Craigslist Missed Connections…St Paddy’s Day in Lowell

St Paddys

Craigslist

St. Patricks Day Girl – m4w – 25 (Lowell)

age : 25

We spoke briefly outside the smokehouse tavern. You told me that your uncle was Micky Ward and that I was “hott”. You said you were cold and wanted to warm up.

If this is you, respond and tell me what your name was so I know it’s you.

I really liked you!

Location: Lowell

do NOT contact me with unsolicited services or offers

do NOT contact me with unsolicited services or offers

Does it get any more “Lowell” than beginning conversations with strangers by establishing your blood relations to Mickey Ward?  Not saying this undoubted prize wasn’t the niece of the legendary Irish Mick, I’m just saying this wasn’t the only claim to the Ward family tree that occurred on Monday night, especially at the Smokehouse.  It’s like a weird tribal tick that’s part of the mating process in Lowell.  Just saying “Micky Wahhhd” in a sentence gives off some weird pheromone that ultimately leads to four kids and a duplex on Chelmsford Street. A Lowell Fairytale(…I think that’s a Shane MacGowan B-side.)

Field Trip Survivor

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It arrived innocently enough in my son’s backpack a few months ago, a permission slip for a class trip to the Harvard Museum of Natural History. They were looking for as many parents as possible to help chaperone the precocious 6 & 7 year olds and I must have been feeling generous or I felt that tinge of guilt that comes when one thinks about their middle child. It was unusual for me to even examine the contents of his backpack if you really want to know the truth. God, could I even find his classroom? I decided to be a good Mommy and signed my name on the dotted line. March 18th, 2014. It was so far away at the time I hadn’t noticed anything odd about the date.

February turned to March and I flipped the calendar page on my kitchen counter and that’s when I saw it. The color drained from my face and I felt as if I had the wind knocked out of me. The 18th of March is the MORNING AFTER SAINT PATRICK’S DAY. Those sneaky bastards sent the paper home before Christmas KNOWING I wouldn’t put 2 and 2 together. It was a conspiracy, I was convinced. I felt duped. I felt angry. I felt actual fear. Fear for the inevitable hangover I was now going to have to suffer on a school bus with a bunch of kids that don’t have the sense to use their indoor voices around me. Anger returned, followed by guilt. Christ, get it together woman. It’s not like you’re 21 years old anymore, get a grip! In my defense, however, this year for the first time in my career as a barmaid I had Saint Patrick’s Day OFF. Unheard of. I had visions of pints and Irish music while I reunited with all my closest alcoholic cohorts. All these dreams were smashed to pieces.

So I spent last night being good (red wine instead of a 12 pack), listening to the Cranberries and cooking a delicious meal in the safety of my own home. So boring. No one was puking, throwing punches, or crying in a glass of green Budweiser. This sure didn’t feel like Saint Patrick’s Day to me. But you know ”KIDS COME FIRST”. I swallowed 3 Advil just to be safe and hit the sack.

While I was excited to spend such quality time with my boy and explore a museum I had never been to before, part of me was dreading the small talk with the other moms. Surely, they would all be in the PTA and I would be the outcast. Albeit, a cute outcast in my Chuck Taylors and my Dickies bag slung over my sweet rack. When I arrived at the school, the kids and the guardians were already standing in line outside. I scanned the crowd for any hot Dads and came up empty. OK, put my game face on and was determined to show whoever was in my group that I was the fun Mom and we were going to have a grand ol’ time. There wouldn’t be any frowning and scolding “No Running Johnny!” from me that’s for sure. I found my son and was informed I only had one other kid in my group. Easy Peasy. He seemed like a good kid and I enjoy this age, truly. These boys just want to have fun. I resisted the urge to pick the crusty boogers out of his nose (my #1 pet peeve about your kids) and we climbed onto the yellow school bus. (I always think of Chris Farley when I encounter a bus driver….he really was the best wasn’t he? RIP) Continue reading

Field Trip Survivor

20140319-080448.jpg

It arrived innocently enough in my son’s backpack a few months ago, a permission slip for a class trip to the Harvard Museum of Natural History.   They were looking for as many parents as possible to help chaperone the precocious 6 & 7 year olds and I must have been feeling generous or I felt that tinge of guilt that comes when one thinks about their middle child.   It was unusual for me to even examine the contents of his backpack if you really want to know the truth.  God, could I even find his classroom?   I decided to be a good Mommy and signed my name on the dotted line.  March 18th, 2014.   It was so far away at the time I hadn’t noticed anything odd about the date.

