This Blockbuster store in Mission, Texas, is franchised by Border Entertainment. The company has 26 stores across Texas and Alaska that will live on after the last 300 or so company-owned stores are closed by early January 2014.
Blockbuster was once the king of movie rental stores. At its peak, it had about 60,000 employees and more than 9,000 stores.
But after struggling for several years, the chain is breathing its last gasp. Dish Network, which bought Blockbuster in a 2011 bankruptcy auction, says it will close the remaining 300 or so company-owned stores by January.
On Twitter, it put out a call for "Blockbuster Memories."
Every week, a cluster of stories comes to define the landscape of news media. These can be stories of international scope or local intimacy, but for their own distinctive reasons, they all offer narratives defined almost in real time.
To get a better grasp on the hectic pace of current events, it's often vital to turn to another kind of narrative — our favorite kind: books. That's why each week we'll invite authors to suggest a book that somehow deepens, contextualizes or offers an entirely new angle on one of the week's major headlines.
All this week, All Things Considered has been broadcasting from Southern California, a hotbed for Latin Alternative music. Felix Contreras, co-host of NPR's Alt.Latino podcast, says that even for him, that music often evades definition.
"Latin Alternative is a combination of tradition mixed with hip-hop and rock and electronica. But then sometimes it's just straight hip-hop, and that throws my theory into shambles," he says. "It's all of the above, but none of the above."
Duval County Public Schools is considering a name change for Nathan Bedford Forrest High School in Jacksonville, Fla. The school is named for a Confederate hero who was the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan — and after five decades of debate, there appears to be momentum for change.
Nov. 22 will mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas, a moment that left an indelible mark on those who remember it.
It also permanently changed the agency charged with protecting the president — the U.S. Secret Service.
Looking back at the images of Kennedy, first lady Jackie Kennedy, Texas Gov. John Connally and his wife waving as they rode through the streets of Dallas in an open Lincoln, it all looks terribly innocent and naive.
The Fisk Jubilee Singers are known worldwide for their flawless voices and stellar performances of Negro spirituals. They're from Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn., but they travel around the world to perform their music. Negro spirituals were originally sung by slaves and remain tightly linked to African-American culture. Paul Kwami, the choir's musical director, said singing these spirituals was a way for slaves to lament their servitude, along with the hope of being free one day.
For six decades, in her light-filled studio on top of New York's Carnegie Hall, portrait photographer Editta Sherman photographed celebrities from Leonard Bernstein to Yul Brynner to Joe DiMaggio. She was a legend — and she'd tell you that herself. Sherman died Friday at 101.
A note on her website reads: "Editta Sherman's vibrant sparkling life faded from this earth on November 1st, All Saints Day. She is at peace now and she is clothed in her ballerina dress with her diamond shoes dancing her way home to our hearts."
New public opinion polls show distaste for National Security Agency surveillance does not break cleanly across party lines. Despite the administration's attempts otherwise, one new study finds that the more people know about the NSA, the more they dislike it.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish, this week at NPR West in California.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block in Washington, D.C.
(SOUNDBITE OF BELL RINGING)
BLOCK: Ringing the bell to open trading on the New York Stock Exchange today, @SirPatStew, @vivienneharr and @CherylFiandaca - all of them big users of Twitter - to mark the day the social networking site became a publicly traded company.
If the Food and Drug Administration has its way, an era of food technology will soon end. The agency announced Thursday it is aiming to ban partially hydrogenated vegetable oils from all food products.
Margaret Hamburg, the FDA commissioner, said at a press conference that her agency has come to the preliminary conclusion that the oils "are not generally recognized as safe for use in food."
If the agency makes this decision final, it will mean a complete ban on this ingredient.
This colorfully illustrated French and Hebrew Passover Haggadah was published in Vienna in 1930. Caption on the image: "Eating Matzah." This restored document is part of an exhibit at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., that opens Nov. 8.
Credit National Archives
Documents from the Iraqi Jewish community dry outside the Mukhabarat, Saddam Hussein's intelligence headquarters, in Baghdad.
Credit Alex Brandon / AP
Patrick Brown, a conservation technician, works on Iraqi Jewish documents at the National Archives in College Park, Md., on Sept. 30.
Credit National Archives
This Rabbinic Bible from Venice in 1568 is the one of the earliest printed books discovered in this collection. Printed in late Renaissance-era Venice by Giovanni di Gara, the central biblical text is surrounded by rabbinic commentaries.
Militias from towns throughout the country's west parade through Tripoli, Libya, in 2012. Analysts say the country is awash with heavy weapons in the hands of militias divided by tribe, ideology and region. The central government has little power over the gunmen.
Zintan, a mountain town in northwestern Libya, is a place of gray and brown buildings, with little infrastructure, about 50,000 people and no central government control.
The Libyan government doesn't provide basic services, not even water. People use wells to provide for themselves. The local council runs all of Zintan's affairs out of a building in the center of town.
At the local militia base on the outskirts of town, we meet the keeper of Saif el-Islam Gadhafi, the son and one-time heir apparent of Moammar Gadhafi.
Western states have led the way in the legalization of marijuana, first with medical marijuana, and then with the legalization of recreational pot in Colorado and Washington last November.
It's been quite an adjustment for the police. Washington State Patrol is adapting to the new reality in a variety of ways, from untraining dogs that sniff out pot, to figuring out how to police high drivers.
