As someone from Boston once famously said outside a Faneuil Hall bar, “Fuck you think you’re doing? That’s Mikey’s cab!”
Once rumored to be a place where genteel Brahmins made polite deals with other genteel Brahmins to keep the prices of used Saabs down, our city on a hill is now (and has been, for as long as I remember it) a cauldron of hot fire emotions. Bostonians have a reputation for having quick fiery tempers, blamed mostly on the city’s ethnic majorities (Irish, Italian, and Portuguese) having a penchant for drama and ambitiously casual attitudes towards temperance.
And though that stereotype is not entirely fair, and easy to refute on a case-by-case basis, when taken as a whole, it is hard to dispel the notion that Boston and its surrounding suburbs give off an air to outsiders that is challenging, insecure, and hard to explain. But fuck those people, amirite?!?! They probably don’t even own several jars of discontinued strawberry Fluff.
Rather than examine the weirdly deep WHY behind the emotional volcanoes that erupt every time someone from Norwood sees someone from Dedham acting “flashy” at the movie theater, let’s look at the WHAT.
So here, friends, is a list of of the things that make people from around Boston so damn angry. Fuck you if you don’t read it, you undercover New York piece of shit.
1. Disrespecting the accent in movies/TV
If you can truly do the accent either because you’re from here (Damon/Wahlbergs/Afflecks) or because you’re just a damn good actor (Baldwin/Renner) we will treat you as a hero and buy you packages of Fenway Franks from Stop N Shop for life, but if you deign to drop your R’s in a way that makes it sound like someone from Kansas is trying to imitate a New Yorker choking on a slice of overrated pizza while doing an impression of someone they met at a Del’s Frozen Lemonade in Rhode Island clearing their throat (Kevin Costner in 13 Days, Blake Lively in The Town, Julianne Moore in 30 Rock), we will rise up and rip your tongue from that sophist mouth of yours. Mostly via prominently placed incensed IMDB comments.
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2. Just, like, all sports
Sports. Sports. Sports. Sports. Boston is a sportiest of sports town, the platonic ideal of a fan base giving a shit, the antithesis of Miami. Does your mother call you to tell you about who got in fights during the Bruins games from the previous week? Even though you’ve explicitly told her you don’t really care about the Bruins? You know what, she probably does, because everyone from this place seems like they’re always angrily sauced on a Kool-Aid concoction made up of Tom Brady witch hunts, Red Sox management errors, and people from Montreal who don’t like Brad Marchand.
My sister went into her room while visiting our dad in San Diego and streamed the NCAA hockey tournament for six hours because BC was in it. The only radio stations set to preset in my mom’s car are WEEI and the one with Felger and Mazz and Toucher and Rich. I once wrote about the Krafts not being great soccer owners and got threats of bodily harm (plus an angry message from my mother).
No one is saying we can’t or shouldn’t be a passionate fan base. It’s in our DNA, it’s our lifeblood. But the combination of paranoia and insecurity mixed with a conspiracy theorist’s dream journal worth of excuses is tiring. But yes, mom, I am proud that Chara stood up for Krejci.
3. That BankBoston no longer exists
Man, that was a great bank, right? That cool green logo with the eagle on the ATM card? The combined financial heft of Bank of Boston and BayBank? Fucking Fleet, man. I think they charged me for checks.
Few things are such a trigger point for anger as South Boston. Either you feel like the old, proud enclosed Irish town on the water has been assaulted by a gentrification hurricane rivaling the power of Bob in 1991, or you’re glad to see changes and progress made in an otherwise unfriendly and pretty damn racist part of town. Wherever you fall on that spectrum (and you do fall somewhere, it’s pointless to fight it), you are likely kind of angry about it right now.
5. Sharks ruining our damn beaches
WTF are sharks doing all over the place in Cape Cod? When I was little you could boogie board on top of a dozen bloody seals into Nauset Beach while eating a sour cream donut from Fleming's dipped in fish guts and nothing would happen to you, except that a bunch of teenagers from Ireland would give you extra chicken fingers at Kadee’s (RIP) that night because they were so impressed by your gall. Now the beach is just filled with scantily clad scientists filming for Shark Week and eating Liam’s onion rings.
6. The proliferation of locally roasted coffee
You think you’re better than a large extra extra from Dunkin'?!? What the fuck is a pour over?!?!
7. College students
College students represent an all-encompassing scapegoat for any anger that takes place in August and September, or whenever you happen to pass by bars in Allston, Harvard Square, Packard’s Corner, or Gainsborough St between the hours of 10pm to 2am. And if you’ve ever wanted to see someone in Boston absolutely lose their mind to the point of hysteria, have them forget that it’s moving day at the end of August, and accidentally drive down any of the side roads off of Comm in Allston. I once saw a guy crying with anger, stuck behind four moving trucks. CRYING.
8. The weather
It is easy to get angry when you realize it’s too hot and muggy in the summer, the winter is an icy hell of Nor’easters that eventually turn into sleet, lining our streets with heavy wet snow and death-teasing black ice, and spring doesn’t exist. Fall is lovely though.
9. Traffic on 93
First of all, who are these fucking people and what do they do for work that allows them to cause these backups at 2pm on a Tuesday in April? Did New York hire a bunch of out-of-work actors to sit in cars along 93 all day long in a brilliantly executed attempt to turn us insane? Did they decide to do construction right now as a sociological test?
10. Visitors not suitably enthralled by Paul Revere’s house
CELEBRATE HIS QUIET MODESTY, DAMMIT!
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