Steve Wilson

We don’t have kings in the United States of America; yet how many of us have at one time or other wished we had ultimate authoritarian power? Remember, even the Cowardly Lion wanted to be “Not queen, not duke, not prince” but “King of the Forest.”

In my past I can recall a retort uttered by young people who believed they were being lorded over: “You’re not the King of the World!” But a King can be benevolent; a popular song of the 1970s said: “If I were the King of the World; Tell you what I’d do; I’d do away with the cars and the bars and the wars, make sweet love to you.” This positive application of regal power is far more appealing to me than tyrannical directives; I mean if ya got power, why be negative? With that in mind here are a couple decrees I would issue if I were King of King City:

Whereas her years of dedicated service to students are well known, I hereby decree that henceforth the library on the King City High School campus be henceforth known as the “Teresa Richardson Memorial Library,” with proper dedicatory to be prominently and permanently displayed. Let it be done.

Whereas the youth are the hope and future of the Realm, I hereby decree that all legally recognized street accesses to schools be staffed by courteous and responsible crossing officers whose sole duty is the safe passage and conduct of students, staff and guardians. Let it be done.

Whereas the Kingdom is one of abundant natural resources and ample employment opportunity, no subject of the Realm willing to put forth effort shall be without shelter, food, clothing and other basic necessities. Let it be done.

Whereas the safety and well being of the Kingdom is the responsibility of every subject of the Realm, the Crown fully realizes the need for duly appointed custodians of the peace and safety; therefore all servants of law, repressors of conflagration, all practitioners of medicine and such support staff of aforementioned shall be amply and adequately supplied and renumerated. Let it be done.

Whereas the furtherance of Arts within the Realm is of utmost importance for community unity, the edifice known as the Robert Stanton Theater will henceforth be the sole property of the King, shall be maintained and staffed professionally and offered to the public free of expense. Let it be done.

Whereas all residents of the Realm require access to those businesses which provide goods and services, therefore free public transport shall be established with a routing system wherein no resident need walk more that one thousand yards for access. Let it be done.

Whereas some in the Realm have been made aware how difficult it is for the King to conjure up something to write about week after week, the above nonsense should bring home the point. Let it be done … with.


I am one for scouring a newspaper and often find interesting items tucked away in the Public Notice sections, and last week’s Rustler had a doozy about Michael Sellens. Don’t know the man personally, but according to what I read he’s the fellow looking for bids of around $750,000 from contractors to gussy up the old Expo Building down at SVF; well maybe not him personally, but he works for something called California Construction Authority out of Sacramento and they’re calling for bids.

Not sure when the actual work will begin, but the deadline for bids is 4 p.m. the 23rd of this month, and the Fair is scheduled for May 12-15; I’m not savvy enough to know whether the work will be done before then or not, but given where I rent I’ll be able to watch the work being done. Of particular interest is the upgrading of the electrical system; for a few years in the ’90s I helped string electrical for booths inside the Expo come Fair time and it was quite an ordeal, so now all that will be made much handier I’m sure. And the east end and west end doors, apparently, will be replaced and those are some big ol’ doors.

For those old enough to remember, it was the Expo building (actual name is Exposition Hall) that served as main entrance to the Fair; at least for as far back as my memory goes. There was a sidewalk running at an angle from Division Street with a flagpole area in the middle, which led to the double doors on the north side of the building. We purchased tickets there, and then walked through the building out the double doors on the south side into the fairgrounds. As a kid the Memorial Hall in Greenfield, the Expo Building at SVF and the Auditorium at KCHS were the granddaddies of big buildings in South County.


I recently received some old photographs from a classmate of many years ago in Greenfield. Her name is Lynne and her father, nicknamed “Smokey,” was a photographer in the 1950s and early 1960s in town, so she has a trove of old photos. Two notable photos she sent are of the building housing Smokey’s photo shop, where he also had comic books, model car kits, kites, balsa wood airplanes and who knows what he had for adults, I only remember the kid stuff. But it was also the Greyhound bus stop for years and one photo shows a bus at the curb, door open.

The other photo was of an archery range set up in the empty part of the lot. Yep, an archery range. Bales of hay with targets attached sat at the north end of the lot and we shot from just south of the sidewalk along Oak Avenue. That ended when an errant arrow went over the fence into Mary Borzini’s backyard. The building was eventually torn down and is now the site of Clinica de Salud.

Take care. Peace.

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King City and Greenfield columnist Steve Wilson may be reached at [email protected].


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