A frightening thought

Of late I find myself worrying a lot. It starts when I go out and pick my paper up off of the steps, leading up to my apartment. It (the paper) is smaller than it was a few years ago—smaller than it was a few days ago—It seems to be shrinking at an alarming rate.

Right about here, you are wondering if “old” Wally has finally gone around the bend. Let me reassure you that I am aware of all the news stations on TV, and that I can access news on the Internet. I know that we now have news literally at our fingertips 24-7. But, you see, I’m a newspaper guy. That’s how I start my day—a cup of coffee and my newspaper. I don’t feel whole until I’ve had my coffee and read my newspaper. I guess you could say I am addicted. Oddly, my newspaper fix isn’t just about news. Fact is, it’s hardly about news at all. Most of the time, I’ve already had a dose of all the news in the paper from TV and the internet, the night before. About the only “news” in my newspaper I’m interested in is the Headlines and the sports page. It’s more about the auxiliary parts of the paper that interest me, the most important being the comics, the horoscope, the Super Quiz, the Sudoku, and the obits, at my age you start reading the obits—I guess to see if I’m listed. I can tell you, it’s always a relief when you or friends aren’t listed.

This shrinking newspaper thing, though, is causing me a lot of angst. If the paper goes away, how will I keep up with my favorite comic characters? I need to know if Luann’s brother Brad is ever going to marry Tony Daytona, or what the kid’s and Frazz come up with at Bryson Elementary school each day.

I’ve been following the escapades of some of these comic strip characters for years, Peanuts, For Better Or For Worse (I am now on my second time through these gems.)… and Doonesbury! The world just wouldn’t seem the same with out my morning allocation of Doonesbury.

I know, I know… I can read them on line. And I know I can read the newspaper on line! But Damn it! It’s not the same! I don’t like it and I don’t want to do it. When they dropped my favorite comic strip, “9 Chickweed Lane,” from the Seattle Times, I was forced to search it out on line. I now follow, what I consider, one of the great comic strips of all time on line. I still love the storylines and the characters but it’s not the same. I find myself falling behind and having to catch up, reading several days at a time—not the same. I liked it better when I had to wait until tomorrow to find out what Edda and company were up to.

And what about my Horoscope—I need to know what I’m facing each day, first thing in the morning, and the Sudoku, The Super Quiz and the Crossword puzzle?? How will I keep my mind sharp, hone my memory? The bathroom will be a boring lonely place. And what will I do without the Obituary Page??? How will I know who died and who didn’t? Search the web?

Well, I don’t want to search the web. I want the newspaper delivered to my front steps! I want to sit in my chair, sip my coffee, and read my paper! I don’t want it to shrink out of sight, out of existence!



9 responses to “A frightening thought

  1. Curmudgeon! *grins and runs*

  2. Wally, I’m absolutely with you about newspapers. I don’t read one every single morning, but I do read one most days. I spend enough time sitting in front of the computer and it’s a whole different experience reading the paper there. Once a week or so, I read the New York Times on the computer – it’s fine, but it’s not the same page-by-page experience. I jump around and I know I miss something because it lets me choose rather than letting me just follow the flow of turning the pages.


    • Part of it, is knowing it’s there and I think it helps start the day. Or maybe starts the mind to thinking. And I too spend a huge amount of time in front of the computer.

  3. Unfortunately, I suspect they will eventually go the way radio programs did. I’m not referring to the music. That part is sort of a low tech iPod. I’m referring to Red Ryder and the Lone Ranger, the Green Hornet too. Amos and Andy made it to television, then tuckered out. Publishing in general is going digital, carrying the world kicking and screaming into the abyss. Ah, me.

  4. Hehe, Wally, you’re so cute!
    I’m a bit younger than you are, but I recall when they removed the crossword puzzle from my Saturday paper, then I noticed other little things changing that I didn’t like. I eventually stopped my subscription, and have done so for all my magazines as well. i just don’t have the time to sit with them as I used to. I think it has to do with being online so much and seeing things move so quickly.
    Not a good thing, necessarily.

    • I’m going to miss my newspaper, once it totally disappears. Maybe when i break down and buy a Kindle or Nook or something of the kind, I can pretend it’s my newspaper. Maybe.

  5. We get 5 newspapers delivered to our staff room every day. And I love it. Often I’ll glance at the NY Times, then go back later to flip through Seattle Times. If there’s something I like, I can stop on my way out and clip it, as they get recycled at the end of the day. One of the great perks for working for the library. They want us to read…

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