Because I am, first and foremost, a newspaper junkie, I’ve always had a thing for great headlines. I remember them, savor them, tell other people about them … you name it.
Although I completely despise what they stand for, I’ve joked to people that the best job in the world for me would be headline writer at the New York Post, because, basically, you get to say absolutely anything in the headline.
They did a book of Post headlines, which I refuse to buy because I don’t want to support Rupert Murdoch and his right-wing nutjob publication, but it’s a hoot to look at. My favorite one is still a headline they did when the U.S. started bombing Afghanistan, “Kabul-sye.”
Anyway, I love headlines. I love the famous N.Y. Daily News one “Ford to City, Drop Dead.” For its pure crassness and unbelievable insensitivity, I marvel at the Trentonian’s “Roasted Nuts” headline over a story about a fire at a psychiatric facility.
But my favorite headline is much simpler and pure, and with this being the big 40th anniversary of the Neil Armstrong spacewalk, I was thinking about it today.
Armstrong is from a small town in Ohio called Wapakoneta, and the daily paper there is the Wapakoneta Daily News.
This was their front-page headline on July 21, 1969:
I just LOVE that. It’s like he’s just another kid from the neighborhood who did something great, like “Joey hits home run to win Little League title,” or “Steve wins national science fair.”
To the whole world, this was one of the most incredible moments in human history, a man stepping on the moon.
To the readers of the Wapakoneta Daily News, it was just, you know, Neil. Doing something nice.
It’s a great reminder of how small the world really is.
P.S. If you have any suggestions for your favorite headline ever, let me know, and if I get enough responses I’ll run a compilation or a collage or something.