The fastest man I have ever seen in my life once told me the story of the day he met the fastest man he had ever seen. The previous year he had been getting ready for the California State High School Championship in the 400 meter dash.
My friend was warming up when this man strutted out there amongst the fastest athletes the state of California had to offer shook his head and said, "Y’all just don’t know. Y’all just don’t know."
My friend says that as he came out of the last turn of that race: "I saw the front of his face and then the back of his head." Across the finish line the man who had bragged that the others didn’t know something stood sipping Gatorade out of a Dixie cup while every other run gasped for breath on the ground. "I told you, y’all just didn’t know."
I am Sacramento born and raised. But I haven’t had the good fortune to live here in years. When I lived in Seattle, San Jose and now North Central Indiana I told (and continue to tell) everyone who would listen and some who wouldn’t, "y’all just don’t know. Y’all just don’t know the greatness of Sacramento."
They don’t know that Sacramento is the most integrated city in America, not just the most diverse. One of the most inclusive cities in the world. We are one family. They don’t know our produce is the best in the world. They don’t know how good our restaurants are. How great our art scene is. They laugh that our voice in our time of greatest need was an unemployed DJ. They don’t know what it means that our toughest neighborhood produced the best mayor in all of America. They don’t know how great our kingdom is. They just don’t know.
Because we wouldn’t tell them. Too often, we’d STOP before we let them know the truth. Because we were the city of "no".
Starting tonight, they’re going to find out. They are going to find out what it means to be the Farm to Fork Capitol of the World. It means that we value our farmers because they are part of our community as much as we value quality. That our commitment to each other got us to twice elect a kid from the hood as our mayor and to make a guy who got fired from a big media corporation our voice. They think it’s a weakness that we aren’t dominated by big corporations. That we are nothing but a One Cow Town.
We say, it’s not a weakness, it’s a strength. We aren’t dominated by anyone. But we will partner with anyone who sees us for who we are. I think it’s a key attribute that attracted this fantastic ownership group to our basketball team: from tech giants to biggest giant of the hardwood.
And who are we? We are a city of Kings, the Republic of Sacramento, Urbs Indomita. The Indomitable City. This is a Cowbell Kingdom and we are all, from the "no voters" to the "yes voters," Sactown Royalty. They say we’re crazy. We say, it’s who we are, and y’all just don’t know.
Tonight as we #PowerForward to Crown Downtown with this new arena, we propel #SacToTheFuture and they just don’t know what’s coming. But starting tonight, we’re going to show them. We will together, as royal brothers and sisters, become the city of yes. And every single person in the city council chambers tonight, every single person following this story that’s bigger than basketball, every single person who loves this city right now will look back on tonight, shake our head, sip our homegrown fine wine and micro brew and say to the world, "y’all just didn’t know."