Pandora's Box

| 27 Apr 2020 | 02:44

This just in - No presidential primary this June so says the NY Board of Elections, meaning that Bernie Sanders gets no NY delegates at the this summer's Democratic Convention. "When Bernie suspended his campaign and then endorsed Biden, he said that he was staying on the ballot," opined Brian Mangan, a local attorney and Bernie Sanders delegate candidate. "Even Biden was okay with Bernie on the ballot." "And were Bernie supporters going to be on board with Biden?" I queried. Fresh from feeling the burn, Brian was pragmatic. "I'll be voting for him." He said he was getting feedback that other supporters would be also be on board for Biden. But it wasn't improbable, he thought, that some will want to challenge Bernie's removal from the NY ballot. Too early for kumbaya? Maybe not.

Shopping for a headache - You'll run into another headache at at least one local grocery/bodega/market if you're looking for Tylenol which appears to be the headache tablet of choice. CVS and King Pharmacy, both on Third Ave. near 90th St., keep it off the shelves and stockpile it behind the counter.

CVS has at least three versions, including PM and Extra Strength. Third Avenue Garden Market sells the two-tablet packet Extra Strength. Since the onset of COVID, the price has gone from $1.25 to $1.60 in the course of a single day. Guess they've figured out that headaches aren't for sale and have joined the ranks of the greedy. And just a little while ago they were giving away hand sanitizer. Live and learn. Tempus fugit. The pandemic will be over. And back to everyday high/low pricing.

Who knew - Ben Kallos has been representing the UES in the City Council for the last 8 years. He's hardworking and always camera- ready. Still, I was surprised to see a pic of him - as I scrolled through - nose to nose in an "Eskimo kiss" with Pandora, his nearly 20-year old cat. Pandora appeared as herself, sitting on a shelf at a first-ever remote meeting of the City Council, as Kallos introduced a COVID-related bill that would prevent essential workers such as health care workers, delivery workers and first responders from being laid off without "just cause" during the pandemic. The bill also protects whistleblowers who disclose unsafe work environments. If Pandora, who made her debut on Earth Day, has any clout, she may want to purr up for a cat cause as Kallos heads for the Manhattan borough president election. Just saying.

Gifting back to the giver - A shopper, wanting to find out how workers were being compensated in these tough days, checked in with Bill Sloan of family-owned Morton Williams supermarkets. (And, yes, there is a Morton and there is a William. They are brothers and sons of the founder.) The shopper contacted Bill Sloan and to find out if workers were being fairly compensated for long hours under stressful conditions. She advocated for giving bonuses for working more than 40 hours a week and pointed out that, because of the pandemic, shoppers were spending more money than ever on groceries. Sloan responded that Morton Williams was "deeply grateful" to their associates and that their employees received higher wages and union benefits than competing stores. He expressed appreciation for the community's increasing tips on home deliveries. Sloan also said that, during this time, workers were getting an additional "$80.00/$60.00 extra per week gift as way of our expressing appreciation." A little checking on that $80/$60 gift found that workers were given a Morton Williams gift card for use at their supermarkets. Look, a gift's a gift, but not one that redounds to the benefit of the giver. Most, if not all, employees can't afford to shop at a Morton Williams. I'd guess that, even in COVID times, $60/80 in cash would buy more at a worker's local market. C'mon, Mr. Sloan. Do the right thing. Cash, no card.