I've never in my life desired a low-sodium biscuit, but I let the well-groomed woman at the Fancy Food Show in Washington, D.C. this week goad me into eating one.
"They're soooo good, I swear," she says.
It's perfectly fluffy and edible, this low-sodium biscuit, but seconds after it's gone I'm regretting having just wolfed down the whole thing. That's precious space in my stomach that I've just forfeited for an unremarkable food I'd never be interested in eating again.
The federal government could soon give the final go-ahead for Royal Dutch Shell to begin drilling for oil in the Arctic Ocean. Shell has spent $4 billion since 2007 to prepare for this work, and is hoping to tap into vast new deposits of oil.
But the plan to drill exploratory wells is controversial — opposed by environmental groups and some indigenous people as well.
GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney wrapped up a five-day, six-state tour in Michigan on Tuesday.
Each of the states he visited was won by President Obama in the 2008 election. Each is also shaping up as a potential battleground this year.
In Michigan, the state where Romney was born, he avoided big cities and stayed in places friendly to the GOP. As he traveled east to west across central Michigan by bus, there were some pockets of protesters, but mostly at a distance.
Beaches on the West Coast are getting a regular dose of debris from the 2011 tsunami in Japan. The first few items were curiosities — a boat here, a soccer ball there — but as the litter accumulates, officials such as Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire have acknowledged the scale of the problem.
"We are in for a steady dribble of tsunami debris over the next few years, so any response by us must be well-planned — and it will be," she said.
Beyond the obvious problem of litter, officials are on the lookout for hidden dangers.
The party that won Greece's parliamentary elections on Sunday has accepted the tough conditions international lenders imposed to bail out the ailing nation. But there's been talk that the party wants to seek some concessions on the terms of the rescue package.
At the G-20 summit in Los Cabos, Mexico, German Chancellor Angela Merkel reiterated her tough line that bailout terms for Greece are not negotiable. After the summit, Merkel returns to a German electorate that is now fed up with a debt crisis that only seems to grow and worsen.
Two members of the Senate's Judiciary Committee are asking the Supreme Court to provide live coverage of its proceedings when it hands down its decision on the constitutionality of the 2010 health care law.
Nurturing young talent is a long tradition in the classical music world, and many professional orchestras have their own youth orchestras. But it stands to reason that an organization with the kind of international stature the Cleveland Orchestra enjoys would have a top-notch youth ensemble. It does. And it's called, not surprisingly, the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra — COYO for short. The young musicians have just embarked on a European tour.
Tinseltown didn't invent the American dream, but it sure put it out there for the world to see — a dream lit by the perpetual sunshine of Southern California, steeped in the values of the immigrant filmmakers who moved there in the early 1900s and got enormously rich.
It was their own outsider experience these Italian, Irish, German and often Jewish moviemakers were putting on screen, each optimistic, escapist fantasy a virtual American dream checklist:
Hard work carries the day in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.
How do doctors work around so many ill people without getting sick? Well, they don't.
Even if they scrub their hands like crazy, which certainly helps, they succumb to germs every once in a while, just like the rest of us. And also like lots of the rest of us, they'll go to work sick, a survey of medical residents finds.
The fighting in Syria has been escalating. The U.N. peace effort is in shambles. And there's no appetite right now for outside military intervention.
The Syrian crisis is prompting renewed calls for international action, and there have been plenty of dire warnings and lots of hand-wringing. But after a decade of fighting in the broader region, the United States and its Western allies have shown no interest in getting involved in another military adventure in a Muslim country.
The top news from Capitol Hill testimony today by JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon is that he says "the bank did its best to fully inform investors about its risk strategy several weeks before it suffered a $2 billion-plus trading loss," The Associated Press reports.
But the quote from him that seems to be getting the most attention came in response to a question from Rep. Sean Duffy, R-Wis., who wanted to know if the bank could ever lose "a half a trillion dollars or a trillion dollars?"
NPR's Neal Conan reads from listener comments on previous show topics including the challenges facing single parents, difficult choices raised by advances in genetic testing and the jokes that define a community or group.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Last week on the first day of the sex abuse trial of former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, a 28-year-old man referred to as Victim Four in court papers took the stand and offered graphic detail of years of abuse.
He also expressed regret for not coming forward earlier. He told the jury he had spent, quote, so many years burying this in the back of my head forever that when he heard there were other cases like his, he felt responsible.
According to Forbes, the boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. is now the world's highest-paid athlete, dethroning Tiger Woods who had held the spot since 2001.
Two bouts during the past 12 months — beating Victor Ortiz and Miguel Cotto in less than an hour combined — netted Mayweather $85 million. That's more than LeBron James ($53 million), more than Roger Federer ($52.7 million), more than Kobe Bryant ($52.3 million).
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. For years, U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan and Yemen remained an open secret. There are reasons why missile attacks on the territory of quasi-allies weren't acknowledged, but because of that secrecy, legal justification started to emerge only last year, and the process that the president and his advisors use to put individuals on the kill list only came into focus this month in Daniel Klaidman's book "Kill or Capture."
The Environmental Working Group, a non-profit health advocacy organization, says you should be concerned about pesticide residues in fruits and vegetables, but not so concerned that you stop eating these foods.
A jury found Roger Clemens not guilty on all charges of obstruction and lying to Congress about steroid use. Clemens has always denied the accusations, but despite the verdict, many fans and sportswriters declared Clemens guilty long ago and refuse to believe he's innocent.
Hans-Jurgen Kuhl started painting when he was 10. He loved gazing at the artwork in Cologne's Ludwig Museum. As a young adult, he discovered silk-screening and soon made something of a name for himself producing Andy Warhol imitations.
Years later, frustrated by his meager living as an artist, he decided to imitate a more difficult but more immediately rewarding piece of art: the U.S. Treasury's $100 bill. Kuhl still considered it art, though the authorities used a different word when he manufactured hundreds of thousands of maybe the best counterfeit C-notes ever.
Microsoft announced yesterday that it was jumping into the tablet market with "Surface." That foray has been hotly anticipated and analysts believe with sales of PCs falling, it's an important move for the company known more for its software than its hardware.
Now that the tech writers have had a chance to get their hands on the device, we've rounded up a few of their first impressions:
From now until November, President Obama and GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney will emphasize their differences. But the two men's lives actually coincide in a striking number of ways. That includes struggling with their respective legislatures. Earlier, NPR's David Welna explored Romney's time as governor of Massachusetts. In this installment of "Parallel Lives," a look at Obama and Congress.