Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 11:14 am
You might not expect "Santa's Helper" to be a career-altering gig, but for David Sedaris, it changed everything. The writer and humorist spent a season working at Macy's as a department store elf. He described his short tenure as Crumpet the Elf in "The Santaland Diaries," an essay that he read on Morning Edition in 1992.
Instantly, a classic was born. Sedaris' reading has become an NPR holiday tradition. Click the "Listen" link above to hear Sedaris read his story.
Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 10:30 am
Editor's Note: NPR Shanghai correspondent Frank Langfitt once drove a taxi as a summer job. He decided to do it again, this time offering free rides around Shanghai in exchange for stories about one of the world's most dynamic cities. This is the first in an occasional series.
I've been working on an unusual reporting project this fall in Shanghai. I picked up a car and have been driving around the city offering people free rides.
Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 2:13 pm
If you visit a local strip mall or downtown shopping street, it's not hard to find a store where customers can lease-to-own. That is, you can pay over time and eventually, after some chunky fees, a flat screen TV or living room set is yours.
Originally published on Mon December 22, 2014 5:50 pm
Sweets this time of year take on all kinds of whimsical shapes: cookies cut into stars, stockings and gingerbread men, candy canes, peanut butter balls ... or logs covered in frosting.
Yes, really — logs.
Not real logs, of course — these are holiday cakes, rolled and frosted to look like a yule log and known as buche de Noel. Sometimes the cakes are dotted with little meringue mushrooms or edible holly leaves. While the cake may not be on every American's baking list, cookbook author Dorie Greenspan says it's iconic in Europe.
Originally published on Tue December 23, 2014 8:54 am
Update, 10 p.m. ET: After more than nine hours and 30 minutes, Internet service has been restored in North Korea, according to technology news service Dyn Research. Access is only partial, Reuters reports, but the country's main news service and newspaper both are back online.
Originally published on Fri December 26, 2014 10:15 am
If your cardiologist is away at a conference when you're having a stabbing feeling in your chest, don't fret. You may be more likely to live.
A study published Monday in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine found frail patients admitted to teaching hospitals with two common types of heart problems were more likely to survive on days when national cardiology conferences were going on.