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READING THE PAPER REALLY PAYS IN TODAY'S WORLD

I don't mind telling you that I get my newspaper free.

No, it's not because I work for the Deseret News - it's because my wife clips and saves coupons from the newspaper and redeems them at the grocery store when she shops."Cents-off" coupons make a lot of sense.

On a recent Sunday, I thumbed through a coupon insert in the Deseret News. That day in that one insert there were coupons worth a total of $21.14. I wanted to find out the value of the coupons we use. To prevent being tempted to add up more coupons than I should, I asked my wife to go through the insert and tell me the amount of the coupons we use on a regular basis.

The total came to $6.25. That's just from one insert on one day. I didn't look for coupons in any other insert that day or in the newspaper on any other day during the week.

The coupon insert comes with the newspaper every week, which means if this were a typical week, we would save $25 a month on our grocery bill by using the coupons from just one insert of the newspaper.

But maybe the day of my thumbing through the coupon insert wasn't typical. So if we cut the total in half, then we're still saving $12.50 a month on our grocery bill - still more than the $8.24 it costs every four weeks for the newspaper.

I'm always amazed when I hear people say they can't "afford" the newspaper. It's pretty plain to me to see that it's easy to save more on your grocery bill each month by using the coupons that come in the newspaper than it costs you to subscribe to the Deseret News.

A newspaper is one of the great bargains of our day. I really believe that. Even as a small boy growing up on the flatlands of Idaho, I would wait for the afternoon newspaper to come. And when it did, I would turn first to the comics - we called them "funnies" in those days - and read the latest adventures of Alley Oop and Red Ryder and all the other characters that the newspaper brought into our home.

After the "funnies," I was off to the sports page to read about the "heroes" of baseball. Bob Feller, who pitched for the Cleveland Indians, was my favorite, and I had great aspirations to play second base for the Indians when I grew up. (That was before professional basketball and football were much of a factor in the world of sports.) And after digesting the sports page, I would plunge into the "news." It was a ritual I would follow every day as the afternoon paper arrived.

A daily newspaper opened up to me a whole realm of entertainment, of information, of learning and understanding.

Reading a daily newspaper was just as much a part of our way of life as going to church on Sunday - we wouldn't think of being without either one of them in our lives.

And today's Deseret News is so superior to anything that was produced back then.

The management and editors of the Deseret News have made great efforts to make the newspaper a viable part of the lives of the people of this community.

Even though we now live in the high-technology world of computers and fax machines, newspapers - which have been around at least since 1690 when Benjamin Harris printed his first and only issue - are still the No. 1 source for information.

We may not wait anymore for the newspaper to arrive to read the "funnies" for our entertainment, but to be really an informed person in today's world it is essential, in my opinion, to read a newspaper every day.

"But I don't have time to read a newspaper," is a comment often heard. The Deseret News is mindful of people's time. With its emphasis on "quick read," summaries, indexes and packaging the news, you can get the gist of the day's news in a very short time. And then if you want more depth, you can read the articles in detail. It's really the best of both worlds. Something for people who want highlights in the interest of time; something for people who want to read leisurely.

And remember you can get the paper free, just as I do, if you redeem the coupons - just one of the many advantages of subscribing to the Deseret News.