I know U2 is currently in Chicago, but it’s never too early to prepare for your trip to the city that U2 loves best, Boston. For those fans coming into my city from out of town/state or country, you will need to know the following in order to enjoy your time here or at the very least, not get your teeth kicked in while here. You can thank me later.
1. Boston is not the only music group that hails from Boston. Aerosmith, The Cars, New Kids on the Block, Bobby Brown and the Dropkick Murphy’s all call Boston their home. Knowing this musical knowledge is key, especially when you are drunk in a bar. BTW, when in a bar and Walk This Way comes on over the airwaves, best way to avoid getting a beer bottle smashed over your head is to make sure you don’t do your best air guitar routine, however holding up a lighter in the air over your head during Aerosmith’s, Dream On is a nice touch.
2. Although, there are 26 letters in our alphabet, here in Boston we only recognize and use 25 letters. Bostonians don’t recognize or use the letter “R.” One of the fastest ways of getting curb stomped is to be drunk and begin making fun of our accent. When in Rome…best to talk like a Bostonian. Saying “Park your card at Harvard yard,” will earn you a beating. Over annunciating “Chowdahhhh” or “lobstahhhh” will probably get you a beat down, as well. It’s best to keep your mouth shut.
3. U2 will be playing at the Gaaaaahhhhden, not TD Garden. No one from here recognizes the TD or calls it TD Garden. When in a cab or asking for directions, just say “Take me to the Gaaaahhhden,” they’ll know what you’re talking about. Crosswalks in Boston are more for decoration than anything. Crossing any street in Boston without getting run over is a win.
4. Speaking of cabs and driving, Boston doesn’t have the worst drivers, but Boston does have the most dangerous, obnoxious drivers. Crossing three lanes without turn signals while simultaneously flipping you the bird is standard operating procedure in town. Tourists, don’t take it personally.
5. Boston is a blue collar town & only recognizes Dunkin Donuts. Carrying anything Starbucks related could land you in Mass General Hospital. You’ve been warned.
6. If sightseeing, don’t refer to the southern part of Massachusetts as “Cape Cod.” Like the “TD,” no one from here calls it, “Cape Cod.” Simply say “The Cape” and everyone will know what you are talking about.
7. Looking for food, Boston has some of the best restaurants anywhere in the world. Boston’s North End, which is within walking distance to the Gahhhhhhden has some of the best Italian dishes this side of Rome. Grabbing a cannoli at Mike’s Bakery is a must.
8. Coincidently, the Yankees are in town the same time as U2, which means one thing……WAR! You want to win a one way ticket to the morgue, wear or mention anything that is pro Yankee, Jet, Giant or anything related to New York sports. If you think I’m kidding, try it out. Also, for our Canadian friends coming down for the show(s), wearing anything Montreal related will get you killed.
9. Speaking of sports, right in front of the Gahhhhden is a statue of Bobby Orr, the greatest hockey player of all time. Great spot for a photo op.
10. Fenway is a few miles from the Gaaaahhhhden. Looking to score some tickets for any Yankee game, bring cash and lots of it. Every game at Fenway is sold out, Yankees in town means ticket prices will be outrageous. Hanging outside of Fenway on Lansdowne Street is great, especially during Yankee games. Looking to watch a few fights between drunk Red Sox and Yankee fans, underneath the smell of 20,000 sausage carts is well worth the trip.
11. Scalpers outside the Gahhhhhden will be out in full force every night of U2. Again, bring cash.
12. Boston has a great nightlife, if you don’t mind the entire city closing down at 2:00 AM and last call being around 1:00 AM.
13. We are having a U2 fan meet up at The Harp, a great bar right across the street from the Gahhhhhden on Friday, July 10th beginning around 4:00 PM. The U2 tribute band will be playing there both Friday & Saturday night right after the shows. Come on down and say hi to U2radio.com’s backbone, Brooke and the black sheep of U2radio.com, me. We may have some giveaways, but then again, maybe not. BTW, I’ve heard the Joshua Tree band numerous times, they’re excellent.
14. With U2 and the Yankees in town, there will be celebs in town. Good bets on seeing Damon, Afflec, the Wahlberg’s or any of the Kennedy Clan. Tom Brady will probably be in town, as well. Remember, this is Patriot country. Any mention of “Deflategate” will get your teeth knocked out.
15. Boston is one of the most historic towns in the United States. Knowing that the U.S Revolution began here is important. Also, knowing about the Battle of Lexington/Concord, Bunker Hill, the Boston Tea Party/ Boston Massacre and who Paul Revere & Sam Adams are will not hurt you. They won’t help you, but they won’t hurt you. 😉
16. Boston has many great different neighborhoods, the North End is 99 % Italian and China town is 99 % Brazilian. 😉 But Boston is mainly Irish. Ask a Bostonian where South Boston is, they’ll look at you like you have 3 heads. It’s not South Boston here….it’s Southie. Some advice when in Southie….keep your mouth shut. If you think you’re going to be cute and mention something about Whitey Bulger or call futbol, soccer in Southie, don’t be surprised if a bunch of hooligans kick your blarney stones in.
17. Boston is also a walkable town. While in town, check out the Boston Common, Faneuil Hall, Quincy Market & Cheers, the bar from the 80″s sitcom. Good Will Hunting was mainly shot at Harvard in Cambridge. Cambridge is on the other side of the Charles River. Saying the “You like apples…” speech will get you a slap across your face around here. Also, Taking a Duck Boat tour is a great way to take a quick tour around Boston and learn more about my great town. Not only does this vessel go through the streets of Boston, but it also goes into the Charles River for some of the best views of the Boston skyline. You can catch one of these either at the Museum of Science or at Faneuil Hall
18. If you find yourself doing some “High Street Shopping,” Newbury Street is the place to be, even though everything there is ridiculously marked up. BTW, if you find yourself on Boylston Street, take a second to remember the victims of the Boston Marathon.
19. If someone yells out randomly, “Oh, I love that dirty water,” you must yell out, “Boston, you’re my home.” Two famous lines from the song, “Dirty Water” from the Standells.
20. Finally, Boston is U2 country. The Gahhhhden was the 1st location to sell out this tour, that’s not by accident. Have a great time and remember, the safe bet is to keep your head down and your mouth shut. 😉
*Also, knowing how lazy I am and probably how hung over I plan on being the days leading up to & following the shows I go to, do not be surprised if this post runs 1 or 2 more times, until I recover…..in August. 😉