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Saturday, March 14, 2009

HOM: Proof

The Rolf's were a pair of families in our church. Randy & his wife were close to Lyn's and my age and good friends, while Ben, his father, owned a weekly newspaper called the Flathead Shopper, a competitor to the Mountain Trader. It was located in the little building at the bottom of Underpass Hill where the pet food store is now. The Shopper always had a full-page article of local interest on the front page and a little different layout than the Trader, but was basically all display ads & classified ads. Randy knew I liked reading and writing and that money was tight for me, so when Ben needed a proofreader for his paper Randy sent me in to talk to him. Ben hired me. This was an every-Tuesday-night job for a couple of hours, and was considerably more complicated than it would be today. It was all paper & glue & literal cut and paste. When I found a mistake I had to chose the proper font, load it into the machine, input the correction and print it out, then cut out the new text and paste it over the old ad or portion thereof. I liked the job, the side benefit of being the first to read the ads did help on a few purchases, and the extra money was a big help. Later on, Ben paid me to deliver the papers around the valley. I had to use his SUV for the delivery once, and he did complain a bit about paying me to use his rig. Lyn had a job selling ads of some type at the time, and a few times she rode with me because the addresses we each needed to visit overlapped. The extra dollars were handy for another reason. My world had done one of those so-called "paradigm shifts": Lyn was pregnant. She was ecstatic, I was stunned. She'd come rolling into the parking lot at GC during a break and jumped out of the car with a "Guess what? I'm pregnant!" She was glowing, I was speechless. I wish her glow and my speechlessness had lasted. I was just short of having in enough time for the company to supply me with Blue Cross insurance, but Arnold & Les fudged the paperwork a bit so that we got coverage. I was grateful. TBC (Me) (Blacktail Books)