Tagged: Hilary Ribons

Boston “bar crawl”

By Hilary Ribons, Blog Editor @hilaryalexisr
and Seline Jung, Multimedia Editor @selinejung

Some of the DFP staff ventured out on a Friday night for a “bar crawl!” Check out the list on our Foursquare map to see where you’re headed. Here’s what we found:

A cozy atmosphere awaits at Tommy Doyle's/ PHOTO BY Hilary Ribons. CLICK PHOTO FOR FULL PHOTO SLIDESHOW

A cozy atmosphere awaits at Tommy Doyle’s/ PHOTO BY Hilary Ribons. CLICK PHOTO FOR FULL PHOTO SLIDESHOW

Tommy Doyle’s:

Located on the side of a small street in Cambridge, Tommy Doyle’s looks like a house from its warm interiors to its wood siding. There was and upper and lower level, but on the night we were there, the upper level had a cover charge and the lower level was a private event. The atmosphere on the main floor is in between a nice sit-down place and a club. It’s a good place to hang out with friends and casually sip drinks before heading to a full-fledged club.

Hong Kong:

From the outside, this bar/club looks like your average neighborhood Chinese food restaurant. But don’t be fooled by the Hong Kong‘s looks. Once you pass the bouncer, make a sharp left, and go up some stairs and you’ll get to a second level. A well decorated bar is packed with people in their twenties and thirties socializing, standing in groups or sitting in offset corner booths with tables. The bartenders are friendly and interactive. But wait, there’s more.

There is a third floor as well. The night we attended, there was a long wait for the floor and most of our party did not get to go up. Part of the excitement surrounding the third floor was the hype that was created amongst the people waiting to go up.

The dance floor was pagoda-themed, and smaller than the lower two floors. Perhaps the biggest allure of the Hong Kong it feels like you have discovered a new scene each time you ascend the stairs.

A cosmo at Mass Ave Tavern/ PHOTO BY Hilary Ribons. CLICK PHOTO FOR FULL PHOTO STORY.

A cosmo at Mass Ave Tavern/ PHOTO BY Hilary Ribons. CLICK PHOTO FOR FULL PHOTO STORY.


There are plenty of dance clubs/bars in Boston, but few have no cover charge. This is one of the few. Storyville usually has a small line. Once inside, you descend a flight of stairs and have the option of entering one of two rooms. The first is lit with red lights and has a bar, and, behind a half-wall with rentable booths, a dance floor. The second room has blue lighting, its own music and a different, calmer yet still dance-worthy atmosphere. This club is good for decent drinks at a decent price, dancing, and saving money. The age group can be a little older, but if you go with a group of friends it’s a lot of fun.

Mass Ave Tavern:

Spacious sports bar/restaurant on Mass Ave and Newbury St. The service at Mass Ave Tavern is fast and friendly and the ambience is laid back but a bit nicer than your average sports bar. It’s not a typical college crowd, but if you don’t want to be bothered by anyone and just want to throw back a beer or two and eat nachos (seriously, the nachos could feed a party of 10) with your friends, Mass Ave Tavern is your place. There is also a foosball table and an array of board games to play, a fun and laid-back addition that mad Mass Ave stand out. Specialty cocktails include the Bee Keeper, which our fellow FreeP staffer described as “rye whiskey [with] fresh lemon and honey [to] really balance it out. It’s palatable and complements it instead of drawing attention to the alcohol.”

Grendel’s Den:

In our opinion, this was by far the best place of the night. Located right in the heart of Harvard Square, Grendel’s is located in the basement of a charming white building. It does sort of feel like a den – prepare to feel cozy but not suffocated, as can be the case in many bars frequented by college students. The crowd is young, the bartenders are trendy and tattooed, and prices are wallet-friendly. But beware of the specialty drink called “Kanye’s Workout Plan” – it sounds cool, but according to our taste-tester, it tasted more like watered-down mint syrup mixed in with some vodka than a refreshing lime-infused drink.

Click for a full photo slideshow

CLICK PHOTO FOR FULL PHOTO SLIDESHOW. Patrons sit inside Mass Ave Tavern/ PHOTO BY Hilary Ribons

Patrons sit inside Mass Ave Tavern/ PHOTO BY Hilary Ribons


Please, shut up: When dorm noise levels go from normal to annoying

By Hilary Ribons, Staff Writer

Sharing living space with other people is bound to stir up some occasional conflict.  The most common point of contention arises between those who like quiet, and those who don’t.

I’m sure you all have heard of the philosophy work hard, play harder. Never was this philosophy put to practice more than in college. In my opinion, it is everyone’s right to make whatever kind of noise they choose Thursday night through Saturday night. Even if it is annoying, just let it happen. If you try to ask people to be quiet, you will most likely either get laughed at or quickly gain a reputation of being annoying, and whoever it is most likely will not listen to you anyways. But college is not conducive to sleep, and you should pick your battles. This isn’t one of them.

There’s bound to be general noise when you share the same building with a lot of people. So when does it cross the line? When does noise go from being acceptable to downright rude? Despite that I think that noise should just be generally accepted in dorms, I’ve compiled a list of who I consider to be the worst offenders. These are people who forget (or simply don’t care) that they live very close to a lot of other people. Every dorm has one…or a few:

The 24/7 partier:

This is the person who lives upstairs/down the hall/ next door with the massive sound system and a pension for pounding house music. On the weekend, his/her room is absolutely awesome to visit. On the weekdays, however, this person becomes the bane of existence for everyone who plans on getting anything done. There is apparently only one volume for this sound system: loud. David Guetta is his or her study soundtrack of choice. This person also hates headphones. You can’t quite get the base-bumping effect that way.

The lazy musician:

This is that music major that for some reason cannot book a practice room. But that shouldn’t mean that it becomes okay to practice clarinet/cello/guitar/drum set/operatic vocals in your room. The musician has a talent for being able to tell right when your face is about to hit the pillow (or your textbook) and picking up his/her instrument right at that very second. Often, the lazy musicians are less frequent offenders than the 24/7 partiers, but are offenders nonetheless.

The noisy neighbor:

Some people are just loud by nature. Happy, sad, angry, joyous, whatever. It doesn’t matter what emotion it is, it is always expressed very vocally. This is the person you might be a little embarrassed to see in the hall because you know things about their lives that you really don’t want to know, but had to overhear by sheer force of volume.

The stomper:

This person lives somewhere above you. You’ve probably never actually met them. Most of the time it sounds like they are hosting a Zumba workshop in their room. When they walk, it sounds like they have barbells attached to their feet. They are also very fond of dropping things on the floor, repeatedly. Usually they start moving around in the evening hours, conveniently around the time that you realize you should probably get your homework done.

I usually give people about 15 minutes before I think about telling them to stop. Most of the time, the noise stops on its own. But sometimes it requires intervention. Over the years, I’ve mastered the art of telling people to be quiet without seeming rude.