February turned to March and I flipped the calendar page on my kitchen counter and that’s when I saw it.   The color drained from my face and I felt as if I had the wind knocked out of me.  The 18th of March is the MORNING AFTER SAINT PATRICK’S DAY.   Those sneaky bastards sent the paper home before Christmas KNOWING I wouldn’t put 2 and 2 together.   It was a conspiracy, I was convinced.   I felt duped.  I felt angry.   I felt actual fear.   Fear for the inevitable hangover I was now going to have to suffer on a school bus with a bunch of kids that don’t have the sense to use their indoor voices around me.    Anger returned, followed by guilt.  Christ, get it together woman.  It’s not like you’re 21 years old anymore, get a grip!   In my defense, however, this year for the first time in my career as a barmaid I had Saint Patrick’s Day OFF.   Unheard of.   I had visions of pints and Irish music while I reunited with all my closest alcoholic cohorts.   All these dreams were smashed to pieces.

So I spent last night being good (red wine instead of a 12 pack), listening to the Cranberries and cooking a delicious meal in the safety of my own home.   So boring.  No one was puking, throwing punches, or crying in a glass of green Budweiser.   This sure didn’t feel like Saint Patrick’s Day to me.  But you know  ”KIDS COME FIRST”.   I swallowed 3 Advil just to be safe and hit the sack.

While I was excited to spend such quality time with my boy and explore a museum I had never been to before, part of me was dreading the small talk with the other moms.   Surely, they would all be in the PTA and I would be the outcast.  Albeit, a cute outcast in my Chuck Taylors and my Dickies bag slung over my sweet rack.  When I arrived at the school, the kids and the guardians were already standing in line outside.  I scanned the crowd for any hot Dads and came up empty.  OK, put my game face on and was determined to show whoever was in my group that I was the fun Mom and we were going to have a grand ol’ time.   There wouldn’t be any frowning and scolding “No Running Johnny!” from me that’s for sure.   I found my son and was informed I only had one other kid in my group.   Easy Peasy.  He seemed like a good kid and I enjoy this age, truly.  These boys just want to have fun.   I resisted the urge to pick the crusty boogers out of his nose (my #1 pet peeve about your kids)  and we climbed onto the yellow school bus.  (I always think of Chris Farley when I encounter a bus driver….he really was the best wasn’t he?  RIP)

We three squeezed into the 2nd seat from the back and I soon discovered it was right over the heater.  It became unbearable before we even hit the highway to head to Boston.   I peeled off my jacket and then my sweatshirt and still felt like I was in molten lava with just a thin white T shirt on.   So I reached up to open the window a little bit.  Fresh air, everybody loves fresh air, right?  I started to feel not-so-menapausal finally when some little asshole girl across the aisle demands, “Can you close the window?!  We’re FREEZING!”  Fuck you little girl.   I shut the window while the driver proceeded to hit every pothole from here to Cambridge.   In my mind all I could hear was Eddie Money singing “her tits were SHAKIN’!” because man oh man my boobs were bouncing up and down so much I almost couldn’t stop looking at them myself.  No wonder these turtleneck wearing ladies wouldn’t talk to me.   This really was one hot bus ride.

We arrived and I was told we could all go and do our own thing as long as we all met back at the lobby at 1pm.  Sweet.  Oh, one more thing, we couldn’t buy anything at the gift shop because not every kid had money to get something and it can cause hurt feelings.  (cue: Flight of the Conchords) That was fine with me until I saw all the cool shit in the gift shop.  I never wanted to buy a rock more in my life.  The lady working there needed to sit and spin on a walrus tusk, she was such a douche bag.   I don’t care for people who scold my son when he isn’t doing anything wrong.   Playing with the puppets in the gift shop to me isn’t something to get all worked up about.  Go.sit.on.that.tusk.   She also made some comment about the fact that the kids weren’t buying anything.  Hey lady!  That wasn’t my rule!   I would gladly give you twenty dollars for a peacock feather and some minerals….but I’m a rule-follower (clearly).  I’m trying not to hurt feelings.  (sorry little girl from the bus)

We had a great time exploring the exhibits and of course the boys and I had a chuckle at a very realistic carving of a naked man, balls and all.   Sadly, that’s the only thing I’ll mention from the museum.   See what hanging around with 7 year old boys gets ya?  

