Your Letters: Roman Numerals; Church Evicted

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Host Rachel Martin shares listeners' responses to last week's show, including a conversation about Roman numerals, church congregations that meet in public schools and the romantic Latin music style called bolero.


Time now for your letters. And we received a whole lot of comments from our loyal Maine listeners after our interview with political writer Al Diamon. He said Maine's stubbornly quirky caucus system is the way it is...

AL DIAMON: ...because we're crazy? I mean, I'm just guessing here but I think that's probably it.

MARTIN: Lisa Feldman, of Orono, Maine writes: That probably goes without saying - but that's not all. As a long-time resident of Maine, let me say a word in defense of Maine's caucus system. The system maximizes local control - an important principle in a state where the town meeting form of government is still going strong. I've always been impressed with the seriousness people bring to their caucuses, speaking and listening to one another patiently and respectfully. Who would trade all this for the chance to be overwhelmed by a tide of temporary media attention and negative advertising?

Well, we heard you, and in another part of the program we will bring you the results of the Maine caucuses. To more of your letters now. Last week, NPR's Ian Chillag and Mike Danforth talked about Roman numerals in honor of Super Bowl 46, otherwise spelled Super Bowl X-L-V-I.

IAN CHILLAG, BYLINE: But in 2016, we get to Super Bowl 50, which in Roman numerals is Super Bowl L.

MIKE DANFORTH, BYLINE: Now, L, you may know, is the universal symbol for loser. The NFL is so concerned about this, they're already having internal meetings about what to do.

MARTIN: Listener Orpheus Allison in Guangzhou, China had a joke for us: The NFL may not want an L for Super Bowl 50, but what about Super Bowl 49? Would that make fans IL - ill? Fans are safe from that particular situation, given Super Bowl 49 would be written X-L-I-X.


MARTIN: The sounds of bolero had listeners not ill, but definitely swooning.


JOSE FELICIANO: (Singing in Spanish)

MARTIN: Felix Contreras and Jasmine Garsd talked about the traditional love songs that they grew up with. They're the hosts of Alt Latino - that's NPR's online music show about Latin alternative music. Listener Frances Vasquez has memories of her own, and she wrote at "The boleros took me back to the romantic music of my parents, the music they danced to cheek-to-cheek. Los Panchos was their favorite trio and the timeless music of great artists will live beyond our generation."


FELICIANO: (Singing in Spanish)

MARTIN: Whether you're moved by nostalgia or anything else, we always want to hear from you. We're on Facebook and Twitter: @NPRWeekend. I'm @RachelNPR. You can email or post your comments at Click on the link that says Contact Us.

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