- Feb 3, 2004, 2:49 PM
Post #1 of 2
The Christian Science Monitor has a story today about Boston and what the Super Bowl and the Democratic convention say about the city. It reads like the writer has some giant Book o' Boston Cliches and just dumped the whole thing into his computer: From football to Kerry to a convention and a labyrinth of tunnels, it's a renaissance for a city of Brahmins and beans. Brahmins? I thought they all moved to Dover years ago. And beans? Aren't there only two places in the whole city you can buy them now, and one's aimed at tourists (Durgin-Park)? And what's with the implication that Boston was a festering dump before Iowa and the Super Bowl? For many it may have seemed an unusual image: Boston residents rioting down rabbit- warren streets, sullying the stoops of their brownstones, seems more suited to 1776 than 2004. Indeed, Boston is perceived as the cerebral neighbor of New York, a city that rolls up its cobblestones by 10 p.m. and probably has as many Unitarians as U2 acolytes. I thought the Christian Science Monitor was based in Boston. Did they fly this guy in special from LA and put him up at Rowes Wharf, only he never left the lobby? Rabbit-warren streets? Sorry, bub, but the rioting was confined to places like Kenmore Square and Hemenway Street. No brownstones there to be sullied (plus: Boston didn't have brownstones in 1776). The intersection of Beacon and Commonwealth is a rabbit warren? Only if you compare it to, oh, the New Jersey Turnpike. Cobblestones? Yeah, I think there's a block or two on Beacon Hill that still has them. Unitarians? Boston is best known for Unitarians? Somebody alert the archbishop! U2? Does anybody even listen to them anymore? Boston, of course, has never been a complete footnote. What? I have to take off my "Boston: The Complete Footnote" t-shirt? Contemporary Boston still plays host to America's royal family, the Kennedys, and remains the recognized center of East Coast intellectualism. Well, true, we've still got Joe floating around on an oil tanker in the Harbor, but last I checked, Hyannis is stretching the definition of "South Shore." For many residents here, the flurry of successes highlighting Boston comes as a nice validation. "It's times like these that Boston doesn't seem to be the parochial city it usually is," says John Strand, a sales manager for The Boston Globe. "It's getting the national attention it deserves." Dare I say it? Are we finally, gasp, world class?!? And doesn't a guy who's in sales for the city's largest paper know better than to call his customers "parochial?" In some ways, Kerry's ascent within the Democratic Party is a vindication of the old Boston: its privilege, aloof dignity, and spirit of achievement. Well, aside from the fact that he's not a Brahmin and that he sorta pretended to be Irish all along even though his last name was originally some Eastern European Jewish name changed at Ellis Island, that is. Oh, and the fact that he had no real money until he married into it, which, anybody who has ever read "The Proper Bostonians" will tell you, is simply not how a Brahmin is made. The convention, say experts, will remind the nation of Boston's political roots, from city bosses like James Michael Curley, to imperious statesmen like Tip O'Neill. I think the reporter is confusing Tip O'Neill with John McCormack (further proof they flew the guy in from some place westa Wuhstuh). Nobody ever called O'Neill "imperious." Boston will show off the grandest parts of the city during the convention, including Fenway Park. But it will be the $14.6 billion Big Dig that could win Boston some big-city respect - and residents and leaders know it. Yes! We got us one hella expensive, wicked big hole in the ground! Woo hoo! Who's your highway daddy now? Won't those delegates from Montana be impressed by that tunnel they probably won't even drive through? Says former Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis: "There's no question that the combination of the harbor cleanup, the dig, our historical buildings, and new architecture work very well together." Boy that Michael, he's a crazy man! Try to contain yourself!
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By Fred Sennott
- Feb 3, 2004, 8:04 PM
Post #2 of 2
[In reply to]
How dare you insinuate that Jawn Forbes kerry isn't a Brahmin.He has the new England Forbes legacy to prove it.He jusy didn't bother to correct all those people who said he was Irish,but that was while he was a candidate so it was OK,and not really a big lie.Remember he was Michael's #2,and I guess taking credit for things you had nothing to do just rubbed off on him.There are lots of Unitarians hanging around up on Beacon hill.I never met anyone more imperious than Tip O"Niel,and I grew up in North Cambridge.I knew him well. Trust in God and sin not.Don't blame me I'm like Sparky I voted for Sarah to.
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