Regional Interests

The fastest human to ride a bicycle over open ground is named Denise Mueller-Korenek, who rode a custom bike at an average of 183.932 miles per hour – shattering a world record that had stood since 1995.

Mueller-Korenek, 45, set the record for fastest speed riding in a slipstream, teaming up with Shea Holbrook, a professional race car driver who piloted a dragster that led the cyclist across the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah.

With a couple of clicks, a quotidian moment can take on a viral life of its own — captured and shared, context lost, shaped by whatever viewers project onto the images.

That's what happened to Anthony Torres, 56.

On Thursday evening, Torres was caught on video shaving his face while sitting aboard a New Jersey Transit train headed out of New York City. Video also showed him with a beer.

Farmers across the southeastern part of North Carolina are just starting to report details about the hit they've taken from Hurricane Florence. The rain is over, but rivers still are rising, and the full picture of damage to farms and the surrounding environment probably won't be known for weeks.

Judge Brett Kavanaugh will testify again on Monday in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee after a California professor claimed he sexually assaulted her when they were in high school. The professor, Christine Blasey Ford, will also testify.

From The New York Times:

When Linda Kay Klein was 13, she joined an evangelical church that prized sexual "purity" and taught that men and boys were sexually weak.

According to Klein's faith, girls and women were responsible for keeping male sexual desire in check by wearing modest clothing, maintaining a sexless mind and body and taking a "purity pledge," in which they promised to remain virgins until marriage.

Paris has upped the scatological stakes, releasing a quirky new viral video called "Pas Pipi Dans Paris" or "Don't Pee In Paris."

If city government getting all up in one's bathroom business already seems a bit out there, the video ups the weirdness factor by beaucoup. It features French YouTube humorist Swann Périssé and others singing, dancing and um, going, assisted by all sorts of toilet paraphernalia.

Editor's note: This story was originally published in 2017 and has been republished with updates.

For Rosh Hashana, more than 350 members of Uganda's Namutumba Synagogue dressed in white, chanted their prayers and feasted on a slaughtered cow to mark the beginning of a new Jewish year last week.

"We are so happy that we entered the new year with such joy and happiness," said Namutumba's spiritual leader Shadrach Mugoya Levi by telephone from Uganda.

The attorney general of New York has reached an agreement with WeWork to eliminate or modify noncompete clauses from most of its employment contracts, which restricted workers' ability to find new jobs.

Noncompete agreements generally have been standard for executives and in high-tech, where companies are trying to protect intellectual property or trade secrets from being transferred to rivals.

Rice University is "dramatically expanding" its financial aid offerings, promising full scholarships to undergrads whose families have incomes under $130,000. The school says it wants to reduce student debt — and make it easier for students from low-income families to attend.

"Talent deserves opportunity," Rice President David Leebron said while announcing the plan on Tuesday.

Today, JAMA publishes two major studies on a hot topic: physician burnout. Burnout is a buzzword that's been in the news, but what is it? How does it affect doctors and their patients?

It turns out, nobody really knows. The first study, a systematic review, summarizes the research to date on physician burnout. Study authors found that researchers do not use a consistent definition of burnout, and estimates of how common it is vary widely.

Ahead of the midterm elections, NPR's Morning Edition wants to connect with parents expecting their first child. What issues matter to you this election? Share your story with us.

A producer may reach out to you to follow up on your response. Share your thoughts with us below or here.

Are you expecting your first child?

A visit to your primary care physician may focus on your headaches or that achy back. But if your body mass index is over 30, a panel of national experts says, it should also include a referral to an intensive weight-loss program.

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When Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, a Republican from Iowa, announced a hearing for next Monday to air a decades-old sexual-assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, it didn't end the debate over how the Senate should handle the charges.

It intensified it.

Democrats are calling for a full FBI investigation of the allegation before a hearing, saying Monday is too soon.

Georgia will continue using its touchscreen voting machines ahead of the midterms despite security concerns about the technology, a U.S. District Court judge ordered late Monday.

But Judge Amy Totenberg rebuked Georgia and state election officials over their handling of election security.

Georgia is one of 14 states using machines that lack a paper trail that voters can verify for themselves.

Updated at 11:01 a.m. ET

Hours after President Trump announced tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods, China responded with its own levies on $60 billion worth of U.S. products.

Chinese state television on Tuesday reported that the government has decided to impose tariffs of 5 percent to 10 percent on $60 billion worth of U.S. products, starting on Monday. The tariffs will apply to 5,207 items.

Doctors at the Charité hospital in Berlin say it's "highly plausible" Pyotr Verzilov of the Russian protest band Pussy Riot was poisoned last week, although it's unclear with what or by whom. Verzilov is currently being treated in Berlin.

"We have no indication — and this is important — that this was an infection or metabolic disease," the hospital's CEO, Dr. Karl Max Einhaeupl, told reporters at a news conference in Berlin. But "we cannot say anything about the question of how this toxin got into the body. It's not for us to answer this question."

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South Korean President Moon Jae-in is visiting North Korea's capital for the first time, hosted by Kim Jong Un for three days of talks. The two leaders shared an embrace and stood in an open car to wave to spectators at a parade in Pyongyang.

Latino Heritage Month (Sept 15. -Oct. 15) is the perfect time to use our Spotify playlist to highlight the width and breadth of Latinx musical expression.

The five women on this week's list couldn't be any more different from each other in terms of style: An electronic pioneer from Argentina; a Brazilian jazz vocalist; our favorite Chilean rapera/soul singer; a Spanish flamenco-inspired pop vocalist; and a Mexican vocalist so versatile it's impossible to pin her down to one genre.

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We want to go now to a community outside Cincinnati where they're celebrating Christmas a little bit earlier this year. It all started when 2-year-old Brody Allen was diagnosed with brain cancer and given just two months to live.

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Now, let's hear the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. NPR's Brian Mann has been driving through some of the hardest hit areas of North Carolina.

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Updated at 9 a.m. ET

A Russian surveillance plane carrying 15 people was accidentally shot down over northwestern Syria by regime forces, Russia's Ministry of Defense says. However, officials in Moscow are blaming Israel for the incident, which killed all 15 service members on board.

The defense ministry says the turbo-prop Il-20 "Coot" used for electronic reconnaissance disappeared from radar near the coastal city of Latakia on Tuesday just as Israeli F-16s were launching airstrikes on targets in the area.

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