Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Reading out the Window

Not a typo. To be sure, my first act on rising is looking out the window. But then the world I want to see is really merely Weather. I already know my drive, backyard, pear tree, and the rest—or the trusty Honda and the houses across the way.

So Window here means World generically, and early on I’m reading it because the world window is made of paper: Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and Detroit News (all depending on the day). A screen would be another kind of Window, but I wake first and the TV makes a noise that might wake Brigitte. That would be. Sad. So paper it must be at first, and for me by preference. I get more from paper and with fewer distractions.

Given the built-in bias in every form of medium, Windows is the real word here. Reading out the Windows, plural. WSJ? Stocks. NYT? All the news that’s fit to print. Well, not quite. The Detroit News? Sports. It takes some effort to figure out what sport deserves half the front page—unless you recognize the code words, e.g. Simpson blankets Bohannan. Is blankets a name, noun, or verb?

My own reading is very selective these days, and the time spent on the W (be that Window, Windows, Weather, or World) less and less. That’s because as you retire (in every sense of that word), you notice that you no longer recognize the names, be that Simpson, GreenSky, Nvidia, or MoneyGram. Much effort must be expended even recognizing what, say, Nvidia does. And when you do, you’re  no longer interested.

I note here that W is not quite the last letter of the alphabet, but close. Thus the World is not quite all there is to read about. There remains something that transcends the W. XYZ. So after reading out the Windows for a brief spell, I fold the papers for Recycling and turn to XYZ. In practice that means tidying up or, on a day like today, dressing warmly to shovel some snow. Doing that I see a big green truck pulling up. The letters GFL are on its side. Even our trash hauler is going in for abbreviations! But what does that mean? Remove the goggles; peer more closely. Ah. Green for Life. But all out there is white and blowing…

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