StoryCorps
12:01 am
Fri October 7, 2011

Remembering A Man And A Marriage

Mary says she knew Thomas was the one for her by the way he treated his mother.

StoryCorps

Thomas Morris worked for nearly 30 years at the Brentwood Post Office in Washington, D.C.

"When he would get off work, he would get home in the early morning and we would go out to eat breakfast at 2, 3, 4 o'clock in the morning," his wife, Mary, says.

The couple married on May 1, 1991, within 90 days of meeting each other at his mother's funeral. Mary says she was impressed by how well he had looked after his mother.

"And you know if a man treats his mother right, he's going to treat his wife right," she explains during a visit to StoryCorps in Beach Park, Ill.

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Economy
12:01 am
Fri October 7, 2011

Long-Term Unemployment's Strain On The Job Search

A job seeker makes a list of his skills during a workshop in Burlingame, Calif., targeted toward people who have been out of work for at least six months. According to the Labor Department, there are now more than 2 million people who have been jobless for at least two years.

Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Fri October 7, 2011 12:05 pm

Long-term joblessness is one of the unfortunate legacies of the recession. Earlier this year, the Labor Department started tracking longer periods of unemployment. According to that data, there are now more than 2 million people who have been jobless for at least two years, and 700,000 of those have been looking for work for at least three years.

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Middle East
12:01 am
Fri October 7, 2011

Iran Charges Student Who Was In the U.S.

Omid Kokabee, an Iranian who was studying physics at the University of Texas, Austin, was arrested when he returned home to Iran for a family visit. He went on trial in Tehran this week on charges related to espionage.

Courtesy of The Daily Texan

An Iranian who was studying physics in Texas went on trial in Tehran this week on charges related to espionage.

Omid Kokabee, 29, a graduate student at the University of Texas, Austin, went home to Iran to visit his family back in February. When Kokabee failed to return to Austin, his friends discovered he had been jailed and charged in Iran with communicating with a hostile government and taking illegal funds.

His case is only now becoming public knowledge, just a few weeks after Iran released two young Americans accused of espionage and held for more than two years.

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The Two-Way
7:06 pm
Thu October 6, 2011

U.S. Tells California's Pot Shops To Close Down, Or Face Charges

Jars full of medical marijuana are seen at a medical marijuana dispensary in Los Angeles. U.S. attorneys sent letters telling more than a dozen of the shops to shut down.

Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

Pot dispensaries have flourished in California, one of 16 states where the use of medical marijuana is legal. But the federal government is now giving some of the state's pot shops 45 days to close down.

The state's four U.S. attorneys gave notice to at least 16 stores that they must close, or face criminal charges and the seizure of their property, according to the Associated Press.

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Television
6:32 pm
Thu October 6, 2011

'The League' Uses Fandom To Explore Friendship

From left to right: John Lajoie, Stephan Rannazzisi and Mark Duplass, from the first season of 'The League'. The new season airs Thursday, Oct. 6 on FX.

Patrick McElhenney FX Network

The stereotypical Fantasy Football fan is a 30-something suburban man-child. And the FX program The League is about their ilk. But even though fantasy football is what brings several friends together in the TV show, you don't have to be a fantasy football fan to enjoy it.

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The Two-Way
5:45 pm
Thu October 6, 2011

Dwarf-Tossing, Long Banned, May Return In Florida

State Rep. Ritch Workman, seen here speaking in 2010, has filed a bill to make dwarf tossing legal once again in Florida.

Mark Foley Fla. House of Representatives

News that a Florida legislator wants to bring back the banned activity of "dwarf tossing" has people shaking their heads, and wondering why in the world you would want to do something like that. Of course, they're also curious as to whether he'll succeed.

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Asia
5:23 pm
Thu October 6, 2011

Something's Fishy About Chinese Hairy Crabs

Hairy crabs are extremely popular in China. These were in a market in the eastern province of Jiangsu.

China Photos Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 10:57 am

Fake products permeate nearly every corner of China's economy. Earlier this year, the trend seemed to reach a new low when phony Apple stores were exposed in southwestern China.

Each fall, the fakery even extends to the world of seafood and East China's Yangcheng Lake, which is just a short train ride from Shanghai. Yangcheng is home to what are reputed to be China's tastiest and most expensive hairy crabs.

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Books
5:04 pm
Thu October 6, 2011

Swedish Poet Wins Nobel Prize In Literature

Swedish poet Tomas Transtromer is this year's winner of the Nobel Prize in literature. Transtromer has been mentioned as a candidate for the award for years. His work often walks a line between concrete reality and dreams — he's worked as a psychologist and social worker in addition to his writing.

Latin America
4:50 pm
Thu October 6, 2011

U.S. Troops Increase Aid To Mexico In Drug War

A Mexican soldier carries a marijuana plant that was found on a large plantation in Baja California state, near the border with the U.S., on July 15. The U.S. military has been stepping up its assistance to Mexico in the fight against drug cartels.

Antonio Nava AFP/Getty Images

MEXICO CITY — When a young corporal in the Mexican marines was ambushed by drug cartel gunmen in the state of Tamaulipas, his first thoughts were for his pregnant wife and unborn child.

But within a split second, he was focused on combat, as his unit took defensive positions around their convoy to return fire.

They managed to shoot dead four attackers while only suffering two injuries.

The victory — one of many by Mexico's marines — was helped largely by U.S.-supplied equipment and training with the U.S. Northern Command in Colorado.

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Planet Money
4:49 pm
Thu October 6, 2011

Why 158 Acres Of Corn Costs $1.5 Million

Yours for $1.5 million.

Robert Smith NPR

Originally published on Fri October 7, 2011 11:16 am

I went looking for a bubble the other day. I'd heard that prices for American farmland were spiking – up thirty percent over the past year, and double what people were paying five or six years ago. It sounded like irrational exuberance.

I flew to Iowa, drove to the town of Colo, an hour north of Des Moines, and dropped in on a land auction. It was a great scene: A hushed crowd of farmers, an auctioneer with a voice made for opera, and a climactic duel between rival bidders, one of whom raised the price with a wink, the other with a slight nod.

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