Unless you live under a rock, everyone knows the longstanding rival between NY and Boston, the Yankees vs. the Red Sox. I live it in my own family. It’s the rival to beat all rivals. That was, I thought until 9/11. Could rivals still be as hateful in times of tragedy?
Three months after 9/11 I found myself in a shop in Chinatown looking for I Love NY kitsch for my nieces and nephews. It was Christmas time and I was feeling especially sad knowing how many people were never going to know the joy of waking up on Christmas morning (or whatever holiday they celebrated that season) with their mom or dad, brother or sister, grandma or grandpa, son or daughter. I couldn’t help but overhear a woman asking the clerk if he had any I hate NY T-shirts! I thought she must be kidding, but she said it again. So in a joking tone I said to her, “You don’t really mean that do you?” She said, “Yes, I’m from Boston.” I was stunned. She wasn’t joking. I then proceeded to unleash a few expletives, followed by a get the hell out of my city, and cried that someone could be so hateful in the wake of a wounded city.
Yesterday terror was unleashed upon the beautiful city of Boston on what should have been a happy Patriots’ Day, and the Boston Marathon. Two I.E.D. type devices were deployed in a crowd waiting at the finish line of the marathon, causing mayhem, traumatic injuries, and death. My NY heart goes out to all the people affected. I understand how unbelievably horrific and heinous this crime is.
Rivalry is only fun until someone gets hurt. I’m not laughing, and I won’t be looking to buy any I hate Boston T-shirts either.