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Monday, October 29, 2007

Commentary on the Red Sox Parade

I'm disappointed in Boston Mayor Thomas Menino's decision to hold the parade on a Tuesday at noon. I can understand the desire to keep the crowd's limited, but it's a short-sighted, outright terrible decision on his part nonetheless.

This parade could have easily been scheduled for the weekend - following suit with the very successful victory parade held in 2004 - so as not to conflict with Boston work day commuter traffic, T shifts, and daily work day Boston activity. Moreover, the decision also impacts thousands of fans who work for a living, who cannot simply take the day off at the drop of the hat.

But the biggest victims of this terrible decision are the kids of New England. Even Boston area schools are not calling for a holiday, so it will be more difficult if not impossible for kids who play little league and emulate their Red Sox heroes to attend the parade, and cheer on their Beantown heroes. How can you leave the kids out in the dark?

All around it seems like Menino's decision is a poor one. Yeah, sure, some adult fans will be able to book off of work, and some will even let their kids play hooky for the day, but from a family perspective and a fan perspective - this decision stinks.

Mayor Menino - the RED SOX belong to all of us in New England. You are robbing a great number of families of the opportunity to celebrate the moment with Red Sox Nation. Even from a business perspective, you are missing an opportunity for businesses to reap the benefits of a hungry crowd.

Is this another example where you've picked the expedient decision over the right one? Just trying to "get it over with?"

Shame on you, Mayor Menino, and shame on the Boston City Council for going along with the idea of shutting out the fans. I hope that at least Boston residents remember this treasonous act against RED SOX NATION at the next election.

We all hear that you plan to do a dance. Well, we hope to do a little jig when you are out of office!


Kimberly said...

somebody understands.
I was so angry about this, I can't believe Menino would screw us over like that. Just cause we're kids doesn't mean we shouldn't be able to cheer on our heroes.
The least they could've done was schedule it for maybe 2 or 3 in the afternoon.

Anonymous said...

Amen to that.

The King said...

Yeah, I hear you Kimberly. I might have taken the day, but I have key meetings today at work, and daycare schedules that need to be kept. I guess I'll have to watch it on NESN. I wondered how the fans in Boston reacted. Anything from WBZ on fan disappointment?

a south end artist said...

I would also like to thank you for your commentary. You are 100% correct! I am surprised that more fans aren't outraged by this decision. It broke my heart not to be there. At first I thought I would get over it, but here I am 2 weeks later and laboring over my decision to go to work instead of seeing the victory parade. I mean, it was absolutely unfair and disheartening to throw this on us with only a 24 hour notice. I had a brand new boss at my work and could hardly imagine asking her to excuse me on her very first day of work to let me see a parade. Even though it meant a lot to me, I felt (or perhaps was made to feel) that it was a frivilous request. So I watched it on tv with during my lunch break. However, it didn't alleviate the pain of missing it in person. It made it worse. It was especially painful because I live right in Boston, just a mile from Boylston Street, but work 30 miles west of Boston. How insane. Otherwise I could have walked out my door and just walked 6 blocks to see the parade.

However, what really troubles me is that here I am suffering from "Parade-Gate" when I should be extremely happy that our team won the World Series again!! It's just awful that those of us who work for a living, to pay our bills and put food on the table would even be forced to make this decision at the "Drop of a Hat" as you so correctly put it. We don't make the millions of dollars that our baseball heroes make, hardly that. Yet, I'm certain that many fans that did skip work to see the parade may have lost their jobs. I know many kids were also tagged with an unexcused absence and some punished. Parents were torn about what to do for their kids, and kids now hold grudges against their parents. It's not the way it should ever be. Menino's excuse was that the players wanted to get back to their families to start their vacations sooner...??? I was thinking...What? Are you serious? Who cares about just won the World Series!!?? Do they even know what they accomplished? All I saw for days after the parade were more of our heroes going on talk shows, going to events, and promoting their win? So, who had to go on Vacation so quickly, forcing a shotgun parade on a Tuesday? Julio Lugo? I don't get it at all. And I don't just fault Menino, my guess is that this came mostly from the Red Sox management. I think the next time they win this, they should plan an entire weekend celebration, with a rain date if necessary, and ensure that everyone has a fair shot at attending. I only pray that Menino and the Patriots consdider this if the Pats end up bringing home another trophy next February. What could be better for our great city and state than to have an entire weekend of fans from all over the country coming in to see our beautiful city and spend money, boosting the economy during what would be an otherwise slow time for the Boston tourism industry, and ultimately making a truly memorable celebration.

I plan to write a letter to the Mayor about this, and I encourage you all to do the same. We deserve better.

Even so, your blog made me feel better. I also realize that I was not alone, and that going into work and missing the parade doesn't make me any less a fan, or any less a part of the history that was being made. We all have our own unique situations and obligations in life, and no one should ever feel bad about being responsible. That is not a good message for anyone to send to anyone, especially our children.