Good Stuff! Extinct, RadioWest, and Ruca’s

I’ve been looking forward to watching Extinct, a brand-new TV series. I watched the pilot with my wife and teenage daughter, and we enjoyed it. I watched the next episode, and then a few days later couldn’t help but binge-watch three more. And I’m happy to report it’s full of good stuff and interesting stories.

First of all, it starts with a killer concept. Aliens invade earth and wipe us out, but that’s been done to death. This story doesn’t start there. This story is set four hundred years in the future after the extinction of the human race, when a small group of humans is revived by an alien civilization.

But this isn’t Star Wars, Star Trek, Blade Runner, Battlestar Glactica or anything like that. It feels more like the TV series Lost or The Maze Runner. The heroes are three humans who have been brought back and are trying to figure out what’s happening and how to survive in a place that’s low tech and is the home to a dangerous band of other humans that were also brought back. They’re dangerous, by the way, because they have been taken over by spores that latch other their nervous system and use their bodies as a host.

This series transports you to a world of cool tech and alien stuff like the sparks that regenerate the humans in pools of water, two interesting drones, and alien ruins and glyphs. But the best part about this isn’t the spectacle of the technology. It’s the stories. There’s suspense and action, but also mystery and a lot of stuff that’s human and warm and, surprisingly enough, thought-provoking.

We try to hold a family night once a week to have fun together and discuss important topics. And I can see us easily watching one of these episodes and finding ourselves in a deep discussion about free will, or the creation, or whether Duncan, one of the skin riders, looks like someone right out of The Hobbit.

I liked episodes one and two, but it was episode three that kicked it into high gear for me. If you liked Lost or The Maze Runner or the series Once Upon a Time, I think you’ll really enjoy this. Right now you can stream the first eight episodes for free from byutv.org/extinct or extinct.tv.

EDIT: I just finished episode 8. I really like this series.

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Do you like listening to interesting ideas? If so, you will love tuning into RadioWest. It’s a daily program from KUER in Salt Lake City that features hour-long interviews of folks who are experts on some of the most interesting things or have an interesting story to tell.

Doug Fabrizio is the host and has to be the best interviewer on the planet. I love his voice, but it’s his skill in drawing out the fascinating meat of the topic from his guests is what sets him apart. And unlike some interviewers who don’t even read the books they’re talking about, you can see that Fabrizio has done his homework. He’s really thought about what they have to say.

For example, just this last week, I got to listen to compelling interviews of (1) Tom Christofferson, the gay brother of Elder Todd Christofferson, a Mormon apostle, (2) Ben Shapiro, an orthodox Jew who is an up and coming voice on the Right and was recently protested at Berkeley and the University of Utah, and (3) science writer Ben Mezrich who has written a book about the scientists and researchers who are trying to bring back the wooly mammoth.

Week after week, Fabrizio brings amazing people and ideas into my car and home. You can listen to his interviews every morning at 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. on the radio at FM 90.1 (Salt Lake Area), FM 90.5 (Logan and Bear Lake), and FM 88.3 (Randolph and Woodruff). Or you can listen live online at radiowest.kuer.org, which is also where they keep all the recordings so you can catch up on any you miss.

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New restaurants come and go all the time in Garden City, Utah. Most of them don’t last more than a few seasons. Often this is because they charge lots of money for food that’s really not worth it. So it’s with great delight that I tell you about Ruca’s, a little spot on the block between the city park and Bear Lake Pizza on the main drag.

Not only are the prices reasonable, but the food is delicious. They have sandwiches and other stuff, but we have gone back multiple times for their ebleskivers (AY-bill SKEE-vurs). These are Danish pancakes in the shape of a ball that can be filled with all sorts of stuff. My wife and daughter love the ones filled with peaches and the others filled with Nutella and strawberries. I like the savory ones filled with bacon and cheese with eggs on top.

They’re going to be closing up for the winter, so if you want some great food for a great price, get over there now and enjoy a new delight.

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