Old habits, and all that

I go grocery shopping every Sunday morning. And every Sunday morning at the grocery store, I buy a newspaper. And then, after getting home and putting the groceries away and eating breakfast, I sit participate in an ancient ritual: reading the Sunday paper while drinking coffee. It’s my Sunday “thing,” just as it was my parents’ “thing” and my grandparents’ “thing.”

Haha. Okay, so the paper I get isn’t quite as old. Though some days it might as well be…

It’s also a silly “thing,” because these days, there’s nothing in the newspaper that isn’t online. By the time the news is printed on Sunday, its old news. That’s not a knock against news reporters – they know how this all goes. Weekdays I listen to the local news every morning thanks to the TV, and then I listen online to world news later each day. But still, whenever Sunday rolls around, part of me looks forward to that moment with the news on paper and the coffee.

I probably look forward more to the coffee, but still. Coffee and newspapers just go together.

Part of it has to do with reading written news stories. It’s one thing to have a head spouting soundbites in ten minutes; it’s another to read a well-crafted, meaningful news story. That’s what I like – the writing and the stories they tell. Some reporters are better at it than others. You get to know the good ones over time and hope that the lesser ones improve. But everyone has an equal chance to flourish or fail in the newspaper.

If I don’t sound like an old person yet, just wait. Because I also clip coupons! Oh yes, I do! (But not to the XTREME.) You know those people who stand at the newspaper rack thumbing through each and every paper trying to find the “perfect” one? Well, that’s me…to a degree. I really don’t have the time to flip through paper after paper, but I do try to locate ones that have good caches of sale papers and coupons. Because after reading the paper, it’s coupon time. And it’s so much easier simply going through a small stack of colorful flyers with scissor than it is trying to locate coupons online. Plus, it’s a habit that helps wrangling my shopping ventures. And who doesn’t like saving money, besides?

Now, if you thought I was going to stop at coupons, you thought wrong, because then there the real…the one and only reason truly why I buy a newspaper every Sunday. It’s…

…the funny pages.

The Sunday comics.

Perhaps “wrapping paper,” if you so desire.

The funny pages are always the last thing I read, because they are the best.

Oh, how the comics stylings of children as adults never gets old.

Yes, yes…once again…there are millions of comics online. And I can easily find those that appear every Sunday there and in other forms. But for me, the Sunday comics are comfort. Yes, some of them are dumb and insipid, but a few are inspired – Pearls Before Swine and Get Fuzzy for sheer humor and farce; Foxtrot in its neverending nerdity; Baby Blues reminding me that it’s good I’m not a parent; Mutts for it’s kindheartedness. Reading jokes in colored squares, sometimes great and sometimes not, makes my Sunday feel complete. Like a really great dessert after a pleasing meal.

Every now and again I consider ending my newspaper weirdness. First, the price of the Sunday paper recently went up to $2 in our region; [FUDDY DUDDY ALERT!] it remains a hard price to accept after paying $1 for so many years. Second, all papers are not created equal. Some weeks, the paper is robust and brimming with interest. Other weeks, the paper is a thin as…as…uh…something that’s really thin! (I’ll get back to you when I come up with a good metaphor. i.e. never) And third, I could honestly being doing anything more productive during that Sunday morning hour I spend with the paper and coffee. Relaxing is all well and good, but I’ve got lots of shit to do. There have been moments where the paper has felt like a waste of time.

Until I figure things out, I’ll still get a newspaper every Sunday. Old habits are hard to break, and the newspaper is definitely an old habit. And, it’s an old profession (journalism, that is); one that I’d like to see continue well into the future. My weekly $2 won’t save the news, but at least I can say that I helped in the rescue efforts.

Next up in old habits…Coffee. In a word: overmydeadbodynowwouldyousokindlygetthefuckawayfrommyfuckingcoffee.


  1. I don’t read the newspaper, but reading this reminded me of my grand father, he was really into sitting out in his garden and reading his morning newspaper and then doing cross word puzzle a, fun times as a child

    You did kind of elude to something that’s pretty important, not sure if it was intentional but kind came across why newspapers or at least the style of it is important. You brought up a great point of when you read your Sunday paper, all the news is essentially old at that point. I kind of see that being the same for pretty much all is bloggers. At least for me, I like to write, talk about news, etc. But I don’t think I’ll be the first to report something ground breaking or just any weekday news. There’s tons of hugs gaming sites that will beat me to the punch through their connections and such. But that brings me to my point where it’s not just about being the first to write about news, as you said the more you read the more you start learning about certain writers. I’m sure given that this news may be old, it’ll probably not just have that news but have some really interesting takes and opinions on those pieces, much like we have here on WordPress.

    Some times do I see articles written for click bait and no real opinion of the matter. So after reading this I think this style of reporting is still very important. It’s an art more than being the first one to the door.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You hit the nail on the head there. There’s a whole philosophy behind the notion that reading great writers will inspire great writing. It’s one of the reasons that I become so distraught when real life gets in the way of me participating in the blogosphere. THIS is the place where I find my inspiration to keep writing and to keep wanting to write better. The reporters in the Sunday papers have gone a long way in fostering my own creativity, as well, but it’s not quite the same. In most cases, news is just news, but being able to put your own spin on things is what helps bring it to life. Whenever I cover gaming news over on United We Game, I know there no chance in hell that it’s new news — it can’t be — but what’s key for the readers is how I interpret it. Maybe they’ll agree and maybe they won’t, but that’s on them. Understanding and discussing opinions is what make the blogosphere (and the world) go round!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. That’s great! I’m sort of similar in the way that I prefer magazines over online or digital articles. Due to the way print works, written articles do tend to have more lasting appeal. I can usually read a news story or article much later and still appreciate how it was told. Unfortunately, I don’t get the Sunday papers anymore, but I used to read the comics every single week. They were my favorite parts!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Over the years, our magazine subscriptions have dwindled, but I agree that paper magazines can be so much better than print ones. There’s something about flipping through the glossy pages, and, as you said, being able to easily return to favorite articles, that just works. Plus, magazine are great for travel! After all, the Internet doesn’t work everywhere, right? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s probably weird of me, but I also like that new magazine smell sometimes. Makes the experience more exciting when there are more senses experiencing the content. And they’re great for travel, I agree! I used to buy magazines right before flights just to have something to do, haha.

        Liked by 1 person

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