adams

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 2:31 pm

In the summer, many middle- and upper-class Egyptians flee the sweltering heat and humidity of Cairo to a string of private beach communities that hug the Mediterranean coast. Here, the weather is cooler and the breeze off the sea carries the shouts of snack sellers. Those vendors make it possible for beachgoers to purchase snacks without leaving the shade of their umbrellas.

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Simon Says
4:58 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Without A Career, How Do We Know Who We Are?

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 2:31 pm

Are we what we do?

A lot of Americans identify themselves by their work. It's often how we introduce ourselves or describe our friends and parents: "I'm a police officer." "I'm a spot-welder." "My dad was a druggist." "My mom was a teacher." "My wife is a pilot." "My friend is a firefighter." "I sell insurance."

Our work has been a kind of identity stamp, defining us as much as our last name or place of birth. As Studs Terkel wrote in his 1974 classic, Working, "Our jobs give us daily meaning as well as daily bread."

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World
7:31 pm
Sat August 25, 2012

What's Next For Jailed Pakistani Christian?

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

There's been international outcry over the arrest of a young Christian girl in Pakistan, who's charged with blasphemy. A Muslim neighbor denounced her for allegedly burning parts of the Quran, a crime that's punishable by death in Pakistan. An Islamic cleric caught word of it and stirred up an angry mob that beat the young girl. NPR's Lauren Frayer reports from Islamabad, the girl is now behind bars and unable to see her lawyer or family.

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Food
9:16 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Not All Chinese Restaurants Are Created Equal

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Hungry? You might give a listen now to David Chan. Mr. Chan is a Los Angeles tax lawyer who says he's eaten in more than 6,000 Chinese restaurants in North America and knows how to identify the best. David Chan joins us on the line now.

Thanks very much for being with us.

DAVID CHAN: Well, thanks for having me, Scott.

SIMON: So what do you look for?

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Sports
9:16 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Armstrong Decision Ripples Outside Of Sporting World

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon and it's time for sports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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Simon Says
9:08 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Phyllis Diller: Showing, And Celebrating, Her Age

Phyllis Diller attends an Academy of Television Arts & Sciences event in North Hollywood, Calif., in 2008. The comedic legend died this week at 95.
Charley Gallay Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

When Phyllis Diller died this week at the age of 95, much was made of the way she burst open doors for women in comedy. But she also showed a way for people to make a midlife crisis into a breakthrough.

Diller was an Eisenhower-era housewife in the smokestack-and-factory-whistle suburbs of Oakland, Calif., whose husband worked at the naval air base. They had five children and could use some extra income. Phyllis, who had been an art and music student in her youth, also had extra, unfulfilled ambitions to entertain. She volunteered at veteran's hospitals for the Red Cross.

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Around the Nation
5:28 am
Sat August 25, 2012

'D'oh!' Simpsons Stamps A Flop For Postal Service

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

There's only one way to begin this item.

(SOUNDBITE OF THEME FROM "THE SIMPSONS")

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Africa
5:28 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Remembering Meles Zenawi, Ethiopia's Champion

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 7:35 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Ethiopia's longtime prime minister died this week. Meles Zenawi was 57. He came to power in 1991 when a rebel army toppled that nation's Marxist dictator and the Ethiopian leader became a trusted U.S. ally in the war against terrorism. As NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton reports, he leaves behind a mixed legacy.

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Afghanistan
5:28 am
Sat August 25, 2012

New U.S. Ambassador To Afghanistan Faces Tough Job

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. James Cunningham has taken one of the most difficult diplomatic posts in the world. He is the new U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan.

AMBASSADOR JAMES CUNNINGHAM: I, James D. Cunningham...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Do solemnly swear.

CUNNINGHAM: ...do solemnly swear...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: That I will support and defend.

CUNNINGHAM: ...that I will support and defend...

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Politics
5:25 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Ahead Of Conventions, Candidates Hone Message

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Republicans and Democrats will talk a lot about the economy during their national conventions over the next couple of weeks. And yet, the man who is about to be nominated by the Republican convention, Mitt Romney, briefly strayed from an economic message yesterday, while speaking in the Detroit suburb of Commerce, Michigan.

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Politics
5:25 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Revisiting Conventions Of Elections Past

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Political conventions used to be dramatic events that made history. They nominated candidates for president. They debated crucial issues under glaring lights. Now, not so much. Presidential candidates win or lose nominations in primaries, and parties tend to see - and use - conventions as what amounts to advertisements for themselves. Our apologies to Norman Mailer.

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NPR Story
4:47 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Apple Win Over Samsung Sends Message To Industry

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Apple has won a decisive victory in a closely watched patent lawsuit. A federal jury in California yesterday ordered Samsung to pay Apple slightly more than $1 billion. The jury found that the world's largest maker of smartphones had essentially stolen iPhone and iPad technology. As NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports, the impact of the ruling is likely to be felt throughout the tech industry.

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NPR Story
4:47 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Need A Soprano? Get A Gibbon On Helium

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This just in: Gibbons on helium sing like sopranos. Wired magazine reports on a study at Kyoto University in which an ape named Fuku-chan was placed in a chamber filled with helium enriched air. This was not a party trick. Helium-rich air apparently allows scientists to more easily analyze vocalizations. Fuku-chan's bellow went from this:

(SOUNDBITE OF BELLOWING)

SIMON: To this:

(SOUNDBITE OF BELLOWING)

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NPR Story
4:47 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Hurricane Andrew: Florida's Unwelcome Visitor

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Music Interviews
1:03 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Selah Sue: From Online Stardom To A Stage With Prince

Selah Sue performs at NPR headquarters in Washington, D.C.
Coburn Dukehart NPR

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 10:18 am

Just a small-town girl, living in a lonely world β€” in Belgium, with her guitar and a MySpace page. That's how Selah Sue used to introduce her music to those outside her hometown: with short videos made between high-school classes and weekend shows at local clubs, posted to her online journal.

