Every morning I quietly hobble from my coffin to retrieve not one, but TWO different newspapers. I have to keep up with the daily demand for wrapping up wedding gifts, lining bird cages with paper mache and of course the never-ending need for dead fish n’ chips grease absorbing diapers . Oh sure I peruse the headlines for the important stuff too like the movie start times or the daily horror-scope. But primarily I just like to see how tall a Jenga tower of newsprint I can build to test my wife’s forklift skills on the way to the recycle bin.
We have a love/hate relationship with our paper boy even though he is actually a 40 year old man who drives an even older van in the wee wee hours of the morning. On the one hand he does give us our daily fix of inane news along with an array of conversation starters during our Pop Tart time. But you would think the guy would have the decency to place the papers neatly on my doorstep instead of ejecting papers out of the window anywhere but on the giant driveway landing zone. I think he purposely spaces his nightly emissions as far apart as possible and plants them in the wet grass, muddy gutter, or up in the trees so I can play ‘Where’s Waldo’ every morning in a 6 A.M. stupor.
The paper-pusher is just bitter because he is STILL dealing to newsprint junkies even when most of his peers have moved up in the publishing cartels to become octopi ink-milkers or ‘blah-blah’ blogging barons. It also may be due to the fact that nobody else on our street gets a morning paper anymore so he has to drive far out of his way to throw stuff ONLY at our house. Except for the ‘newsies’, what other career allows you the luxury of pitching softballs at interviewees, hitting the comic books to do research, or throwing high priced yet worthless pre-paid projectiles at your clients’ houses.
As gasoline prices rise and the route delivery biz dies, I try to keep abreast of the changes afoot for those parts as well as the rest of the lifeless body of the newspaper industry. Despite the waning few of of us die-hard, hard-headed Cro-Magnons who still need to let our knuckles do the dragging through WalMart ads, I’m afraid the ‘dailies’ destiny is dier . Yes as soon as wireless bandwidth makes that next big speed leap for the finish line, the paperless e-book revolution will definitely spell doom for my newspaper dude and his ‘van-do’ attitude. This foreboding change to my breakfast ritual may seem alien at first. But luckily in our shack's litter box, I can always take pillow-soft comfort in at least one close morning encounter, of THE paper kind!