Weekend Edition Saturday

Saturdays 7-10 a.m.

The program wraps up the week's news and offers a mix of analysis and features on a wide range of topics, including arts, sports, entertainment, and human interest stories.

 

Michael Hawley told me he had cancer a few months ago but didn't have a bucket list of things to do. "Just friends I want to see," he said.

I was blessed — a word Michael used generously, even as a scientist — to be among them.

Michael Hawley died this week at the age of 58, after a life packed with feats and friendships.

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Eric Andre joins us now. His first comedy special, "Legalize Everything," is now on Netflix. And, Mr. Andre, I don't think you have to worry about us giving away some of your best lines because I don't think I can repeat them.

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Cue the music.

(SOUNDBITE OF BACH'S "TOCCATA AND FUGUE IN D MINOR")

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There is a lot of music in the recent Black Lives Matter protests. Let's hear some of it.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "BLACK LIVES MATTER")

RICHARD ALEXANDER: (Singing) Just know you ain't gonna break my soul - break me down today.

When actor Matthew Rhys first found out about plans to reboot the legal drama Perry Mason his first question was: Why?

"Why would you? How can you?" says Rhys, who stars in the new HBO show.

This Perry Mason is no rerun of your grandfather's Perry Mason from the 1960s. He's not a sharply creased L.A. defense lawyer, with a voice that booms in wood-paneled courtrooms.

No, this is "a very dark Perry Mason to which I was instantly very attracted," Rhys says.

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And now it's time for sports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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BJ Leiderman still writes our theme music, but pocket change is the new toilet paper. How's that for a transition?

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A man I called Uncle Jim showed me how to tie a tie. The day I was going to graduate from 8th grade, he saw me in a white shirt with a yellow clip-on bow tie, shook his head, and went to his apartment to bring back one of his own dark blue neckties. Jim showed me how to pull together a Windsor knot, which I tie to this day.

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And it's time for sports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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With America stuck in recession, prices have been falling but not at the supermarket. Grocery stores are doing a brisk business. As NPR's Scott Horsley reports, the way people are filling their shopping carts tells us something about how Americans are adjusting to the pandemic.

Why are there U.S. military bases named for Confederate officers who took up arms against the United States?

I've covered stories at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where the XVIII Airborne Corps is headquartered, and Fort Benning, Georgia, known as the Home of the Infantry.

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75 years ago, in the summer of 1945, Ralph Waldo Ellison returned home from serving in the Merchant Marine during World War II and tried to rest on a farm in Vermont. But he was restless to write a novel. It would take him five years. That novel, Invisible Man, is enduring and imperishable.

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For Clarence Castile, the death of George Floyd has felt all too familiar.

In 2016, Castile's nephew, Philando Castile, was pulled over while driving in a suburb of St. Paul, Minn. The officer asked to see his license and registration, and he was reaching for them when the officer shot him five times.

"It is very painful to see another black man killed at the hands of the police for basically doing nothing worthy of dying for," Castile said in an interview with NPR's Weekend Edition.

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Georgia was one of the first states to allow businesses to reopen with necessary precautions to safeguard public health. It's been hard, if not impossible, for many businesses to get back on track.

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And now it's time for sports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Toilet paper has been an issue since the start of the pandemic, but now toilets themselves are the concern. As stay-at-home restrictions are lifting, many are feeling a long pent-up urge to go out, but what's stopping some is concern about their urge to go while they're out.

As in, use the bathroom.

Loath to risk the germs in a public restroom, if they can even find one that's open, many are limiting their outings while others are getting creative.

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John Glenn circled the Earth, won combat medals, was a U.S. senator, ran for president and went back into space in his late 70s. He was unreservedly considered a hero.

Pac Man, A Video Game Icon, Turns 40

May 23, 2020

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(SOUNDBITE OF TOSHIO KAI'S "PAC-MAN THEME")

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Some city streets have undergone a remarkable transformation during this pandemic. They've become walkways or bike paths. As NPR's Camila Domonoske reports, some of these changes could stick.

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The band Woods has always incorporated diffuse influences, taking inspiration from lo-fi rock, Ethiopian jazz and psychedelic folk sounds. Guitarist and vocalist Jeremy Earl, who recently became a father, says his group's latest album, Strange To Explain was influenced by something else — a lack of sleep.

"Those first few months or first year of having a newborn kind of put me in a dreamlike state," he says. "And that was my escape: to start writing."

Evictions are expected to skyrocket in Texas where the state Supreme Court has lifted a moratorium on evictions and unemployment has risen to historic levels amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Some cities are taking additional steps to protect renters and delay evictions, but many Texans remain vulnerable.

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