November 27, 2008

Kind words at the soup kitchen

OK, I'll confess.
When I got back in the car after talking to people at the soup kitchen about today's Thanksgiving meal, I had to brush away a few tears.
What got to me were the comments from several of the people who went there for a meal expressing so much concern for me, for my family, and for the newspaper they find a way to read each day.
"I can't imagine Bristol without The Bristol Press," one of them said.
A woman stood outside and told me that the paper is her lifeline to a community that doesn't much care whether she lives or dies. It's how she learns what's going on, even the fact that the Salvation Army was offering a meal today.
"I feel bad for you and Jackie," she said, referring to my wife, reporter Jackie Majerus.
It pulls at the heartstrings to think that anybody who's going to the soup kitchen for a holiday meal can spare some sympathy for us or the paper.
I'm not sure why it is that a newspaper that means so much to so many might simply cease to exist come January. But I do know that when people who are struggling can find it in their hearts to pray for the paper -- and for me, too -- those of who have the capacity to act to save the Press must do whatever we can to preserve it.
I really don't want to shed a tear for the kindness of strangers. I want to keep their newspaper alive.
Copyright 2008. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at


Anonymous said...

I knew you were a crybaby. ;)
Seriously, it probably does say something about how much the paper means that even people with no means care about its fate. Good luck with your efforts!

Anonymous said...

Things are so bad that you ended up at the soup kitchen?

Steve Collins said...

Just covering the story... for now.

Anonymous said...

Steve make these "Turkeys" happy (if that's possible) and call it the Gees!

Bob Jelenic said...

Classy move offering your time at the soup kitchen. I respect that.

It will be sad once the paper closes. It will be a difficult adjustment for the community. But people will learn to adjust. Perhaps the best way local newspaper advocates can be using their energy is to start pressuring the Hartford Courant or the other newspapers that will soon become the nearest daily. Start efforts to ensure that those newspapers know they need to pick up and slack and begin focusing more time and space on Bristol or New Britain. The closure of the newspapers is something that most likely cannot be prevented at this point, but convincing other papers to step up coverage of these towns is possible.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Bob. It's time to take positive steps.