Monday, October 18, 2010

A Food Expert on Toilets



I was listening to NPR one day this year when a rerun of this episode of "Wait, Wait...Don't Tell me" came on, featuring Michael Pollan answering several questions about Japanese toilets.

Michael Pollan is, well, Michael Pollan. He lives in the Bay Area, and he tells an embarrassing story in this clip about getting caught buying some Fruity Pebbles for his son in the Berkeley Bowl. If you don't know Berkeley Bowl, it's about the crunchiest grocery store you can imagine in the crunchiest town you can imagine. And Michael Pollan, writer of "The Omnivore's Dilemma" and "The Botany of Desire" defends local, organic food consumption - you get the idea.

You have to listen to the end of the clip to hear the part about the toilets, but it's well worth the listen. In the process, they discuss Twinkies and Ring Dings, etc. And they actually say, in the course of the interview, that the scriptwriters of "Wait, Wait" discussed what kind of topic they were going to address, trying to figure out a subject Mr. Pollan wouldn't know much about. Since he deals mostly with food, they went with - well, the opposite end of the process.

But Pollan does say, at the end of the interview, that they gave him a good idea for a sequel. So we look forward to sharing with you Pollan's discourse on "what comes out the other end."

A full transcript, with audio, is available here.

Monday, October 4, 2010