Mark Memmott

Mark Memmott is one of the hosts of NPR's "The Two-Way" news blog.

"The Two-Way," which Memmott helped to launched when he came to NPR in 2009, focuses on breaking news, analysis, and the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

Before joining NPR, Memmott worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor at USA Today. He focused on a range of coverage from politics, foreign affairs, economics, and the media. He's reported from places across the Unites States and the world, including half a dozen trips to Afghanistan in 2002-2003.

During his time at USA Today, Memmott, helped launch and lead three USAToday.com news blogs: "On Deadline," "The Oval" and "On Politics," the site's 2008 presidential campaign blog.

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The Two-Way
10:46 am
Fri May 31, 2013

No Smoking Outside Starbucks Shops Starting Saturday

Don't sit down here and have a smoke with your coffee, Starbucks says.
Mark Memmott NPR

Originally published on Fri May 31, 2013 10:17 am

Starbucks is moving its smoking ban outdoors.

Starting Saturday, according to signs posted in its more than 7,000 shops across the U.S. and Canada, "the no-smoking policy ... will include outdoor areas."

"Smoking will be restricted within 25 feet of the store and within outdoor seating areas," the notices read.

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The Two-Way
9:25 am
Thu May 30, 2013

New Data Confirm The Economy Isn't Growing As Fast As Hoped

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 7:57 am

The U.S. economy grew at a 2.4 percent annual rate in the first quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported Thursday morning.

That basically confirms what the agency said a month ago, when it released its initial estimate for gross domestic product growth in the quarter. Then, it reported the economy had expanded at a 2.5 percent pace.

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The Two-Way
9:41 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Moms now primary breadwinners in 40 percent of homes

Dawn Heisey-Grove of Alexandria, Va., hands off son Zane to father Jonathan Heisey-Grove after a midday feeding. The couple were both working full time when Jonathan lost his job as a graphic designer two years ago. She's a public health analyst. He's now a stay-at-home dad.
Kainaz Amaria/NPR

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 7:11 am

"A record 40 percent of all households with children under the age of 18 include mothers who are either the sole or primary source of income for the family," the Pew Research Center reported Wednesday as it released data that certainly won't surprise many Americans but will underscore some dramatic shifts over recent decades.

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The Two-Way
12:01 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Does Canada's $100 Bill Smell Like Maple Syrup? Many Say So

Canada's $100 bill. Some think it smells sweet.
Bank of Canada

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 12:31 pm

This much is true: Many Canadians apparently think their government has embedded a maple-scented scratch-and-sniff patch in the nation's $100 bills.

According to CTV, "dozens of people" contacted the Bank of Canada after the polymer bills were introduced in 2011 to say they were sure there was something fishy ... or perhaps we should say sweet ... about the money.

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The Two-Way
12:32 pm
Wed May 22, 2013

GIF talk: Do you say it with a G or a J?

Steve Wilhite, inventor of the GIF file, was given a lifetime achievement award at the 17th annual Webby Awards Tuesday night in New York City. Don't congratulate him the wrong way: To him, GIF sounds like Jif.
Stephen Lovekin Getty Images for The Webby Awards

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 12:41 pm

The kerfuffle Tuesday and today on Twitter about the "news" that the creator of the GIF gets annoyed if he hears someone use a hard "G" when pronouncing the name of his file format triggered our aging memory banks.

Hadn't we heard a while back that GIF creator Steve Wilhite and many other tech types insist it's supposed to be pronounced with a soft "J," like Jif peanut butter?

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The Two-Way
10:15 am
Mon May 6, 2013

Gun Made With 3-D Printer Is Successfully Fired

The Liberator — a plastic handgun made with a 3-D printer.
Defense Distributed

Originally published on Mon May 6, 2013 10:22 am

The Texas-based company Defense Distributed is getting quite a bit of attention this week for its Liberator — a handgun made almost entirely by a 3-D printer.

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The Two-Way
9:34 am
Mon April 29, 2013

Crazy photo: Reporter snaps pic as baseball nearly beans her

That's a baseball zooming in behind Kelly Nash's head. The image is from Nash's Instagram account, with her permission.
@KNashSports

Originally published on Mon April 29, 2013 9:40 am

When Fox Sun Sports reporter Kelly Nash was at Fenway Park in Boston on Saturday to cover the Houston Astros' game with the Red Sox, she decided to take a few "selfie" photos while atop the famous Green Monster in left field.

Below, batting practice was underway. So some balls were flying in her direction. Nash turned her back to the field, held her smartphone up and started snapping.

And when she looked at one of the photos she'd just taken, Nash says, she discovered she'd come much closer to being beaned than she'd realized.

