Monday afternoon, as we literally waited for hours at the doctor's offcie, my husband scavanged various pages of the day's newspaper.
Being San Diegans, that paper was the San Diego Union Tribune. Sadly, this paper, like many around the nation, is dying. The black and white newsprint is being replaced by electronic new sources and the 24/7 news available on the television, radio, and elsewhere. Fewer and fewer people are reading print papers, and only the very biggest and best of them seem to be hanging on (think The New York and LA Times).
I myself hate newsprint, finding it is almost as unpleasant as those rough, brown "paper towels" available in some public bathrooms, or the irritating fuzzy skin that surronds a lovely peach. But enough about me. The decline of the paper still does give one, even me, pause, it being the beginning of the end, so to speak.
The pages we read together on Monday are testament to this change, this decline. I could not believe the mini-headlines we were reading. They read more like the National Enquirer than like the newspaper of a major metropolitan area. "Elderly woman attacked by raccoon," "Woman's pet bear kills her," but the story that really got my attention was one titled, "Woman arrested for child endangerment."
Did any of you see this story elsewhere?
Here's the gist of it, if not. A woman in Alabama had her thirteen-year-old daughter ride inside a box on the roof of her minivan, ON THE HIGHWAY, because the box would not fit inside the car. The box was secured to the car with a coat hanger. Singular.
What the???? Where do we begin on how crazy this is? Okay, I'll start; if the girl is inside the box, it must be empty, or near empty, right? Who needs an empty box so bad that you're going to put your daughter inside it on the highway? And why?
And who thinks a coat hanger is going to help secure anything, let alone a giant box with a girl inside, to the top of a minivan?
I don't like to discriminate, but what kind-of crazy do they have in Alabama?
It makes you think this joke really isn't:
An Alabama State trooper pulls over a pickup truck on I-20. He says to the driver, "Got any ID?" The driver says, "Bout what?"