It takes a deft hand to do justice to the ordinary. Most novelists don't even bother to try, which is why most novels are about a rip in the fabric of the routine. It's tough to find fiction ambitious enough to tackle the story of a run-of-the-mill job, a hum-drum family; but, if the mundane matters to you, then Stewart O'Nan is your man.

In California's Silicon Valley, the economy is finally showing signs of a turnaround. Social media companies like Twitter and Facebook are generating a lot of new excitement, and there's even been a slight uptick in hiring. Still, the recession has done considerable damage to the region's economy, and the unemployment rate remains high.

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STEVE INSKEEP, Host:

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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STEVE INSKEEP, Host:

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

You simply cannot appreciate the brilliance of Angry Birds unless you play the game. So go get your iPhone or borrow one from a friend. You can download the first game for free.

There are many spoilers ahead in this piece, and by spoilers, we mean this: If you want to be surprised by the final few episodes of Big Love, you should not read or listen to this piece until you finish the season.

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SIMON: Warren Christopher died last night at the age 85, at home in Los Angeles. He was the son of a North Dakota bank clerk who became a blue chip, L.A. lawyer in splendid suits, and a famously self-effacing diplomat.

H: the best public servant I ever knew.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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P: Mr. Breslin, thanks so much for being with us.

JIMMY BRESLIN: Good. I'm here.

: Yeah, you...

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

: Indeed, and it's good to have you here, sir.

BRESLIN: Yeah

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SCOTT SIMON, Host:

NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson reports voter turnout is unusually high in some districts.

(SOUNDBITE OF PEOPLE SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE)

The earthquake and tsunami that ravaged Japan's northeast has torn the social fabric of many communities wrought havoc on the normal cycles of life and death. In the northern city of Kesennuma, where at least 300 people were killed by the tsunami, communities are struggling to maintain dignity and respect as they send off the deceased.

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Programming Changes Coming to WEKU and Classic 102.1

New Programs such as 1A+, The Daily, Reveal and more...

with Tom Martin

Thursdays at 11am

Ohio Valley ReSource

Special Project: Coal Ash Uncovered

Jun 16, 2018
Ohio Valley ReSource

Coal has long powered the Ohio Valley. But it left behind a legacy of waste: dozens of massive coal ash disposal sites. As the Trump administration changes the regulation of coal ash, the Ohio Valley ReSource and partner station WFPL have analyzed new data from the region’s waste sites. The analysis found widespread evidence that coal ash sites are leaking contaminants into surrounding groundwater. 

In the first of a three-part series, reporters Brittany Patterson and Ryan Van Velzer share what they found and what it might mean for nearby communities.

Steve Pavey, Hope In Focus

Anti-poverty activists say they will continue a campaign of demonstrations and civil disobedience throughout the Ohio Valley despite arrests at some events and being blocked from Kentucky’s capitol building.

The Poor People’s Campaign has rallied in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia and campaign leaders returned to Kentucky Wednesday after the group was denied access at earlier demonstrations.

 

Public Radio East

The U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee has passed it’s version of the Farm Bill with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s provisions to remove hemp from a list of Schedule 1 controlled substances. 

McConnell’s Hemp Farming Act of 2018 legalizes the growing of hemp and also allows hemp cultivators to receive federal crop insurance. Lawmakers made amendments during Wednesday's Agriculture Committee meeting and passed the revised version of the bill with only one dissenting vote from Republican Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa. 

MORE STORIES FROM THE OHIO VALLEY RESOURCE