Whatever Happened to the Age?
When I was growing up I had lots of interactions with the Age newspaper.
I remember loads about how it looked, felt, and it's function in society.
Pre-internet (gasp) there really weren't many places you could source content.
You had had the library, you have 3 or 4 TV channels, some magazines, and then the newspapers.
Because all the other print content is so slow, it was not like library books or news agency magazines were spinning on high rotation, it is no real surprise that newspapers were the main source of content.
The writing was often long form, with articles citing sources and fakes, and even having some balance, albeit skewed to a left-wing perspective.
I recall my father reading the Age and also getting a workout. Because the size of the pages resembled laundry sheets, each time you turned the page, you'd need to raise your arms above your head, and turn the page. He was quite the master at that. I never mastered the Age mid-air page turn.
The other memory I have of the Age is the size and chunk.
When I was 11, I started doing a paper round.
If this 'job' was available nowadays, the owners would be put in prison because of slave labor. Here's the conditions. Wake up at 5:30am. Ride a bicycle for a couple of hours delivering newspapers in rain, hail and shine, and get paid $1 a day for that. It really was insane.
You would attach a basket rack to the front of your bike, and fill it up with as many newspapers you could without tipping over. For serious players, you'd doubt basket at the front and the back. It took a lot of skill to ride a bike that way. Imagine an 11 year old running off into the dark, bike weighed down by newspapers ... lol ... For me, it had its charms but was still hard work.
The Age on the Weekend was gargantuan. It was like delivering rock hard pillows of paper. You would both need to double hand and lift, and there would be no post box that you could scroll that one in to.
At the end of the weekend delivery, the Herald Sun was compact and friendly, the Age enormous, you would be covered in Ink.
At the end of my Saturday week, I would stop at the local bakery. They would have just finished cooking donuts, and I'd buy half a dozen, half a Big M Blue Lightening, and sit on armchair and watch Rage, before other people woke up. It was sugary bliss.
The content of the age was better at the time. The articles were more diverse, worldly, and used better vocabulary.
I understand the Age has been sold to the hideous Channel 9 group who are truly vomitous.
This morning I scrolled the internet, and came across the Age.
No huge pages to turn, no ink on the fingers, no substance - material or intellectual.
Instead, it is like a tabloid - full of half truths and silly stories.
Wouldn't it be nice to have some decent news to be able to decipher what's really happening in the Ukraine?
I fear the Age is no longer relevant and can't be taken seriously.
Stil, I have my memories and they will be fond ones.
Have a great weekend everyone.
In Peace and Parallel,