After many years of conscientious voices inside my head nagging that I should remain "informed" on the world's happenings -- here, there, and everywhere; voices whose combined drone rose a few decibels seven years ago, or so, when an International Relations teacher highly recommended to the class reading a quality newspaper everyday (and even then the local papers all failed to be deemed "quality"); voices to which still more voices would be added at times as when my old friend, Arc, related proudly and proverbially to me the fact that his Italian-immigrant grandfather had made it a point to read New York Times cover to cover daily to improve his English and his mind; finally I've answered them all today with a bold act: I have subscribed to that prestigious New York daily; I did it today, this morning. I can't wait for the first issue of The New York Times to be delivered by the apartment gate some soon-coming, anticipated morning. I have fond memories, as a child, of awakening in the dark before dawn to scamper outdoors and find the paper lying somewhere on the stairway, or occasionally on the porch (it changed with each deliverer). Sometimes it wouldn't yet be there, and I'd slink back inside disappointedly, onto the living-room couch to await it's arrival; an arrival that was always (at this quiet early time when the streets were empty) predicted by the sound of a car engine - at first distant, approaching in fits of accelerations and stops, between which, during the stops, a plop and, depending on the delivery, a little skidding sound could be heard. With each acceleration and stop the engine would grow louder, and the plops and skids grew into little dud-missiles, landing with a thud. O, the agony if it was a rival paper, and not mine, being delivered! Finally the loudest thud and skid of all would sound, and I'd dash outside, retrieve the paper, pull off the rubber band (or, in rainy weather, hopefully, the plastic sleeve) and riffle through the sections to the sports, whose contents would occupy the remainder of my morning before needing to get ready for school.
Maybe the experience of receiving a paper through delivery in my more mature years won't be as romantically felt, but my heart and my mind will be very glad indeed to see it. It's something to get up for. And it will edify my mind and conscience.
For those of you who can, and do, follow the news through the web, congratulations. I have a strong aversion to it. On the web it is so much easier to be distracted from the substance. And a newspaper can be carried with ease anywhere without much fear for its safety, as with a laptop. A plus to my subscription is that it also entitles me to online privileges; so I can read it in its printed form on any computer with internet. There are also archives dating back to the paper's inception in 1851. They will be fun to peruse!