Originally published on Wed February 8, 2012 10:31 am
For an election that shouldn't matter on paper, Missouri's primary on Tuesday may carry a lot of weight.
The state's Republican electorate tends to be both populist and conservative. That could give former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, who has campaigned in Missouri the most — and the most recently — among GOP presidential candidates, the chance for a strong showing.
It's flat. It's slimy. And it hides under rocks on the river bottom. It's the Ozark hellbender, and at up to two feet in length, it's one of the world's largest salamanders.
But Ozark hellbenders are disappearing: Fewer than 600 are left in the rivers of southern Missouri and northern Arkansas. Scientists have been making a huge effort to get them to breed in captivity. And now, thanks to a major effort at the Saint Louis Zoo, 2012 could be the year of new hope for hellbenders.
Originally published on Wed December 14, 2011 4:16 pm
When the head of the National Transportation Safety Board called for states to pass tough new laws banning drivers from using cellphones or hand-held devices, she said: "No call, no text, no update, is worth a human life."
While Tuesday's statement by NTSB Chairwoman Deborah Hersman is undeniable, there are those who question the advisability of such a ban. Some state lawmakers and transportation experts say it could be difficult to enforce and that there's no real evidence yet that existing laws on hand-held devices have significantly reduced accident rates.
When rock 'n' roll legend Chuck Berry navigated his music career, he didn't rely on agents or record labels; he drove himself to his own business meetings and concerts in his fleet of Cadillacs.
Now Berry has donated one of those cars, a candy-apple red 1973 Eldorado, to the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, set to open its doors in 2015. NPR's Rachel Martin went with curator Kevin Strait to watch Smithsonian fleet manager Bill Griffiths restore the car in Suitland, Md.
The Great Recession has hit the industrial Midwest especially hard in recent years, from big cities to small factory towns. But now, in at least one small Illinois city, local leaders believe the worst is finally behind them.
Sitting across the Mississippi River from downtown St. Louis, Granite City, Ill., has certainly seen better days. In its downtown, there are more boarded-up and empty storefronts and vacant lots than there are businesses.
A cook's secrets are meant to stay in the kitchen. An off-recipe substitution, a unique addition, an improvised technique — they often come from inspiration, or just a sense of craft, that can make a home chef both proud and protective. Luckily for us, Chris Kimball of America's Test Kitchen is happy to share the secrets he's picked up in more than 30 years of cooking.
Originally published on Mon October 31, 2011 12:01 pm
Being a comedian, Joe Marlotti is always afraid he won't get laughs. But he grows especially nervous this time of year. After all, a comedian doesn't want his kids to bomb when it comes time to tell jokes.
Marlotti hails from St. Louis, where local Halloween tradition calls for children not to say "trick or treat," but to tell a joke in order to earn candy.
"I've been all around the block — literally — telling them that it's important to tell the joke right, or it makes me look bad," Marlotti says.