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'Art Beat' With Sean Rameswaram

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(Dec. 30) SECOND CITY IN CHARM CITY Charm City gets some laughs courtesy of Second City Thursday night through late February. Chicago's seminal improvisational comedy institution has churned out some of the biggest names in laughter. They bring a Baltimore-specific production to Center Stage on North Calvert Street.

(Dec. 31) NYE@KC If you're ready to ring in 2011, but still lacking the right place for the celebration, there's New Year's Eve at the Kennedy Center Friday at 8:30 p.m. For the 16th year, The Kennedy Center switches out calendars with classical compositions courtesy of the National Symphony Orchestra and some dancing in the grand foyer well into the morning.

(Dec. 30-Jan. 9) MYSTERY MOUSTRAP If you like to close out the year or begin new ones with mystery, there's "The Mousetrap" at 1st Stage in McLean, Va., through Jan. 9. All the usual ingredients are present in Agatha Christie's whodunit: a well-intentioned couple with a guesthouse, a number of guests, a crippling storm and a murder.

Music: "Boyd's Journey" by Damon Albarn and Michael Nyman

NPR

Is It All Greek To You? Thank Medieval Monks, And The Bard, For The Phrase

Ben Zimmer, language columnist at The Wall Street Journal, explains the origin of the phrase "it's all Greek to me" — and shares a few variants from other languages.
NPR

Do Try This At Home: 3 Korean Banchan (Side Dishes) In One Pot

If you've ever eaten at a Korean restaurant, you're used to the endless side dishes that come out with the meal. They're called banchan, and they're remarkably simple to make for yourself.
WAMU 88.5

Cutting Local Taxes in The District

The D.C. Council has taken steps to accelerate tax cuts for all income earners. They're part of a broader overhaul of the city's tax levels, but some council members argued there wasn't enough time for a rigorous debate about the new schedule. We explore the debate over cutting taxes for D.C. residents and how it affects the city's ability to pay for critical local services.

NPR

Reddit CEO Says Miscommunication Led To Blackout Protest

A user revolt briefly shut down the social site last week after a key employee was dismissed. Interim CEO Ellen Pao says the company has "apologized for not communicating better" with site moderators.

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