Newspaper Memories

Even today, the sound that the newspaper made as it hit the front porch is as clear as a bell, and always coincided with the barking of our dog. Usually, the stirrings of life within the house began around that moment to signal the day had begun.

The paper was an essential part of a household because everyone wanted something from it. The most fought after item was sometimes wrapped around the newspaper and the weapon of choice to be shot at anyone within range of my father. The pleasure and the pain brought was determined by who had possession of that round piece of elastic.

In our house, we each had our own technique of the best way to shoot it. One never knew who had that stretchy item, until you felt the sting of it against the back of your bare leg or butt. My mother would yell, “cut it out,” and there would be a pause for awhile. However, at some point, the behavior continued and when you hit someone unexpectedly, you savored the moment.

Besides people, that band was shot at little green army men, the hand on the wall clock, and as we aged to hit a fly on the front window’s curtain. Even now, I feel that I could still be a contender in an elastic band shoot out.

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