481: This Week

481: This Week

Dec 7, 2012
This week we take on ... this week. Stories united by one thing: They all happened in the seven days prior to broadcast. We try our hand reporting the global stories in Egypt and Afghanistan; and take on super local stories, too, like a man who tries valiantly — valiantly! — to actually get out of bed when his alarm clock goes off. You can also see this week in pictures.

Pictured: Hyder Akbar’s car after he was ambushed in Kunar Province.
We sifted through thousands of images posted on Instagram and chose a selection of events, big and small, that people captured over the course of this week.
  • A 17 year old Ethiopian girl who is just learning English goes with her teacher to face her fears head-on: She orders tea in a local coffee shop. A woman in America talks to Ira about her husband, in Syria, who is currently negotiating with kidnappers for the release of two of his employees. In Doha, Qatar, the lead negotiator for the Philippines at the United Nations Climate Change Conference implores world governments to take action now. The Missoula Community Theater puts on a special performance of their Christmas musical, adapted to an audience of people on the autism spectrum. A group of 10 year-old girls in Charlottesville, Virginia, talk smack while competing in a local step competition. And a man on the Airtrain at Newark Airport gets ready to meet his newly-discovered half-brother. (11 minutes)Criminal JusticeEnvironmentFamilyHolidaysTeenagers

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  • This American Life contributor Hyder Akbar heads into Kunar Province in Eastern Afghanistan to report back on life there this week. Things look good until he gets ambushed, shot at and his car catches on fire on his way back home. (15 minutes)

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  • Lisa Pollak goes to the Enchanted Snowfall at La Encantada Mall, where the snow is "98 percent magic; 2 percent soap." (4 minutes)Holidays

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  • Ira asks Washington-insider Norman Ornstein if we actually need to be paying attention to all of the Fiscal Cliff political news. Or can it wait until next week? Ornstein is the author of the book It's Even Worse Than It Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided With the New Politics of Extremism. (3 minutes)Economics

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  • A group called NO/AIDS heads into bars to offer free HIV testing for high-risk people. Writer Nathaniel Rich tells the story of one man's test. Nathaniel is the author of the forthcoming book Odds Against Tomorrow. (6 minutes)Health Care/Medicine

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  • It's been a tumultuous week of protests and demonstrations in Egypt. Nancy Updike talks to two Egyptian men whose ideologies are completely opposite, except one thing unites them: Their anger at the United States. (6 minutes)Politics

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  • We hear from the people in the land of the non-working: Fred Beaton on his last shift driving a shuttle bus at Logan Airport before he retires; Linc Cohen and Sandi Weisenberg talk about what chores get done once retirement begins; and Angela Jane Evancie tries to get her boyfriend, Morgan Peach, to stop relaxing quite so much. (5 minutes)Jobs/Employment

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Photo

Hyder Akbar’s car after he was ambushed in Kunar Province.

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