I went to college at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California. I didn’t go home a lot during college, so for four years Stockton was my home. Stockton is a rough town, there’s no doubt about that. It’s been that way since it was founded as a river town by gold seekers coming up through the Delta from San Francisco Bay on their way to the gold fields.
Forbes Magazine’s Kurt Badenhausen recently called out Stockton at the top of “America’s Most Miserable Cities.” Greg Basso grew up in Stockton. He raised a family in Stockton, and he built a very successful family business in Stockton. He takes issue with Forbes and strikes back with all the good that Stockton has to offer.
My favorite part comes up at about 3/4 of the way through, “Right now if you’re having a Manhattan, that cherry is from the Stockton area, the nuts at the bar, not the ones drinking, but the ones in the cup, the almonds and the walnuts, they came from the Stockton area, and for that wonderful New York pizza, the tomato paste came from the Stockton area.”
This is pride. This is what keeps secondary cities like Stockton going. It’s people who build businesses and then stay in the community. Stockton’s not perfect, but like in a lot of places in America, there’s people like Greg Basso that aren’t going to let that keep them from trying to make it a little better.
PS – Greg knows the right way to pronounce “almonds.”