Wednesday, May 27, 2009


For as long as I can remember, I’ve had a love affair with the written word. I can’t really trace it back. I just remember reading, reading, reading. All the time. Anything I could get my hands on.

And that’s still how it is.

I believe it’s why I majored in journalism. And despite the fact that I don’t get to live out my dreams of being the next Anna Quindlen* (although, hey, it’s never too late!), I still feel very tied to my major of choice. So it broke my heart this week when I overheard coworkers talking about how they never read the newspaper anymore.

Granted, our local newspaper is awful. I mean, really pathetic for a capital city’s source of news coverage.

But still. It hurts a little.

I feel the same sinking feeling when people choose Kindle over paperbacks.

Websites over magazines.

Don’t get me wrong. I love the, and I’ve started listening to NPR. But there’s something about a newspaper in my hands. The inky residue that remains long after the paper hits the recycling bin. The connection I feel to the writers, publishers and editors who spent countless hours putting it all together.

It’s why I plan to renew my subscription to Newsweek magazine. I know, I know. Money is tight. But $20 is a pretty small price to pay in support of one of America’s few lasting news institutions. (And a subscription to the Times is way out of my price range.) Not to mention the fact that their complete redesign has my little heart just spinning. I’ve simply got to support that kind of bold move.

And, lest my uber-conservative brother be reading this post, I openly confess: Newsweek is a pretty left-wing publication. But I love it nonetheless.

I read it to stretch my brain. To figure out what I really think. To determine what my beliefs really are.

Plus, most of the time, it’s great writing.

And great writing just gets me every time. Quindlen’s final column practically had me in tears.
So, in the name of the written word (and the feeling you know you get when you open your mailbox and see something other than bills), subscribe to a magazine. Buy a good book. Shell out 75 cents for a newspaper.

Then celebrate the ink on your fingers. Because that's what Gutenberg would want you to do.

*Oh my word. She's married to an attorney. Maybe there is hope after all.


MOm said...

I know that this is directly tied to the fact that you smell books and love libraries so much that it was your number one on the list to see in Washington, DC. Your proof of what reading to your children can do! Go YOu!!

me said...

Ooops I mean You're. I knew you'd catch that!!!

chet said...

A few words from our third President.

"Advertisements contain the only truths to be relied on in a newspaper."

"I do not take a single newspaper, nor read one a month, and I feel myself infinitely the happier for it."

"The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers."

"Where the press is free and every man able to read, all is safe."

"I cannot live without books."