IDEA! Boston ‘T’ Blog

Today I was sitting at the 1369 coffeehouse in Central Sq., as I do most days of the week, reading the papers and generally absorbing the happenings… some guy in a shirt-and-tie fretting over Excel spreadsheets at his laptop on my right. Another guy on my left, copiously practicing Chinese-looking script for words like “cow”, “apartment” and “love”. Ahead of me was a man in his mid-40s sitting with his young son, who was playing Gameboy and occasionally chatting with some of the people who work there. One of these girls was taking a break with a coffee, bagel and the New York Times. I liked her Lacoste Izod polo shirt.

Anyway, I had time to sit there, in-between reading the Globe, Herald, Times and the Cambridge Tab, to think about the merits of living in a place like Cambridge. I really have a lot of love for this side of the river—be it the bars, the wacky academic types walking around, or the Red Line. It’s got such a community feeling—even for somebody like me who prefers to sit and watch rather than interact.

For some reason, I began thinking about NYCbloggers.com, a project that intended to create a geographic community of New York bloggers, based on which subway stop they lived near. I love maps, public transportation, and I couldn’t help but be in awe at the shear balls it must’ve took to tackle such a project of that scope. I thought, why not try to do that in Boston?

Now, I know there are tons of Bostonite blogs, especially given the 250,000 university students that are here. BostonBlogs.com is doing a good job of setting up social gatherings for us Boston-based blog freaks—although I can’t bring myself to attend one. Call it social phobia. Avoidance. Whatever.

Still, attempting to tackle something on the scale of nycbloggers.com would be a challenge. Christ, making the maps themselves would pose all kinds of issues. And would bloggers in Boston be interested in such a thing?

New Yorkers famously have attachments to their different subway lines—be it the F, A/C, 1/9 etc. It would be interesting to see the same kind of B-line or Red-line pride here in Boston. Once the back-end database stuff is developed, I could see branching out to other cities—Buffalo perhaps? Public Transportation needs a cheerleader!

If anyone in Boston reads this and think that it is a worthwhile endeavor, shoot me an email. Maybe it’d be a good collaboration.

15 Responses to “IDEA! Boston ‘T’ Blog”


  • I think it would be a good idea, but Boston’s a little too small for it. Rather, it would have to be organized by actual city, major surrounding cities (Cambridge, Quincy, etc), and then general suburb areas…

    oh, and nice blog:)

  • Washington, D.C. has a similar site which may be more in line with what you are thinking… DC Bloggers.

  • I think this is a good idea, especially appealing to those of us who have lived at our stop (Central in my case) for years.

    I live 2 minutes from the 1369; I’ve probably seen you there as I picked up my double-tall latte….

  • Thanks all of you for your input…

    You don’t know me but, why wouldn’t it work to use the subway map? I have a real preference for urban living and public transport…. also, it’s VISUAL. it’s taking a symbol (map) that we see every day, and adding a context to it… i mean, i look at stops on the orange line, and i’m like… WHERE THE FUCK IS THAT? i have no real idea.

    starting something like this would add a spatial element to boston blogging.

    Don, I like the DC site very much. I’m going to email them.

    Jason, i probably have bumped into you there. i’m a bit of a wallflower in there though. get my coffee, sit, read paper, exit.

    i’ve only been in Central since september… i used to live on the other side of the river, but i prefer it here.

  • that’s you Don, from work Don? How are ya?

  • reenhead.com, home of the DC blog site listing, is run by my friend Maureen. Small world, eh?

  • When I started collecting blog URLs for Boston Online, I thought the T idea would be wicked cool – that NYC bloggers site is very nice. Then I realized I’d actually have to ask most people what stop they’re near – oh, the work :-).

    But there were a couple of other reasons I decided against it. One is that Boston itself is really small, so you’d have to have all the commuter lines for all those “Bostonians” who really live in Natick or wherever (plus, what do you do about people like me: I live in Boston, but the closest station to me is actually the Hyde Park commuter-rail stop, not a subway station). Also, the definition of a “Bostonian” is a lot more fluid than a “New Yorker,” we don’t really have the sort of cultural (and geographic) boundaries that separate “us” from the rest of the universe (well, 128 or 495 maybe…).

    More important, for the most part, what does knowing where a blogger is really get you? With a few exceptions, exactly where a blogger lives around here doesn’t really seem to matter in terms of what he or she writes (Surface City writes a lot about South Boston, which is cool, but other than that?). So I’ve started trying to categorize bloggers by topic, which I realize introduces its own problems, since most people seem to write about lots of things – still, there are some definite “politics” blogs, even some religious blogs (all Catholic, as far as I’ve been able to find so far.

    Still, if you do want some help, I could, at a minimum, get you the Boston Online blog listings in an Excel file (well, CSV).

  • So, my comments about T stop are merely based on numbers. While Central Square and a few other stops will, I’m sure, be bursting with locals – I’m at Ashmont, on the red line, and question how many people from my T stop are blog-obsessed.

  • well, You Don’t, I think you might be suprised. Obviously there are a lot of subway stops in NYC, and not every one has a blogger listed.

    I don’t see why that’s uninteresting… if anything, it would put your blog on the map.

    sorry for the pun.

  • why would anyone take up such a daunting task of massholizing NYCbloggers.com?

    There’s no money in it…. or is there?

  • you know what? I don’t know why!

    I just thought it would be a good “community” type thing to bring to Boston… There seem to be a ton of “bloggers” in the Boston-area… but I don’t seem to read any.

    Maybe I just need to move to NYC? You think? Oh, and if anyone is interested in doing this, then talk to me!.

  • I found your site when googling for exactly what you’re debating – a boston blogger map. One thing that hasn’t been said about the NYC bloggers is that you don’t actually have to reside in NYC; you just have to consider yourself a “New Yorker” and then map yourself to a stop that resonates with you; it doesn’t have to be your actual RL abode. I am a former Bostonian now living in NYC and was hoping there was something with the same setup.

  • i know. it is sooooo tempting. but i’m working on a boston events guide now…

    i can’t imagine why i’d add myself to a stop in NYC… ya know?

  • Would you be kind enough to define the difference between a “Bostonite” and a “Bostonian” for me. Thank you in advance.

  • SO, I noticed this Slate article– http://slate.msn.com/id/2085046/… any awesome database coders out there? want to team up?

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