On this morning’s walk we encountered, as we frequently do, our newspaper carrier. He’s been doing his job since 1968. But in the past few years he’s been given roadblocks that make his already difficult job much harder. He likes to share his opinions on this topic with us.
He has faced rising gas costs, charges for plastic covers and a $3 fee for every newspaper complaint he gets (even though the cost at the newsstand is less than that). There have been reductions in the work force making his routes longer. The addition of the Wall St. Journal and USA Today on his route make for long waits at the warehouse, even though he has only 3 or 4 to deliver.
He doesn’t complain about the schedule the job demands requiring him to be up before 2 a.m. He doesn’t complain about the weather. He doesn’t complain about his customers and he doesn’t complain about his handicap which makes it difficult for him to walk easily and makes his speech thick.
Many people would.
This morning he had a new problem to overcome. The newspaper has decided that carriers will all have to go to Whitehaven to pick up their papers. In the past, carriers got them at drop off spots near their routes or from the Beale Street building. Now everyone will have to add miles and time to their job.
Wait a minute! Isn’t this the newspaper that touts green stuff until readers feel green? Won’t this enlarge our carbon footprint? Don’t they care about the environment, because not an issue goes by without their editors telling us how evil it is to waste energy. We are told to recycle and how fabulous certain restaurants or stores are because they go organic and compost. We are told to drive less because it uses too much fuel. Ditto with home energy use. We’re supposed to do everything “smart” even if it really does nothing to improve life at all.
But when it comes to them, all this extra gas – which the carriers pay for themselves – doesn’t apply.
No wonder the carriers see red.