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Barflies behaving badly: Regular at South End bar sucked into couple's angry argument; man at East Boston bar chased around billiards table before falling down stairs

Update: Board decides neither incident was foreseeable so no violation for either bar.

The Boston Licensing Board decides Thursday what to do about incidents at bars in the South End and East Boston in which patrons apparently looking for trouble found it.

On Nov. 5 of last year, a 20-year regular at the Franklin Cafe, 278 Shawmut Ave. in the South End was at the bar, minding his own business with his husband when he noticed a couple getting into what seemed like a heated dispute at a nearby table, according to cafe owner Dave DuBois and a police report.

At one point, the boyfriend left the couple to get something at the bar, according to the bar's owner, when the girlfriend softly told the regular's husband she was afraid of her boyfriend. But then, boyfriend returned to the table, girlfriend said the regular at the bar had been talking about him, and that revved up the boyfriend, who got up, pulled the regular toward the table and growled "get the fuck out of here before I kill you!" according to the police report.

The regular managed to disengage and punched in 911 while bar staff told the man he was no longer welcome and had to leave immediately. DuBois said the man actually returned to the bar another time, but the bartender recognized him and told him to get out. He has not returned since.

"It seems like a very odd situation," DuBois said.

The board also heard of an odd situation on the night of March 8 at NFarra, 127 Maverick St. in East Boston's Maverick Square.

A man spotted his former boss up there on the second floor and couldn't resist bringing up all the alleged ways the boss had screwed him out of wages and even locked him in the workplace that one time, the man acknowledged. His ex-boss apparently didn't want his laundry being aired in public, so he smacked the man upside the head with a beer bottle and then began chasing him around a billiards table. As he was being chased, the man told the board, he fell down a flight of 20 stairs to the ground level.

Police say EMS was summoned but that the man declined transportation to a hospital.

The man told the board he did not blame NFarra at all for what happened. In fact, he doubled as a translator for the restaurant's owner during the hearing.

The board has to decide whether the bars could have prevented the incidents and, if so, whether any sanctions are warranted.



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Stop giving the patrons a slap on the wrist.

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Totally agree that these people were out of line and should be charged with assault. (Maybe they were?) But also I have to wonder if they were overserved.

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The Franklin Cafe used to have a paneled wall interior (think your aunt's basement rec room circa 1978), just above slit sized windows, and signs all over saying "DO NOT DO DRUGS IN HERE - UNDERCOVER POLICE ARE WATCHING".

It was great.

You could go there on quiet times and not feel like you were going to die. Of course, the nearby Waltham Tavern had a convicted murderer as a bartender and a post "The Accused" creepy sign which said "Pool Table / Ladies Invited".

Today, its crisis intervention if someone trips over a baby carriage stowed outside on Shawmut.

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I saw two guys next to me at the bar. Weatherbeaten older Black men. By looks they could have been musicians; they could have been truck drivers. "You've been around the South End for a while?" I asked. Old-school South End; they had been living there all their lives: friendly, knowledgeable, happy to talk about local history and political personalities We generally concluded that "Things around here sure have changed."

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in the South End to see any sort of trouble there.

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and I don't mean Boston Police Department, I mean Borderline Personality Disorder.

Some people like to cause chaos, and some women like to see their man fight other men.

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