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Playlist: Diana Prince's Portfolio

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Big Picture Science (Series)

Produced by Big Picture Science

Most recent piece in this series:

Skeptic Check: The Body Electric

From Big Picture Science | Part of the Big Picture Science series | 54:00


Electricity plays an important role in our everyday lives, including allowing our bodies to communicate internally. But some research claims electricity may be used to diagnose and treat disease? Could electric pulses one day replace medications?

We speak with experts about the growing field of bioelectric medicine and the evidence for electricity’s healing abilities. Their comments may shock you.



Sally Adee – Science journalist, author of “We Are Electric: Inside the 200-Year Hunt for Our Body’s Bioelectric Code, and What the Future Holds"

Samantha Payne – Assistant Professor of Biomedical Sciences at University of Guelph

Kevin Tracey – Neurosurgeon and President of the Feinstein Institute at Northwell Health

Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake

A Way with Words (Series)

Produced by A Way with Words

Most recent piece in this series:

Up Your Alley (#1504)

From A Way with Words | Part of the A Way with Words series | 54:00


The slang term birdie refers to drinking from a bottle without touching it with your lips. You might ask for a sip, for example, by promising Don't worry--I'll birdie it. This sanitary sipping method is also jokingly called waterfalling.
A listener in Southampton, New York, puzzles over the language at the end of J. M. Barrie's Peter Pan, in which the narrator assures that the story will continue so long as children are gay and innocent and heartless. What does heartless mean in this context?
If you're a pegan, then your diet is limited to a combination of paleo and vegan.
Judy from Tallahassee, Florida, is curious about the word spendthrift, which means someone who spends money freely. The word thrift in this case means wealth, and is the past participle of thrive. A more obvious word that means the same thing: spendall. Another is dingthrift, someone who dings, or makes a dent in, their savings.
The term cultural cringe refers to a tendency to regard one's own culture as inferior to that of another.
Quiz Guy John Chaneski's shares Writer's Math, a puzzle in which the names of numbers hidden within consecutive letters in a sentence. For example, what number lurks in the sentence Launch yourself on every wave?
Alice in Atlanta, Georgia, seeks a term for an adult who has lost both their parents. The best that English can offer is probably adult orphan or elder orphan.    
Vice is a noun meaning bad behavior, but it's also an adjective referring to an official who is second in command.  Karen, a seventh-and-eighth-grade history teacher in Waco, Texas, says her students wonder why. These two senses of vice come from two separate Latin words: vice, meaning in place of, and vitium, meaning fault or blemish. The two English descendants of these words ended up being spelled exactly the same way, even though they mean completely different things.
The little-used word famulus means assistant, and originally referred to the assistant of a sorcerer or scholar.
Rod in LaPorte, Indiana, has Welsh ancestry, and always wondered if the expressions to welsh on a bet suggests that the Welsh are dishonest. The verb to welsh and the noun welsher are  indeed mild ethnic slurs. To welsh dates back to at least the 1850s, and because it may offend, should be replaced by other words such as renege, waffle, or flip-flop. Similarly, taffy, another old word for the Welsh, long carried similar connotations of being a habitual liar and cheater.
Chandler from Chesapeake, Virginia, wonder about a term her in-laws use to mean in abundance, as in We have strawberries up the gump stump. The expression seems to have evolved from an earlier phrase possum up a gum tree or possum up a gum stump, referring to a hunted animal that's trapped. Over time, it became the rhyming phrase up a gump stump, and like the phrase up the wazoo, came to mean in abundance.
Book recommendation time! Martha's reading Dictionary Stories by Jez Burrows, short stories based on example sentences from dictionaries, and Grant recommends Julia Durango's The Leveler, a techno-thriller for teens about virtual worlds.
Named for anesthesiologist Dr. Virginia Apgar, the Apgar score--a measure of a newborn's appearance, pulse, grimace, activity, and respiration--is both an eponym and an acronym.
Publishers use the term up lit to describe contemporary novels with an upbeat message focusing on kindness and empathy.
Shawn, who lives in Washington State, is used to hearing the phrase right up your alley to describe something that's particularly fitting for someone. Then she heard a British vlogger use the phrase right up your street in the same way. Since the early 1900s, the phrases right up one's alley, or right down one's alley, or the more old-fashioned in one's street, all mean pretty much the same thing. Both up one's alley and up one's street suggest the idea of a place that's quite familiar. In its original sense, alley meant a wide space lined with trees, deriving from the French alee.
Publishers use the term up lit to describe contemporary novels with an upbeat message focusing on kindness and empathy.
To have one's work cut out comes from an earlier phrase to have all one's work cut out. Picture a tailor who's working as fast as possible with the help of an assistant who's cutting out the pieces to be sewn. If you have your work cut out for you, you have a big job ahead, with a series of smaller tasks coming at you thick and fast.
A cabochon is a convex gem or bead that's highly polished but not faceted. 
Scott from Copper Canyon, Texas, wonders about a expression he heard from his childhood in the Deep South: neat but not gaudy. He understood it to mean appropriate, but not over the top. The expression goes back to 1600s and has many variations. Early versions and elaborations included as Neat but not gaudy, said the devil when he painted his tail pea-green, or Neat but not gaudy, said the devil when he tied up his tail with a red ribbon. Sometimes the artistic creature was a monkey.
Twitter user @crookedroads770 observed that his two-year-old son referred to an owl as a wood penguin. 
This episode is hosted by Martha Barnette and Grant Barrett, and produced by Stefanie Levine.

WNYC's Fishko Files (Series)

Produced by WNYC

Most recent piece in this series:

WNYC's Fishko Files: Sviatoslav Richter

From WNYC | Part of the WNYC's Fishko Files series | 07:12

Saraflat_medium_small Sviatoslav Richter, born March 20 1915, was a pianistic phenomenon, whose broad musical range was backed up by dazzling technique. On the 100th anniversary of his birth, WNYC's Sara Fishko considers his musical gifts as well as his unconventional life.  With guests Michael Kimmelman (NY Times critic, pianist and sometime music writer), pianist Vladimir Viardo, and the late pianist and music critic Harris Goldsmith.

*The excerpts from Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition"  are from Richter's live recording made in Sofia, Bulgaria, on February 25, 1958 

Latin Perspective - Latin Jazz Hour (weekly) (Series)

Produced by Tony Vasquez

Most recent piece in this series:

Latin Jazz Perspective (N-8)

From Tony Vasquez | Part of the Latin Perspective - Latin Jazz Hour (weekly) series | 59:02

10408791_948591901823533_3291516235368767195_n_small A 1hour radio show featuring the best in classic and contemporary Latin Jazz music hosted by 18 year veteran Tony Vasquez.