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Welcome to the Neighborhood: Some Helpful Advice

Merry Southie Christmas – my third least favorite time of year, right after parade day and Country Fest. Every September our quiet little seaside community get an influx of new residents, and every September I do my best to extend a hearty welcome and share a few tips for a seamless Southie transition…and every September a few weasels pop into the comment section and spread their toxic negativity, but that’s neither here nor there.
How did the move go? Depending on what day you moved it was either a brisk early fall day or one million degrees, so either good for you or that sucked. I’d like to welcome you the greatest place in the world to live, South Boston (yes, I do think South Boston is the greatest place in the world to live, and I think everyone should feel that way about wherever they live). I’m Southie born and raised, and I like to fancy myself a bit of an expert, so let me help you acclimate to your new hood and make the most of living in God’s country.

Take a Walk
I know you just moved and you probably want to just plop on the couch and watch whatever hip young people watch (what do you watch by way, I’m almost done with my She Wrote re-watch and need something to binge) but trust me. Head out and walk a few blocks in every direction, take in everything your new neighborhood has to offer. You’ll learn where to grab a coffee, a sub, a slush, where to take your dry cleaning, what bus lines you’re near, and who knows what else. Oh, and while you’re out you’ll come across other humans, smile at them and say hi.

Days of the Week
Now that you live in South Boston your life will be ruled by two days every week, street cleaning and garbage day. Learn what days your street has street cleaning and garbage day and commit them to memory. There is nothing worse than walking to your car and finding out it was towed, I know because it has happened to me many, many times. Now for garbage day, whatever day of the week it is, you can put your garbage on the curb the night before, in actual barrels with lids that snap, these are non-negotiables. After the trash is picked up, bring your barrels back into your yard or alley.  Don’t leave them on the sidewalk for days.  And please promise me you’ll do better with your trash going forward because I saw how some of ya’ll moved in and you’re gross.

Parking
I have no real tips here. Parking is a nightmare; may God grant you the serenity to accept the things you cannot change. And speaking of God, for her sake pull up to the bumper when you park.

Neighbors
There are good neighbors and there are bad neighbors, please don’t be a bad neighbor. Yeah, you’re excited to live in Southie and you want to invite everyone at Lincoln back to your place after last call for an afterparty on a Tuesday, but that’s not a good neighbor move. Some other bad neighbor behavior I’ve witnessed from new (and not so new) residents, peeing on the sidewalk, blocking a driveway, the aforementioned trash, having drunk screaming fights at 3am, public vomiting, and some other things I won’t mention because I’m too much of a lady. Be a good neighbor, don’t be an asshole.

Odds and Ends
Get a library card. I know I sound like your nana, but do it. In addition to paper books, you’ll get access to audio and e-books, museum passes, ferry tickets, DCR parking passes, kayak rentals, AND MORE!
Our Stop and Shop is terrible, you’re going to want to get your produce almost anywhere else.

SLOW DOWN. The speed limit is 25mph, that doesn’t mean you can go 40 on East Broadway. And if you are speeding I reserve the right to throw eggs at your car.

East Third Street near the Post Office is an anxiety attack inducing nightmare.

You don’t have to wait in line at bars, you can walk a couple blocks in any direction and find a bar without a line.

Go to Sully’s on a rainy weekday, you’ll be in and out in minutes.

Go to K&8th for meat while you still can.

I’m sure I forgot a few things, I’m only human, and old but everything you’ll ever need to know about Southie can be found by reading Caught In Southie (which you’re already doing, so good job) and listening to our podcast, Caught Up, A Podcast From South Boston. I hope you love Southie and stick a around for a long while, unless you’re a sucky neighbor, then I hope you’re gone before March.

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About the Author

Heather Foley

Heather has been writing for Caught In Southie since pretty much the beginning and for that we apologize. She can often be found on her couch with a log of raw cookie dough. Her biggest fear is being on an episode of Dateline and her wildest dream is being a guest judge on RuPaul's Drag Race. Feel free to let her know if there's something you think she should write about, unless it's stupid.

Comments

  1. Unfortunately the drunk, immature, college-like behavior is only gonna get worse here. This neighborhood has turned into a college town for kids in their mid-late 20’s. Snobby, trust-fund suburbanites, MANY, of who work in the Financial District, have as of about 2010, officially ruined the neighborhood. Fake Boston at its finest.

    • Let me rephrase that for you.

      *Unfortunately there are a few long standing folk that can’t seem to let go. K & 8th is on it’s way out. Multiple churches have had to consolidate and there are just a few schools left for the people that actually choose to raise their children here. They’re up 40 fold on their homes yet they still will not budge. But don’t fret, day by day this issue is getting better. The new is replacing the old, times are prosperous and crime is low. Yuppies and their puppies line the streets instead of gang bangers and their minions. “Fake” Boston at it’s finest.

      • I agree with Big Shot. Dylan McCarthy. If you don’t like it then.. then go ahead and get out man. We are here to stay whether you like it or not. Sure we might get a little drunk and obnoxious from now and then, but we are contributing to the local economy more than you are so PEACE BRO.

