Thursday, September 12, 2002


I saw it the other day, it just sort of jumped out at me from a newspaper article I was skimming on my way to some actual news, and I thought my eyes had deceived me so I directed the derelict orbs to check again and confirm that 'no one would really ever say such a thing in a newspaper, which is supposed to maintain at least the illusion of fidelity to facts,' is I guess what was going on in my interconscious, that part of the mind we live and walk around in and look at the world from the windows of, that we create as we go along out of bits and pieces of what we think was the past and what we think is the present and what we expect will be the future, but yes, the paper said what my eyes had said it said, and I quote: "...a yellowing 1976 newspaper." I couldn't believe it. A yellowing 1976 newspaper?? Didn't they mean 1796? Did they think 1976 was ancient history or something? And stated so cavalierly! Why 1976 was only a couple of... decades... yeah, I guess the paper could be a little discolored by now, if it's been left in an attic window or something, and if you really want to stretch a point, but why say it's yellow, as if we'd all instantly concur, as if 1976 were a universal symbol of antiquity or something? Much more to the point is the fact that even though I'm pretty dogeared myself, 1976 was only a year or two ago in my mind, and I dare say in most readers' minds who aren't mere children of 35 or so. What are these chronically challenged journalists thinking of, calling a newspaper from thence 'yellowing'? Thomas Jefferson's letters are yellowing. Civil war posters are yellowing. A 1976 newspaper is not yellowing. Slightly sepia, perhaps, around the edges if improperly stored. I know that to those handicapped by youth-- those suffering the chronic deficit of limited years-- 1976 might seem a long time ago, but in fact it isn't. And actual, physical newspapers do not 'yellow' all that much in a mere decade or two for the convenience of unconscionably juvenile journalists. Where do they get 15-year-old journalists, anyway? Does the world in its new age believe that 1976 is just so much history? When, then, were the sixties: in the big archive with the pyramids and the fall of Rome? Hell no. Why, even the fifties are still right here, fresh as a new front page: that's me on the high school steps with the guys, listening to Elvis sing Hound Dog over the airwaves for the very first time, just a couple of minutes ago.

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