Herbert Burtis met the person he wanted to marry in college, in 1948. But since the object of his affection was another man, they had to wait until 2004 for the ceremony, when Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriages.
"It's a long engagement," Burtis says, laughing. "We thought it was time that we made each other honest people."
His spouse, John Ferris, died four years ago. When Burtis went to the Social Security office to apply for survivor benefits, the clerk told him the federal government did not recognize his marriage.
For as long as he can remember, German teenager Robin Dittmar has been obsessed with airplanes. As a little boy, the sound of a plane overhead would send him into the backyard to peer into the sky. Toys had to have wings. Even today, Dittmar sees his car as a kind of ersatz Boeing.
"I've got the number 747 as the number plate of my car. I'm really in love with this airplane," the 18-year-old says.
Two giant ships move through the Panama Canal's two parallel channels at the Miraflores locks, heading toward the Pacific Ocean.
The orange and white Bow Summer is a tanker. The deck of the Ever Dynamic is stacked high with burgundy and blue shipping containers. More boats like these are backed up in both the Pacific and the Atlantic waiting to enter the narrow waterway.
Global trade has grown dramatically, but the Panama Canal — one of the most vital transit routes — hasn't changed its basic structure since it opened in 1914.
The first in a 3-part series airing this week on Morning Edition.
When Facebook goes public later this spring, its founder, Mark Zuckerberg, will be following in the footsteps of a long line of Silicon Valley tech entrepreneurs that includes Steve Jobs and Google's Larry Page and Sergey Brin. But there was a time when the idea of an engineer or scientist starting his or her own company was rare.
Rick Santorum came surprisingly close to an upset in Wisconsin this week, losing to Mitt Romney by less than 5 percentage points. It was not as heartbreakingly close as his previous losses in Michigan and Ohio, but it was one more reminder of what might have been.
With a win in Wisconsin, Santorum would have confounded the ruling media narrative of the moment, which wants to turn from the primary season of spring to the autumnal matchup of Romney and President Obama.
Hearing about golf these past couple of years has turned into some sort of dual universe. On the one hand there is the real world, like: "Smith and Jones Tied for Lead in Cat Food Open."
But then, in more detail, the larger shadow story reads: "Tiger's Putter Falters, Trails By 12 Strokes."
Golf has become like fantasy football or Rotisserie Baseball. Only, imagine if everybody has the same guy — Tiger Woods — on his team. No other golfers seem to exist, except possibly The Ghost of Jack Nicklaus.