Friday, June 24, 2011
Dailies have been in decline for 70 years, maybe more. The decline steepened with the advent of cable news, but they were doomed when the internet ruined the classified ad business. You wanted to buy a used anything, look for a job, rent an apartment, find a soulmate, you bought a newspaper. People read classifieds as entertainment. The pages adjacent to the classifieds were filled with large ads from car dealers & realtors. The "news" wasn't what sold newspapers. It was classifieds; also comics, Dear Abby, daily horoscope, the crossword, the word puzzle. When Calvin & Hobbes & Far Side ended, I didn't have much reason to buy the Star-Ledger at all.
My step-sister's son - that makes him my step-nephew - sent me a friend request on Facebook. I don't know why, curiosity maybe. I accepted. I liked my two step-siblings' kids when their kids were kids & I saw them two or three times-a-year. They were energetic, noisy, cheeky without being disrespectful. Years after my dad passed & I'd lost touch I ran into several of them, high school kids on the Point Pleasant Beach boardwalk one August night. They all resided down that way. They recognized me first. I was pleased they were hanging out on the boardwalk. My step-sister was an amusing, smart woman, probably still is. But she's turned - not unexpectedly - into a raving Tea Partier. That's where Republicans go now & it's sad. Can't even talk to them anymore.