As published in the White River Current - Thursday March 27, 2014
We recycle; have for a long time. It gets in your blood. We started when I saw an article about how many trees were required to provide the paper to print a Sunday edition of the New York Times newspaper. It was several thousand, I believe. Anyway, it was a very large number of trees. We began recycling several years ago by saving our newspapers and milk jugs and other plastic and taking them to the center in Mountain Home. Sometime later one of the elementary school teachers began a local center as a class project and we quickly joined in the effort. The local center has been active ever since, accepting newspapers, cardboard, magazines, metal cans (tin and aluminum), plastic containers (No. 1 & 2) and clear glass. Recycling is easy and may even be biblical. It’s amazing how much less regular trash we have so recycling adds years to the life of our landfills and saves us all money. Makes sense to me. Some paper products are disappearing. Plastic bags have replaced the paper sacks in most stores. Have you noticed that a number of newspapers and magazines have become smaller and most are available on the internet as an alternative to the printed version. I used to subscribe to both the Arkansas Gazette and Arkansas Democrat newspapers and continued to subscribe after they merged to form a single publication. When I was growing up, my family subscribed to several magazines. Some that I remember are Colliers, The Saturday Evening Post, The Progressive Farmer and the Readers Digest. Only the Post and the Readers Digest and still around and they have changed a lot over the years. The Post was famous for the Norman Rockwell paintings that adorned the front cover. I developed my love of reading by searching out the exciting mystery stories that appeared in every issue. Quite often if was a Perry Mason mystery by the author, Erle Stanley Gardner. I believe I have read all of the Perry Mason stories and many by A .A. Fair, the pen name used by Gardner to highlight characters other than the famous attorney. Other good mysteries appeared in Cosmopolitan until an Arkansas native, Helen Gurley Brown, became the editor and turned the format of the publication into what it is today, certainly not one that I would recommend for the younger generation. The Post is still a good family oriented magazine. The Readers Digest, a much smaller magazine than most, has been around a long time. Originally it mostly consisted of condensed articles from other magazines. It did not contain advertising for several years. Today it seems like at least half of the magazine is ads but I guess they need the revenue to stay in business. The Digest is also well known for the humor features such as “Life in These United States, All in a Day’s Work, Humor in Uniform” and others. The following joke was in a recent issue: “A man walks into a bar and orders a Martinus. ‘Excuse me’ replied the bartender, ‘did you mean a Martini.’ ‘No’ the man replied, ‘if I had wanted a double, I would have ordered it.’” OK, I thought it was funny. Reminded me of the age-old questions about the English language: If the plural of cactus is “cacti” why isn’t the plural of crocus “croci” or for that matter why aren’t more than one stewardess called stewardi? I know, borderline humorous. You can tell I’m struggling today. Must be a mild case of writer’s block. A good way to end my second year of rambling. I’ll begin my third year with the issue week after next. I’ve had some thoughts and several suggestions about items to ramble about. I had some complaints about my melancholy article a few weeks ago. Hey! It just came out that way. Sorry! I’ll do my best to liven it up a little, but I can’t promise anything, but I sincerely appreciate your observations. Thanks to Ima and others for their calls and comments. Keeps me going.