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2.25.16: Starbucks the Benevolent, "Hot Sauce in Her Bag," & 10 Minutes With Chris Bohjalian

Healthcare coverage, interest-free loans, housing allowances. These are just some of the perks Starbucks is offering new employees in some of its new global markets. Today: is this benevolence, or just good business? 

Then, Beyoncé’s song "Formation" has made headlines since its release, but one line in particular has kicked off a conversation about food, race and culture in America.

Listen to the full show. 

Starbucks the Benevolent

If you're working as a barista, the assumption is that you're unemployed, a college student, or waiting for some kind of big break. Ever think the person frothing your milk would be getting a getting a housing allowance? Interest-free loans? Money for college? Or health care coverage?

Actually, these are perks being offered to Starbucks employees in some of the markets where it's now gaining ground. So, what's behind Starbucks decision to provide these benefits? With us is Atlantic contributor Amanda Ripley who wrote the article “Starbucks the Benevolent?”

Starbucks the Benevolent

Day Job: Bitter Barista (Matt Watson)

For every rock star, there’s a musician making ends meet by working a day job. Joshua McNichols brings us this profile of one musician whose day job has become a source of inspiration. He produced it as part of his podcast “Day Job, How Musicians Pay the Rent.”

You can listen to this story again at

"Hot Sauce in Her Bag"

The day before she took the stage alongside Coldplay and Bruno Mars at the Super Bowl, Beyoncé released a new single - "Formation" - and in typical Beyoncé fashion, it took everyone by surprise.

Even before she performed the song at the half-time show, the song and its video were already making headlines. But it's the line: “I got hot sauce in my bag. Swag.” that's kicked off conversations about food and race in America.

In an essay for Eater, a writer and diversity consultant Mikki Kendall says "Hot sauce in her bag is communicating something much bigger than how Beyoncé likes her food."

"Hot Sauce in Her Bag"

Plus, we further explore the history of the relationship between food, music, and culture.  

Food & Music

10 Minute Writer's Workshop: Chris Bohjalian

Author Chris Bohjalian sat down with Virginia to chat about his writing style and his advice to fellow and aspiring authors as part of the 10 Minute Writer's Workshop podcast - a quick glimpse into the minds and creative processes of renowned and emerging authors. 

You can listen to this installment of the 10 Minute Writer's Workshop again over on their page

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