So, all in all I had a good day.  I fulfilled my motherly duties and ate 2 bags of chips.   But make no mistake, next year St. Patrick- IT’S ON LIKE DONKEY KONG.

 

Creatures of the Lowell Line

Boston.com

The US Secret Service confirmed today that it is investigating a man who allegedly impersonated a Secret Service agent on an MBTA commuter rail in an attempt to avoid a fare.

“We’re aware of the incident and we are investigating it,” Special Agent in Charge Stephen Marks told Boston.com. “Impersonating a federal agent or officer is a crime… we’re taking the report seriously [and] looking to get to the bottom of it.”

Richard Sullivan, lieutenant detective with the MBTA Transit police’s special crimes unit, confirmed that the transit police are also investigating the incident. Sullivan said that the investigation is ongoing.

“We have had communication with the US Secret Service—Boston office relative to the video,” Sullivan told Boston.com. “I’m confident that the gentleman alleging to be a federal agent does not possess such status.”

Did this really go down on the Lowell line?  I ask you this, does this stuff NOT go down on the Lowell Line every single day?  You give me a day that ends in “Y” and I’ll give you at least one incident of a dude trying to get out of the fare.  Secret Service Agent?  Not even in the top 5.  I  saw a guy crawl into the portal to hell known as the train toilet and emerge halfway to Woburn, only to find a patiently waiting conductor (Some bird totally narced on him).  When asked for a ticket, the guy claimed he was on the previous train into Boston, experienced a “seve-ah diarrhea attack” and couldn’t dethrone in time for the next trip.    Needless to say, that ride was on the State.  Nobody in history has ever debunked an explanation that involved diarrhea.  It’s bullet proof.

Mayor Elliott Absolutely Destroys the St Paddy’s Day Breakfast

ElliottCarrotTop

Shades of Richard Pryor and Sam Kinison in their prime.  Just eviscerating the room with comedic nukes.  At a certain point, the laughter was so uproarious that it kept knocking WCAP off the air between every masterful line.  Panos and Fontanella have some splain’n to do because those of us on the radio end just got awkward silences.  You’re better than that fellas.

…and how about this Coakley bird trying to big league our mayor?   She’s a day removed from “SHEMA” and all of a sudden she’s a Last Coming Standing judge?  I wonder what she said about Willie Lantigua during all those Lawrence St Paddy’s day breakfasts? 

Farewell Sbarro. We’ll always have our little slice of history together.

sbarro

New York Times

The pizza restaurant chain Sbarro filed for bankruptcy protection for the second time in three years after struggling with too much debt and fewer customers in malls that house many of its restaurants.

Lenders would take control of Sbarro, which is based in Melville, N.Y., under a prepackaged Chapter 11 reorganization. The company on Monday said that could allow a “quick exit” from bankruptcy, before May 7.

Sbarro expects to cut its debt load by more than 80 percent, and said nearly all its lenders supported its restructuring, which requires court approval. The company will invite other buyers to submit better offers.

Founded in 1956, Sbarro tried to increase sales by rewriting its recipes to entice diners who increasingly favor fast-casual chains such as Chipotle and Panera Bread. But an “unprecedented decline in mall traffic” and an “unsustainable” balance sheet necessitated a revamping, including the closure of hundreds of restaurants, Carolyn Spatafora, the company’s chief financial officer, said in a court filing.

Farewell Sbarro.  Will I remember your delicious sauce? Neh. Will I remember your chewy crust? Neh.  As far as I can remember, your pizza sucked.  But I had a stranglehold on the Mortal Combat game at the Pheasant Lane Mall Dream Machine from 1991-1992 and a portion of this feat should be credited to your nuclear grease.  When that stuff coated my fingers, I was like Tommy, the pinball wizard.  During that run, even the Asian kids gave me respect, and that’s unheard of in a Mall arcade…especially once they released Dance Dance Revolution. That pretty much killed it for white kids. 

