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"Park Manager"   Sue King

"A pet friendly  55+  Mobile  Home  Park  in  Tucson Az."
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Paper Peeves


Beloved comedian Will Rogers used to begin his act by saying, “All I know is what I read in the papers.” He’d then do some blistering one-liners based on that day’s headlines.

For most of us the newspaper is a rigid part of our daily agenda. We read it with coffee in the morning. Some page through it while commuting to work. A few lug it to work with them and read through it at the desk before the day’s tasks begin.

Arizona has many fine journals. Fittingly, many of them have the word “Sun” in their titles. There’s the Yuma Sun, the Wickenburg Sun, the Green Valley News and Sun, the San Pedro Valley News-Sun, Flagstaff has the Arizona Daily Sun, and there’s also Yuma’s Bajo El Sol, which, because of my extensive education and linguistic skills, I know is French for sun.

Some newspaper names reflect a trait of their hometowns, like the Kingman Daily Miner, the Camp Verde Bugle, the Sedona Red Rock News, and I suppose, Humboldt’s Big Bug News.

They’re all fine papers, but they still annoy me. Not because of their content or their editorial policies, but simply because newspapers—any newspapers—have a way of personally annoying me.

The massive Sunday papers are the biggest offender. I like to read through the trivia contained in the Sunday supplement. You know, that magazine-like 16 or so pages that’s usually part of any Sunday paper. It’s quick, light reading, and I enjoy glancing through that first. However, I can never find the blasted thing. It’s always hidden among a series of multi-page ads that are disguised to look like the Sunday magazine supplement.

I think I’ve got it, but no. I’ve got pages and pages of ads for computers, printers, televisions, and the like. Is this it? No. This is a full-color booklet for golf clubs, treadmills, and athletic shoes. I go through these voluminous look-alikes and, many Sundays, never find it. I can only read it after my wife goes through the paper and hands the supplement to me. It was obviously there all the time, but it was hiding from me.

My spouse is the source of another of my newspaper peeves. We both read our paper in the morning, so we select different sections. My wife heads right for the front page. I get the sports section because there is nothing in the sports section that interests my wife. There is nothing in the sports section that interests me, either, but I read through because for men, that’s the law.

So while I’m pretending to be fascinated by something or other written about the sports world, my wife will say, “Listen to this.” So I listen to it. She reads excerpts from whatever column she’s reading about world affairs.

I nod my head and then go back to finding out why so-and-so is unhappy with his $70 million dollar contract to catch a ball. Then my spouse will say, “Do you believe this?” and she’ll read more about some current event.

By the time I get the front page, it’s old news.

Also, my wife loves to do the daily crossword puzzle. I hate crossword puzzles. But my wife will invariably say to me, “Who was a famous hockey player? His first name might begin with an ‘M’ or a ‘B.’” I say, “Bobby Orr.” She says, “It doesn’t fit.” I say, “Brett Hull.” She says, “It doesn’t fit.” I say, “Maurice Richard.” She says, “It doesn’t fit.” I say, “Write smaller.”

She goes on to other clues in the puzzle and I’m left thinking about nothing but famous hockey players for the rest of the day.

There’s another thing that bothers me about the paper. Certain pages often stick together. I try to separate them with my thumb, but they don’t want to divorce. I try to go up to the corner to find something I can grab to pull them apart. No way. They are together and they insist on remaining together.

Me? I’m determined to get them apart. I fight, I struggle, I curse. Finally, I get them separated, open the pages, and invariably find a full-page advertisement for some department store. I could have done without those pages. However, if I hadn’t opened them, I would never know that.

Sometimes, too, I fight to get those pages apart only to find when I glance at the page numbers, that I’m trying to separate page 5 from page 6. It’s only one page, but I’m trying to force them open as if they were two.

This may seem like my mistake, but it’s not. The newspaper publishers purposely print some pages so that they’ll feel like two, just to make me look incompetent for trying to separate them. It’s an insidious plot against me. It’s personal.

So, like Will Rogers, all I know is what I read in the papers. And I do read them, or have my wife read them to me whether I like it or not. Someday I’ll learn to read them well and wisely, but until then, they’ll continue to annoy me.

please click to see more of Wit Stop

by Gene Perret of Arizona Highways





Friendly-Village of the Catalinas
"A pet friendly  55+  Mobile  Home  Park  in  Tucson Az."

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