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January 19, 2007

Comments

Hymie

Hey ....

.Your a FOOL

you is living in the past...

.GET A LIFE and join the rest of us in the REAL WORLD

Sock parties and Hootinannies are a thing of the PAST...

I'll be your favorite movie is "THE WIZARD OF OZ" am I right ? I know I am I am always RIGHT ON .........

Ron Newman

Who are you talking to in that comment?

Sticky barbecue finger food and bowling balls don't sound like a good mix --

Wasn't Bowl Haven for sale?

Wasn't Bowl Haven for sale? How come they diddn't come up with this idea months ago. The property is over priced.

Ron Newman

I believe the Sacco family owns it free and clear of any mortgages. I support anything they can do to stay around -- if they closed, that would be a great loss to Davis Square.

DS

Meth-heads/heroin dealers/drunks sleeping it off and filthy people hanging out nursing one cup of coffee all day don't sound like a good mix with bowling to me... that will encourage the little kiddies to bowl allright!

You can kiss bowl-haven goodbye in a few years if that coffee shop crowd changes the place - it'll be the bowl-haven condos... then they can cry/solicit city funds about where to move again.

Move On, Someday

I agree with the above comments. I'd be glad to help save Bowl-Haven. The owner helped a group of SHS kids do a fundraiser there a few years ago, and he was awesome! He helped them raise tons of $. But I don't think that the Someday Cafe clientele/environment is the right mix. It might drive away the old ladies, kids, teens, and young townies who hang out there now! I think it would definitely hurt his bowling business in the long run. The 'Someday' people seem so desperate for a spot they don't really care who it impacts. They need to move on, just like everyone else did when new businesses have moved into the square and pushed out the old! Maybe they should try the space vacated by Poor Little Rich Girl, or Enterprise Rent-a-car.

Ron Newman

Ultimately, this is going to be Joe Sacco's personal decision, not anyone else's. I think it can work, but obviously the New Someday will have to be run differently. The employees will take more pride in the cafe's operation if they own the business. Gus Rancatore was a somewhat negligent absentee owner of the previous cafe.

DS

No matter how bad the owner was, these are the same kids who let all the crap go on there, didn't clean the place, welcomed druggies and so forth into the place and let them hang out all day. Racnatore apparently also owns an ice cream place in Cambridge that isn't as gross as the Someday - so how is it his fault? they may have pride of ownership of their name/attitude but they don't own the bowling alley, so who's to say they won't let it go downhill too.

Let them get their own place - do they have to spoil bowl-haven?

new here after 20 years

DS - What are you so afraid of? You thought the Someday was gross and scary. Good, I hope that means you didn't patronize the establishment. Many people enjoyed the Someday and it's environment and spent a lot of time there. You just twist that around to mean that Someday was some sort of combination drug den/flop house. Something I never found it to even remotely resemble. Your thinly veiled hatred for all who aren't Townie is appalling. When I first moved to Somerville around 20 years ago I was walking down Porter St. and a couple of 10 year old kids started screaming at me "whadda ya doin' on our street - ya not from Somerville". Was that you by some chance? I wish the likes of you would just pack it up and move to Billerica or North Carolina or where ever it is that small minds go when they leave this town.
A quick word to Move On Someday --- You're worried that the Someday clientele may drive away Sacco's current mix of townie teens, kids and old ladies. Based on the attitudes I see on this site---CONSTANTLY/not just on this topic----you may be right. There are just too many townies who cannot accept "those people". You know, anyone who wasn't born here or at least move here at a young enough age to graduate from Somerville High (or not). You're all pathetic. Not all townies - just those of you who hold to that old line Somerville attitude.
Sorry to sound insultive to any and all who don't fit that mold. The rest of ya's can rot.

