If you heard that collective sigh of relief around 10:30pm on Monday night, April 27, that came from BostonMan Magazine as we wrapped up the finishing touches on this Spring 2020 release.
This issue, our seventh to date, was undeniably the most challenging -but in many regards- our most fulfilling edition to complete.
With the uncertainties, restrictions, and adjusted ways of living that have come with the Covid-19 pandemic, “business as usual” has certainly been disrupted among the BostonMan ranks, with our Legacy Club community, and with our Legacy Club events.
At our February event at Scorpion Bar in Seaport, we proudly revealed a video hosted by Andrea Cadigan and myself announcing our Spring cover concept on the globalization of Boston featuring Celtics big men Enes Kanter and Tacko Fall. This story, by Thomas Haire, would be shot outside the iconic Bill Russell statute in City Hall with Tacko and Enes enclosing the greatest NBA center of all time for this once-in-a-lifetime shoot.
The co-cover, to be shot a week earlier, would be at the breath-taking new NBC Boston studios featuring newly anointed President and GM, Chris Wayland. This issue was already on fire!
That Friday after the February event I attended the Celtics game against the Utah Jazz to see Enes and Tacko and then the next day joined Enes at the MIT SLOAN conference where he was one of the keynote speakers and presenters.
In the few short days from our event to the weekend nerves were beginning to unravel regarding whatever this “coronavirus” thing was.
The following week Andrea, Eric Snyder, Shaunna Legatos, Shelly Szmyt, and I arrived at NBC for our shoot with Chris Wayland. The entire NBC team was in an emergency COVID-19 meeting when we arrived and when Chris came out, him and I did an awkward chicken wing elbow bump to greet each other. We had an amazing shoot (images by Eric featured on this cover and in the story) and as it concluded Chris warned me that that city was about to be turned upside down.
And the next day it was. Boston officially went into Covid-19 pandemic mode as we began our social distancing and isolation practices.
With that came the cancellation of the Enes/Tacko shoot and the beginning of many layers of juggling editorial outlines, advertising cancelations and pivots, and the re-thinking of how to release this magazine.
This next line could read how disappointed I am that we were not able to deliver the magazine this Spring to Boston how we initially intended to do so, but that’s not how I feel.
Instead, I could not be prouder of how this magazine came together. Our team and our Legacy Club community are beyond amazing.
Heather Walker from the Celtics was tremendous in securing us images of Enes and Tacko to substitute for the lost shoot (including some exclusives never before used!). Same goes for Hank Fetic (Enes’ agent) who is also featured in the co-cover story.
Kathryn Shehade at NBC along with Kellie Speed, author of the Wayland co-cover, were instrumental in helping us get all assets in place and updated content for that story.
Amidst everything going on, ON POINT fashionista Gustavo Leon could not find the right tone for an entry this issue but his Legacy Club brother Ed Naczi was able to step in to keep ON POINT alive.
Cale Anjoorian, who was slated to be the Legacy Club back cover feature this spring with his LifeBred brand, selflessly gave up his prime location so BostonMan could donate it to our partners at the Greg Hill Foundation and Sam Adams for their Restaurant Strong campaign.
Our Creative Director, Ashley Bruce, whose workload has increased not decreased at her real job as a result of Covid-19 still found the time to design and edit with me at any and all hours for this issue.
Our Legacy Club community as a whole has been endearing in their support of one another and me as we pushed this magazine through to its release.
There is a famous scene in the classic Boston film Good Will Hunting where Robin Williams describes the night he met his wife to Matt Damon. He gave up a ticket to Game Six of the 1975 World Series at Fenway Park, the game where Carlton Fisk hit one of the most famous home runs in MLB history to hang out with a woman he met minutes earlier.
Matt Damon is beside himself. He can’t believe Robin Williams gave up his ticket to Game Six of the World Series to hang out with a woman at a bar he just met (“I don’t care if Helen of Troy walked in, THAT’S GAME SIX”). Robin Williams must have regrets?
No regrets, Williams assures Damon. Everything happened the way it was supposed to, and he wouldn’t change a thing.
I feel the same way about this issue of BostonMan Magazine. While I could regret that we are not able to release this the way we originally intended, what we thought would be the “perfect” spring magazine has instead evolved into an even deeper, more resounding understanding of how resilient Boston is and how strong the Legacy Club community we’re building is becoming.
As Matt Damon comes to understand and respect the beauty behind Robin Williams reasoning of “no regrets” from the night of the Game Six World Series he looks at his mentor with a new found admiration.
A slight smirk comes across Damon’s face and he says: “It would have been nice to catch that game though..”
Williams returns the smile and replies: “I didn’t know Pudge was going to hit that homerun..”
What you read right now has been the most challenging issue of BostonMan Magazine to so far construct. Even though it’s not how we originally outlined it in February, it’s something our team is extremely proud to release to our wonderful city. No regrets.
But man, it sure would have been nice to have shot Enes and Tacko with Bill Russell..
But seriously. Watch this. And think about metaphorically what we’ve given up and what we’ve gone through to ultimately get to where we are going.