Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Paying for content

My parents bought me a gift subscription to the New Yorker.  The whole paying for the written word - it's unheard of.

I find that despite my best efforts and intentions, I cannot keep up with this subscription.  No matter how diligently I plow through an issue, another one crops up waaaay before I am done with the one that I have been slogging around.

There are stacks of them everywhere.  I tell myself that it's okay to throw them away, but it's not.  Trees have died.  My parents spent part of their hard earned retirement to give me access to the kind of writing that they feel their daughter, the aspiring New Yorker, should have access to.

I tell myself that it's okay to start skimming them.  Skipping the articles that don't grab my interest.  This is not working either.  Because there are a lot of things in this world that I don't know a thing about.  More often than not, I run across something that does grab my interest there.  Often in a piece that I would not ordinarily force myself to read.  At one point I was reading a book review which I found very difficult.  When I complained to my mother about this she said, "Those are the ones that you have to finish.  They do the most for you."  Lo and behold she was right.

With the New Year, I am trying to read current and past issues of the magazine.  I was telling SO about this and he made a comment about how the New Yorker is very dense.  I hadn't thought about this, but it's true. I recently bought an issue of Mental Floss and read it really, really quickly.  Back in the day, I never had a problem zipping through an issue of Entertainment Weekly.  The New Yorker is another animal entirely.

It could be worse.  Many, many years ago my parents got me a subscription to the New York Review of Books.  The NYRB can be pretty damn amazing but I am grateful to have been spared that agony this year.

It's a word eating race and I am really not holding up my end.  But I will press on.

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