NEW YORK – The pandemic is also affecting today’s solemn remembrance of the September 11 terrorist attacks, as there will be no live readings of victims’ names at the World Trade Center. But none of us can never forget, 19 years ago today. We continue to pay our respects.

STATEWIDE – Remember all those millennials snubbing the suburbs for life in denser locales, where they could tumble out of bed and straight to the nearest coffee shop for a double shot of whatever was trending? Word was the young’uns couldn’t wait to flee suburban New Jersey. A new report confirms that land development has slowed in the Garden State in recent years as more young people moved to the centers of action, to call themselves “New Urbanists” or whatever. But wait! Just as it has changed so much else, the coronavirus pandemic is also reversing the anti-suburb trend in the Garden State. NJ Spotlight has the details of why we could be dusting off those McMansions in the middle of nowhere. That’s fine. Just remember, kids: Stay off my lawn.  

VERNON – Although the spirited Bavarians have been celebrating the annual harvest with beer festivals since the 1300s, for the first time since World War II, Oktoberfest has been canceled in Munich, Germany. So, what to do? The beer-drinking world is invited to Sussex County – as long as they don’t drunkenly slobber all over one another – to properly celebrate. But the pandemic is flattening the suds a bit. Rather than accommodating 15,000 or so revelers, as usual, the Mountain Creek Resort is capping the festivities at 500 beer guzzlers per day, Sept. 19-20. And if you are one of the lucky ones, make sure to carry a thick wallet under your lederhosen. Tables, up to eight attendees, are $1,000 a pop for six hours a day for the two days, featuring all the sauerbraten, bratwurst and sauerkraut you can squeeze in a stomach filled with liter upon liter of beer. Make sure to visit the always-popular Pepto tent. 

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BRIEFING BREATHER

Seven percent of American adults believe that chocolate milk comes from brown cows.

TRENTON – You just gotta love Council President Kathy McBride, now calling for a state investigation into the fact The Trentonian keeps reporting news that she doesn’t want out. She actually penned a letter to AG Gurbir Grewal and Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo Onofri, demanding they investigate what she believes are illegal leaks of "privileged and confidential" information to The Trentonian. Of course, the tabloid giddily reported the contents of the Sept. 8 letter, in which McBride asks “your collective offices to ascertain the source or sources of the leaks of executive, privileged and confidential information.” The letter was dashed off just after the tabloid reported a deal to sell the historic Roebling Wire Works building for $200,000.  No doubt, state and county authorities will launch an exhaustive, at-call-costs investigation, as nothing else is going on.

ROCKAWAY – The Township Council has a message for one of its members: You are obnoxious. Actually, it was more of an official censure of Councilman Tucker Kelley, who is apparently "behaving in a way that is not in accordance" with municipal statutes, the Daily Record reports. The governing body says it's fed up that Kelly keeps disrupting meetings, using them as a forum to “cast aspersions upon or criticize the job performances of other members of the governing body, members of the administration, township employees, professionals and others.” Kelley responded that he’s “in a sword fight with an octopus” at council meetings, where votes often tally 8 to 1 against him. The censure received seven “Yes” votes, one abstention and one “No” vote. Wonder who that was.

ROCHELLE PARK – In other news of local politicians getting censured, we take you to leafy Bergen County. That’s where the five-member Township Committee is whacking Committeewoman Linda Boniface, NJ.com reports. “The only reason you got elected was because of your wheelchair,” the censure quoted Boniface as telling Mayor Nicholas LiBassi, during a June 24 committee meeting. LiBassi uses a wheelchair as a result of a spinal cord injury in 1996.  There’s more cringe-worthy quotes. “You used that wheelchair as prop during your campaign,” the resolution quotes Boniface as saying. “There was not one headshot of you, every picture of you included the wheelchair.” And another gem: “Let’s hear what the cripple has to say.” Meanwhile, Boniface had no comment for NJ.com, but has claimed her colleagues are lying. 

IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS

ROANOKE, VA – Yeah, sure, we all like gum. But a 94-year-old man, with a strange lifelong passion for Juicy Fruit, seems to be taking things a bit too far. He has finally been granted permission by the Mars Wrigley Co. to have his casket painted to resemble a packet of his favorite chewing gum. The guy, in the hospital now for three weeks with a heart condition and can check out at any minute, started chewing Juicy Fruit while serving in World War II. It was a love that would carry through life, as he was known for handing out packs wherever he would go. At first, Mars Wrigley Co. wasn’t exactly thrilled that the guy wanted to be buried in a big box of their product, but then relented when a Facebook post went viral.  Not only did the company say “yes,” – as this stuff is marketing gold – they sent the man’s family 250 packs of gum. An artist is now being solicited to paint the casket for the hospitalized nonagenarian. Better move quickly.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

It was this day in 2001 that four commercial passenger jet airliners were hijacked and two of the planes crashed into the Twin Towers, one plane into each tower, causing the collapse of both buildings within two hours. The third aircraft crashed into the Pentagon. Some 3,000 innocent souls perished.

WORD OF THE DAY

Ruddy – [RUDD-ee] – adjective

Definition: Having a health, reddish color.

Example: I tussled Little Johnny’s ruddy hair and handed him a baseball glove.

WIT OF THE DAY

“The definition of a lunatic is a man surrounded by them.”

-Ezra Pound

TODAY'S TRUMPISM

“We don’t want to be crazed lunatics."

-Donald J. Trump

WEATHER IN A WORD

Improving