We're going to hear next from a woman who has finished one of the most extraordinary careers in recent sports history. Tina Thompson, of pro basketball Seattle Storm, has retired. She played in every one of the WNBA's 17 seasons. The all-time top scorer, she won four championships, two Olympic gold medals. But she never dreamed of becoming a pro basketball player. That option once hardly existed for women.
And now we have this note as we continue America's most comprehensive coverage of the government shutdown. We have this morning, a scientific clarification about lemmings. Last week, you may recall a Republican lawmaker called his colleagues lemmings. He meant his fellow Republicans were following Senator Ted Cruz on a disastrous mission that led to the government shutdown.
Lemmings supposedly follow each other over a cliff. But we have learned - NPR has learned - that lemming mass suicide is a myth.
Sergio Garcia passed the California Bar exam four years ago. The bar granted Garcia a law license, but then rescinded it because he was undocumented.
The justices of the California Supreme Court may have been sympathetic to Garcia, but it quickly became clear during arguments they didn't think the law was on his side. Specifically, as the U.S. Department of Justice argued, federal law prevented Garcia's admission to the bar.
When it comes to political deal-making, former House Speaker Dennis Hastert speaks from experience.
"I always had a feeling whenever I had to negotiate ... you really needed to make sure that you knew where the hole in the box was, so if you got in there, you could get out of it again," says the Illinois Republican, who was speaker from 1999 until 2007.
Hastert tells NPR's Steve Inskeep that he can't say whether House Republicans now have themselves in a box in the government shutdown fight because "we don't know what the end of this thing is yet."
As the war in Afghanistan enters its 13th year, the political and security situation there remains precarious. But the country is hoping to reach a milestone next spring: the first democratic transfer of power in the country's history.
And there's no shortage of candidates vying to succeed President Hamid Karzai — who is barred from running for a third term.
OK. This year's Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine will go to three scientists who have figured out how cells package up material - like hormones - and how they deliver those materials to other cells. This is one of the most basic functions for living cells and diseases can result when the machinery goes awry, so it's important to understand.
And with some perspective on why the two sides are so dug in, and what options Speaker Boehner and President Obama may be weighing, we turn as we do most Mondays to Cokie Roberts. Good morning.
COKIE ROBERTS, BYLINE: Hi. How are you, Renee?
MONTAGNE: And Cokie, given what Tamara just reported, that a small but very key group of Republicans are unlikely to go along with a possible solution to the next crisis that's looming - that's a possible default on the national debt - what does Speaker Boehner do?