For my long time friends or anyone who had an early morning newspaper route: Here is one I doodled years ago about the joys (or lack thereof) of having a newspaper route as a boy in my high school years. How I wished I had a motor scooter then!



Looking back on my youth as a paperboy
In the small rural sawmill town where I lived
Delivering a morning daily was my employ
That I be industrious was my father’s motive.


Up at six every morning come rain or shine
Peering out the window the weather to see
I’d grab my bag and upon my bike I’d climbed
And peddle out into the early morning’s ebony.


I loaded my two-bagger over my head it hanged
Resting on handlebars of my second-hand Schwinn
Riding along porching papers as I was trained
Or rolled into the boxes of customers and friends.


So down towards town I peddled on Tunnel Road
To streets Reuben, Pacific, Willis and Molly
Then on 1st through 8th Streets my Schwinn I rode
Knowing each house, shortcut and alley.


Turning home I’d coast down Sether and Gilbert
Up Red Hill, past Clarissa, Major and Minor
Humphreys Addition’s hill I was tempted to avert
Trudging up for one last paper but I was no whiner.


In fair seasons my rides were times of delight
For nature and fowl revealed wondrous displays
But cold rain and snow brought hours of blight,
And some mornings my job I almost betrayed.


Besides weather, neighborhood dogs were a worry
I knew at what houses they lay and waited
Peddling by, they sprang and I’d kick’em in a flurry
And my ammonia-filled squirt gun also aided.


My dread was the Sunday morning editions
They were always big and tripled in size
While they added to my monthly commission
Heavier loads and longer peddling time I despised.


End of the month collections was often a chore
But I knew certain customers gave generous tips
There were the Bests, Johns, Perrys and Mohrs
And others rewarded for my early morning trips.


Some asked that I come back time and again
So frustrated me, I really wanted to holler
A few overlooked paying for months on end
I learned to pinch a penny and stretch a dollar.


All in all the travails of a paperboy taught
Some lessons that’s been with me all these years
That committing to obligations always brought
A job well done and customers of good cheer.


It showed that thrift is the root of prosperity
That diligence—the continual care to a worthy cause
Can help overcome moments of disparity
While service to others bring silent applause.


In hindsight I now can see my dear father’s plan
To allow his son to labor in bad seasons and good
To prepare him to travel life’s road wherever it ran
And by avoiding its potholes whenever he could.


~By Larry Troxel~