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Music Interviews
1:03 am
Sat August 25, 2012

Sean Rowe: An Outdoorsman Enters Civilization

Sean Rowe's new album is The Salesman and the Shark.
Marius Bugge

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 9:16 am

Sean Rowe has a voice and a style that stands out in popular music. His voice is deep β€” really, truly deep β€” fine, and often doleful. He's a baritone troubadour who sings of roads not taken, regrets and the dreams that shake you awake at 3 in the morning.

After years of working bars, road houses and more bars, Rowe is playing concert stages and winning over critics for his story-songs and that remarkable voice. But, as he tells NPR's Scott Simon, he wasn't always so proud to be a singer.

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Music Al Fresco
1:03 am
Sat August 25, 2012

A Roving Percussionist On The Big Easy's Busy Streets

Clyde Casey has been performing on the streets of New Orleans for 40 years.
Tegan Wendland

Originally published on Sat August 25, 2012 11:53 am

All summer long, Weekend Edition has been bringing listeners the sounds of music played outdoors by all manner of street performers. Of all the cities in America that embrace buskers, New Orleans, with its tradition of jazz and oompah bands at Mardi Gras, may be the most welcoming. It also happens to be a city with a certain eccentric flair β€” so Weekend Edition wasn't surprised to find Clyde Casey there.

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Europe
8:58 am
Sat August 18, 2012

For Julian Assange, A Tricky Exit For Asylum

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 2:03 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This week, Ecuador announced that it would grant Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, political asylum. He's been holed up in Ecuador's London embassy since June facing extradition to Sweden over sexual assault claims that he denies. But somehow he's got to get from London to Ecuador and he can't just buy a ticket, buy a canister of tea in duty-free and fly to Quito. The British government says that Julian Assange will be arrested if he sets a foot out of the embassy door.

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Americandy: Sweet Land Of Liberty
5:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Valomilks: A Sweet Treat That Runs Down Your Chin

The family-owned Russel Sifers Candy Company has been making Valomilks β€” and only Valomilks β€” for decades.
Melisa Goh NPR

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 4:23 pm

The Valomilk was once advertised as "the 5-cent candy bar with the 50-cent taste." And while the price has changed, the product has not.

For more than 80 years, the family-owned Russell Sifers Candy Company has been using the same recipe to churn out a rich concoction of chocolate and creamy marshmallow goo.

The candy-making machines are busy on the factory floor in Merriam, Kan., just southwest of Kansas City. This is the headquarters of the century-old company, where Russell Sifers himself is a fourth-generation candy maker.

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Business
5:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

In Wall Street 2.0, Computers Are King

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 2:03 pm

Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon talks to Sean Gourley, physicist and founder of quid.com, about the computers that trade stock shares faster than human minds can comprehend.

Sports
5:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Week In Sports: The Nationals And Steven Strasbourg

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 8:58 am

Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon speaks with Howard Bryant about sports this week and the Nationals' plans for star pitcher Steven Strasbourg.

Europe
5:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

France To Hollande: Time To Get To Work

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 2:03 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The president of France, Francois Hollande, has just passed 100 days in office. Mr. Hollande swept to victory in a wave of discontent aimed at former President Nicolas Sarkozy. But now, there are concerns that the new president's slow, cautious manner may not be suited to solving some of the challenges facing his country. Eleanor Beardsley sends us this report from Paris.

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Middle East
5:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Fighting Continues To Scar Syrian Cities

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 2:03 pm

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The last U.N. military observers are pulling out of Syria today. Their mission has been made near impossible by the heavy fighting gripping the country.

A former Algerian foreign minister is taking over as U.N. envoy on Syria, but he's not optimistic about a quick end to the fighting. And neighboring Lebanon remains on edge, after a spate of kidnappings this week related to the Syrian conflict. NPR's Anthony Kuhn joins us from Beirut.

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Sports
5:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Preparing For The 2012 Paralympic Games In London

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 2:03 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Presidential Race
5:31 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Wrapping Up Week One Of Romney-Ryan

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 2:03 pm

Last week, Mitt Romney announced that he had selected Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate. NPR's Ari Shapiro has been covering the pair for a week now, and he joins Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon talks with him about the past week of campaigning for the new pair.

Europe
3:54 am
Sat August 18, 2012

Italian Yacht Owners Weigh Anchor To Dodge Taxes

The quayside at Compagnia della Vela in Venice, Italy, is largely deserted. Authorities have targeted yacht owners as part of a crackdown on tax evasion, and many boat owners have sailed to other countries in the Mediterranean.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 18, 2012 7:24 pm

Italy has a public debt of nearly 2 trillion euros, and it's cracking down on its notoriously wily tax evaders. Owners of luxury yachts are a prime target, with tax police launching dockside raids to see how individual tax files line up with owning and maintaining an expensive boat.

But yachts are mobile assets. In response, many boat owners are simply weighing anchor and setting course for more tax-friendly Mediterranean marinas.

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NPR Story
1:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Voices Of Support From The Romney-Ryan Announcement

The Romney campaign launched its first event with Ryan on the ticket in front of an excited crowd of supporters in Norfolk, Va., Saturday morning. If the crowd at the event was any indication, the decision has energized the Republican base.

NPR Story
1:38 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Mitt Romney And Paul Ryan's First Day Out

It's been a big day for Mitt Romney's presidential campaign. Romney officially announced his running mate this morning in Virginia. NPR's Ron Elving tells guest host Linda Wertheimer how the pair are starting out.

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