9:49 am
Sun February 9, 2014

Why Confounding Coincidences Happen Every Day

Originally published on Sun February 9, 2014 10:44 am



Coincidences confound us. Miracles amaze us. And the chance that the same person could be hit by lightning three different times, well, that just defies explanation. Or does it? David Hand is an emeritus professor of mathematics at Imperial College in London. And he has written a book called "The Improbability Principle: Why Coincidences, Miracles and Rare Events Happen Every Day." He joins us from the BBC studios in London. Thanks so much for being with us.

DAVID HAND: Thank you very much for inviting me.

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Sunday Puzzle
7:02 am
Sun February 9, 2014

Break Loose, Break Loose, Kick Off Your Sunday Shoes


Originally published on Sun February 9, 2014 10:44 am

On-air challenge: Today's puzzle is called "Break Loose." Every answer is a familiar two-word phrase in which the first word has a long-A vowel sound (as in "break"), and the second word has a long-U vowel sound (as in "loose").

Last week's challenge: The challenge came from listener Sam Williamson of Charlevoix, MI, and it's a two-part question: where in most homes will you see the words SHE and HIS ... and what word will you see right after HIS?

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Author Interviews
7:00 am
Sun February 9, 2014

Seed Librarians, Stone Carvers And Sheepherders Along The Hudson

Originally published on Sun February 9, 2014 10:44 am

Travel can take on many modes: Air, bus, boat, car — and how about going a few hundred miles by bicycle?

One day in the spring of 2012, English designer and photographer Nick Hand set off on his bicycle from Brooklyn, New York, and traveled north up the Hudson River, collecting the stories of local artisans he happened to meet along the way.

Hand put all those stories together in a new book called Conversations on the Hudson, and he tells NPR's Rachel Martin that he found inspiration in a similar journey he'd already taken around the British coastline.

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You Must Read This
6:02 am
Sun February 9, 2014

From Muse To Outcast, A Woman Comes Of Age In 'Widow Basquiat'

Rebecca Walker's previous work includes the memoirs Black, White & Jewish and Baby Love. Adé: A Love Story is her first novel.
Amanda Marsalis Courtesy of Little A / New Harvest

Much has been written about Jean-Michel Basquiat, the childlike savant and startlingly brilliant neo-expressionist who went down in a ball of heroin, cocaine and rage before his prime — before he could see his paintings sell at Christie's for $49 million, before he was compared to Picasso and de Kooning. Since his death in 1988, he has been immortalized in countless museum catalogues and even more Ph.D theses, and rendered larger than life on the silver screen by none other than the king of the eighties art world himself, Julian Schnabel.

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Arts & Life
4:09 pm
Sat February 8, 2014

People, Language And Controversy In The Headlines

Originally published on Sat February 8, 2014 5:34 pm

Writer and comedian Hari Kondabolu speaks with NPR's Arun Rath about India being excluded from the Olympics, a controversial Coke commercial, and comments from Sen. Pat Roberts from Kansas during the confirmation hearings for surgeon general nominee Dr. Vivek Murthy.