No News Saturday

Like most small towns in America, my rural Hawaiian village has its own daily newspaper. And like most small towns in America, mine has very little going on that would earn an eager local reporter a Pulitzer Prize were he or she to bother to write about it. See, a headline like “Corruption Discovered in Small Town Government” would be about as newsworthy (or surprising) as “Scientists discover that men enjoy looking at naked women.”  

But that’s not to say that no one writes about it. They do. We yawn and think about naked women. At least us men do. I can only imagine where the female readers’ minds wander to. Probably best not to know.

Aside from petty corruption and good old nepotism, there are also vivid articles on land use disputes, council meetings, banana problems, festivals, local sports and the occasional crime. Of course the banana articles will be read with the most interest because more people have bananas than crime. I tend to think of this as a plus and a concept we should consider exporting. In fact some local reporter, tired of writing about orchid festivals or zoning battles, might want to examine the relationship between the number of bananas per capita and the crime rate. Obviously I was completely wrong in my opening paragraph. I smell Pulitzer.

Our local paper is what a mainlander might think is a bit on the thin side. The whole Sunday edition, even with all the supplements, is about the size of a big city paper’s entertainment section. Our entertainment section is smaller than most big city obituary pages. This could be put down to the lack of bananas in big cities or the fact that they have more people ready to die.

Actually we do have several pages of nightlife. It comes out every Sunday. It’s called the TV listings.

You may be asking, “What does any of this have to do with No News Saturday?” This is a weird thing to do because I can’t hear you. But in case anyone was listening to you talking to yourself, I will tell you this: we have no Saturday paper. That’s right. Nothing happens on Saturday. And if by some strange chance it did, we could read all about it on Sunday.

You get used to it. Really. Every once in a while I’ll slide into the Liar’s Bar, pull up a stool and over a Jack rocks ask my friends what happened today.

“I don’t know. It’s Saturday,” they’ll say.

“Right,” I’ll answer.

“Hey, I’ve got some bananas in the truck if you want some.”

Considering that reading the paper rarely fills one with joy anyway, I consider this a pretty good system. I like living in a place that has made no news is good news not just a cliché, but a lifestyle, if only for one day a week.

©2010 Kona Lowell