Anyway, farewell Sbarro, we’ll always have that little sliver of history to cherish.

Can I Be Frank?: St. Patrick’s Day! (AKA Amatuer Day)

irish brawl

Bostinno.com – March 17, 2014 – How Many People Were Arrested at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade?

The number of people arrested by the Boston Police Department during Sunday’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade could be counted on one hand.

According to a BPD report released Sunday evening, five people were arrested at the St.Patrick’s Day Parade. Two were arrested for disorderly conduct. Three were arrested for boozing in public, and one had to be taken into protective custody.

In total, however, police issued 293 citations.

The majority of the people who attended the parade, dressed head-to-toe in green, the BPD said, “did so in a fun and safe manner.”

BostInno won’t take credit for keeping yesterday’s arrest numbers down. All we did was provide some tips on how to not get arrested. Whether or not that helped doesn’t really matter. The bottom line is: The 2014 St. Patrick’s Day Parade was safer than last year’s.

In 2013, more than 330 people were issued citations and 26 were arrested for disorderly conduct at the parade. Yesterday, only five people were arrested.

Way to rage responsibly, Boston.

First of all, Happy St. Patricks’ Day!  As a very proud Irishman, I love this day like the other 96% of the state of that claims Irish descent.  That said, it is a little discomforting that this is the type of news that hits the wire on the most important day of the year when we celebrate The Old Sod.  Nobody loves to tip a few pints back, especially on the glorious Paddy’s Day, as much as me but let’s face it, folks, today should be called ‘Amatuer Day’.  Like St. Patrick’s Day’s illegitimate children, New Year’s Eve and Pre-Thanksgiving Wednesday, today’s happenings always kinda piss me off and here are a few reasons why…

1.  Crowds

Irish bars and pubs, especially in these parts, are the proverbial Blarney Stones.  They are great; at least for 364 days/year.  BUT, today, it is a total shite-show.  Drinking a poorly poured pint out of a plastic cup while crammed in the corner between “Meaghan the Lonely Obnoxious Power Boozer’ and “Juan, Ireland’s First Mexican” is just not that fun to me.  If you can’t pull up a stool and allowed enough room for you and the Holy Spirit, move on.  Better off trying your luck at Polish American Club on St. Paddy’s.

2. Irish for a Day

Look, I am not being a snob (well, maybe a little) this is a America after all and if people want to celebrate, Irish or not, that is their Constitutional right.  That does not mean I have to like it.  Sure, join in the spirit.  Toast a Guinness.  Sip a whiskey.  Go for it.  But, if this is your first attempt at imbibing some of these Irish classics…tread lightly.  I’ll take the same advice on Cinco de Mayo when the Patron is being passed around.

3. Junior Varsity Day

Like many of the inexperienced or overzealous drinking patrons on St. Patrick’s Day, the bartenders and wait staff do not have their A-game on this day.  Due to the massive crowds of raucous revelers, the staff at your favorite Irish watering hole are forced to put out a less the top-notch product.  The pints are often puny.  The corned beef resembles the output of a shoe leather plant on strike.  The cabbage is, well, cabbage is gross on it’s best day…but actually worse during Paddys.  As Robin Williams told Matt Damon, ‘It’s not your fault“, but that doesn’t make it any better.  Again, Wayne Kowalski, the day bartender at the Polish Club, may be the best bet for your drinking needs today.

4.  Embarrassment

Pretty sure SAINT Patrick would not be overly psyched to read the above story on the arrests that went down at, ya know, a feckin’ PARADE!  Don’t really see these types of headlines after Greek Independence Day, do you?  Rarely is there a Rosh Hashanah riot?   Drunken disorderly during Ramadan?  I don’t think so.  But it’s par for the course for those sons and daughters of the Emerald Isle.  Stop it.

Alright, enough negativity from me.  Enjoy St. Patrick’s Day – but trust me, its more fun to be Irish the other 51 weeks each year.  Now, if you’ll excuse me I need to get totally annihilated on watered down whiskey and pick a fight with some Polacks.

Slainte!

You can listen to last Friday’s ‘F n K Show’ where we discussed all things Irish on 980 WCAP.