By Allen David
The morning after the election rarely feels good, but this one feels worse than usual because I didn’t vote—and the consequences are already obvious and costly. In the 31st congressional district, where Democrats hoped to pick up a seat in their campaign to again achieve a majority in the House of Representatives, they won’t even have a candidate in the November general election. A pair of Republicans—Gary Miller and Bob Dutton—finished first and second. Democrat Pete Aguilar, who was forecast as a threat to win, was third. Worse, campaign records show that Miller and his supporters paid nearly $100—actually, $95.63—for each of the 16,319 votes he received, compared to Aguilar ($28.41) and Dutton ($11.99). Think I couldn’t have used some walkin‘-around cash like that? There is a little consolation, though—-thanks for not voting, either.
THURSDAY, JUNE 7
Amazon begins the process of stocking the 950,000-square-foot distribution center it will open this fall in the Alliance California complex near the San Bernardino Airport. First order of business: turning more than 1,000 people into employees, who will then be placed inside the humongous distribution center, further classified as either warehouse associates or lead warehouse associates and consequently paid either $12 per hour or $14 per hour for filling the orders of the vast swath of the society who at this very moment are wasting vast swaths of their lives staring into their home computers and, aware of their expanding emptiness, are desperately ordering things from Amazon that they pray will have some meaning. “We’re thrilled to be starting the hiring process,” Amazon spokesperson Ty Rogers tells San Bernardino Sun reporter Ryan Hagen. “We’re excited to be a part of this community.” Someday, at this point in what will have become a journalism career filled with an endless series of interviews with corporate shills, Hagen will respond by giving some future version of Ty Rogers a fierce groining. Not today. Maybe that’s because Hagen is already laying plans to get out of journalism and is considering Rogers’ potential value as a contact or reference. But there’s always the possibility that Rogers is not striking a public-relations pose, that he really is “excited” and “thrilled.” Because when you think about it, Amazon has got to be damn-happy about getting a desperate workforce at a down-market price. Those $12 and $14 hourly wages translate into $480 and $560 a week.
FRIDAY, JUNE 8
Still excited. Still thrilled.
SATURDAY, JUNE 9
Timothy Bradley, Jr., brings World Boxing Organization’s welterweight title to its rightful home—that would be Palm Springs . . . what, you didn’t know?—by laying such a beating on champion Manny Pacquiao that he showed up for the post-race press conference in a wheelchair. Bradley, that is. Bradley was in a wheelchair. Not Pacquiao—he seemed just fine, except for the fact that he isn’t champion of the world, anymore. He is, however, still mega-rich and a member of congress in The Philippines, and—because, thank God, none of the 159 punches Bradley landed during the fight struck his throat—still quite a singer. Quite a singer. That ought to hold him until he gets a rematch with Bradley in November. Meanwhile, everybody’s in an uproar about the judging, which awarded the win to Bradley, even though Pacquiao landed almost 100 more punches. Yes, that sounds bad, but not so bad when you realize that Bradley absorbed those 253 punches from Pacquiao punches without ever coming close to going down. And to get back to my original point, don’t forget that this fight has brought the WBO welterweight title to its rightful home. History and destiny have always been strong influences in big prizefights . . . and it will be fascinating to learn what the hell welterweight boxing has to do with Palm Springs. Anybody?
MONDAY, JUNE 11
Riverside County Sheriff Stan Sniff, to this point most famous for his hilarious role as the allergic lawman in one of the Toy Story movies—I’m wondering: has anybody EVER done a more-convincing post-nasal drip—has finally outdone himself by asking the county to hire more deputies. Whew! How does the dude come up with this stuff?
TUESDAY, JUNE 12
The Los Angeles Kings win the Stanley Cup for the first time in their history, and as someone who played a crucial part in that history—as a sportswriter for a Southland daily in the early 1980s, I covered almost all the home games and was there in the playoffs for the famous Miracle on Manchester—I believe I am uniquely qualified to offer some perspective on the importance of what just occurred. But first, could somebody please explain to me what the Blue Line is all about? Oh, and what officially constitutes offsides?