Ron Newman

As someone who was also not born here, but has lived here for over 22 years, I have no desire to push out the "townies". Without them, Sacco's would no longer exist at all. There used to be many places like Sacco's in urban neighborhoods all over the Boston area. This is almost the only one remaining.

brickbottom

new here,

You wrote:

"When I first moved to Somerville around 20 years ago I was walking down Porter St. and a couple of 10 year old kids started screaming at me "whadda ya doin' on our street - ya not from Somerville".

Ten year olds????? Please, you can lie better than that.

brickbottom

BTW new here,

If it's true what you say they would have said....Summaville!

Davis Square Resident...

So if one doesn't wear Abercrombie, doesn't like top 40 music, but instead enjoys art, good coffee, reading or chatting with unique people, one is a meth head, dope dealer, or drunken loiterer. Funny, I became a Someday customer after moving to Davis Square 2 years ago and never saw or met anyone that fit those criteria of criminal element. People were always friendly, and though the atmosphere might have been a tad dingy that had more to do with the owner's lack of interest in putting money into making improvements (most of baristas I talked to were as disgusted with the carpet as I was). It seems unusual to me that such a troubling safe haven for criminals would gain the support of the Somerville Mayor and other city officials when attempts were made by a handful of employees to keep the Someday at its current location.

As a further note, please remember that the people you seem to think made Someday Cafe and place of insidious character, are the people that keep local independent Davis Square area businesses alive and well. These are the folks that go out of their way to support local businesses (like Saco) and restaurants (like Redbones) in place of large corporate franchises. Alienate them and Davis Square is doomed to become yet another strip mall or collection of upscale condos. Though judging by your comments, perhaps that is what most of you would prefer.

john hildebidle

As a devout Somedayer, I am a bit miffed by some of the comments. Not all of the regulars in the java joint were meth-heads and the like. I like Sacco's (my son used to hang out there when he was in HS)and I long for the day when the Someday reappears. Can't see why Redbones needs the space, given the size and location they already have. The juxtaposition of metaphysics and candelpins speaks to me, loud and clear. Go for it, I say.

Ezra

Times I have gone to Sacco's: 0, even though I have meant to.
Times I went to the Someday: >500.

If the Someday were there, it would certainly be the thing that actually got me off my butt to go.

I'm with Ron, I'm not sure eating mixes with bowling as well as drinking. Even if it's coffee.

brickbottom

Times I have gone to Sacco's: 500.
Times I went to the Someday: 1, that was enough for me,too dirty.

Not one of you

The close-mindedness and fear exhibited on these blog comments is astonishing. This entire blog reads like a Good ol' Boys knitting circle.

Wake up and smell the coffee, townies: People who are different than you are moving into your beloved city. It's not going to stop no matter how much you whine about it. The world is changing and you can either accept it or continue being babies about it, posting anonymously on internet chat boards.

God damn I miss the Someday.

Ron Newman

If the 'townies' hadn't started businesses like Sacco's, the Somerville Theatre, La Contessa, and so forth, Davis Square would not be nearly as attractive a place for the 'new folks' such as you and me. I see no constructive value in dissing another group of people. Not if you're going to live next to them.

Not one of you

My apologies to the townies who have started hip businesses in Davis Square. I did not mean to offend you. I was not dissing "townies" in general... I was dissing the behavior of the yahoos posting garbage anonymously on this little blog.

Can I get a large Bainbridge to go?

Ron Newman

The thing is, the businesses I listed weren't started in order to be "hip". They served the local "townie" community quite well, long before any of the "hip" people moved in.

I actually think newcomers and old-timers get along pretty well in Davis Square.

newhereafter20years

Ron, you're correct when you say "I actually think newcomers and old-timers get along pretty well in Davis Square" and the rest of the City for that matter. However when annonimous here on the web we see what people really think.

