BELLEVILLE - The Old Guard is finally letting go of some towns in New Jersey, and fresh-faced, newly-elected mayors are blowing off the cobwebs. Take a peek into Belleville, where Mayor Michael Melham, 44, in his tenth month in office, walked into a town hall where no one expected the mayor to actually show up. He is building himself an actual office to do actual work, he is trying to find modern-day computers to link with printers and even has high hopes the municipal email address system will one day be reliable. Melham stepped into the Jaffe Podcast studio for a candid talk about what it takes to get everyone together and begin the uphill climb toward real change.
STATEWIDE - The next time you are in the dollar store - looking for something that is actually sold for a dollar - drown your frustrations with a nice cold one. That's right, your local Family Dollar will soon be selling cheap booze, perhaps even for a buck, along with aisles of semi-worthless, foreign-made items that will soon be hitting a landfill near you. The company announced that 1,000 Family Dollar stores will be seeking liquor licenses, likely to spice up a chain that saw 390 stores close this year. So, enjoy that can of domestic swill. You earned it.
TRENTON - For one GOP Assembly candidate, there's a lot riding on unwavering support of Trump. Republicans in the 8th District were rattled recently by the defection of state Senator Dawn Addiego to the Democrats. After rumors that Assemblyman Joe Howarth might also flip to the Dems, he lost the backing of the Burlington County GOP. But Howarth is still running to represent the GOP in the Assembly - as the furthest thing from a Democrat, a "MAGA" Republican, a Trumpier-than-thou adherent of President Donald Trump's "Make America Great Again" message. NJ Spotlight reports on the GOP battle in the 8th; let's see if Howarth rides the red cap to victory on Tuesday.
JACKSON - So, there's this rollercoaster at Six Flags Great Adventure that guns from zero to 128 miles an hour in just 3.5 seconds. It shoots you into the sky, up 45 stories, before crashing you back down to Earth with this 270-degree death spiral. Now, one rider is calling the "Kingda Ka" dangerous and, of course, is suing the amusement park, claiming Six Flags should have been more specific about the dangers of such a looney ride. The guy alleges the roller coaster is not fit for taller people, like himself, and alleges he now has lifelong injuries, NJ.com says. Sorry to hear, but it seems anyone paying to ride this torture chamber on wheels must already be severely damaged.
TRENTON - What?! A pharmaceutical company blindly driven by profit? That's at least what state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal is saying, as he slaps the Sackler family silly with eight separate lawsuits. The family is behind the nationwide catastrophe known as OxyContin. The AG blames the Sacklers for blatant lies and bad science over decades, as more and more people got hooked on the drug, causing an opioid abuse epidemic that kills thousands in New Jersey each year and destroys countless families. Grewal says the Sacklers became "unimaginably rich," as they claimed their drug was "rarely addictive," while handing it out like jelly beans at a 6-year-old's birthday party. Hopefully, a settlement can bring in resources to fight widespread addiction.
PARAMUS - Just when you think we've officially run out of things to gentrify, enter a new one: the chicken finger. Apparently this favorite food of your local toddler can also be farm-raised, never-frozen, antibiotic-free, hormone-free and sold for a much higher mark-up. So, here's a New Jersey welcome to "Sticky's. The Finger Joint," which announced it is opening today at The Outlets at Bergen Town Center in Paramus, with super expansion plans around the state. So, now, your trendy new chicken finger can be enhanced by such sauces as "Buffalo Balsamic Maple," "Vampire Aioli" and even a s'mores sauce, for some reason. Just don't ever dare ask for ketchup.
IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS
DOWN THE SHORE - Just in time for summer, we present to you "The Jeado." And what exactly is that? It's a bathing suit for men, but it is denim and it only comes in shockingly short briefs. Each one costs $39.99, courtesy of some retailer named "Shinesy." And here's the product description: "It is like eating a bag of chips in church. Everyone looks over at you with disgust, but deep down they want some, too." That's true; it is like eating a bag of chips. Afterward, you are embarrassed, remorseful and vow never to do it again.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
It was this day in 2016 that the super-rich plunked down $10,000 a pop to see Hillary Clinton - live and in-person - at the Hilton Hotel & Conference Center in East Brunswick. Bargain nosebleeds went for $250, but if you came with real money, you could have a photo, one-on-one with the woman who would certainly, no doubt, become President. (Souvenir picture frame not included)
WORD OF THE DAY
Assumpsit - [ə-SUMP-sit] - noun
Definition: A legal term, an implied promise or contract.
"Mr. Kennedy, what is the definition of assumpsit?"
"Mr. Kennedy, you realize assumpsit was the first word in your reading?"
"Yes. I circled it because I didn't know what it meant."
"Mr. Kennedy, do you own a dictionary? That's what people use when they don't know a word."
"I never showed up unprepared for Professor Elizabeth Warren again."
- Joseph P. Kennedy III, as quoted in The Boston Globe, July 26, 2016
WIT OF THE DAY
"It's absolutely stupid that we live without an ozone layer. We have men, we've got rockets, we've got saran wrap - FIX IT!!!"
- Lewis Black
WEATHER IN A WORD
THE NEW 60
A Jaffe Briefing Exclusive
by Andy Landorf & John Colquhoun