Weekend Edition Saturday

Saturdays, 8am - 10am

NPR's Peabody Award-winning correspondent Scott Simon captures the spirit of Saturday with an informative and worldly blend of news and analysis, and special features including the topics of sports, gardening, entertainment and more.

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Middle East
7:35 am
Sat July 21, 2012

In Syria, An Urgent Effort To Organize Rebels

Members of the group Hamza Abdualmuttalib trained this week near the Syrian city of Aleppo.
Bulent Kilic AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 9:47 pm

The battle for Syria appears to have reached a decisive stage. Tanks are on the streets of Damascus as civilians flee the city, and rebels have seized outposts on the borders with Turkey and Iraq.

The opposition has shown a surprising military capability over the past few days. As fighting intensifies in the Syrian capital, there's an urgent push under way to organize the rebel force.

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Around the Nation
7:35 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Man-Volvo Love Story May Hit 3 Million-Mile Mark

Host Scott Simon talks with 72-year-old Irv Gordon. His 1966 Volvo P1800S needs about 30,000 more miles to reach the 3 million-mile mark. His license plate reads, "MILNMILER."

Around the Nation
7:35 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Tragedy In Colo. Hits Movie Audiences Nationwide

The phrase "theater number 9" may soon be one of those added to our collective memory. That is where the shootings in Aurora, Colo., took place. It has some movie goers wondering about their safety in cities across the country.

Sports
7:35 am
Sat July 21, 2012

What's Coming Over The Olympic Horizon

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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

(SOUNDBITE OF SPORTS THEME MUSIC)

SIMON: OK, maybe that should be the (hums Olympic theme) because in just a few days, all the pomp and patriotism, the grit and athleticism, the sweat and pomposity of the 2010 Olympic Summer Games begins. Here with a preview NPR's Tom Goldman joins us. Tom, thanks so much for being with us.

TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: Did I just hear doves released in the studio there, Scott?

(LAUGHTER)

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Author Interviews
7:35 am
Sat July 21, 2012

'Our Kind': Unpacking Misconceptions About AIDS

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

A new book about global attitudes to the AIDS epidemic in Africa, lays some of the blame at the door of Joseph Conrad. Conrad's novel "Heart of Darkness," says the author - who's Uzodinma Iweala - connected inferiority and disease with Africa and Africans, in way which is still evident today. Uzodinma Iweala was himself was born in Washington D.C., the city with the worst incidence of AIDS in the United States. His first book, a novel called "Beasts of No Nation," told the harrowing story of child soldiers in Africa.

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NPR Story
7:24 am
Sat July 21, 2012

How Columbine Shaped Police Response To Shootings

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 7:35 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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NPR Story
7:24 am
Sat July 21, 2012

LIBOR Spotlight Shifts To U.S. Regulators

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 7:35 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

There's another dimension to that unfolding LIBOR scandal which cost Barclays, the British bank, its CEO and $450 million in fines after it was revealed that the bank had been manipulating international lending rates. Attention has shifted to why U.S. financial regulators, who knew about the rate rigging, didn't move to stop it more swiftly.

We're going to put that question to Robert Smith, correspondent for NPR's Planet Money. He joins us from New York. Robert, thanks for being with us.

ROBERT SMITH, BYLINE: My pleasure.

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NPR Story
7:24 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Treating Mental Trauma: Lessons From Tragedy

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 7:35 am

Host Scott Simon talks with Tom Olbrich of the Jefferson Center for Mental Health in Denver about some of the lessons learned about treating patients post-Columbine shooting.

Books
6:06 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Get Revved Up: London Cabbie Picks Olympic Reads

Black taxis drive through London. Weekend Edition knows one London cabbie who treats reading like an Olympic sport.
Pierre-Philippe Marcou AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 7:35 am

At the end of July, thousands of visitors will descend on one of the great literary landscapes of history for the London Olympics. And if they're lucky, they may find themselves getting a ride from a man who drives for a living, but lives to read. London cabbie Will Grozier occasionally joins Weekend Edition to discuss what he's been reading. Lately, he's been thinking about books for the London Olympics visitor — reads that put both the games and the host city in context. He shares his recommendations with NPR's Scott Simon.

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Americandy: Sweet Land Of Liberty
6:06 am
Sat July 21, 2012

The Modjeska: A Star On Stage, Sweetly Remembered

The modjeska owes its name to a Victorian-era candy maker's infatuation with a Polish actress.
Melisa Goh NPR

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 10:20 am

In the back room of Muth's Candies in Louisville, Ky., Jonathon Skaggs and Bobby Masterson are busy dipping marshmallows into a copper pot.

The pot is filled with a top-secret hot caramel mixture. Skaggs and Masterson tap the excess golden caramel off each candy before placing it on a board to cool.

Masterson says it's a rhythm repeated hundreds of times each day.

"They're good ... they're a big-time seller in here in Kentucky, especially right here in Louisville," Masterson says. "There's a lot of people that come and get 'em."

