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Our trade embargo and travel restrictions on Cuba were loosened as of today. That means Cuban cigars could be on their way back -- but are they all they’re cracked up to be? Then, Pope Francis has announced his plans to canonize Father Junipero Serra, the founder of California’s mission system. We look at his controversial life and legacy. Next, there’s a vaccine in the works for addiction. Could it work? In our weekly film segment, we look at what’s new at the box office after the Oscar blitz. And finally, the strange story of a bull named Toystory and what his life says about the dairy industry.

Producers:
Andrew Walsh
Christian Bordal
Matt Holzman
Jolie Myers
Anna Scott

New Cuba Rules and Cuban Cigars 10 MIN, 4 SEC

The trade embargo and restrictions on Americans traveling to Cuba have been loosened as of today. United Airlines already announced plans to ask for permission to establish direct service to Havana. And Americans who are allowed to travel there can bring back up to $400 in souvenirs, including $100 in either alcohol or tobacco...like Cuban cigars! Cuban cigars, banned from U.S. stores for more than 50 years, are thought of as the best in the world. But is that really true?

Guests:
David Savona, the executive editor of Cigar Aficionado magazine. (@DavidSavona)

More:
TOP 25 CIGARS OF 2014

Saint Serra? 7 MIN, 50 SEC

Pope Francis announced yesterday that he plans to canonize Father Junipero Serra, the founder of California’s missions, as a saint. Anyone who grew up in California and did their fourth-grade mission project knows of Serra. His life story is taught in classrooms; and streets, schools and freeways all over the state are named after him. But he’s also controversial. The missions Serra introduced decimated local Indian tribes. We look at his life and legacy.

Guests:
Steven Hackel, history professor at UC Riverside and the author of the biography “Junípero Serra: California’s Founding Father.”

Vaccines for Addiction 7 MIN, 33 SEC

There’s probably no place in the world with more 12-step meetings than Southern California. In fact, drug dependency is a huge problem everywhere in the U.S. The National Institute on Drug Abuse estimates addiction costs the economy more than $600 billion a year. For decades, scientists have been working to find a “cure” for addiction. Now, for the first time, their efforts are showing promise: not for a cure, but for a vaccine against addiction. We hear all about how it would work.

Guests:
Carrie Arnold, freelance science writer who wrote about addiction vaccines for “Scientific American.” (@edbites)

More:
Vaccines Give Addicts a Shot at Quitting

Snipers, Best Men, and Black Hats 13 MIN

We’re emerging from our post-Oscar-nominations hangover today, and ready to talk about new releases. We talk about what’s new at the box office in our weekly film segment.

Guests:
James Rocchi, The Lunch (@jamesrochhi)
Grae Drake, Rotten Tomatoes (@graedrake)

An Obit for a Very Special Bull 7 MIN, 13 SEC

He was a giant in his field, known around the world simply by his first name: Toystory. And he was the most prolific bull in the world. Toystory sired more than 500,000 offspring in his lifetime, an incredibly high number by industry standards. Why was he so special, and what do his life and death tell us about the dairy industry?

Guests:
Mark Peters, Wall Street Journal reporter based in Chicago (@mrmmpeters)

More:
A Breeder Apart: Farmers Say Goodbye to the Bull Who Sired 500,000 Offspring

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