Five at 8 – 9/10/09: Keillor’s stroke

1) Garrison Keillor’s “mild stroke” apparently won’t keep him from the start of another season of A Prairie Home Companion later this month. But online reader Karen Smith Caledonia, Illinois dropped us a note to say we should’ve taken the opportunity to tell people how to identify signs of a stroke. She’s right, of course.

S – Ask the individual to SMILE.

T – Ask the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE (Coherently)

R – Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS. If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks, call 999/911 immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.

New Sign of a Stroke ——– Stick out Your Tongue

Ask the person to ‘stick’ out his tongue. If the tongue is ‘crooked’, if it goes to one side or the other , that is also an indication of a stroke.

2) Love me don’t. What’s it like to be a Beatles hater?

3) The history of Glensheen, the historic Congdon estate along Lake Superior, In rap.

(h/t: Perfect Duluth Day)

4) The gift of music: A study commissioned by the government in the UK says children who take up a musical instrument had a higher IQ, compared to 4.3 points for drama lessons. But singing or piano lessons do not necessarily improve children’s math ability.

5) Let your work colleagues know you’ll be unavailable for the next few hours. Tomorrow is the 8th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The National Sept. 11 Memorial & Museum launched a Web site today with a collection of citizen journalism. Hundreds of hours of amateur video and photographs have been collected. “They say that 9/11 was the most digitally documented event of all time,” said Alice Greenwald, director of the planned 9/11 museum.

It’s clearly a work in progress but has the potential to be one of the most compelling sites on the Internet.

As impressive, perhaps, is the dedication of Michael Bellone, who volunteered at “the pit” for nine months.

For better or worse, Michael Bellone — now 54, down to 13 percent lung capacity, on permanent disability and living upstate near Syracuse with his wife, whom he met at ground zero — has not given an inch to moving on. He figures, if some people have to keep the memories alive, why not let it be him?

He’s spent the last three years fixing up a fire truck and making it a traveling memorial to over 300 firefighters who died in New York, according to the Times.

Bonus: Still have some time to spend online? Then watch the latest episode of PBS’ excellent Inside series. It provides the best glimpse — ever — into fighting California wildfires. This episode is available online, however, for only a few days.


In his address Wednesday evening before Congress and the country, President Obama sought to build support for his health care reform effort. How did his speech affect your view of health care reform?


Midmorning (9-11 a.m.) – First hour: Reaction to President Obama’s speech.

Second hour: Does required reading help or hurt when it comes to inspiring kids to become lifelong book lovers?

Midday (11 a.m. – 1 p.m.) – First hour: Stephen Parente of the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School and former Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm of Courage Center discuss the president’s health care reform address to Congress.

Second hour: Rebroadcast of President Obama’s health care speech to Congress.

Talk of the Nation (1-3 p.m.) – First hour: Stress and the


Second hour: Did the president change your mind on health care?

All Things Considered (3-6:30 p.m.) – There’s a forum on H1N1 flu at the University of Minnesota today. MPR’s Lorna Benson is following that. Dan Olson is attending a news conference on the condition, use, and funding of Minnesota’s highways. And another airing of today’s Art Hounds.

From NPR: How many uninsured are there in America? Should there be a sugar tax on soda pop? And a Palestinian love story.

  • Al

    On the question of raising ‘lifelong book lovers’, though our kids are only 6 & 8, they already love books. The 8 year old is a voracious reader and the other loves books too. I suspect that what really makes for ‘lifelong book lovers’ happens before the kids ever get to the point where they have required books in school. It was really amazing to watch our oldest with books the year before she figured out how to read. You could see her looking at the secret code on the page yearning to figure out how to decipher it.

  • bob

    I humbly suggest that another missed opportunity re: GK’s stroke was to bring up and discuss the “successor” question — namely, what is the plan for PHC, post-Garrison?

    I am a PHC fan and wish Garrison many more years of life, but he is at that age where this would seem like a logical question. Yet I’ve heard nothing about it on MPR.

    Are plans in the works to have a new host for PHC? Will the show die when Garrison does?

  • Bob collins

    Ish. I can’t think of a more inappropriate thing to bring up on the day a guy has a stroke. so I can’t really say that was a missed opportunity.

    I have no insight but maybe a key would be what happened when he fled for Denmark and after the attempt to replace him failed miserably. Rebroadcasts.

    Personally, I don’t think you replace a Garrison Keillor and when he retires, A Prairie Home Companion perhaps ought to retire, too.

  • Phil

    I don’t think I know all there is about the health care reform, but Obama’s speech (the bits I saw) made me think that it really should start now, and it is a practical time to do it. And even if it isn’t the perfect solution at least it’s a start. I supported it before, but now I feel much better/secure in that support.