Brickbottom - I assure you the story I mentioned above is true. It really happened -- and yeah they did say it like a really townie would --- My point though is that it was a long time ago but the attitude driving those screaming brats still seems to be present in some old timers. Others are much more accepting of a guy like me. A guy who still can't say he's "from Somerville" after living here for 20 years, buying a home here and setting a course to grow old and die here (well I've probably got another 20 to 30 years before the dying part). At least that's how the Summaville attitude would see it.

DS

Dear New Here,

We disagree about the coffee shop and I will not rehash what I have already said, but you are WAY off on one major assumption - that I am a townie. You assume simply because I like an 'old-school' place like Sacco's and don't want to see it change into what I see as a negative, and that since I don't like the Someday and its crowd, that I am some old codger who has lived here for 50 years - well, I hate to break it to you, but there are plenty of young and newer residents who couldn't give a rats ass about the Someday cafe, just like some of the townies everybody is ripping on here.

bill

Is Redbones looking to move their location completely into the Sacco? or just expand there?

Roger

I for one am excited about the Someday reopening. Sacco's could use an influx of new blood and there are plenty of ex-Someday regulars (townie and not-townie) who would love to see the cafe open again. I really don't see any downside to this.

The descriptions above of the old Someday paint it variously as if it was either some sort of dirty crackhouse OR as an example of posh out-of-town yuppiedom. Which was it? It couldn't have been both at the same time. I'd say it was neither of those things.

The truth is that the old Someday, despite its faults (and the perpetual rattiness of the carpets was one of them) was a blend of the local and the out-of-town: something very, very rare in the greater Boston area nowadays.

Honestly, can you even think of a business where the actual business closes and its employees-- the people who actually ran the place-- try to resurrect it on themselves? On their own? I sure can't. 99.9999% of businesses just aren't that important to their employees. None that I've ever worked at were. Naysayers should ask themselves why, if the Someday was sooooo terrible, its former employees should try to resurrect it, when they could have easily moved on and done other things, as almost every downsized/fired/ employee does.

I think the Someday filled an important space in Somerville-- and not just a physical space-- that is still vacant. I hope it, or something like it, comes back soon. Not just for Sacco's or the Someday regulars or even myself, but for Davis Square and Somerville.

PersonDavis

Jeez! Now I can't even go bowling without tripping over all the bohemians from Someday and worrying about what kind of fungus they are spreading on the shoe rentals. Gimme a break! The old man would roll in his grave. What's this leave for us here? Ball Square lanes? Are they even still open? Maybe elder services can run a shuttle over to Turnpike lanes for anybody who wants to just go bowling.

black hippie

so worried about loser customers ruining a nice square?
pick on McDonald's or someone who deserves it. the Someday is and will be a bright star in an increasingly homogonized square.

newhereafter20years

DS- Well I guess I mis-judged you based on false assumptions. Sort of like what you've done with your opinion on the Someday. Yeah, the place was a real opium den filled with convicts and pirates and drug dealers. You may not be a Townie and you may not be 70 but your attitude screams something else entirely.

But folks - as Newman pointed out this is all up to Sacco's. If they're considering something like this they must need to increase revenue. I want to see the spot stay there too so 'expanding their base' sure seems like a good move to me.

jay

I went into Sacco's the other day and choked on the smell. maybe someone had just crapped themselves or something, but if it smells like that i wouldn't want to sit there. Smelled worse than Deisel. I didn't go in the pool room though, would it have a door to keep the sound of the lanes out?

And I wonder at this point who would start going back to it? As far as the scary loiterers, there seemed to be two crowds, one of the rasta/hippie/musician type, who mixed with the customers pretty well I think, and then the methadone/drunk type, who didn't really, and I don't think those two overlapped at all. Would both start hanging out there again? Who knows. Would anyone just run in for some coffee down there? It is just far enough down the block that you might lose that whole source of income to Mr Crepe (assuming they serve coffee).

If it had free wireless internet, we bloggers would show up, cause I don't think anyplace else does in Davis. Don't use that old pay-by-the-month service that Diesel uses, please! Though I can see why they don't offer it, they're too crowded. Grand Prix on Mass Ave and True Grounds in Ball Square have free wireless.

