I know there have been devastating earthquakes all over, and tsunamis, and radiation leaks, and countries going broke, and that Kaddafi continues killing his people, that
Osama Bin Laden lies at the bottom of the ocean doing his last service to Earth
as fish food and that Dominique Strauss-Kahn has ruined his own life and
perhaps a few more because he can’t seem to keep his pants up. I know all these
things and many more because people who read the newspapers and watch the news
on television tell me. I do not have to read descriptions of the mass killings
or hear the testimonies of the survivors, or see the destroyed buildings, or
wonder why there was no photo of OBL after his death.

In other
words, I know as much or more than I need to know as I step out into the      summer-like Salies’ morning. And then, as
I walk towards the Café, I realize what is missing, what wasn’t on the News
this morning; those things that precisely didn’t make headlines, didn’t even
make it to the commentary on the bottom of page eight. There was no report, for
instance, of the hundreds of birds hidden in the foliage that have suddenly
burst into song with the warmer weather; no one announced publically that the
river didn’t overflow and flood the village in spite of the fact that it had
risen dangerously during the three days of steady rainfall; that there were
actually patches of blue between the clouds and that the sun routinely peeped
through with a brightness we hadn’t seen this week went unsung by journalists
and news people; no one seemed to find it worthy observing that the heavy rains
had cleaned the sidewalks of dog-doo or that the pansies had glutted themselves
with water and were beaming their little faces skywards again; newspapers –even
regional ones- never seem to find the daily good humor of the Madame in the
Café interesting enough to comment on, even though she serves the same people
the same coffees day in and day out with cheerful abandon. Neither is it deemed
news when the town’s sirens do not sound announcing someone’s dire need
of help, which simply means that no one has had an emergency up to this noon
hour. And the new garbage service so loudly criticized by all has simply fallen
into oblivion now that it is functioning properly. And if the church bells do
not toll someone’s demise, even then the papers do not chalk up a clean slate
for Salies today.  As far as I can see
everything is in working order: internet continues delivering its messages and
finding what search commands request; the phone gives its dial tone every time;
there is electricity and running hot and cold water and even the leak in the
toilet bowl has been fixed.  Clocks are
keeping time, people are going about their business and one must wonder where
the news people are that should be reporting all this.

But of
course, who would buy a paper whose headlines shouted: ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL DAY IN SALIES, and went on to report that in all
of France there has been but one murder in the last 24 hours, hardly worth
mentioning considering all the people who have NOT been murdered. Take my
neighbors, for instance: not one of them hacked to pieces, no rapes that I know
of, and as far as I can see no one is keeping their son or daughter prisoner in
the dark storage closets in the basement. Supposing the newspapers did
interviews with all the people in the banking and investment business who had not
absconded with millions and who live a decent, reasonably comfortable but not
stinking rich life? Instead of reporting on the divorces of national
celebrities, why not report on the marriages of those that haven’t gotten
divorced after 20 or 30 years of marriage?

instance, a secondary article in the local newspaper could read something like:


In an unexpected change of weather –the forecast had mentioned afternoon
rain- the sun showered down from a beautifully blue sky yesterday as of 4pm.
Inhabitants rushed from their houses with nothing more to warm them than light
sweaters over their shirts and jeans to contemplate the surprising summerlike
weather that had seemingly sprung from nowhere in the middle of May. Misfortune
did hit all members of one family, however, that had splurged on raincoats.
Intending to show them off in the park they were obliged to carry them draped
over their arms instead.

         Pictures of the pansies in flower boxes
on window sills could accompany the article. And to celebrate the fact that
Good News is Now News, the paper could be given away free to all those people
who would rather bury their noses in newsprint than gaze up at the unendingly
blue sky.


2 thoughts on “GOOD NEWS IS NOW NEWS

  1. We see the world through our souls and I must say your world is beautiful. Mine is also although I have not your admirable ability to describe it to detail. My world is full of sunshine, blue skies and unending roaring of interminable blue ocean waves, yet always different as yours. And yes, there is more beauty and good in this world for anyone that wants to see it.

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