Pine Nuts: A short history of the Boston Tea Party |

Pine Nuts: A short history of the Boston Tea Party

McAvoy Layne

Like everybody else nowadays, I’m lugging a heavy heart around in my chest. So I like to escape into the past now and again, and dream about how things might have been.

I would like to have been in Boston for the Tea Party for example, and I picture myself at the Bell In Hand Tavern, holding forth in front of my fellow Bostonians…

“Guys, forget the Boston Marathon, you couldn’t finish it anyways. No, there are more important issues at hand, for whom the bell tolls. The Lymies are out to tax our tea! You heard me right, tax our tea without representation! I know you don’t drink it, I can’t stand it either, but when we can no longer afford to pay for our ladies’ tea parties, well, there will be hell to pay! So dang it, we need to throw a tea party of our own, and here’s my idea … hear me out! Let me buy the house a round, and hear me out!

When we leave the Bell In Hand Tavern tonight after last call, we strip down, paint each other with war paint to look like wild Mohawk Indians, and jump the three English cargo ships in our harbor. Now I see some of you wiping your mouths with your napkins to hide your smiles, but I’m serious. Once aboard those cargo ships we throw the night watchman and all 90,000 pounds of tea into Boston Harbor!”

One of the doubters raises his hand and shouts out, “That’s the craziest idea I ever heard!” I shout him down and buy him a beer to keep him quiet. Then I launch into my master plan from the top.

“Now, listen up. There are 60 of us Mohawks and only three English ships. Twenty Mohawks board each ship at the stroke of midnight and start heaving chests of tea over the side, along with the night watchman.”

Some lummox asks, “So what do we do when English troops arrive to kill us Mohawks?”

Of course I have the answer ready, and I deliver it with panache, élan and a Lager …

“When the English troops arrive to kill us Mohawks we will already be Bostonians again, and we will not quarter them, and what are they going to do? They will be out in the cold and we can at last tell Olde King George to go fly a kite to the moon!”

Of course, what does happen when the English troops arrive we can discuss on another day …

What we do know is that the Boston Tea Party worked its bazar magic on that December night in 1773, and the ladies of Boston were able to continue their private tea parties sans taxes. I will sign an affidavit to that statement, and this is where my short history of the Boston Tea Party comes to an end. I only wish I could have been there…

Learn more about McAvoy Layne at

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