Friday, May 05, 2006

Where's Sam & Diane? Isn't this Cheers?

Equal time for kids. I recently posted my latest trip to Evanston to visit my daughter, Annie at Northwestern. For my weekend post, here’s a travelogue from a few years ago when we visited our son at Tufts in Boston.

By the way, as you read this I am probably somewhere over the North Pole. It’s not a faulty GPS system. My wife and I are off for a two week cruise on the Mediterranean. Anything to avoid local gas prices. But new daily entries will continue to appear. A big thanks to HH for filling in as blogmaster. I’ll miss you all…as well as 24, but that at least I can tivo.


Back from 4 days in Boston seeing our son, Matt at Tufts. We were there for parents weekend but didn't read the calendar very well. It’s next weekend. Lucky we didn't show up at the President's house for that Sunday morning breakfast.

First up was Legal Seafood Thursday night where Matt and I went with my radio friend, Dale Dorman. He's been a fixture in Boston radio for over 30 years and is still truly one of the funniest jocks ever to crack a microphone. And he has to be considering his voice is higher than mine. But boy was I impressed. The restaurant was packed, we walked in, he said his name, and we were treated like royalty. Imagine a disc jockey in LA even being seated if he HAS a reservation?

I had lobster.

Debby and Annie arrived via the redeye Friday morning and immediately wanted to go outlet shopping. We don't have a Gap outlet in California. I decided not to go, preferring to do, well...ANYTHING else. So I spent the day with Dale at KISS 108 and to show you how utterly pathetic my life is, I got to run his board while he did his air shift and it's one of the highlights of my professional year so far.

They have a great contest. Four people are living inside a Mini Cooper. The last person to leave gets to keep the car. Two guys and two girls. The girls bolted almost immediately (proving that women are smarter than men). So to keep the remaining flood victims company the station threw a big dog in the car. It's on display at Faneuil Hall so sleeping is impossible because all these homeless guys knock on the windows all night. This for a twelve thousand dollar automobile that will probably have to be boiled to get the stench out.

It took Debby, Matt, and Annie forty five minutes to get to the outlets. Three hours to get home. I don't have the heart to tell them about Nordstram's Rack.

Sirens in Boston are goofy. No wonder people drive like raving maniacs there. How do they take policemen seriously? I felt like I was in Toontown.

The college girls come in only two varieties: cute brunettes and Carole King.

Tourists still flock to Cheers. It's the place to go if you want to see real people from Louisville or Gainsville. "Hey, this don't look anything like the bar we see on the magic picture box". No, that's because it wasn't FILMED there. Norm and Cliff and Sam and Diane DON'T EXIST. Befuddled, these tourists eat their overpriced lunches, buy sweatshirts, mugs, and other overpriced souvenirs and head off to the Freedom Trail where they could purchase New England Patriots jerseys actually signed by George Washington and Paul Revere.

Tufts University is very pretty. It is in Medford which is not. Actual store sign: "LIVE POULTRY: FRESHLY KILLED".

Saw Matt's apartment. Former SLA hideout.

Saw Matt's frat house. It’s any structure in Kansas after being hit full force by a twister.

The leaves haven't really turned yet. Except in the Mini Cooper.

Taxis in Boston are interesting. They have two fare options. Either "when you're not in a hurry" or for $3 more "they'll rush". Every cab I took had at least one warning light flashing on its dashboard. My first cabbie plowed into a car, sheepishly saying to me "I didn't see him". Didn't SEE him? It was a Windstar right in front of you on a one lane street in Harvard Square.

Ever notice that when you go to another city you can never find a radio station you like but every time you climb into a taxi the driver is listening to a station in his native foreign language? I was treated to twenty minutes of a Haitian station on one cab ride? The Classic Hits station has to change formats because it had no listeners yet there's a Haitian station...and not just any Haitian station -- a Haitian TALK BOSTON. (Which I'm sure still has better ratings than KMPC 1540, all sports in LA).

Saturday night we went to the Oak Room restaurant at the Copley Plaza. The best steaks and seafood in town says their ad. Lovely old dining room in the tradition of the Pump Room or Clifton's Cafeteria if they'd remove the tropical rain forest. Pasqual, our maitre 'd almost stuck in a knife in his heart when my wife asked if the Haddock was good. Matt asked him how the tenderloin was and he described it as "a beautiful woman with no sense of humor".

I had the lobster.

Sunday we had brunch at the Charles hotel. (Get the idea that all we did was eat?). Big celebrity sighting: Natalie Portman. She's one of my son's faves. I offered to lend him my Becker fleece, figuring that would really make her want to jump his bones but he passed. Annie saw her across the room and said, "Sweetie, you're making a kazillion dollars a movie -- that is the ugliest sweater I have ever seen in my life!" My charming daughter also said, earlier when we were all talking about the new shows and specifically Good Morning Miami "Oh yeah...more washed up people that Dad worked with".

A Harvard male a capella choir in suits and bowties entertained. I didn't catch the name of the group but I believe it was "Young Men who Can't Get Laid". At least they didn't sing the Kelly Clarkson song.

We were late leaving Boston. They had to take one piece of luggage off the flight. So they sent for a baggage handler, he had some accident, they had to send for an ambulance, then get a second baggage handler. Thus the answer to the question: How many American Airlines employees does it take to remove one suitcase?

Latest update: the dog can't stand the stench and has left the Mini Cooper. But Joe and Miles are still there.


Anonymous said...

I have a huge soft spot for Medford/Somerville.

Great post!

- Allen

ps, You should have gone for steak at Abe & Louise instead.

Hollywood blond said...

(The college girls come in only two varieties: cute brunettes and Carole King.)

Wicked, funny... too true.

Paul Duca said...

Update to this post...Dale Dorman is now doing mornings at Boston's WODS-FM "Oldies 103".
And mean Clifton's Cafeteria is still around--I came across it mentioned in, of all things, a biography of Woody Guthrie.

nick said...

So true about the cabs in Boston. 100% on the money.