Sunday, August 21, 2011

Sunday Newspapers

When I was growing up in semi-rural Michigan, the bulk of the Lavalli clan still lived in Detroit. Easter and several other Sundays were spent on W. Lafayette at the house were my Aunts Alice & Doris, Uncle Ray and Grandma Lavalli still lived. Most of my father's generation were born in that house. Often as kids we would go to the city for the weekend and come home with our parents late Sunday night, I still remember falling asleep in the backseat on the long, pre-freeway drive home on Michigan Avenue.

No internet back then, no news magazine for my family either; we were newspaper readers in the heyday of print media. Early on Saturday evening when we were in Detroit, the "first edition" of the Sunday papers would be delivered. One each of the Detroit News, the Detroit Free Press and the Detroit Times. I fondly recall sitting on the green metal glider on the enclosed front porch and reading all three sets of comics. Full page, brightly printed, full size Sunday comics on Saturday night. My aunts, uncles, parents and older cousins would collectively pour over the "adult" sections of all three papers. As I got older, I added first the sports sections then entertainment and finally the hard news.

But what fascinated me the most was that on Sunday morning there would be three more papers delivered before anyone woke up. The 'Sunday sections' including comics, roto-review, ads, personals etc. all came only with the Saturday evening deliveries. The Sunday morning papers were overnight updates of the front page section, sports, editorials and entertainment and 75% of those were repeats of the first edition from the evening before.

Those were not the only two weekend editions. There was the regular Saturday morning or afternoon deliveries. The Free Press was a morning paper, the News an afternoon edition and the evening Times. In the city we got all of the Saturday papers plus the first  Sunday edition on Saturday night and all three City Finals in the morning. There was also a late night edition that was printed overnight between the "first edition" and the "Sunday final" it went out by truck to the suburbs that was the paper we got delivered at home, way out there in the sticks.

I discovered when I started working at the pharmacy that my dad had not broken the multiple-Sunday edition addiction. He had a bundle of the Saturday evening first edition delivered to the store late on Saturday, one copy for him and several more for other Detroit ex-patriots who had like us, escaped to the rural life.

The Times stopped operating in 1960, while the Free Press and the News have had a "joint operating agreement" since the late 80s. These days I don't subscribe to any newspapers, haven't since I left Michigan in 1975. Times and The Times change.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I "subscribe" to online NYTimes. I post a few articles on FB and email a few to people they remind me of.
I watch Charlie Rose and some PBS news on TV. No time for more than that!