Why Beantown Beats the Big Apple - in Baseball and Beyond

August 07, 2009 - 5:28 am

So the Red Sox got manhandled by the Yankees Thursday night '€“ big whoop.

Boston may have lost that minor battle, but ultimately the city has won, and will continue to win, the greater war. When it really boils down to it, this rivalry isn'€™t about baseball but rather about pride. It'€™s about which city is the superior metropolis.

So without further adieu, I present to you a head-to-head match-up of Boston vs. New York:

History and Politics:

This category undoubtedly goes to Boston for one simple reason: without us there would be no United States of America. That means no baseball, no apple pie, and no New York for that matter. Hell, if it weren'€™t for Boston, we'€™d all still be British subjects paying too many taxes without due representation.

But Boston didn'€™t stand for that. When the Brits tried to exert more control over their American colonies in the early 1770s through greater taxation, it was the Bostonians who told them they could take their taxation and shove it up their knickerbockers.

The Beantown colonists started their uprising by throwing snowballs at British soldiers with loaded guns in March 1770, sparking the infamous Boston Massacre on State Street.

Three years later, they were dressed as Native Americans on British merchant ships as they dumped hundreds of pounds of tea in Boston Harbor to protest the newly instated Tea Act.

The train had left the station (or, given the time period, perhaps it would be more appropriate to suggest that the carriage had left the barn?). Bostonians had ignited the American Revolution and done the country yet another useful service: producing Paul Revere, without whom we would have never known that the British were coming.

So in short, you'€™re welcome for establishing this country, New York '€“ you ungrateful schmucks.

Not to mention, Boston has produced some of the country'€™s finest politicians and leaders including John Adams, John Quincy Adams, JFK, and George H.W. Bush.


This is what New York is working with:

· The Big Apple (lame)

· The City That Never Sleeps (exaggerated)

· The Capital of the World (so cocky it'€™s unbelievable)

Boston, on the other hand, has been called '€œThe Cradle of Modern America'€ (true), '€œThe Hub'€ (a historical reference), and most notably '€œBeantown,'€ due in large part to the colonial obsession with Boston Baked Beans.

Advantage Boston.


Both accents epitomize the characteristics of their respective cities. Both are also non-rhotic, meaning people drop the '€œr'€ sound at the end of a syllable or immediately before a consonant.

But Bostonians have a far more prominent dialect made famous by JFK, the Simpsons' Mayor Quimby, and of course, Martin Scorsese'€™s '€œThe Depahted'€. They not only drop their r'€™s but also broaden their a'€™s.

So Bostonians don'€™t take baths, they take baaths. They don'€™t park their cars in Harvard Yard, they pahk their cahs in Hahvahd Yahd. Drunken Fenway fans didn'€™t root for Red Sox shortstop Nomar Garciaparra, they rooted for Nomaaaah!

New Yorkers, in contrast, reverse their er and oy sounds, making for a truly terrible noise reminiscent of Archie Bunker or Vinnie Barbarino.

Simply put, if you were stuck on a bus for an extended period of time, whom would you rather be with?

The guys from Good Will Hunting?

Or her?

I thought so.


New York has plenty of songs written about it. I'€™m still sticking with '€œDirty Water'€ and '€œShipping Up to Boston.'€


Alas, we'€™ve arrived at the final and perhaps most epic of all the battles between these two powerhouse cities.

In typical arrogant New York fashion, New Yorkers are quick to point out the 28 combined World Series Championships won by the Mets and Yankees, the five Superbowls won between the Jets and Giants, the eight Stanley Cups between the Rangers and Islanders, and the two NBA Championships that belong to the Knicks.

I'€™ll concede that my dear city can'€™t compete with all those rings.

With the exception of the 17-time champion Celtics, Boston hasn'€™t racked up all too many championships in its long sports history. In fact, most of them have been recent acquisitions (Patriots in 2001, 2003, and 2004; Red Sox in 2004 and 2007; Celtics in 2008).

But I will tell you one thing, and I can say this with the utmost sincerity: Boston cares more.

We live and die with every pitch, every free throw, every extra point kick, and every faceoff. We see sports as a reflection of our city and, in turn, we expect only the best from our teams. It'€™s a unified effort in which we have one team for each respective sport '€“ one choice, like it or not. Yes, for some time our teams were garbage. For years the Patriots couldn'€™t buy a Superbowl, and the formerly glorious Celtics forgot what it meant to win. And there'€™s the Red Sox, who every time came so utterly close to changing history, only to fall short in excruciating fashion.

But our teams persevered, our fans stayed true to their loyalty, and it'€™s for these reasons that winning these past few years has felt so good, so significant.

So New York can have all their World Series, their Superbowls, their NBA Championships, and Stanley Cups.

I'€™m fine being a Bostonian.