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Word of Mouth 04.21.2012

(Photo by Leo Reynolds via Flickr Creative Commons)

Part 1:

Pay Less...Hate More?

A newly-released study by several economists shows significant correlation between the number of big-box stores, specifically Walmart, and the number of hate groups in a region. Dr. Stephan Goetz is Director of the Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development, and Professor of Agricultural and Regional Economics at Penn State. He’s lead author of the study, “Social Capital, Religion, Walmart and Hate Groups in America," which was published by Social Science Quarterly earlier this month.   

Bring Your Kid to Prison Day?

We talk with NHPR's Dan Gorenstein about a new summer camp program being launched for kids of state prison inmates.

Dan's original story.  

Part 2:


Last night, I was following the Twitter feed of Raw Story Executive Editor Megan Carpentier. So? Well, it turns out Megan was sitting in a New York City restaurant when she tweeted this pithy nugget:

"There is Schadenfreudic satisfaction in seeing a wealthy hipster couple argue about banal relationship sh*t while one is eating alone."

Carpentier then started a string of journalistic observations about the bad date unfolding just a few tables away, while I (and hundreds of others) hung on to her every character.

Thanks to NHPR's Web Editor Courtney Cania for playing the part of Megan in this brilliant recreation. /RL 

Part 3:

Let's Pretend This Never Happened

Blogger Jenny Lawson called upon a few of her biggest fans to make the trailer for her new memoir, including author Neil Gaiman there, musician Amanda Palmer, and Star Trek actors Wil Wheaton and Jeri Ryan, claiming to be Lawson in a YouTube video that’s been viewed more than seventy thousand times…

Jenny Lawson is the writer behind The Bloggess, which, besides attracting famous fans, averages close to a half million views a month. Some of her wryly funny posts -- including one about the impulsive purchase of a giant metal chicken – have gone hyper-viral on Twitter and Facebook. Jenny’s new memoir, "Let's Pretend this Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir)," traces her distinct, irreverent voice back to its source…her barely believable childhood in West Texas...without much running water, but no shortage of strange stories involving animals, both alive and dead.

Our previous interview with Jenny about Beyonce, the metal chicken.  

And now...from you...

Senior Producer Rebecca Lavoie responds to a question from a listener about how we choose music for the show.

Part 4:

So Percussion

So Percussion, a New York-based quartet, brings an epic approach to adding more than a little rhythm to contemporary classical music. 


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