ASBURY PARK – Assume there are many residents of this liberal seashore enclave who have been enjoying some politically-tinged lawn signs that one resident continually places on his Third Avenue property – slamming President Trump with an ongoing stream of slogans. There have been plenty of colorful descriptions, like “unhinged,” “psychotic,” “delusional” and “bat shit crazy.” The Asbury Park Press notes the resident has concocted more than 100 messages over the past couple of years, offering a new banner every few days. Of course, this is all First Amendment stuff and perfectly legal. But the resident may have dipped over that fine line, with cops knocking on his door and asking him to remove a banner that suggests some recommended sexual activity between our President and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Free speech or overt obscenity?

STATEWIDE – There’s some great news for credit card companies; it seems they’ll be getting a steady stream of glorious interest out of New Jersey for an eternity. Wages in the state are higher than most places on the planet, but the cost of living here is so darn high. And that’s why Business.org says a New Jerseyan who earns about $21 an hour would have to work 80 hours each month just to afford rent, at an average of $1,670. Meanwhile, if you lived in 44 other states, with cheaper rent, you could get a much bigger bang for your buck. New Jerseyans earning around $43,600 have to reserve half their pay each month for taxes, insurance, food, clothes, utilities, iPhone, Netflix, etc. Can’t make ends meet? No problem, says Capital One, wondering what’s in your wallet.

TRENTON – Bet you haven’t noticed, but all has been quiet in the halls of the State House these days. Ah, sweet bliss! The gang is all out campaigning for re-election to the Assembly (all 80 seats) and one Senate seat. With just under one month to election day, on Tuesday, Nov. 5, NJ Spotlight hits you with everything you want to know (or don’t) about the often-sleepy contests. Apparently, while we weren’t watching, a few of the races have been turning quite lively.  Not barnburners, of course, but with some slight potential for combustibility. Get all fired up about your candidate in today’s NJ Spotlight.

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MENDHAM – Expect a stark increase in greens fees at the Mendham Golf and Tennis Club, after two men claim they contracted hepatitis A and are demanding a total of $9 million for their pain and suffering. The Daily Record says the two men claim they became sick after eating food that was handled by an ill worker, requiring both of them to be hospitalized. They claim the club “intentionally and recklessly” failed to warn everyone of the outbreak, which would have clearly prompted many diners to go elsewhere. The club, for obvious reasons, isn’t talking to the media about these allegations.

MIDDLETOWN – Get a kick out of this: Mater Dei Prep recruited a 17-year-old female soccer standout as their varsity football team’s place kicker. Coaches hope Claire Gaston will boot “The Seraphs” on to the team’s fourth chance at a state championship. The Point Pleasant teen, also goalkeeper for Monmouth County’s Cedar Stars Academy’s soccer team, tells the New York Post that one of her gridiron goals is to change people’s minds: “This is a great opportunity to show young girls you can do anything, even make an impact in a boys’ game.”

UNION – October is always a big month for candy-makers, but this one is a dual milestone for Jersey’s own Smarties Candy Co. Makers of those classic pastel-colored sweets – sure to end up in every kids’ trick-or-treat bag – are marking their 70th Halloween in business. It’s also the 95th birthday (last week) of founder Edward Dee, who in 1949 had the smart idea to retool WW II pellet-making machines to churn out fruit-flavored sugar tablets. His factories, on Lousons Road here and in Ontario, now generate 2 billion rolls of Smarties each year. Dee’s granddaughters now run the operation and promote their candy as “fat-free, gluten-free, peanut-free, allergen-free and vegan.” Those were pointless selling points back in the 40s, but hey - they work now. 



IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS

NYACK, NY – Believing in ghosts is a matter of opinion - except here, at America’s only “legally haunted” house. To resolve a 1991 dispute between spooked home buyers and former owners, the State Supreme Court ruled that a charming Queen Anne Victorian on the Hudson riverfront “is haunted” and potential buyers must be informed. Now that you know: This 1890s mansion on LaVeta Place could be yours for $1.9 million. It’s on the market again, just in time for Halloween. The New York Post says it features five bedrooms, four baths and a few former inhabitants who just won’t leave. But some good news: You’ll always have someone to share your Smarties.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

It was this day in 2003 that we first learned that anyone can be elected anything, as Arnold Schwareznegger is chosen as the next governor of California.

WORD OF THE DAY

Slake – [SLAYK] - verb

Definition: To satisfy, quench

Example: Will a Manwich slake my humongous craving?

TODAY'S TRUMPISM

“One of the key problems today is that politics is such a disgrace, good people don't go into government.”

- Donald J. Trump

WIT OF THE DAY

“Nothing is creepier than a bunch of adults being very quiet.”

― Tina Fey

WEATHER IN A WORD

Transitioning

THE NEW 60
A Jaffe Briefing Exclusive
by Andy Landorf & John Colquhoun