Tuesday the government's annual poverty and income report revealed that the earnings of male workers in the middle of the income ladder are lower today than they were almost 40 years ago.
In 1973 the median male worker earned just over $49,000 when adjusted for inflation, while in 2010 that worker made about $1,500 less. Yet, in the same period, the output of the economy has more than doubled, and the productivity of workers has risen steadily.
Black trumpet mushrooms are among the 24 varieties of mushrooms that Pat McDonagh of Northampton, Mass., eats. She says that there are more than 1,000 varieties in the woods — and there's been an abundance since Hurricane Irene tore through the Northeast.
Credit Anne Mostue for NPR
When Hurricane Irene tore through the Northeast last month, it caused severe flooding and damage to homes, trees and power lines. But it also left behind something rather delicate — mushrooms.
Foragers say they've seen more fungi in the past few weeks than ever before.
On a recent weekday morning in Northampton, Mass., three 50-something adults wander into the woods. The oak leaves fall alongside the pine needles, and the tall maple trees are just starting to show color.
Occasional flooding is part of life on the batture, between the Mississippi River and the levee.
Credit Kevin O'Mara
Jean Brady Hendricks, 88, is happy in the batture. After living in New Orleans for most of her life, the former torch singer moved to the community about three years ago.
Credit John Burnett
In the netherworld of the batture between the levee and the Mississippi River near New Orleans, there is a small community built on stilts. Locals call them "camps": a dozen eccentric structures — some rundown, some handsome, all handmade — clinging to the river side of the great dike.
One man has been fighting for years to claim this land, which he says belongs to his family, but those living on the batture don't seem too worried about losing their homes.
An investigative journalist for <em>The Wall Street Journal,</em> Lucette Lagnado is the author of the memoir <em>The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit </em>and recipient of the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature.
Credit Kathryn Szoka /
Lucette Lagnado's parents started their lives together in late '40s Cairo.
Her father was Jewish, a charmer who hobnobbed with the city's social elite. Her mother, Edith, was also Jewish — a brilliant, bookish, beautiful girl who read all of Proust before she was 15, became chief librarian of a Jewish school in Cairo, and was a protege of the wife of an Egyptian dignitary, or pasha.