Take Two #141: Male Bonding in The Maze Runner

By Kyra-lin Hom

The Maze Runner (2014) is the newest YA (young adult) book-to-screen adaptation to try for the big leagues. This first movie, just opened in theaters, is based on the first book of James Dashner's trilogy+prequel bearing the same name. It's a dystopian, post-apocalyptic, Lord of the Flies-style adventure story wherein memory-wiped teenage boys are dropped in the center of a massive Lovecraftian maze with no explanation and have to survive.

Unlike my approach to the Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games, Divergent, Percy Jackson, etc. franchises, I accidentally stumbled across this one and know almost nothing about the books. Coming in blind has given me a fresh perspective.

Frustrations with the movie first. The days of the stand-alone film adaptation are gone. Though I did enjoy the film despite some epically bad dialogue, the in-movie realization that this was but part one of (at least) three was frustrating. The end was vaguely unsatisfying for movie goers and obviously in place to tease those who knew the books.

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The Monorail: 52 Years and Counting...

by Libby Carr
Campaign Manager
Century Transportation Campaign

Once upon a time, there was a city whose leaders thought: “What might we do that would put Seattle on the map as a World Class city and help ensure a brighter future for our fair city and the Northwest?”

The answer was to become the site for the 1962 World's Fair. Three of the components that captivated the interest of hundreds of thousands of world visitors were the Pacific Science Center, the Space Needle, and the Seattle Monorail. Aside from the futuristic aspects of those three facilities, they all shared another aspect unique to world fairs of the time—all three were intended to be permanent installations, not just fancy facilities for a famous fairground.

All three have survived to this day, and thrived. Two have achieved the potential envisioned by those bold planners. One, the monorail, lags behind, its potential largely ignored by city and regional transportation planners to this day.

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Take Two #139: The Bridge Maker Parable

By Kyra-lin Hom

Once upon a time there was an isolated village high in the mountains and surrounded by steep canyons on all sides. Sure, their existence might have seemed lonely to us outsiders, but the villagers didn't know any better. They had everything they could need and, though their existence was a simple one, they were content with their seclusion.

Then one day, a mysterious benefactor appeared on the other side of the canyon and built a small rope bridge. The canyon was very wide and building the bridge was very difficult, but eventually the finished bridge stretched all the way from one side of the canyon to the other. It was thin and a little shaky and could only support one person at a time, but a bridge it was. Word spread quickly and soon villagers were lining up for hours just to explore the strange wilderness on the other side. For a small fee, of course.

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