The five most popular stories on CNN.com in the past 24 hours, according to NewsPulse.
Secrets pilots won't tell you: You hear their voices over the airplane speakers and you sometimes catch a glimpse of them as they inspect a plane before departure, but for the most part airline pilots remain a mystery. What are their lives really like these days?
French strikes continue; vote near: French unions called Thursday for two more days of protests against government plans to raise the retirement age, as lawmakers cut through red tape to try to make the proposal law within days.
Why you should have sex at least once a week: Sexuality counselor and New York Times best-selling author Ian Kerner used to think there was no one right answer to the question of how often couples should have sex. He has changed his mind.
10 infants dead in whooping cough outbreak: Whooping cough, also known as pertussis, has claimed the 10th victim in California, in what health officials are calling the worst outbreak in 60 years.
NPR analyst fired over Muslim remarks: NPR's president and CEO defended Thursday the network's decision to terminate the contract of Juan Williams after the news analyst made remarks elsewhere that she said veered from analysis into opinion, adding that it was not the first time.