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Boston 2024, or The Raven Returns

John Fish and other Boston 2024 organizers met with the Globe’s editorial board on Tuesday. Lane Turner/Globe staff/Globe Staff

This week upon a Tuesday dreary, while I sat, tired and bleary, pondering arcane bits of fiscal lore,

Suddenly, there came a rapping, a distinct, insistent tap-tap-tapping at the Globe’s boardroom door.

The door swung open at the rapping and in they came, all back-slapping, a well-heeled squad of six or more,

The team that leads the jinxed endeavor, the star-crossed effort known forever, by the title oh-so-clever, Boston 2024.

Now, ’twas very much this scribe’s wish, to pose a query to Sir John Fish, leader of the sporting core.

To get an answer, or at least to try, to the problems I espy.

Answers I’d expected long before.

For I’d been told there was a way, which pricy lawyers could relay,


For all the debts to find repay.

So if gold should turn to clay, and send their best-laid plans astray,

The public fisc would be okay.

But quickly John set to talking, and soon it seemed there’d be no stopping,

as off he went, subject hopping.

Weaving, winding, time unminding, intent it seemed on ways of finding,

Our specific queries to ignore.

He called his team by names not theirs, affected rather lofty airs, and fixed upon us gimlet stares,

As we tried to speak our fiscal cares, and inquire how it all squares:

The bills, the debts, the ticket fares.

Words rushed forth by the score — hundreds first, then thousands more — and digressions wandered off galore.

And yet the basic answers wanted — to questions asked of consultants vaunted, who claimed their experts were undaunted,

Alas, they simply weren’t in store.

Presently my resolve grew stronger, and fearing I could endure no longer,

Sir, I said, of you I do implore, please, before I start to snore,

Can you, Mr. Sports-adoring,

Tell those of us who want assuring, how our purse will escape a goring —

And not just now, but forevermore?


But the more John talked, the more hope faded, and the more I felt myself grow jaded.

Deep in vagueness we all waded, our doubts sadly unabraded,

Our sense not a wee bit aided, of how our treasury might go unraided.

Feeling then a frenzy feeding, came the others interceding, trying hard to stop the bleeding.

A smoother discourse they aspired to, as, of course, they’d been hired to,

Even if it meant conceding a public vote that needed heeding.

Now if this report seems long and trying, and you feel your patience dying,

Imagine us our questions plying, and listening hard to the replying,

Without an answer ever spying.

Yet truth will out, as Shakespeare wrote — no matter how high the castle or deep the moat,

And one truth I glean and want to note: The Olympic dream is hard to float,

Without public credit in the boat.

Which demands a plan with real protection, a scheme that passes close inspection,

To bring their hopes to resurrection.

And not just talk of sporting glory, or claims that all is hunky-dory.

Or another windy John Fish story.

Lest no matter how much we adore,

The well-paid team at ’24,

We’ll guard our purse and bar the door,

And tell Sir John: “Nevermore.”

Scot Lehigh can be reached at Follow him on Twitter at @GlobeScotLehigh.