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Monday
Feb252019

Are these the dying days of paper delivery?

The ‘Thwack!’ of the rolled up newspaper landing on our verandah has woken my beloved and me during almost four decades of married life. That entire time, sitting in bed with our first cup of tea, poring over The Age has been the start to every day, even in the small country town where our paper boy complained vociferously about the weightiness of the Saturday Age. We were only one of two households that had it delivered.

Not that there haven’t been conflicts in this idyllic scenario. It suited my bloke and me when the sports section came separately; he could pore over that while I read the news and opinions. Then there was a separate ‘Metro’ insert which I was happy to read while he looked at the main bits. Once all the sections no longer came separately, it did cause some marital tensions about who had first dibs, but this problem was neatly solved a few years back with the arrival of iPads, to which my husband took like a duck to water, signing up to The Age app as soon as it became available.

So, for the last five years, we have happily coexisted of a morning, as I turn the pages of my beloved hard copy version and he flicks through it on his device.

These days, however, I’m wondering if this cosy habit of a lifetime is about to come to an end.

For one thing, occasionally, our paper delivery is late. If the ‘Thwack!’ that makes me smile with anticipated pleasure at 20 minutes of good reading doesn’t happen till after I have left for work, it’s too late.

Other times there’s a veritable treasure hunt involved in finding it: perched high in one of the trees or deep in one of the bushes in our front yard, under the car, on the nature strip. Our neighbours must chuckle in amusement at pyjama-clad me, prowling anxiously, on the hunt for my daily fix.

But the most compelling reason I’m considering adopting the app is that more than half our recycling each week consists of newspaper, and I need to do something about that. So, maybe it’s time I bit the bullet and went online for my Age reading. It’s the end of an era, and I feel a bit nostalgic. And sad that the accompaniment to my alarm clock – the sound of the paper landing on my front step, will become, like so much else in life, a nostalgic memory.

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Reader Comments (3)

It won't be long before there are no newspaper deliveries, if only because the people tossing newspapers out of their cars realise there's no injury-cover for discombobulated, or even dislocated, shoulders.(It's quite a skill, especially when they have to toss the paper over the car to the other side of the road.) I too know the disorientation of looking for the paper. (Oslo Davis did a cartoon about this just the other week. In the paper Of course.)Sometimes I find the paper after I've been to the milk bar (another endangered species) and bought another copy. Breakfast without the paper is unthinkable. Cheers.

February 26, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterVin

We'd have to solve the problem of sharing the cryptic as we both work on it together.

February 26, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterGeoffrey

I’ve been an app reader for quite a few years now having been ‘forced’ to give it a go. And I have adapted and can now enjoy the puzzles and even find the answers on the same day. But there’s still nothing like reading the weekend paper in the printed format as we still occasionally do on holidays. I too will mourn its passing.

February 26, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJane

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