KWIT

NPR Staff

Bonnie Mackay has written an unusual sort of memoir: Tree of Treasures is the story of her life, told through Christmas tree ornaments. Mackay is something of an ornament aficionado — starting with the first tree she decorated with a friend from college. "We called it the tree of disarray ... " she tells NPR's Ari Shapiro. They adorned it with unconventional objects, including jewelry, scarves and kitchen items. From those humble beginnings, Mackay went on to design ornaments professionally...

On Donald Trump's visit to Carrier in Indiana on Thursday, he mentioned a phone call that he made to the CEO of United Technologies, the air conditioning company's parent. As Trump describes it, that call led to Carrier announcing it will not move as many jobs to Mexico as it had planned. "We can't allow this to happen anymore with our country. So many jobs are leaving and going to other countries, not just Mexico," Trump said. Trump made it sound as though the decision to keep 1,000 Carrier...

The late Cuban dictator Fidel Castro loved baseball. And you may have heard that he was such a good player that years before the Cuban revolution, he tried out for the New York Yankees in Havana. Or not. This myth has persisted for years, and though it might be fun to contemplate the historical consequences of this "What if?" scenario, Adrian Burgos Jr., University of Illinois history professor and author of Playing America's Game: Baseball, Latinos and the Color Line , says it simply didn't...

Stephen Moore, a senior economic adviser to Donald Trump, was once a doctrinaire libertarian and free-trader. Now, Moore says: "Donald Trump's victory has changed the [Republican] Party into a more populist working-class party in some ways that conservatives like myself will like and some that we'll be uncomfortable with." Moore recently told House Republicans that the Republican Party under Trump is no longer the Republican Party of Ronald Reagan . In an interview with NPR's Steve Inskeep,...

For years, Americans have been eager to visit Cuba, not just for its Caribbean warmth, but to seek out the roots of the island's music, to watch its films, to thumb through its books and meet its writers. Fidel Castro's death Friday has again spiked interest in the country among Americans. And, with diplomatic relations thawing between the U.S. and Cuba, now more than ever it's possible to explore the island's culture at its origin. But where to start? To answer that question, we turned to...

H.G. Wells' eerie writing brought us time machines, aliens and a submarine, long before a real one was seen in the world. Still, one of his short stories spent decades unseen by his avid readers. Until now, that is. His long-unpublished story "The Haunted Ceiling" is making its way into print for the first time. In its new issue, The Strand Magazine is publishing the story — which features a man driven mad by the image of a dead woman, with her throat slit, appearing on his ceiling. The...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bgemCaaQkU Andy Grammer's latest single, "Fresh Eyes," is a love song — but it grew in meaning when he filmed the music video on Skid Row in Los Angeles. Over the course of the video shoot, the pop singer and his team provided haircuts, clean clothes, meals and kindness to people seeking shelter at the Union Rescue Mission in L.A. "We probably spent, I don't know, eight to 10 hours down there, just to really get to know people and share some love with them,"...

Some people had been girding for battle for weeks; others, meanwhile, had been practicing their evasive maneuvers. Some even gave up on the looming fights entirely, heading for safer shores — alone, with takeout, or a good book. It's tough to blame them. After a particularly brutal election season, Thanksgiving this year had many people feeling nervous about family conversations around the table. In a year riven by a deep partisan divide, the holiday promised more than a little friction with...

Looking for a diversion from divisive political conversation this Thanksgiving? StoryCorps suggests using its smartphone app as part of its Great Thanksgiving Listen project. The project asks middle, high school and college students to record conversations with elders using the app. The app can suggest questions to ask. "We're not asking people on the app to argue about politics," StoryCorps founder Dave Isay recently told NPR's Linda Wertheimer. "It's about talking about who they are, where...

Disney's latest movie, Moana , tells the story of a young girl living on an island in the South Pacific. She's the daughter of the chief, which means she's supposed to lead her people and stay on the island, but she finds herself drawn to the sea. When coconuts start rotting and fish start dying, she sails out to save herself and her people by finding the demigod named Maui. "There's an imbalance between man and nature at the start of the film," says John Musker, who co-directed and co-wrote...

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