Did something today that I haven't been able to do in downtown Denver for years: I bought a paper.

Don't misunderstand. Of course, newspapers are easily available in downtown Denver.

The difference today? I didn't go to a bookstore, a hotel lobby or a drug store. Nor did I deposit coins into a news rack. Instead, I walked to an honest-to-goodness, freestanding outdoor newsstand that was fully stocked with newspapers, magazines and other reading materials.

The NewsCube, as it's called, stocks more than 400 magazines and 15 newspapers. It opened this weekend and it's plopped right in the heart of downtown Denver, two blocks from the convention center and across the street from a visitors' center.

Alas, the Cube didn't have the aroma of cheap cigar smoke that I remember from the newsstands of Chicago, where I grew up. And the mechanical cash register had been replaced by a laptop computer. But do you want to know something? The Cube will do.



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