Thursday, September 20, 2012

Catching Sarah's Jabs

I was so preoccupied with all the drama surrounding Ma's death that I didn't recognize Brandy at first when she was running towards me on the sidewalk.  I was walking home after work, and she was out exercising.  We said a quick "hello!" as she continued running on.

The gym opened on time, but Alan didn't arrive until way after eight due to a meeting he had at his day job.  Anthony came in, looking for Gene who didn't come in Wednesday night.  "I need to get some work in," Anthony kept saying.  He wants to fight in the boxing show next Friday.  Andre decided not to attempt sparring due to his broken rib. 

Anthony eventually convinced Tommy (in the photo above) to get into the ring.  Tommy kept making jokes about "I'll go in only if 911 is called first".  He saw me with my camera and said, "Make sure you get pictures of me being beat down.  I'll need them for evidence!"  Anthony said they would go light.

However, Anthony (in the white shirt) gave Tommy a few hard shots, including a hook to the head.  Each time, Tommy had to take time out to catch his breath and clear his head.  Alan kept telling Anthony to take it easy.  Andre (in the doo rag) gave some pointers.  I used Anthony's cell phone to videotape the rounds.

Tommy hung in there, but two rounds was more than enough for him. 

Prior to that, Sarah and I sparred.  My mind wasn't totally focused on the gym, and initially, I wasn't too keen on sparring that night.  The day before, I informed the hospital in California that I would not pay to have Ma's body shipped back to Chicago, nor was I going to have a funeral.  The cost was too high, and I wasn't about to put that financial burden on my aunts, either.  None of us are rich, and besides that, a couple of my aunts are dealing with health issues.  The social worker I talked to at the hospital seemed taken aback at my attitude.  I guess he doesn't know many people who had contentious relationships with their parents.  Maybe that social worker should get around more.  Pastor Roger seemed a little surprised as well.  He kept offering suggestions for a funeral or memorial service.  "It's a done deal. The state of California will cremate my mother's body on their dime," I told him.   

I forced myself to pay attention in the ring.  Alan told me to catch Sarah's jabs with my right hand.  In between rounds, I told him, "It feels easier to catch her jabs with my left hand."  "It's better to catch them with your right, so you can throw a jab back," Alan explained.  For the next three rounds, I did just that. 

After sparring, I groaned about being tired.  "You ain't tired!  What are you talking about?  You ain't tired," Anthony smiled.  "I'm an old woman," I said, as I dropped my headgear to the canvas.  I don't know how well I will do against an opponent - if I have one - next Friday.  But I have full confidence that Sarah will do well. 



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