The B-Side

Townie bars, today is your Super Bowl 🍺

Happy Wednesday, Boston. Here's today's edition of The B-Side.

The B-Side
Welcome to The B-Side: The daily dose of news you actually want to hear.

✈️ Quick note: We’ll be off Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving, and then I’ll be OOO on vacation. So next week, our fabulous producer Katie Cole will be writing The B-Side. Be sure to say hello to her @KatieColeMedia on Twitter.  

I’ll be back in your inbox Monday, Dec. 5. Until then, Happy Thanksgiving!

👀 What’s on tap today:

  • There’s a new variant in town
  • It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas 
  • Orange Line delays hit an all-time low

Up first…


THANKSGIVING EVE

It’s your townie bar’s time to shine

Gif: The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon via Giphy, Illustration: Katie Cole

“It’s absolutely the best night of the year.” That’s how Tony Bligh describes Thanksgiving Eve at Corrib Pub, his family-owned bar in West Roxbury that’s been in business over 30 years. 

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The night before Turkey Day is the Super Bowl for local bars like Corrib. 

“Everyone is in a fantastic mood. You don’t have work the next day, you get to sleep in, and then you get to eat a feast,” Bligh said. “What could be better?”

And he’ll never take it for granted again after COVID stole the last two. Corrib had to close at 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving Eve in 2020, and many patrons were still tepid on hanging out in public last year. Bligh predicts tonight’s energy will be supercharged. 

“I think the kids will be out guns blazing this year … they’ve missed out on a lot of social events,” Bligh said. 

Mix that energy with your high school friends, then sprinkle in some alcohol, and you might feel the itch to make some bad decisions — like texting your ex — a stereotype Bligh said is alive and well.

Has he ever seen old flames rekindle at Corrib on Thanksgiving Eve? “No comment. What happens at the Corrib stays at the Corrib … but I might have a lot more dirt for you Thursday morning,” he chuckled.

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While Bligh won’t tell you whether you should text your ex (probably not), his only piece of advice is to start early and have fun. And try their Guinness if you like beer, his “bartenders know how to pour a pint.”

Every Thanksgiving Eve at the Corrib is sacred, but this year feels a little extra special for Bligh. 

“We got great weather on Wednesday night … A zillion turkeys in the oven on Thanksgiving. Then a Pats game. I think all the stars are aligned.”


CITY

Quick & Dirty Headlines

Illustration: Katie Cole

🎄 The Boston Common Christmas tree is back. This year’s official Christmas tree for the city, an annual gift from Nova Scotia, arrived in downtown Boston on Tuesday morning — and she’s a beaut! The tree is a 45-foot white spruce, and staying true to the brand, came from the community of Christmas Island. The annual tree-lighting ceremony will take place the night of Dec. 1. Starting at 6 p.m.

🚇 Orange Line delay times have hit a new low — but in a good way. The train is the fastest it’s been since 2019. Recently, round trips on the line have been delayed about 17 seconds, compared to six minutes pre-shutdown. Still technically not on time, but we’ll take it. TransitMatters only found one remaining slow-zone still in effect: a 17-second delay between North Station and Community College. 

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🦠 Step aside, BA. 5, there’s a new COVID variant in town. BQ.1.1, a relative to the omicron family, is officially the predominant variant in Mass. The good news? Active COVID-19 cases and wastewater data suggest that there won’t be a huge spike in infections, as both have remained relatively stable over the last month. The bad news? Current antibody medicines probably won’t work against the new variants, increasing risk for immunocompromised people and those with severe infections.


THINGS TO DO

Post-Turkey Day plans

Image: Imgflip, Illustration: Katie Cole

🚲 Spin at midnight with Rev’d Indoor Cycling in their Copley Place studio. Only a few spots left! | Friday, Nov. 25 at 11:59 p.m.  

🛍️ Browse for local gifts and goodies atthe Fenway Flea winter market pop-up at Time Out Market. | Nov. 26 and 27, 12 to 5 p.m.

🎳 Give candle-pin bowling a go at Bowl Brighton inside American Flatbread. If you’re hungry, grab some of the wood-fired pizza. Lanes are $30 per hour and shoe rentals are $3 per pair.

⛸️ Ice skate, then grab a drink at The Rink at 401 Park (right next door to Time Out Market). Adult tickets are $10, students are $6, and skate rentals are $7. Book your slot here. 

🏃 Go for a post-Turkey Day trot around Jamaica Pond for the free parkrun 5K. Runners, joggers, and walkers are all welcome. The real run will be followed by a coffee run at Espresso Yourself. | Saturday, Nov. 26, 9 to 11 a.m.


ONE LAST THING

Brown University athlete makes history

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Photo: Olivia Pichardo: Courtesy/Brown University, Illustration: Katie Cole

Olivia Pichardo made history as the first woman to make an NCAA Division 1 baseball roster. She’ll be playing for Brown University this spring. 

Pichardo played for the 2022 USA Women’s National Team and earned her spot on the Brown squad after coach Grant Achilles gave her a chance to walk on in the fall.

“My goal in playing baseball wasn’t really to directly inspire the next generation,” Pichardo told the Globe on Monday. “It’s kind of something that comes with being a girl playing baseball by default. By default, you become a pioneer.” 10-year-old me who wanted to play baseball is currently beaming.


🌴 Thanks for reading! My toxic trait is ditching my family for Thanksgiving since it’s one of the cheapest times to fly internationally. I’ll take St. Lucia over stuffing any day.  

💃 Keep up with other B-Side tomfoolery on IG, TikTok, and Twitter @BostonBSide. Send comments and suggestions to [email protected]