How We Live

Rainier Vista townhomes near Martin Luther King Jr Way S.
Flickr Photo/Oran Viriyincy (CC-BY-NC-ND)

David Hyde speaks with Erica C. Barnett about the pros and cons of a new idea for Seattle: neighborhood conservation districts.

Geoffrey McGrath delivers a petition bearing more than 125,000 signatures, urging Amazon to stop donating money to the Boy Scouts on May 21, 2014.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Marcie Sillman talks with former scoutmaster Geoffrey McGrath about the president of Boy Scouts Of America's call for an end to the ban on openly gay adult leaders. 

Brigid Schulte discusses her book "Overwhelmed" at an event in 2014.
Flickr Photo/Howard County Library System (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Americans are famously industrious. The chart of our productivity growth per hour worked from 1948 to 2011 shows a rise of over 250 percent. It’s the classic ‘up and up and where it stops, nobody knows’ graph.

But the fact is, while Americans work longer hours than workers in most other countries, we’re actually less productive than you might think. According to a number of studies, working more than 40 hours a week just makes us less productive. So what would happen if we worked less?

Ross Reynolds interviews Ryan Harvie, co-director of a new documentary called "Bodyslam: Revenge of the Banana."

Between 2003 and 2009 a group called Seattle Semi-Pro Wrestling was packing dive bars in Seattle with gonzo wrestling performances. Characters like Ronald McFondle, Eddie Van Glam and The Banana were cabaret fighters, spoofing wrestling pros. 

Marcie Sillman talks with Seattle-area author Bev Harris about finding out that her 2004 book, "Black Box Voting: Ballot Tampering in the 21st Century," was among those listed in a declassified government document called "Bin Laden's Bookshelf."

At an elementary school outside the Chinese capital, Beijing, first-graders practice controlling soccer balls under the instruction of American coach Tom Byer.

"When I clap, everybody's going to dribble to the circle, pull it back and go to the right. Go!" he says.

Regular soccer balls would practically come up to the kids' knees, so they practice with miniature ones instead.

But Byer, a native of New York, argues that even at age 6 or 7, the children are already late to the game.

Dr. Sara Jackson, left, and Linda Johnson were part of Open Notes, a national study that gave patients access to their medical records.
KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

Do you wonder what your doctor scribbles in the chart during your visit?

Patients at Harborview Medical Center got to read their medical records, including their doctors’ detailed notes. For some, that access prompted them to become more involved in their health care.

To discover the new frontier of urban farming, you'll have to look up — and look sharp — for hanging fruit.

Makah whalers celebrate atop a dead gray whale after a successful hunt seen in this May 17, 1999, file photo, in Neah Bay, Wash.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

Ross Reynolds talks to historian Joshua Reid about his new book, a history of the Makah tribe  titled, “The Sea is My Country: The Maritime World of the Makahs."   

The Makahs' tribal land occupies  the Northwest corner of Washington state.  They gained worldwide attention in 1999 when they resumed the traditional practice of hunting for grey whales. Reid's book takes a fresh look at the controversy seen through the  history of the Makahs.

Reid, a member of the Snohomish tribe, was born and raised in Washington. In the fall he’ll be at the University of Washington as an associate professor of history and American Indian Studies.

Heinz-Peter Bader/Reuters 

Tolerance with a side of pedestrian safety: That's the message Vienna is trying to send by replacing the usual stick figures on some of its pedestrian traffic lights with same-sex couples.

Peter Krauss of Vienna’s Urban Planning, Traffic and Transport department says the new lights catch people’s attention, and that’s a good thing. ”We wanted to raise awareness because a lot of accidents in Vienna happen at pedestrian crossings because people do not look at the lights," he points out. "Our idea was that if we change the symbols maybe we get their attention.”

Robert Darden, left, and Anthony Fox moved to Seattle from Nashville. They say they are adamant about living within Seattle city limits, although escalating rents have made that increasingly tough.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

About half the renters in the Seattle region pay too much for their place.

Too much means they’re spending more than a third of their household income before taxes. SeaTac and Rainer Valley neighborhoods are particularly rough on renters, although this trend affects the entire city, regardless of median income. (Check your neighborhood in the interactive graphic below.)

Portland and Seattle are known for their parks — and now they have the accolades to prove it.

StoryCorps

Tony Tansey is a single father with a 4-year-old daughter, Kylie. Early in 2013, Tony was furloughed from his job as a cabinetmaker.

As a result, he was unable to pay his rent. Father and daughter moved to a motel, but after Tony was laid off from his job altogether, he quickly ran out of options.

Here he talks to Rev. Jan Bolerjack, the pastor of Riverton United Methodist Church in Tukwila about how he and Kylie came to live in her church.

Somalis moved to Seattle in two waves -- one in the 1970s and the second after 1991. Somalia's prime minister stopped in Seattle to ask for their help.
Flickr Photo/City of Seattle Tech

We need your help.

That’s the message from Somalia’s former prime minister as he tours the U.S. to meet with Somali diaspora communities. There are about 100,000 Somalis in the U.S., most of them in Minnesota, Ohio and Seattle.

The iconic sculpture in McCaw Hall, home of the Pacific Northwest Ballet and Seattle Opera.
Flickr Photo/Frank Fujimoto (CC-BY-NC-ND)

A new national survey ranks Seattle fourth in the nation when it comes to the number of nonprofit arts and culture organizations. That's higher than San Francisco or Minneapolis.

Longtime arts administrator Sue Coliton isn't surprised by that news.

Pages