A very nice man came to my door about a month ago. He politely explained that he was from the Democrat-Gazette and he was here to deliver my new iPad. I was temporarily confused because someone from the newspaper had called my wife a few days ago to set up an appointment for me to get the iPad at the Fairgrounds event center in Conway.
However, we got all that straightened out and he proceeded to set up my iPad with the Democrat-Gazette and demonstrate how to use it. He was thorough, but not bossy or hurried. Like I said, a very nice man.
I knew this day was coming but, honestly, I was not ready for it.
Of course, I'm sad about this. Every day around 6 a.m., my black Lab, Pepper, takes me out to the driveway so she can retrieve the paper and bring it back to the house. She is so proud and happy to perform this important duty. That all ends on July 14, our last day for daily newspaper delivery. And I will miss spreading out the paper and scanning a whole page at a time to decide what articles or columns I am interested in. And spilling coffee on one or two of the pages.
Then (about two hours later) Ina will show up and start reading the paper. She usually finds something I skipped or didn't read so I get filled in on all that stuff. Since retirement, it has become our morning ritual.
I'm pretty good with dogs, but I don't know how to explain to Pepper why we won't be getting "her" paper anymore. Heck, I can't even explain it to Ina who says she will not read her paper on an iPad.
Of course, the digital "replica" version of the Democrat-Gazette has some very nice features, including the ability to print any articles on a Bluetooth printer, expand the page and font with a touch of the fingers, leap from one section to another, and the ability to get "galleries" of color photos related to stories instead of just one. You can even touch an obituary and it links you to the particular funeral home that person's family is using. (At our age, this is handy.)
However, the thing I like about the iPad most is that now I can read the Democrat-Gazette every day even when traveling, so long as I have Wi-Fi. This will be nice at the beach. I'm usually the first person up, and I like to sit on the porch and have my coffee while smelling the salt air and listening to the surf. Now I can read the paper too. I'm trying to be a "glass half-full" guy here.
Our children really don't read the paper anyway, so they will never miss the old lady. Neither will the grandkids. And it will soon just be something their grandparents talk about with a nostalgia they will never quite understand.
I'm hoping that Sunday deliveries will continue for a while. So is Pepper ...
Boyd Ward of Mayflower is a novelist and author of the blog A Yellowdog Takes Aim.
Editorial on 07/11/2019
Print Headline: BOYD WARD: A left-handed gift