'I think he just called Paul Pierce a spook!'

Ryan Barrett and some friends were at an Irish bar in the South End last night watching the Celtics game when two older white guys started getting louder and louder:

... We chose to ignore the guys ... until we heard this: "C'mon, make the shot you f*cking spook."

Our table began bouncing questions off of each other - "Did he really just say that?" "I think he just called Paul Pierce a spook!" "WTF?!?!"

The guy overheard our table talk and started rambling to himself about how we didn't understand his life and how everyone called Black basketball players "spooks" in Roxbury in the 60's. ...

Free tagging: 

Comments

Walking Museum Exhibits

Why don't they just wear clothes like the ones that they did in the 60s, and do some interpretive work as Bill Russell's hostile racist would-be white neighbors?

You know, like all the Ben Franklin impersonators wandering around the Faneuil Hall area?

That would remove some of the stench of pathetic from the whole thing.

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Pot, Meet...

By on

Nope. Maybe that would be taken the wrong way :-)

I've had good conversations with Ryan in her comments section, so I like her; nothing personal. However, in her piece she says the following...

"We decided to head out to the only “bar bar” in Boston’s South End (which also happens to be an Irish one, go figure)"

It never helps to be racist on your own when accusing someone else of it.

As I said in her comments section, she probably doesn't mean anything by it, but maybe the "spook" guy didn't, either?

(Now, if the idea is that it's a bar named "O'Shea's Irish Pub" or something like that, then she's technically correct, of course. However, the "go figure" reads as though she's calling the Irish a race of drunkards, which is a stereotype, which is racist, etc.)

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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Irish bars

By on

Ryan doesn't mention the name of the place, but I'm thinking of one place that meets the criteria of being both a "bar bar" and being Irish (in the South End, a bit of a rarity), and if it is that place, then, yes, I'd argue it's an "Irish" bar - right down to its name. I didn't see it as any more than saying something like "We ate at the only decent deli in Brookline, which also happens to be a Jewish one, go figure."

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Eating vs. Drinking

By on

I think most folks make mountains of molehills when it comes to this sort of thing, and maybe I'm guilty of it this time, too. Point taken, Adam. I'll not continue the argument.

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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Explanation on "bar bar"

By RyanB on

Hey Suldog :)
By "bar bar", I just meant one that isn't stuck up and snooty like most bars in the South End. Like, a bar where you can just hang and talk loud and laugh without sucking into your $200 skinny jeans. I didn't mean to imply that we thought the people there were any lesser than us or that we expected Irish people to be racist... just that the only "bar bar" in the South End is Irish (go figure in that it's no surprise, because Boston is an Irish town. And the bar is called J.J. Foley's and all the waitstaff and bartenders are Irish).

Kinda roundabout explanation, but does that make sense?

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Archie Bunker

Wasn't there a "bar bar" in his neighborhood where he hung out with others like him?

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One from the morgue

By on

I thought I was the only one who remembered that used to be a racial slur. My alliterative joke about this year's excellent Democratic presidential contenders fell flat with everyone.

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Like in the Human Stain

By on

The only reason I know that the word 'spook' was ever a racial slur type word was that it was used that way in the book The Human Stain by Philip Roth. Actually caused the downfall of a college dean who said it in passing, which in a clever turn of events turned out to have been a light-skinned black man "passing as white" for his whole career, which was also a concept I'd never heard of before.

And another interesting sort of antique racial identity concept I learned from that book was that he had married a curly-haired secular Jewish woman, partly so that if the kids' hair came out sort of nappy-looking, that it wouldn't automatically raise suspicion about his racial heritage.

Seems totally alien to me, but I guess these things are not that far in the past.

So is 'spooks' still considered a racial slur?

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oh my god, someone in boston

By on

oh my god, someone in boston made a racist comment? call the national guard!

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Why is everyone so surprised

By on

Why is everyone so surprised by this? It's unfortunate, sure, but if you're shocked by two white guys from Boston referring to blacks as 'spooks,' then you don't know the city you live in.

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Why?

By on

It's not 1974 anymore.

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I have been to some bars in

By BR on

I have been to some bars in my day, and Clery's does not count as an Irish bar. I stand by my assertion that it would be a decent bar if it weren't so full of douchebags, however. And it just always is.

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Oh, I just realized that

By BR on

Oh, I just realized that there is one other Irish bar in the South End; I was too quick to presume. I stand by my interpretation of the bar I mentioned, though.

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just curious

By on

what's the other one? (I sort of know where it is, yet always manage to forget the name)

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JJ Foley's

By on

Which I kind of figured was where Ryan was even before she mentioned it.

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damn limosine liberals

By on

I would like to point out that when it comes to sports, a random guy saying "spook" is not such a big deal compared to and entire football team being called "redskins" or "cheifs" or "indians" and everyoen thinking thats ok.

I mean I dont see a team called the Washington Spooks, do you?

As for being shocked that someone used a racial slur, please... it just goes to show that there are 2 bostons, and anyone that is shocked by that needs to get the hell out of cambridge more often.

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