        • ***I’ll still be contributing to the “local economy” in 10 years from now, when your long gone – out in Wellesley or Dover. Enjoy your 3 years here!

          • I agree with Dylan to an extent. Two years ago, I moved out of Southie after eight years & up to Charlestown & it’s so nice not having an endless cycle of new neighbors. That’s my biggest pet peave with gentrification; short term residents who could give two shits about their neighbors.

          • @BosYup – That is Southie now though. People go in knowing it’s temporary and even move around within the neighborhood multiple times within their tenure. It’s not really the result of gentrification itself but the result of Southie becoming the #1 neighborhood in Boston for new graduates. Every single neighborhood in Boston is gentrifying to a degree, but Southie happens to be taking the brunt of the youngest demographic. Charlestown is gentrifing rapidly (look at the naval yard) but it’s gentrifying with a slightly older demographic that is less likely to move around due to a more stable living situation. A lot of young people don’t want to move but do to a room mates work situation or SO, they are forced to move around.

      • Crime is low, Big Shot? You DO realize there’s shootings down the lower end almost every day, right?

        Dylan is 1000% right. However, not all yuppies are 20-something trust fund college kids.

        • Yes, where there are BHA complexes there is crime. I think that is a given. Relative to 20 – 30 years ago crime is low. Obviously when you pick out higher risk areas due to the demographic it’s easy to make your point, I was saying generally crime is at a low in south boston compared to what it used to be.

  2. 2 most important pieces in here:

    The stop & shop is abysmal, I do not know how they pass inspection.

    The line to get into the bar past 10 pm moves extremely slow, sometimes it doesnt move at all. There are other bars not named Lincoln, Loco or Capo….crazy….I know. But try Shenanigans or Junction, Backyard Betty’s or even Worden Hall they have great food.

    But most importantly, go to community development meetings. If you go and show support for developments your rent will go down or stay the same, if you don’t, the scrooges of the neighborhood will do anything and everything to stop any change, whether they’re clearly positive or potentially negative.

    And beware of the stomper.

  3. We need to stop the extremist views of the newcomer vs. natives. We need to understand that things change and evolve, but respect the history of our neighborhood. It is a great history. Those that have lived here their whole lives don’t care about their property value increasing because many of them will never leave. It is possible to have some things change, but also keep some things the same and to respect those that have lived here their whole lives. I will leave it at that and some can agree to disagree.

    • I agree completely. The issue is us younger folk came here in good faith to contribute. Aside from us being on the louder side from time to time (who wasnt in their 20’s?) all we do is positively contribute. Yet here are these “natives” throwing rocks out of their glass house solely due to our existence. It’s easy to say let’s all get along, but in reality these natives hold a false sense of ownership over the neighborhood because theyve been here.

      • Perfect example: The term Yuppie. While it isn’t directly a negative term, most natives use it in a negative way. While most Yuppies couldn’t careless about being called a Yuppie, it is to a degree demeaning.

        Please, tell me what us Yuppies call natives? That’s right, we don’t call them anything because most of us are respectful to your heritage. It isn’t until the natives started name calling that things started to get divisive. SO SORRY FOR YOUR 40 FOLD HOME VALUE GROWTH, TRAGEDY!

  4. I never thought of myself as living in a ‘seaside’ community until Heather said it ! Cool ????

  5. Welcome to the neighborhood!

    While it is hot as heck right now, soon it will be frigid and snowing. Let’s all remember to help the elderly/sick (or maybe not so elderly/sick) neighbor by shoveling for them or shoveling your cars respectfully around others who have already shoveled their sidewalk .

  6. A group of ladies ( ages 23-25) FIVE in one house..had a “party” Saturday night..starting at 10:00PM, they left the local bars and proceeded to their new digs with 50 of their “FRIENDS “..needless to say at 11:00 PM these inconsiderate, LOUD, obnoxious idiots were told to disperse and go home by the BPD..selfish inconcerate suburban jerks.

      • I would have called the cops too if 50 chicks were screaming at a house party from 10-11p. That’s what Heather described as a bad neighbor.

    • Speaking of last weekend…I was taking my dog out when I noticed that the new residents in a basement apt next door to me were throwing a rager Sat night and they just left their front door wide open to the street. I assume they did that so their friends could come and go as they please but that’s pretty much the dumbest move ever. I hope nothing bad happens to the kids who moved in there but they clearly do not realize that living within eyesight of Moakley park isn’t exactly the best area to leave your door wide open to anyone walking along the street…..Southie might be gentrified but it’s not as safe as a college dorm.

  7. I Left out a rid bit of information..this group of “IMPORTS” woke up not only my children age 6and and 8 but also my neighbors children ages 2 4 and 9..at 11;00 PM I’d like to see the reaction from their SURBANAN parents if MY Daughter and her friends woke up their children at their LILLY WHITE SUBURBAN neighborhood..they would CALL THE COPS in a heartbeat..take that to the bank

    • Funny, you’re describing the perfect scenario to get up and move to a suburb with great, free public schools where the buses actually come on time and open the door to decent colleges. But by all means, keep that false southie pride rhetoric going at your children’s and grand children’s expense, good on you.

