Top of the list: Katie Couric makes Robert De Niro cry and are longer school years in the future?

Here are the stories people were talking about on February 5, 2013.

1.  CAPTIVE AUDIENCE:  The trial of Jodi Arias keeps getting juicier, and now she’s on the stand in her own defense.  The 32-year-old is accused of shooting and stabbing her on again off again boyfriend, Travis Alexander back in 2008.  Arias first told police she knew nothing about his death, then pointed the finger at masked intruders before finally claiming self defense. 

Only The List gets analysis from two experts in the case.  Legal analyst, Nancy Grace says it’s difficult to convict a woman in a case involving the death penalty. 

"That’s the main thing the defense has going for them. She is a woman and appears to be petite and diminutive in court. The image she’s projecting in court is a very shy and demure image, and it’s almost as if the mind is tricking the eye," said Grace.

HLN Host, Jane Velez-Mitchell said it’s possible there is a sympathetic jury.

"Our producer in court yesterday said she noticed two jurors who seemed to smile at Jodi Arias.  And that certainly raised eyebrows," she said.

2.  KATIE MAKES DE NIRO CRY:  Only The List has the story behind the story.  On the same day Robert De Niro got his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, America watched him break down on Katie Couric’s hit program, which has just been renewed for a new season. 

Couric talked with The List’s Matt Gallant about how that special moment came about.  It all happened on a show featuring the cast of the "Silver Linings Playbook."

"I got to really expand the conversation about mental health in the country, and bipolar disorder, about how we’re treated, how we view people, how we can get more people diagnosed and helped," Couric said.

This is something she hopes to do more of with her show.  You can see more of Matt’s interview with Couric on Wednesday and Thursday’s episodes of The List.  And tune in to Katie on Monday, February 11, for her exclusive interview with Joe Paterno’s widow Sue.

PHOTOS: Matt Gallant and Katie Couric

3.  HIGH OCTANE PAIN:  You have probably noticed gas prices spiking 17 cents in the past week.  The national average is now $3.52 a gallon.  Adding fuel to the fire, and salt to the wounds a new study out Tuesday shows American’s waste an average of $818 a year stuck in traffic in 2011.  But don’t worry, we found an app that will help you keep money in your wallet.  It’s called Gas Price Forecast, and it predicts whether gas prices will rise or fall in the next day. 

4.  PROLONGING THE AGONY:  A collective groan from children across the country as a new push to extend the school year gains momentum.  Five states around the country have already started a pilot program that adds at least 300 hours to the curriculum.  Parents and educators are divided on the issue, those in favor say it will keep children’s minds active and keep America competitive against nations like Japan that have much less time off.  Those against it say kids need summer breaks for vacations and family time. 

5.  FLU LIST:  Your daily list of flu stories making headlines.  The Centers for Disease Control says senior citizens are dying at the highest rate ever seen from the flu this year.  Meanwhile, Walgreens is reporting a nearly 4 percent rise in sales for January, due to increased sales of medications.  Finally the archdiocese of Baltimore is telling its priests to use lots of hand sanitizer and make sure not to touch congregants tongues when giving communion.

 

Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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