She was about three feet longer than the distance from an NBA free throw line to the basket. She was a bit more than twice the height of many bedroom ceilings. You could park two Smart Cars beside her with a foot or so to spare.
Those are some ways to get a sense of just how big the biggest Burmese python discovered so far in Florida was.
When the Waldo Canyon Fire roared over the hill behind the Mountain Shadows neighborhood in Colorado Springs, Colo., in June, nearly350 homes were destroyed. The blaze reduced this affluent neighborhood at the foot of the mountains to rubble.
C.J. Moore's home on Mirror Lake Court was among the casualties. The inferno was so hot, her stone driveway exploded. Only a few blackened trees sway eerily in the wind where her home used to stand.
Helen Gurley Brown, the longtime editor of Cosmopolitan magazine, died Monday in New York at age 90.
If Cosmo was her biggest legacy, it was her 1962 best-seller, Sex and the Single Girl, that launched her to fame. She was 40, with a high-paying job in advertising and a recent marriage to Hollywood producer David Brown.
But she was writing for the single girls, not her privileged peers, says Jennifer Scanlon, author of a Brown biography called Bad Girls Go Everywhere.
D.W. Gibson is the author of Not Working: People Talk About Losing a Job and Finding Their Way in Today's Changing Economy.
The bright white Heritage Park library opened up a mile from my house when I was 13, and the first thing I checked out was Roald Dahl's story collection Someone Like You. I should have known what I was in for because of that giant eyeball on the cover; but somehow I saw it as more of a temptation than a warning.
Boston's Debo Band takes inspiration from a golden era of popular music in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in the late '60s and early '70s. During a brief period of cultural freedom in Ethiopia, funk and soul music fused spectacularly with local traditions. Debo Band's debut album both honors and updates the sound of "swinging Addis."
When it comes to connecting with the Egyptian public, the country's new president, Mohammed Morsi, seems to have looked at what his predecessor did, and then plotted a course that is diametrically opposed.
During three decades of rule, the former president, Hosni Mubarak, would sometimes go months without making a public statement. When he did appear, it was almost always a formal presentation that seemed to emphasize the gulf between the leader and the ruled.
How do a Swedish producer and a Malawian singer end up collaborating? The partnership that became The Very Best was sparked several years ago, when Johan Karlberg stopped into a London secondhand store that was run by the Malawi-born Esau Mwamwaya, and the two started talking music.
Olympic winners like gold medalist Claressa Shields have said the games were a learning experience, but what were they learning? Hard work? Sure. Sportsmanship? Maybe. The metric system? Certainly not.
U.S. judo competitor Kyle Vashkulat competes at 100 kg, which he knows means he weighs 220 lbs. But does he know height?
"We were in a sauna, and the guy's telling us the height of the boxers, and he's like, 'Yeah, this guy's like, 1.7 meters' — and we're like, 'How tall is that?'" Vashkulat says, laughing.
Since Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., came on the scene Saturday, Mitt Romney's rallies have felt different. The crowds are bigger. The audience is more raucous. Lines that used to be a routine part of the Republican presidential candidate's stump speech have become rousing battle cries.
At the NASCAR Technical Institute in Mooresville, N.C., 1,600 people crowded into the room and thousands more swarmed outside.
"I feel like I'm in Woodstock," gubernatorial candidate Pat McCrory exclaimed. "There's a parking jam!"
News that Paul Ryan was chosen as Mitt Romney's running mate had people in his hometown of Janesville, Wis., abuzz Saturday morning. But the strong feelings Ryan provokes elsewhere for and against his policies were also evident.
On her way into the Janesville post office, Corrine Smith has a smile on her face. She and her husband are both big Paul Ryan supporters, and they were thrilled when they heard the news.
Mitt Romney's newly announced running mate, Paul Ryan, has long subscribed to the objectivist philosophies of novelist Ayn Rand. Host Guy Raz speaks with James Fallows of The Atlantic about how that approach to public policy will play with voters.