There's a nationwide search underway to find former students who don't know they've already done all or most of the work needed to earn a credential that might help them land a better-paying job.
In Michigan, several hundred community college dropouts were recently surprised to learn they had enough credits to qualify for an associate degree. There are also ex-students who apparently didn't know they're just a few credits shy of a two-year degree.
Election Day has come and gone, but your vote can still make a difference. That is in choosing a name for a new giant panda cub. The National Zoo here in Washington has put forth five possible names for the female cub born this summer. You can vote on the Smithsonian National Zoo's website.
And we want to make sure you have everything you need to make an informed decision, so we've called up our Beijing correspondent Anthony Kuhn for some help understanding the choices. Anthony, ni hao.
A player from the Vatican's new cricket team of priests and seminarians returns a ball during a training session at the Mater Ecclesiae Catholic college in Rome last month. The Vatican officially declared its intention to defeat the Church of England — not in a theological re-match nearly 500 years after they split, but on the cricket pitch.
People wait in line at a counter for medical services at the Guanganmen Chinese medicine hospital in Beijing.
Credit AFP / AFP/Getty Images
Hospital workers protest against attacks on medical workers outside the No. 1 People's Hospital in Wenling, in east China's Zhejiang province, on Oct. 28. The protest came after a man stabbed three doctors, killing one, three days earlier.
Credit Ng Han Guan / AP
A patient rests on a bed in the corridor of a crowded hospital in Beijing.
Several hundred doctors and nurses jammed the courtyard of the No. 1 People's Hospital in Wenling, a city with a population of about 1 million in Zhejiang province, a four-hour train ride south of Shanghai.
They wore surgical masks to hide their identities from the government and waved white signs that read, "Zero tolerance for violence."
"Doctors and nurses must be safe to take care of people's health!" video shows them chanting.
As China and India race to Mars, we'll venture outside our solar system and consider this mind-expanding possibility: There could be 40 billion planets in our Milky Way galaxy that are orbiting stars in a habitable zone that could support life - 40 billion. Makes you kind of puny, doesn't it?
Florida's citrus industry has a new problem. It's long wrestled with crop diseases like canker and greening. But the effort to halt greening has killed millions of bees, as growers have increased their use of pesticides.
And that, in turn, is straining relationships between citrus farmers and their longtime partners, beekeepers. Here's Ashley Lopez of member station WGCU.
ASHLEY LOPEZ, BYLINE: Harold Curtis runs an 1,100-acre grove in southwest Florida. He walks through the rows of trees, packed full of plump, juicy oranges.
Voters in New York City go to the polls Tuesday to choose their next mayor, and it appears all but certain that they'll elect Bill de Blasio, the city's public advocate.
The Democrat has built a wide lead in the polls by distancing himself from the incumbent mayor, billionaire Michael Bloomberg. In fact, de Blasio has made income inequality the central issue of his campaign, name-checking the Charles Dickens novel A Tale of Two Cities dozens of times at debates and stump speeches.
Howard University, one of the country's most prominent historically black schools, has hit a rough patch in recent months.
The school's Faculty Senate recently voted no confidence in leaders of the school's Board of Trustees. That vote came just weeks after Howard's president announced a surprise early retirement and Moody's Investors Service downgraded the university's credit rating, as my Code Switch teammate Gene Demby has reported.
The Large Stone Carving is the heaviest stone in the Forbidden City in Beijing. It was believed to have weighed more than 300 tons when it was first transported to the site between 1407 and 1420.
Credit NYPL Digital Gallery
Judging from a carving found in an Egyptian tomb, experts say 172 men were used to transport the 60-ton Statue of Tehuti-Hetep, circa 1880 B.C. Water was used to lubricate the colossus as it slid along wooden planks.
The distance between the Forbidden City in Beijing (a) and the Dasiwo Quarry in Fangshan (b) is about 43 miles. Double lines on the map represent rivers; single lines represent roads.
Credit Bob Jordan / AP
The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in Buxton, N.C., was moved almost 3,000 feet inland on July 9, 1999, to protect it from the advancing ocean.
Great works of ancient engineering, like the Pyramids or Stonehenge, inspire awe in every beholder. But some onlookers also get inspired to figure out exactly how these structures were made.
Howard Stone, an engineer from Princeton University, had such a moment in Beijing's Forbidden City — a city-within-a-city of palaces and temples built in the 15th and 16th centuries. A carved, 300-ton slab that formed a ramp to one structure particularly caught Stone's eye. "How in the world did it get here?" he wondered.
Maltreatment during childhood can lead to long-term changes in brain circuits that process fear, researchers say. This could help explain why children who suffer abuse are much more likely than others to develop problems like anxiety and depression later on.
Nie Haisheng, Zhang Xiaoguang and Wang Yaping aboard the Tiangong-1 space module in June. China is leading what some see as a space race among Asian countries: It has worked on a lunar rover, a space station and an unmanned mission to Mars.
Credit Anthony Kuhn / NPR
Wu Ji, director general of the China National Space Science Center, says he's excited that his organization now has the funding and the mandate to pursue more purely scientific space projects. But he expresses disappointment at the difficulty of cooperating with colleagues at NASA.
India's launch Tuesday of a satellite bound for Mars is the latest milestone in a space race among Asian nations. China, though, is still seen as the leader. A decade ago, China became the third nation to put up a manned spacecraft; it has worked on a lunar rover, a space station as well as its own unmanned mission to Mars.