Slice open one of those red juicy-looking perfectly ripened tomatoes and let the sweet smell of nothing waft through your kitchen. Savour the taste of water mixed with paste as you bite into its flawlessly red skin.
The modern tomato is a work of genetic art. But as soon as you taste it you can tell it's an imposter.
Now a team is trying to understand how those missing ingredients of flavour and aroma can be restored into a fruit that's long been bred for yield, shelf-life and insect resistance. The tomato is complex and when you get one of those rare ones that's as tasty as it is beautiful, there's a number of complicated interactions happening at the genetic level. Bringing back flavour is hard work.
We meet a plant molecular biologist whose life's work is the tomato. He's a tomato scientist. Salads of the future owe him big time.
Going After Rato
Spain had to take a bailout this week and their banks are reeling
after a real estate crash. The bailout signals to Spaniards that things
are going to get worse in a country where youth unemployment is already
more than 50%.
There are protests- lots of them- and this week activists swiftly raised the money they needed to sue one of the big banks, Bankia, and its previous director, Rodrigo Rato.
Spain has the Eurozone's fourth biggest economy. We go to Madrid for more.
Dan Rather has spent 60 years in the news business and interviewed every president since Harry Truman, getting under the skin of more than one. He tangled with LBJ and both the Bushes, odd since they all identify as Texans.
Eventually his pursuit of George W. Bush's record with the Texan National Guard cost Dan Rather his job. His memoir Rather Outspoken offers no apologies. Dan Rather traces how Texas shaped his life and career as he talks to us on Day 6.
Slaughter Nick for President
Rob Stewart is a Canadian actor who got a big break, playing detective Nick Slaughter in a 90's TV action series called Sweating Bullets- a low-budget cross between Magnum P.I. and Baywatch. It was probably a good job to have, but the show looks cheesy in hindsight.
And Rob's fortunes declined after he played Nick Slaughter, for a while he was living in his parents basement in Brampton, Ontario.
But elsewhere Nick Slaughter was a big deal. In Serbia, where the show was extensively re-run during the conflict of the 90s, Nick Slaughter was known as Slaughter Nick and considered a potential saviour to the war-torn country. It was an ironic cry from fed up Serbians, but it had traction: "Slaughter Nick for President" became a local slogan.
When Rob found out his character was so well-loved he was shocked. A new documentary called Slaughter Nick for President follows Rob to a country he's never visited before where he was welcomed as a hero. It's a crazy and strange tale.
Inside the Marathon Vote
Your MPs really earned their pensions this week. Well not really, but they pulled an all-nighter making the House of Commons look like a University dorm on the night before exams.
The issue was an omnibus budget bill, the tactics ranged from bombarding the order with amendments to something called slow-voting, and the end result after 22 hours of members standing and sitting to vote: the bill passed. All of it.
Detractors are saying the new law with all its embedded provisions comes at a cost to Canadian democracy. But what about the cost to our MPs? Don't you care about them?
They get some empathy from Aaron Hagey-Mackay and Simon Pond.
Lehrer on Dylan
In his book Imagine Jonah Lehrer tries to unlock the secret of creativity. He asks: what happens in the brain when there's a break-through, a Eureka! moment that changes the way we've been thinking about a problem or idea and kicks everything up to a whole new level?
One of the moments Jonah drills down on is the time in New York state in 1965 when Bob Dylan- burnt out and considering quitting music- instead pulls something out of his brain that seems to come from nowhere. It's the song Like a Rolling Stone.
Jonah Lehrer sat down with Day 6 to talk about a seminal moment in rock and creativity.
Punk Icon Patti Smith
She's a poet, a photographer, a memoirist and a Mom but Patti Smith is best known as the godmother of punk. In the 70s she released four albums of astonishing power and raw emotion. Her days with that early version of Patti Smith Band sealed her fame, but she was always immersed in art. For a while, just as the 1980s began, she seemed to disappear.
Since she returned to public life, she's been celebrated for her photography and her memoir Just Kids was one of the best books of 2010. Her new album Banga is her 11th, and she's on tour with Neil Young. Patti Smith joins us on Day 6 to talk about Neil, kids, music and life.
I loved talking to her.
And you can win a copy of Patti's new cd, plus a bag to carry it in if you enter this week's Riffed from the Headlines. Start your weekend with free stuff from Day 6, share the podcast and spread the word.
We're back next week with more. Have a great weekend.
Brent Bambury @CBCDay6