The Boston Herald Has Made Menino Forgiving

Their story on a city contract with the guy behind a 2007 bomb scare has them holding a grudge longer, even, than Menino.

The Boston Herald has done what few can: made Tom Menino look like a front of forgiveness by holding a grudge longer than even the Mayor.

The Herald ran a cover story Wednesday revealing that a guy asked to put on an electronic light show at Boston’s First Night celebration this year is the same man whose viral marketing campaign shut down the city of Boston in January 2007 when it caused a bomb scare.

Peter “Zebbler” Berdovsky, a graduate of the Massachusetts College of Art, installed 40 LED lighted signs in the shape of “Mooninite,” a character on Cartoon Network’s “Aqua Teen Hunger Force,” to promote an upcoming movie. They’d pulled a similar stunt in other U.S. cities, but Boston Police weren’t big Cartoon Network buffs, and the ensuing bomb scare caused a lot of havoc. In the aftermath, Berdovsky was arrested on felony hoax charges, which were later dropped. Turner Broadcasting paid a $2 million settlement to the city.

Flash forward to today, where Berdovsky has a contract to stage a $50,000 electronic show at Boston’s New Year’s Eve celebration. The Herald cover is outraged in the way you expect any good tabloid cover to be. One person who is less outraged: Mayor Menino. Responding to the report, Menino called it “unfortunate.”

The Herald points out that at the time, Menino called the Mooninite scare “irresponsible,” as well as “outrageous,” unacceptable,” and a “nitwit technique” and then called for everyone to boycott the movie out of respect for the people of Boston. This is the side of Menino with which you might be more familiar.

Today at a stop at the Dorchester Boys & Girls Club, he sounded more somber. “He did make mistakes and he apologized for those mistakes,” he said, adding, “It’s six years gone.”

Menino is, how do you say … not known for his forgiving nature. So it’s impressive that The Herald has held onto a grievance longer than Hizzoner. On the other hand, today’s Herald story is aimed at City Hall as much as it is Berdovsky. And there’s nothing like a little self-interest to stretch your forgiveness muscles.


Wednesday’s Boston Herald cover, via Boston Herald’s Facebook page