So now that we know who Mitt Romney's running mate is, what about the keynote speaker at the Republican Convention later this month? No word yet. Democrats have announced that San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro will get that coveted spot that has, in the past, served as a platform for bigger things.
It's WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Guy Raz.
And as we've been reporting, Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan has joined Mitt Romney on the GOP presidential ticket. The two men launched a multiday, multistate bus tour this morning. They spent much of the day in Virginia where crowds came out to cheer them on, including in Ashland, where Paul Ryan spoke.
So what makes Paul Ryan such a bold pick and potentially such a risky one is the detailed budget plan he has now twice passed through the GOP-controlled House. That plan has not passed the Senate, and President Obama says if it reached his desk, he'd veto it. The heart of Ryan's plan calls for dramatic changes to the nation's largest government health programs, Medicare and Medicaid.
With us now to discuss what those changes could mean for the campaign and the country should Romney and Ryan win the race is NPR's Julie Rovner. Julie, hello.
Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 2:41 pm
Batman has many secrets — the best-known one, of course, being his millionaire alter ego, Bruce Wayne. But that may not be the Dark Knight's biggest secret.
Since the 1930s, only one man has been given credit for creating the caped crusader and his home city of Gotham. Bob Kane's name appears in the credits of all the movies, the campy TV show and the associated merchandise, from video games and action figures to sheets and underwear.
Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 3:13 pm
Saxophonist Branford Marsalis, oldest son of New Orleans pianist and educator Ellis Marsalis, released an album with his quartet this week. He spoke to weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz about the failings of modern jazz, his hopes for the next generation and leaving New York City to move back to the South.
Originally published on Mon October 22, 2012 9:38 am
You might imagine a war between lobster trappers to be something like this battle of the lobsters. OK, not really. Still, the price war heating up between the fishing folk in Maine and Canada this summer is bringing everybody down.
The London Summer Olympics are winding down, and by most accounts, the games have been a success. There were plenty of "thrill of victory, agony of defeat" moments; big, enthusiastic crowds — although there were too many blocks of empty seats; and for those who like a helping of scandal served up at their Olympics, there was that, too.
It wasn't the usual scourge of doping. Instead, the London Olympics had incidents of bending the rules and ethics of sport.
When writer David Rakoff died Thursday at the age 47, he was barely the age he said he was always "meant" to be. In his 2010 memoir, Half Empty, he wrote, "Everyone has an internal age, a time in life when one is, if not one's best, then at very least one's most authentic self. I always felt that my internal clock was calibrated somewhere between 47 and 53 years old."
Rakoff died in New York City after a long struggle with cancer — an ordeal that he wrote about with sobering honesty and biting wit.
Originally published on Sun August 12, 2012 7:45 am
On a recent day, baffled motorists honked their horns and veered around the blocked entrance to a major street in Sidon. Now Lebanon's third-largest city, Sidon was once a flourishing Phoenician city-state on the Mediterranean.
The street was closed off by Sunni cleric Sheik Ahmad Assir, who erected a small tent encampment in protest against the country's most powerful military and political force, the militant Islamist group Hezbollah.
The Royal Spanish Academy — the official arbiter of the Spanish language — recently announced that it will add the word "Espanglish" to the 2014 edition of its dictionary. This is a big deal for the traditionally conservative academy, and it's a big deal for supporters who feel that mix of Spanish and English has officially been ignored for more than a century.
With the Olympics drawing to a close, NBC is looking especially golden. They have had two weeks of great ratings — including record highs. What better time than on the eve of the network's new fall season to rack up two weeks of record audiences? But what might seem a slam dunk for the network is anything but.
Jennie Fields was well into her new novel about Edith Wharton — and her love affair with a young journalist — when she heard that a new cache of Wharton letters had been discovered. They were written to Anna Bahlmann, who was first Wharton's governess and later her literary secretary. Bahlmann had never been considered a major influence on Wharton, but Fields had decided to make her a central character in her book, The Age of Desire, even before she heard about the letters.