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NPR News Nuggets: Cool Runnings, Panda, Panda & Thanksgiving Prep

Here's a quick roundup of some of the mini-moments you may have missed on this week's Morning Edition.

Almost Turkey Time

A lot of preparation usually goes into a Thanksgiving celebration, but for one Ohio mom that preparation started weeks before. As Morning Edition host David Greene told us on Monday, she taped a sign to her living room banning her kids from entering. The note read "This room has been cleaned for the holiday and is officially CLOSED until Thanksgiving."

The mother went on to say that under certain stipulations — meaning her kids had showered and had put on clean clothes — other family members would be allowed to enter the room, but food was still banned. Admittedly, one of her sons who posted the note on Twitter said his mother cleaned up after him and his brother often. He also mentioned that even the dogs hadn't dared to enter the room. Woof.

Cool Runnings

David Schnerch went out for to run an errand in Alberta, Canada, when he came across a bobsled team...from Jamaica. I know what you're thinking. Could it possibly be? Yes, it could. As Morning Edition host David Greene said on Tuesday, it was the Jamaican bobsled team — made famous by their 1988 Olympic debut. It turns out they're still at it, but their van broke down on the way to a competition. Schnerch decided that wouldn't do and drove the team to Olympic Park himself. Afterwards, the team had another competition to get to, so Schnerch handed them the keys and said "Just focus on the race. We'll get you what you need. With that there's only one thing left to say. Feel the rhythm, feel the rhyme. Get on up! IT'S BOBSLED TIME!

Early next year astronaut Peggy Whitson will celebrate her 57th birthday and become the oldest woman in space as she orbits the Earth on the International Space Station.
Kirill Kudryavtsev / AFP/Getty Images
AFP/Getty Images
Early next year astronaut Peggy Whitson will celebrate her 57th birthday and become the oldest woman in space as she orbits the Earth on the International Space Station.

Houston, We Have Liftoff

She may not have literally shattered a glass ceiling, but astronaut Peggy Whitson did head into space on Thursday, where she'll set a record for women. Whitson will become the oldest woman in space, ever.

As Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep said Thursday, early next year Whitson will celebrate her 57th birthday aboard the International Space Station. While this does make her the oldest woman in space, she has a few more years to catch up to the oldest man. John Glenn was 77 when he flew on Space Shuttle Discovery in 1998. In the meantime, it's all systems go.

Picky Pandas

As it turns out humans aren't the only mammal to experience culture shock. Three-year-old Panda sisters Mei Lun and Mei Huan just moved from their home at the Atlanta Zoo to Chengdu, China. Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep said Friday that their transition hasn't been easy. The two sisters are lost in translation when it comes to the command their new keepers give. In fact, the pandas don't respond to them at all, but that's because they're in Chinese, not English. And when it comes to their food, they've become somewhat picky eaters. Their keeper reports they wouldn't eat or drink anything unless it's mixed with American biscuits. This includes water. It's a pampered life for a panda.

Wynne Davis is a Digital News intern.

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Wynne Davis is a digital reporter and producer for NPR's All Things Considered.
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