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Deceptive Cadence
6:05 am
Sat July 21, 2012

A Grand Soviet Symphony, By Way Of Brazil

Sergei Prokofiev (pictured) wrote a Fifth Symphony that has special resonance in Sao Paulo for conductor Marin Alsop.
Library of Congress

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 9:08 am

People keep asking me why I recorded Sergei Prokofiev's Fifth Symphony for my first CD release in my new post leading the Sao Paulo Symphony Orchestra. The simple answer is that it just felt right. But in thinking about it, I can now see many parallels — at least for me — between Prokofiev's music, the city of Sao Paulo and the country of Brazil.

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Music Interviews
6:05 am
Sat July 21, 2012

A Tribal Anthem's Author — And A Cult Rock Hero

In 1969, Plant and See, a band led by the late Lumbee Indian singer Willie Lowery (second from left), made its only album, a cult classic rereleased this month.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 8:39 am

In the 1960s, the late Lumbee Indian singer, composer and activist Willie Lowery led a band called Plant and See — as in, plant the seed in the ground and see what comes up.

The band recorded only one album, Plant and See, which went out of print shortly after it was released in 1969, but psychedelic rock fans have always held it in high esteem.

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AIDS: A Turning Point
6:02 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Know Your HIV Status? D.C.'s Asking

HIV counselor Natrussa Williams explains the results of the oral HIV test to Katherine Tapp at the D.C. Department of Motor Vehicles in southeast Washington. There have been no babies born with HIV in the city since 2009, in part because of increased testing at locations including some high schools and the DMV.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 2:38 pm

Washington, D.C., has the highest rate of HIV infection in the nation, almost 3 percent. It's considered an epidemic. Health officials believe one way to halt the spread of the disease is to encourage people to get tested and "know their status." They hope this will encourage residents to seek treatment and reduce the chances of them passing on the virus.

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The Aurora Theater Shootings
6:02 am
Sat July 21, 2012

From Top Student To Top Suspect: A Mystery Between

A photo of James Holmes released by the University of Colorado Denver.
University of Colorado Denver

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 8:49 am

Police are still not saying what motivated the gunman who walked into a crowded Aurora, Colo., movie theater, shot 12 people dead and injured more than 50. The shooter was well-armed and believed to have acted alone.

Police immediately apprehended the suspect, identified as 24-year-old James Holmes, outside the multiplex. Until recently, Holmes was a student in a graduate program at the University of Colorado, Denver.

The Gunman's Entrance

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The Aurora Theater Shootings
6:00 am
Sat July 21, 2012

In Chaos And 'Severe Trauma,' Colo. Lives At Risk

Mourners also held a candelight vigil in Devner, Colo., Friday.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 9:48 pm

In Colorado, authorities are investigating why a gunman opened fire in a movie theater on Friday. Suspect James Holmes is in custody, and police say they have talked with the 24-year-old, but won't say yet what they've learned.

Meanwhile, vigils are planned this weekend to remember the 12 people who died and to support the dozens injured. In all, there were 70 casualties — police say nearly all of them suffered gunshot wounds.

'It Was Like A Dream'

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History
7:54 am
Sat July 14, 2012

50 Years Ago, Communications Became Global

Originally published on Mon July 16, 2012 4:54 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Fifty years ago this week, communications went global. July 12, 1962 the Telstar 1 satellite from AT&T became the first commercial spacecraft to beam television images from the United States to Europe.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

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Science
7:54 am
Sat July 14, 2012

Starry-Eyed In Arizona Observe The Heavens

Originally published on Mon July 16, 2012 4:54 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

There may be no better town in America for observing the heavens than Tucson, Arizona. It has low humidity, high elevation and a darkened desert. That part of the state has attracted quite a few astronomers, both professional and amateur. We sent NPR's Peter Breslow to Tucson to seek out this community of stargazers.

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Europe
7:54 am
Sat July 14, 2012

Toil And Trouble: Eurozone Pot Continues To Boil

Originally published on Mon July 16, 2012 4:54 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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

There's more gloomy news from the eurozone this week. Italy saw its sovereign debt rating lowered by one agency, at just a couple of notches above junk status. In Spain, civil servants, coalminers, and others took to the streets once again to protest more spending cuts and tax hikes. And Germany's highest court heard arguments challenging the constitutionality of two measures considered central to efforts to try to contain the euro crisis.

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Science
7:54 am
Sat July 14, 2012

Found In Musical Translation: Higgs Boson Explained

Originally published on Mon July 16, 2012 4:54 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

It's been over a week since scientists announced that they've found the Higgs boson particle. It's an important discovery. They say that although the Higgs boson particle is small - or, come to think of it, perhaps because of it - it holds the universe together. But for all the publicity the particle's received, how many of us could explain what it actually does? Well, here's the announcement from scientists in Switzerland.

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Around the Nation
7:54 am
Sat July 14, 2012

Black Lung Makes A Deadly Resurgence

Originally published on Mon July 16, 2012 4:54 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Earlier this week, NPR and the Center for Public Integrity reported astonishing news: the coal miners' disease called black lung is a growing problem again. The investigative report also showed that weak regulation and industry deception has thwarted the effort to protect miners from the coal mine dust that causes black lung.

NPR's Howard Berkes joins us. Howard, thanks for being with us. first,

HOWARD BERKES, BYLINE: It's good to be with you, Scott.

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