Ron Newman

What is the deal with the Ball Square bowling alley? It usually looks closed when I walk by it. I asked about it on LiveJournal a year ago, and got a variety of interesting responses; see also here.

Is 'Turnpike Lanes' the same place as 'Lanes and Games' on Route 2 near Alewife?

older guy

Since when has "Townie" refered to someone from Somerville ? Buddy must be turning over in his grave.

JARfromWard3

I'm not sure about Ball Square lanes as to whether it is still open or when it may have closed. A guy I worked (with who retired many years ago) used to bowl at Ball Square on the Willow Cafe team.

Reading all this talk of Sacco's reminds me of my father telling me how he used to have Tip O'Neil and Tom Jr.'s shoes ready for them when they showed up on Saturday afternoons. This was back in the mid-late 50s, before I was born. Dad used to repair the pin-setting machines there and would cover the counter as needed.

Another alley that comes to mind is the former KofC Lanes that Butchy Foster used to run downstairs from what is now Anthony's. We used to bowl down there on Saturday mornings.

Yet another alley that I bowled at here was behind Leone's on Broadway. My wife introduced me to it back in the early 80s before we were married. Probably 8-10 lanes. I'd have to look at the sign again, but I think it's "Leone Way" or "Leone Terrace". A particular recollection I have is seeing the scoresheets of a guy who bowled there back in the late 60s or early 70s who used to routinely run in the high 100's and low 200's. I'm sure someone out there reading this will know who it is/was. The guy who showed me the sheets told of how this bowler had an extremely slow toss that seemingly took all day to reach the pins, and then proceeded to knock them all down, scoring marks on just about every other box.

Ron, Turnpike Bowladrome is, in fact, now called Lanes and Games. We used to bowl there with the CELCo League.

Ron Newman

Thanks, John. I never knew about the Leone's lanes. What happened to them?

JARfromWard3

I presume they're closed. It was a real small alley. I figured someone would chime in here with details.

73
JAR

Ron Newman

Long ago there used to be a bowling alley under the Somerville Theatre. I don't know when that closed; might have been before you were born.

Remember?

Another big lane that's now gone was where the Super S&S is now at Wellington Circle. I can't recall the name. Another interesting fact, John, is that this is the only area of the country where they have candlepin bowling. In other places they have only ten-pin! There's another type of bowling also unique to New England but that name also escapes me at the moment. I must be getting old!

Kate

Ron - I believe you are thinking of 'duck' pins?

Re: Ball Square Lanes - as far as I know, it is only for leagues.

JARfromWard3

Remember?;

Thanks for that recollection. I don't recall the bowling alley at Wellington, but I do remember a Finast Store over there someplace. It may have been nearer to JM Fields though.

Ron;

I never knew of the bowling alley in the basement of the Hobbs Bldg. That must go back to at least the early 50s, in which case it was likely a manual pin-setting alley. Dad (like many of his generation) worked as a pin setter--back breaking work as I have been told.

73
JAR

Ron Newman

Ian Judge, the manager of the Somerville Theatre, can tell you more about the Hobbs Building's former bowling alley. He talked about it on the theater's CinemaTreasures page:

The basement was leased to the MBTA for the duration of the T project. They used it to store supplies....the basement bowling alley space was what the MBTA leased. There were three lanes; they closed in the 60's as much as I can tell. The lanes were on the Dover street side, running back to front. Under the storefront on the corner (where the Someday was) was a billiards hall, and under the theater lobby was a cafe that also served as a speakeasy during prohibition. The basement also contained bathrooms for visitors and of course dressing rooms for the theater space.

Also, briefly in the 30's the bowling alleys were used to set up an indoor mini-golf course (open till 1:30am each night!).