  8. No I’M HERE TO STAY..these ” pass throughs” are NOT gonna ruin my neighborhood where my family has been for 5 generations..what they did was totally INCONSIDERATE, this is SOUTHIE not the Fenway, BRIGHTON/ALLSTON..FAMILY AND RESPECT 1ST..and if you don’t like it YOU LEAVE!

    • Ah, and here lies this blind “ownership” mentality I mentioned. You sir have 1 vote, as do I, as does every other “Pass throughs” you mention. It’s my neighborhood as much as it is yours. Get it through your head. This is the divisive newcomer vs. native mentality that needs to end. If I respect your yard, you should respect mine, but it sounds like you refuse.

      • Do you consider partying late at night, pissing in people’s yards and leaving beer bottles on people’s front steps, all of which I’ve experienced, respecting someone’s yard? The long term residents who you seem to think don’t contribute to the local economy also pay property tax, which you don’t. The only economy you contribute to is the bars most of which are owned by out of town era.

  9. Ownership????…so it’s ok to wake up the neighborhood (that includes CHILDREN)at 11;00PM ..with a LOUD, OBNOXIOUS, VALGUARTY FILLED “CONVERSATION”..Never mind the stupid “RAP” MUSIC..these little punks showed NO RESPECT for their neighbors..but you got people like you who refuse to admit the truth..

    • I just find it very interesting that you put all the blame on those young folk who were probably having a housewarming party, but 0 on yourself for putting your children in that situation. That’s really it. It’s a two way street, just because you were there first doesn’t mean you get to defer all the blame.

      The neighborhood is now established as a young & vibrant with a lot of nightlife to go around. If your kids are kept up at night, look in the mirror.

  10. Put my children in ” that situation” ?? You mean by living in the same house for 50 yrs is ” putting my children in THAT ( HOUSE) SITUATION..”
    your a complete fool,and a moron..
    .

    • Yes, by not changing with the times you are equally liable for putting your children in that situation.

      It is disrespectful to be loud in general, but if there is a more respectful time to do it, it is on a Friday or Saturday. At least it wasn’t a school night. As many have mentioned including myself, it’s a young, vibrant neighborhood with a lot of nightlife. If your kids knew they could have an acre to play on in a beautiful suburb with little to no noise at night they wouldn’t be happy with you.

  11. Hey big shot..50 stupid,LOUD OBNOXIOUS drunks playing stupid RAP MUSIC at 11:00 PM is RESPECT..another stupid statement..

  12. Big shot looks like yuppies first..long time residents get lost..my family all went to BOSTON LATIN ( starting at the 7th grade)..BEAUTIFUL SURBURBS..what like BROCKTON, AVON WEYMOUTH, RANDOLPH, and we have a huge back yard and PARKING..wby do t you leave via the SE X-PRESS WAY ( the world’s largest parking lot) AND NEVER COME BACK seems funny all the children that grew up in the burbs CAN’T WAIT TO MOVE TO SOUTHIE..guesd those burbs AREN’T WHAT THEY ” APPEAR” TO BE..othsrwise the SELFISH little mommas boys/girls would stay in those LILLY WHITE ….HOLES..!

  13. Liza..so right ..that BIG SHOT is really ANGRY..too bad he has no understanding of this great town.
    Get him a Xanax…and book understanding this GREAT TOWN.

  14. I’d like to see an article on how to stay safe in the city, especially for all these new young women moving in. A certain amount of street smarts is required and if you didn’t learn it growing up, it’s time you did.

    Do not let inebriation put you in a dangerous situation. Always buddy up. Always- while jogging early morning or late at night, when walking home from bars, when parking a long distance from home at night ( call a friend to meet you or ask a passerby if you can walk with them especially if you’re down by beach or park.)

    Never, ever get in a car if you are being accosted on the street. The perpetrators goal is to bring you somewhere isolated to harm you. Scream, run, kick fight. Always have your keys ready to open your car or house door- do not fumble while looking for them. Get in quickly and close and lock door behind you immediately.

    Walk fast and confidently at night and focus on your surroundings. Pocketbook slung around your neck and shoulder and bag in front. Have a ‘don’t mess with me’ demeanor.

    Use common sense and stay safe. You already have your stupid, party college years behind you. Don’t extend those years into your twenties. Having Self respect, healthy friendships, discriminating choices on romantic partners and being a friendly neighbor will ensure a safe, positive experience for you and the community at large.

    Welcome!

    • Thank you for the heads-up regarding street smarts, Judy Nee. They make great, good sense. I’m not a Southie resident, but the street smarts that you have written about are good street smarts to be followed by anybody, regardless of where they work and/or live, especially nowadays.

      I’ll also add that if one absolutely has no choice but to go solo anywhere, especially in the pre-dawn hours of the morning, or late at night, it’s especially important to pay attention to one’s surroundings.