Ever wonder what it’s like to live in Topeka?
I didn’t think so…
So I’ll skitter past the above headline’s premise. And then let you in on a couple things about the state of newspapering in the capital of Kansas that you’ll never in a million years hear from the moist, sincere lips of jimmycsays. You know, Fitzpatrick.
Mostly because he’s not dating anybody there (like I am). At least I don’t think he is.
I’ll begin by telling you that by KC standards there’s not a whole lot to do in Topeka or T Town as some of the hipper natives refer to it. I mean, they’ve got Olive Garden, Famous Fave’s, IHOP and most of the main food groups as defined by America’s top chain restaurants. There’s a buncha other stuff, too. Family stuff, church stuff, Fred Phelps stuff and that nutty new governor Sam Brownback.
I won’t bore you with the details…
Let’s talk briefly about the town newspaper, The Topeka Capital-Journal.
My exposure to it comes in the form of the free issues that have been finding their way to my friend’s driveway the past several weeks. It’s not news that the Star isn’t the only daily paper up you-know-what creek w/o a paddle.
Here’s how the Capital-Journal’s been handling its shrinking circulation and readership.
"I hope you enjoyed your complimentary copies of the Topeka Capital-Journal," reads a flyer inside today’s paper. "if you wish to start the Topeka Capital-Journal, please see the enclosed flyer and pick the option that fits you best. I hope I can be your carrier in the near future."
It’s cheaper than the Star but not by all that much. Around $4 a month less on the EZ-Pay plan.
As for what you more-or-less get, well, the state political and local news coverage looks like it beats out the Star but everything else comes in a distant second. And it looks like they’re kinda hurting for ads, although they have a lot of geezer come-ons like the Star. You know, hip inplants, siding deals.
Dead people are big business for the Capital-Journal as well. And yes, they do charge for the privilege of letting other locals know you’ve checked out. They’re also pretty much stuck covering the Royals – the baseball team, not the newlyweds. Which is too bad for all concerned, but at least the Capital-Journal still seems to have something that still resembles a classified section. Unlike the Star.
The pickings are ultra slim – as you might imagine – in the paper’s "Weekend" section.
There was a musical satire that looked pretty vanilla featured on the section cover last Friday. Along with a biker jam, a couple movie rewinds at the "library," and not much else. And only a tiny pair movie ads that didn’t even tell what was playing. That despite that T Town is just as landlocked as us and what else is there to do there on a hot summer afternoon? Or evening?
I’ll tell you what there is to do and that’s eat!
The past several months I’ve spent hanging there, I’ve beheld some of the most bounteous beefcake ever.
Which brings me to another story in last Friday’s Capital-Journal with a Kansas City dateline: "Report shows the percentage of obese Kansans has doubled," the headline reads.
"A new report says the percentage of Kansans who are now obese has more than doubled in the past 15 years with 29 percent of the adult population fitting that category."
During that span, Kansas has soared from 36th place to 16th, the story says.
So there you have it, and you think that former New York Times dude was hard on KC the other day!