Under the Sun
4:27 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Human Hair Is Farmers’ Friend

A circular hairmat is placed around a plant.
Dan Grech

That’s according to Blair Blacker, and he should know.  In this story, host Dan Grech visits a warehouse in Florida City with Blacker to have a look at a novel product– mats made from human hair.  Blacker says the mats fertilize plants better than most herbicides, plus they prevent weeds and conserve water.  The circular mats, made by SmartGrow, fit snugly around a plant’s base and biodegrade over time.

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Under the Sun
4:23 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

The People Robert Frank Saw

Robert Frank (American, b. Switzerland, 1924) Elevator—Miami Beach, 1955
Philadelphia Museum of Art, Purchased with funds contributed by Dorothy Norman, 1969, Photograph © Robert Frank, from The Americans

This photo of a forlorn, slightly bored young hotel elevator operator was taken on the beach in 1955, at the Sherry Frontenac Hotel (65th and Collins).  It has become one of Frank’s most famous photographs and the face of the exhibition, “Looking In:  Robert Frank’s the Americans” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. It runs through Jan. 3.

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Under the Sun
4:01 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Episode 4: Hispanic Versus Latino

Top row: Cesar Guida (parents are Cuban), Kim Lewis (mother is from Peru), Vania Campos (Peru) Bottom row: Michael Lombrozo (European, lives in Miami), Rubi Rosado (Mexican tourist), Carlos Reyes (Honduras)
Jose Maya

Dan Grech gets a government form in the mail and he’s asked to decide: Is he Hispanic, or “a big white guy?” He’s pretty sure he’s not Latino.

To sort it all out, he invited demographer Maria Aysa to the studio.

In this piece, she explains the difference between the terms Hispanic and Latino, and why some people are so adamant about using one instead of the other.

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Under the Sun
4:00 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Author Edwidge Danticat On Life As A Haitian Immigrant And Writing Her First Memoir

Books & Books owner Mitchell Kaplan and author Edwidge Danticat
Ruth Morris

Books & Books bookstore owner Mitchell Kaplan speaks with award-winning author Edwidge Danticat about her experience as an Haitian immigrant living in Brooklyn, what it’s like to live in Miami now, and about writing the memoir

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Under the Sun
3:51 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

What’s Up With South Florida?: Inglish Gratis

In our regular What’s Up With South Florida? feature, you decide what we investigate.  You voted overwhelmingly for an explanation of the “Inglish Gratis” sign outside of Hialeah High.  This photo had been circulating virally through email.  It was brought to our attention by  photographer Tomas Loewy.  In Episode 3 of Under the Sun, Kenny Malone set out to solve the mystery of this misspelling. (-T.S.)

Funding for this episode provided by a grant from The Florida Humanities Council and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Under the Sun
3:45 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Meet Poet Campbell McGrath

Campbell McGrath holds the “Florida orange bird.”
Dan Grech

When you see a book titled Florida Poems, you might imagine titles and verses about bright sunshine and sand-swept beaches, with a picturesque Key West sunset thrown in.  You know, kind of like the poetry version of those generic landscape paintings that hang in every Florida seaside motel? (With the exception of paintings by the Florida Highwaymen, but that’s another story for another time.)

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Under the Sun
3:44 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Young Poets

Alicia Zuckerman interviews members of the Miami Poetry Collective. (L to R) Laura McDermott, Yaddyra Peralta, James May, Jessica Machado, Alicia Zuckerman
Nick Vagnoni

Host Alicia Zuckerman was intensely curious about how young poets graduating with Masters of Fine Arts degrees expect to make money.  Since the average poetry journal pays just $20 for a poem, it’s not exactly a way to make a living.   Sure, writing by candlelight because you can’t pay FPL has a certain romance to it, but what happens when you run out of matches?  So how do poets expect to pay their bills?

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Under the Sun
3:37 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

Dinner Set Gang

Dominick Latella retraced his steps with Lyn Millner for this story
Lyn Millner

The writer Somerset Maugham called Florida a “sunny place for shady people.”  A couple of decades before Bernard Madoff hit Palm Beach, a pair of cat burglars hit mansions up and down the coast.  Lyn Millner tells us where they are now.

 

Before becoming a jewel thief, Dominick Latella played guitar with a band called Two + Two in New York.  Here are some songs from the band’s record:

Under the Sun
3:18 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

A Penny Per Pound

Coalition of Immokalee Workers
Scott Robertson

Norberto Jimenez is a low-wage migrant worker who joined the Coalition of Immokalee Workers in their battle against Burger King and the Florida Tomato Growers Exchange.  We sent Ruth Morris into the tomato fields of South Florida to find out more.

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Under the Sun
3:15 pm
Mon March 18, 2013

A True Old World Craftsman

Abe Rich in his shop.
Alicia Zuckerman

For years, billiards aficionados made a kind of pilgrimage to a place called Star Cue. It was a tiny shop just off Fifth Street in South Beach—tucked behind Flower Bazaar, an upscale floral boutique. Holocaust survivor Abe Rich made some of the country’s most coveted pool cues. Tristram Korten stopped in and spoke with Rich shortly before he passed away.

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