Reflections

Italian Newspapers {Thoughts of the Past}

Because I hope there will always be a place in this world for dads in red flannel slippers reading their newspapers.

As a child, I remember my father pouring over the Daily News, our area’s newspaper. Every evening, as ours wasn’t a morning edition, he’d sit in his easy chair, newspaper in hand. Slippers on his feet. For some reason, red flannel plaid slippers come to mind. Though I’m sure he had other kinds through the years. 

I’m more of a newspaper skimmer myself, rarely reading a full article unless it really catches my interest. Maybe I was really just ahead of the times. Already prepped for the days of internet surfing, before they even invented it. Imagine that!

Yet I like newspapers, and I’m glad they’re still strong here in Italy.

(Unlike what I read about the USA, where people mostly read them online.) Not only do many people here still buy them from the local newstand, but most coffee bars stock copies of the daily issues. Read or skim the news while sipping your espresso, brioche (pastry) in hand. Coffee bars and newspapers. They just go together in Italy!

But did you know you can’t subscribe to an Italian newspaper and expect to have it delivered by a paper boy?

And perhaps that’s why most people read them at the local bar. Otherwise, they have to get one from the local news stand. And since they’re already stopping for coffee, why stop twice? These stands are usually chiosks along the side of the street or in a parking lot. And they stock not only newspapers, but magazines, puzzle books, bus tickets, candy, lottery tickets, and even some DVD’s and gift items! Sometimes the owners will provide delivery to your home, but that’s usually done more as a personal favor.

With the advent of newspapers online it is now possible to subscribe directly from the newspaper itself, choosing between a paper copy or a digital issue. But most Italians simply grab a copy at their local coffee bar and read while they drink. Most of them stock at least one or two papers for their clients.

The clever paintings on the windows of this news stand, below, come into view once they’ve pulled the shutters down for nighttime closing. Cool, right?

Yes I’m glad newsspapers are still strong here. Yet a part of me says, “Too bad. Online reading saves our beautiful trees.” Although dead computers and all their parts contribute greatly to pollution. So perhaps that’s not too logical…

Though still the greater part of me also says, “Good, because some things should stick around.” In love with change, I’m far from a traditionalist. Give me new faces, experiences, and places. New things to see and do.

But it’s funny how one little word brings thoughts from the past. Unexpected thoughts, flitting in with a warm cozy and feeling that beckons, “Come and stay a while.”

Like dad in his red flannel slippers, reading The Daily News. Steaming cup of coffee in hand. Relaxing after a long, hard day’s work. Working to bring his family a good life, while also checking up on the world at large.

No, I don’t read the newspaper. I’m still a skimmer, jumping from one thing to the next. But I hope there will always be a place in this world for dads in red flannel slippers, newspapers in hand. Bringing help, love, and hope to this needy world. Don’t you?

And what does the word “newspaper” make you think of?

[Stack of newspapers by moritz320; Coffee & newspapers by AlbanyColley; Both from Pixabay.com. Newsstand is our own image.]

8 comments

  1. The word “newspaper” brings back special memories of my parents. Mama would sit in the recliner and read the paper. I would sit in the floor and wait. After finishing reading a section, she would hand the paper to me to read. Then, I would give the paper to my Daddy. He usually read the paper while sitting at the kitchen table. Precious memories. Both of my parents taught me the love of reading and writing.

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    1. Yes Mimi, those are precious memories!! I find it interesting that sometimes it’s the most ordinary, mundane things we remember a lot from our childhood. I guess because they are a part of what made home really home! Memories to treasure! From my mom I got a love of reading, and from dad a need to know and discover. Great legacies!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I too thought of my dad, doing the same. It also reminds me of my single days when I would spend my Saturday mornings in my jammies, drinking tea, eating something, and poring over the weekend edition of our national paper – seriously good, engaging articles. ☺️

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  3. Hello Sheila:) Enjoyed your post. Very visual. Brought me back to my own hardworking father who also read the paper nightly. He didn’t have red plaid slippers but the big old chair is tucked the memory somewhere. Here in our house in America, we have the Wall Street Journal delivered by mail as we are far from New York City, or any major city for sure. It keeps us current with the world. Thank you for visiting me the other day! Blessings, denise

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