Wednesday, July 28, 2004


The sky is falling in Boston. Businesses are enraged by the money lost during the Democratic National Convention -- one FleetCenter neighbor hung out a “Thanks for nothing, DNC ... vote Bush” banner -- and cursing Mayor Thomas M. Menino and the local media for bringing the event in the first place, then scaring all the locals away.

But it worked. The T was easy to navigate. The roadways were a breeze. Restaurants and shopkeepers were excited and pleased to serve, so grateful were they to have any customers at all. And for the delegates, politicians, journalists and hangers-on who came to Boston this week, this laughably false image of the city is the one that will go home with them. This is what they will tell people of their visit. This is the image that will be reflected by the DNC host city for years and decades to come, even if, like all reflections, it’s an illusion of the actual host city.

What this means to Boston is even more tourism: more people eating in the restaurants; more people shopping in the shops; more people getting haircuts in the salons shut down for the week; more people taking Duck Tours; more people, more spending, more money.

It’s not the sky falling. It’s the sun setting on an event. The sun rises again tomorrow, and next week, and next summer.

Even for those angry banner hangers. Even if they vote for Bush.

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