I used to live right around the corner, in a one-bedroom apartment overlooking the alley behind Park Drive, which forms a looping ring around the entire neighborhood known as the Fenway; I loved it there. I got two terrible slices and a can of Sprite for $2.15 from the pizzeria around the corner, which was run by people whose ethnicity could only be specified as “not Italian.” Greek? Uruguayan? Were they Turks? I only knew that they were not Italians and they made pizza just as awful as every other shop in Boston.
You could also eat at the Deli Haus. This is what it looked like:
You only needed two bucks to do that. (Technically, the one-egg breakfast was $1.25, but you had to leave a tip.) The waitresses all looked like Suicide Girls, but they were called Riot Grrls back then, and they had tattoos and piercings in their faces and great big clunky shoes, probably from John Fluevog. There was only one waiter, and he looked like Brad Pitt. Not a little: the motherfucker looked exactly like Brad Pitt. Before there was internet-famous, there was neighborhood-famous; Brad Pitt Waiter was known to all in the Fenway.
And so was Mr. Butch. This was Mr. Butch:
Everybody knew Mr. Butch, too. He lived in Kenmore Square until Boston University decided he wasn’t appropriate for the brochure, and he was sent out to Allston, but that’s where the musicians were, so Mr. Butch was fine with that. He graduated from Berklee and played guitar. Drank, too. Everybody knew Mr. Butch and a few years ago, he wrapped his Vespa around a lamppost.
The Deli Haus is a tap-room now, whatever the fuck that is. It doesn’t sound like the sort of place where two bucks can you get you much of anything.
(Picture of Fenway Park courtesy of Jim, who is from Jersey, which is the best place to be from.)