Sing It, Sister

A writer to the W. Post captures exactly something RC2 and Spousal Unit gripe about almost every morning! I say it's because reporters know nothing. He says it's because there's no news, so they have to fill the front page with features. At any rate, the whole stinkin' Washington Post is written like society pages. No offense meant to my own sex, but it's a paper written for women (the kind who "lunch") and men who wish they were women.
Here are the lead-ins to the six stories on the front page of the June 13 edition of The Post:
"Soul Khalil woke with a start. Her split-level home in Burke was shuddering. . . . "
"A hard rain had fallen most of the night. Xu Juxian, a wiry farmer's wife. . . ."
"Ellen Saracini lost her husband. . . ."
"Like the summer love of your youth, the Washington Nationals. . . ."
"The fourth-grade girl with shoulder-length cornrows looked out. . . ."
"Minutes before showtime, the man in charge sits in a VIP reception area above the stage, sipping a Grey Goose on the rocks. . . ."
Okay, at the risk of revealing myself as a former J-school cranky pants, what happened to the traditional, who-what-where-when-why-how lead? Are your reporters no longer taught to follow that approach? Have your editors abandoned it in favor of irritating, essay-style reportage in hope of attracting a younger demographic? Are you trying to make the paper longer to sell more ad space? Where's the news in all that verbiage?
When I pick up The Post I read the first paragraph or two of a story, then decide whether I need to keep reading or whether I've learned enough to move on to the next item. I'm sure I'm not the only person who does this. I don't think most people read the newspaper in its entirety every morning, and eliminating the traditional, just-the-facts lead makes this quick-scan approach impossible.
I mean no disrespect to the individuals profiled in these stories, some of whom have suffered terribly. But writing every single piece on your front page in a style once reserved for soft-news stories diminishes rather than enhances its effect. If I want to read a well-told tale with interesting characters engaged in cosmic struggles, I'll pick up Shakespeare or Dostevski. When I pick up The Post I'd like a little less infotainment blah-de-blah and more straight news with my morning coffee. --March Dodge, Chevy Chase
Yes! Oh, Yes! It heightens the humor of this, which is spot on (read the stories).