Sep 9, 2017

Mr 'Would You Rather The Telegraph?'.

As far as I'm concerned, an ideal Saturday morning starts as follows.  I wake up to the sound of silence as opposed to my alarm, toss around in bed for a bit, get to the gym, hit the treadmill and remember to do my core stability and neck exercises before finally wandering off down the road to my local cafe.  I love being up early on Saturday mornings.  Seeing the 'hood wake up at a slightly more leisurely pace than during the week.  And paradoxically also finding motivation from all the people who are out fresh from the gym or dressed and ready for a day of getting things done or ... real estate (couldn't resist, it's a big industry around here).

I put my order in, get my table number and find myself a table and help myself to one of the cafe's copies of the Saturday paper.  I don't subscribe to the actual paper anymore because when I did, I'd often find myself with a pile of plastic wrapped rolls of paper on Saturday morning because I never seemed to have the time to open them during the week.  I tried to bring them into work to read at lunch but that wasn't happening either.

This morning was one of those ideal Saturday starts.  The Herald was open on a vacant section of the bench which at this particular cafe means that someone was standing having a skim while they waited for their order.  So I folded it closed and brought it with me to my table.  Just a little conscious of a pair of eyes darting over to me.  Was it the activewear and all the lack of appropriate dress standards for stepping out that some tend to associate with my generation of mothers?  Or perhaps my phone that I was scrolling on mindlessly as I scooped up the paper without establishing eye or vocal contact with the actual live humans around me?  No, must be the hair.  Post gym it looks even more of a disappointment to the neighbourhood than usual.

It ended up being none of the above.  Just as I sat down and glanced at the front page, the voice that belonged to the eyes spoke, 'Excuse me, would you rather read the Telegraph?'.  To be honest, not really the voice inside my head replied.  But my polite doormat voice spoke instead, 'Would you like to swap?  Here you go...'

I know, I know.  So many thoughts.  Should I have let the voice inside my head speak?  I only have myself to blame if I feel a bit peeved given that I offered to swap papers.  Am I overreacting and are there other things to talk about today such as the local council elections (no sausage sizzle or cake stall at my polling place I'm sad to say)?  Or the news of Kimmy K's third child (via surrogate)?

And then there's the issue of The Tele itself.  Who is the typical Tele readier?  You all know I'm out and proud about dirty secret kind of love of The Daily Mail...

Here's my understanding of how the cafe newspaper system works.  Knowledge I've gained after close to two decades of on the ground experience:

  1. Possession is nine tenths of the law.
  2. Think of the cafe staff and put the copy you're reading back either on the designated wall rack or on the bench that houses various reading materials for the takeaway crew to browse as they wait.
  3. It's okay to ask to 'borrow the paper' if it's quite obvious that someone has read the paper which they signify by folding it back up and placing it in an unoccupied corner of their table.
  4. Try your best to keep all the inserts from each paper together.  It's bad form to nick the Target or Dan Murphy catalogues.
  5. Remember to use particularly colourful pages of the paper as a background for photographing your breakfast / coffee.  
  6. If you use the paper as a table mat, remember to shake it out when you're done.
  7. Do not steal the real estate pages or magazine.  This is Sydney and the weekend real estate write up is even more religiously devoured than the weekend gossip pages.  Speaking of which, there's always too much Miranda coverage for my liking and it's usually about some particular ideology of hers.  Why can we not hear more about Elle (showing my age), Roxy (!!) or the presenters of morning radio and television?  
  8. Do not rip recipes out of the food and lifestyle section.

Any glaring omissions from my list?

What would you have said to Mr 'Would You Rather The Telegraph?'  Was my interaction worthy of a blog post?

Just who is  Ms Typical Tele Reader?

Over to you....


  1. I'm so curious as to the other person's intentions. Did they genuinely believe you'd prefer a different read or were they just asking for your paper in an obscure way?
    Either way, good on you for being so nice. Life's too short to worry about what we peruse at the coffee shop.

    Have a lovely weekend.

  2. I would have said:
    "Why? You look like a tele reader. Thought you were."

    I'm Sick and tired of being assessed- I remember when I walked into my first lecture for Master of Law and the female lecturer looked at me and said "undergraduate class is next door dear". Was very happy to reply " no, I'm in the right room".
    Have become more fearless and less apologetic especially since noticing that the kids were studying my every response in social settings. I'm very conscious that i have to set a good example for them and to make sure they go about their way in the world as confident but aware people. Time will tell... Den xx

  3. Stand your ground.
    Say "bitch please, I read at higher than a year 7 level", then sashay off in your high end activewear without a glance backward.

  4. Definitely worthy of a blog post. Like you, I probably would have politely swapped, but then would have silently fumed at myself for being so compliant. Mind you, I don't know much about the Tele. If it's a bad as you say, I might have dropped my filter and spat out something quite rude at him..:-)


Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment. I'm having trouble importing comments from Blogger right now so using Disqus or sending a tweet would be your best bet. X


Related Posts with Thumbnails