Thursday, December 11, 2014
A Day With George and a Bear
I spent two days of training at Garfield Park. Every time I go there, I'm reminded of the time Ma took me there to get my immunization shots before I began Kindergarten forty-eight years ago. The building, with little upgrades here and there, still looks the same.
Training involved knowing how to interact with the patrons, mainly the youths. Training is what training is. Some of it can be useful, and some of it is not. People are up and interested at various times, and counting down the minutes until it's over at other times.
I talked to George, who runs the boxing gym there, when I had breaks from training. He's been with the Chicago Park District for 42 years. His actual title is that of a program specialist. George no longer has kids 12 and under; he starts with ages 13 and up, and most of the boxers he deals with are professionals. Most of the equipment was brought and installed in the gym out of his pocket and his time. There's a lot of history in that gym.
It pays to talk to someone who has been on the job for a long time. George gave me a lot of valuable information to help me on my way.
This is a shot of Garfield Park's lagoon. Quite a few geese were out there today.
I had noticed the guy standing next to me in this photo the first day of training. He sure looks familiar, I thought. Today, I figured out that he was Chris Zorich, who was a defensive tackle for the Chicago Bears. Chris is a nice guy, and he agreed to take this photo. He's now a supervisor with the Chicago Park District.