May 6, 2008

A emailer put me on to a recent post by local Johnny Come-Lately Ari Herzog on his blog. I don’t read his blog as i find it foolish, but i checked it out today. Ari, who has lived here a few months as I understand it, acutally has the nerve to ask if we like the name “Newburyport”, or if we should call it something else. Now, I’m sure this was said as a joke, but it is fairly disrespectful to those of us who have lived here, who make it home, and who actually love to live in their home town. To suggest that it be called “Yeatville” is truly a slap in the face to long time residents and natives. We’ve had to suffer through enough gentrification due to constant influx of newcomers, but it really bothers me, and a lot of other locals/natives, when we see stuff like this. Ari, move back to Cambridge and save the planet, and leave us ignorant townies our City’s name.



  1. Wow, indeed.

    To clarify:

    1. You don’t read my blog because you find it foolish.

    2. Someone suggests you read this on my blog.

    3. You read it, feel I disrespected you, so include me and my foolish banter with the muck you rake on your blog here.

    Who’s calling who foolish?

    Note: Everything written above this sentence should be interpreted as a joke.

    As Aristotle once said, “There is a foolish corner in the brain of the wisest man.”

    Mr. X, you may find this hard to believe, but I also call Newburyport my home. Should it matter that I’ve only lived here 8 months? (Oh, and I never lived in Cambridge.)

    Back on February 15, when you first entered the blogosphere under the name Mr. X, you wrote that you wouldn’t write anything that you wouldn’t say at a downtown bar over a beer.

    Name your poison, Mr. X, and let’s grab a drink some night at the Whale over a game of darts. Eh?

  2. Ari, you little shit, I’d tell you the same thing in public in a bar…if Jakes Cafe or Jacob Marley’s were still open for business. Seeing as The Thirsty Whale has been emasculated we’d have to settle for the Grog, and that’s a darn shame.

    Seriously, though, enough is enough. Folks move to town precisely because it IS Newburyport and then proceed to change it until it no longer resembles Newburyport. You want to rename Newburyport? Fine; let’s call it ‘Potemkin on the Merrimack’ as that’s exactly what it’s become, a Potemkin village. In character Newburyport is becoming a combination of honky tonk (because few if any of the downtown businesses are actually sustainable without the visitor/tourist trade, yet the businesses that attract tourists and weekend visitors trend towards the unsustainable. How many times can a local purchase a t-shirt with the name of his hometown on it?) coupled with Yuppie neighborhood.

    The soul is completely gone. It’s been sucked out by the non-natives who bought into Newburyport as a theme park where they could spend their time on the weekends lobbying to Free Tibet and Save the Planet, then come Monday drive 50 miles to work in their gas-guzzlers while wearing clothes made in China.

    Even the local yachtsmen think the newcomers are too stuffed and yuppified for their own good.

    Re-reading the above, Ari, I guess you have a point. We might as well rename Newburyport, seeing as the real one is gone.

    As for the completely devastating effect that newcomers have had on the city of Newburyport I would refer you to the years during which Lisa Mead held the office of Mayor (which seemed to me to be the turning point at which the city’s culture started swinging away from the Newburyport of old). Ask about THAT while you’re polishing butt at the City Hall.

  3. I find your analogy to a Potemkin village intriguing, Jeffy, as I don’t grasp your frame of reference. How far back in time must you travel to appreciate the soul of Newburyport which you claim no longer exists? 1990? 1960? 1880?

    If you read my initial post that initiated this thread, you’d see I was not serious in suggesting Newburyport change its name. I don’t see the city gone at all. Sure, there have been changes over the years in the name of redevelopment and reinvention but that’s part of life. What’s so wrong with change anyway?

  4. Hi,

    Cool. You guys go to the Grog with the old people.

    Please leave the only bar left in town alone. Emasculated? I’m starting to think you really don’t know what you are talking about. Plus funny way to describe it given the history.

    Jakes or Jacob Marleys? Really, now there were two similar places. At least suggest a club.

    I do sometimes find this whole native vs. non-native discussion funny. Sometimes its hard to tell the difference between the people who moved into town recently or the ones a couple of generations ago and are complaining about the “newcomers”. Its seems the ones that complain the most are the ones that moved into town at some point after 1635.

    Its just one long ad hominem attack.


  5. Hey Jeffy,
    i don’t know how long you’ve been in town, but why don’t you take your veiled homophobia and shove it some place in one of your orifices where the sun doesn’t shine.

    The Thirsty Whale is, when all is said and done, perhaps the last place in town where all Nbpters; be they life longers, newly arrived or long term wash-a-shores, upscale or downscale, gay or straight come together in a place that, when all is said and done, is well run and full of many great people from all walks of life.

  6. hi,

    macsurf, we’ll put.

    that is the soul of this city. all are welcome.

    we may disagree (and most certainly will) but at the end of the day we are all here together in the best place on the planet.


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