Today, theaters 2 and 3 occupy the bowling alley space (as well as the first floor along Dover St.) and the old billiards hall is storage space for the storefront on the corner. The old speakeasy/cafe space was divided into a storeroom for the theater and offices for the Someday cafe (though with the change of tenants, that space reverts to the theater).

JARfromWard3

Very interesting Ron... thanks for sharing that. So, it was the basement of Reed Drug Co. that housed the bowling alley. Me wonders if it was a "public" alley or a private one attached to the cafe and open primarily to its patrons.

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

Butters and JAR,

Very good boys. But both of you will only get a B+ for forgetting one of my all time favorite ball tossing venues.

In the basement of the old Elks Hall on the corner of Central St. and Highland Ave.(now Anthony's parking lot)was one of the best candlepin lanes in the City.

I miss the old Elk too!

Bowling for Dollars,

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

Missing the Elk

Well, if you miss the old elk (I won't even go there), why not take a road trip to visit it? The elk is living quite comfortably in suburbia...standing guard in front of the Wakefield Elks, looking out over the traffic on Route 128. If you look to your left you'll see it next time you head up north.

Lucky Larry

Maybe the Elk is smarter than all of you. All us smart people saw the writing on the walls and headed off to the 'burbs. Guess what, we got a great police force that is active in the community, a fire department that works more than they complain, and a dpw that actually does public works !! Ya, they can fix water pipes, plow and pave streets, AND don't complain !! So keep up the old slumerville soap opera B.S., wait until the yuppies have total control of the city, maybe you can all hold hands under the rainbow flag at Shity Hall....
P.S. Dr. Mrs., we have some lovely senior citizen communities out here, and the bowling alley behind Leone's was much better than the Elks crooked lanes.

Those were the Days

Hey, don't knock Ralph for the crooked lanes. Ralph was a great guy who did a lot for us when the good ole days were around. Free shoes with 3 games of bowling for $..75 wasn't bad back then.

Now they go to the one in Ball Square where the lanes aren't as crooked as the owner Herbie F. and you can get cancer and drunk all for one price.

Maria

Remember and JARfromWard3

I'm wracking my brain, but I can't remember the name of the bowling alley at the site of the current Super Stop & Shop in Medford on the Fellsway/Riverside Avenue. It was quite a place, though. It was 10-pin (can't remember if they offered candelpin also). There was a little pancake house inside. It was packed on Sunday's, with everybody going there after the 10:00 mass, at St. James.

Now regarding another bowling alley in Medford, that I had completely forgotten about. This one was strictly candlepins and was situated at Wellington Circle, behind where Kappy's is now located.

JAR - As to the Finast supermarket(acronym for First National Stores), it was located next to, and back from, the gas station at Wellington Circle -- along with, yet separate from, J.M. Fields (remember?) and the original Kappy's.

Actually, the Finast was originally located on Middlesex Avenue, in what is now a dry cleaner -- on the left 3-4 blocks before BJ Warehouse.

I've really gotten off the track but all this reminiscing is fun.

Lucky Larry

....right near S & H green stamps !! I think Dr. Mrs. McCarthy still has a few unused books of "greenstamps" !! LOL

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

Larry,

Of course I still have them. Are you trying to tell me I won't be able to complete my dinner service for 30? Are you trying to tell me that they no longer redeem them?

God Damn it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Stamp me Stupid,

Dr. Mrs. McCarthy

Remember.....

And what about the Bal-a-Ru? I don't know if I'm spelling it correctly, but that was a better family activity than Good Times can ever hope to be!

Ron Newman

This is all very cool history. Maybe some of us should try to create a "Lost Bowling Alleys" exhibit or website, like David Guss's Lost Theatres of Somerville.

Ron Newman

Fortini's Gulf station on Beacon Street (just east of Kent Street) still displays an S&H Green Stamps sign.

Lucky Larry

Bal-A-Roo was on mystic ave. What was the name of the restaurant that was across the street ? There is an adult store there now !

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