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Seg. 1: Mark Twain's Favorite Food. Seg. 2: Nick Vedros

Segment 1: Mark Twain's love letter to American cuisine.

Samuel Clemens, AKA Mark Twain, was an avid writer and traveler. He was also a champion of America's regional foods. While homesick in Europe, he wrote an extensive list of the foods he missed, like prairie hen and peach cobbler. On this episode, we speak with the author who's been following in Twain's culinary footsteps, first for a book in 2011, and now for a podcast.

Segment 2, beginning at 36:17: A local photographer in a survey of American portraiture.

Kansas City's Nick Vedros is one of just 9 living photographers in an exhibit showcasing the great American portrait photography of the past century. Hear the stories behind both photos included in the show: one of George Brett, one of James Earl Jones.

Portraits Americana: A Brief Survey of American Portrait Photography is on display at the Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art through January 6. For more information, visit Albrecht-Kemper.org.

People don't make cameos in news stories; the human story is the story, with characters affected by news events, not defined by them. As a columnist and podcaster, I want to acknowledge what it feels like to live through this time in Kansas City, one vantage point at a time. Together, these weekly vignettes form a collage of daily life in Kansas City as it changes in some ways, and stubbornly resists change in others. You can follow me on Twitter @GinaKCUR or email me at gina@kcur.org.
Every part of the present has been shaped by actions that took place in the past, but too often that context is left out. As a community storyteller taking a new look at local history, I aim to provide that context, clarity, empathy and deeper, nuanced perspectives on how the events and people in the past have shaped our community today. I want to entertain, inform, make you think, expose something new and cultivate a deeper shared human connection about how the passage of time affects us all. Reach me at hogansm@kcur.org.