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The Two-Way
5:29 am
Mon April 8, 2013

Former British Prime Minister Thatcher Dies

Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in 1981. She died Monday, at the age of 87.
PA Photos /Landov

Originally published on Mon April 8, 2013 9:12 am

Margaret Thatcher, who as British prime minister in the 1980s became known as the "Iron Lady" for her tough economic policies, her partnership with President Reagan in standing up to communism and the short war with Argentina over the Falklands, has died.

Her spokesman, Lord Bell, tells the British Press Association that Baroness Thatcher died Monday following a stroke. She was 87.

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The Two-Way
11:09 am
Thu April 4, 2013

Facebook Phone Is 'A Family Of Apps,' Zuckerberg Says

CEO Mark Zuckerberg at Thursday's "Facebook phone" announcement.
Robert Galbraith Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu April 4, 2013 12:06 pm

Facebook is going to "turn things around," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Thursday, by turning "your Android phone into a great, simple social device" that is "designed around people."

He came on stage just after 1 p.m. ET at Facebook's Menlo Park, Calif., headquarters to talk about a very poorly kept secret — the so-called Facebook phone.

But, Zuckerberg said at the start of his talk, "we're not building a phone and we're not building an operating system."

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The Two-Way
10:03 am
Tue April 2, 2013

NRA Task Force Recommends Training School Personnel Who Want To Be Armed

Former Republican Congressman Asa Hutchinson holds up his task force's report during a news conference Tuesday in Washington, D.C.
Shawn Thew EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Tue April 2, 2013 9:56 am

A task force launched by the National Rifle Association after the Dec. 14 school shooting in Newtown, Conn., has come back with a report that recommends the creation of programs that give additional weapons training to school resource officers as well as "selected and designated school personnel" who could then carry arms.

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The Two-Way
9:29 am
Mon April 1, 2013

If Something Smells Funny, Remember What Day It Is

Spaghetti is "harvested" in 1961 from the ceiling of an Italian restaurant in London. A 1957 April Fools Day report by the BBC about spaghetti trees fooled many, and has been famous since.
Keystone/Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 1, 2013 2:59 pm

  • From 'Morning Edition': 'Hootie and the Time Travelers'

Google Nose was unveiled Monday morning. It's "the new scentsation in search." Just put your nose to the screen to sample "15M+ sentibytes." Google's also offering new options to its "I'm Feeling Lucky" button, including "I'm Feeling Wonderful" and "I'm Feeling Hungry."

Twitter is out with "Twttr," a version that only lets you use consonants.

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The Two-Way
12:47 pm
Thu March 28, 2013

Obama: 'Shame on us if we've forgotten' Newtown victims

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 9:27 am

Standing in front of mothers whose children have died in shootings, President Obama said Thursday at the White House that if the nation fails to toughen its gun laws, "shame on us."

"Shame on us if we've forgotten" the 20 children and 6 educators killed three months ago at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut and all the others who have died in gun-related violence before and since then, Obama added.

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The Two-Way
9:34 am
Thu March 28, 2013

'Arsenal' found at Newtown shooter's home; read the police reports

Dec. 18, 2012: Crime scene tape stretches across the property outside the home where Adam Lanza lived with his mother, Nancy Lanza. Inside, police found weapons and other evidence.
Lucas Jackson Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Thu March 28, 2013 10:57 am

Police found hundreds of rounds of ammunition, guns, three photos of "what appears to be a deceased human covered with plastic" and other evidence when they searched the Newtown, Conn., home of killer Adam Lanza, according to records released Thursday.

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The Two-Way
9:10 am
Tue March 19, 2013

Lululemon Vows To Get To The Bottom Of Its See-Through Pants Problem

Perhaps not the moment when you want "increased sheerness."
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 10:51 am

The buns ... er, puns ... seem endless:

Lululemon, the yoga and running clothier, concedes in a letter to its customers that some of the black "luon women's bottoms" it has been selling since early March aren't quite covering their "guests" the way they should.

As Lululemon puts it, there's been some "increased sheerness."

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Other News
10:37 am
Tue March 12, 2013

The Smoke Is Black: No Pope After Cardinals' First Vote

As the black smoke rose from the Vatican chimney Tuesday, some of the nuns and others gathered in St. Peter's Square were singing.
Eric Gaillard Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 12:25 pm

  • From 'Morning Edition': Sylvia Poggioli on the latest from Rome
  • Philip Reeves on the princes of the church

Update at 2:43 p.m. ET. No Pope Today:

Black smoke just poured from the chimney above the Vatican. That means, as was expected, the cardinals did not choose a pope on the first vote of their conclave to name a successor to the now-retired Pope Benedict XVI. As the cardinals' ballots are burned, NPR's Sylvia Poggioli says, chemicals are added to a fire in a second stove to turn the smoke black if there's no pope elected and white if there is.

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