Sunday, December 14, 2014
Finally, The Ring Is Surrounded
In this photo, taken by Martine Granby, I'm alone in the gym, folding up a hand wrap.
Only one kid under 12 showed up at the gym yesterday. During the week, only one teen showed up during the 13 and up class. They both wanted to spar, but that's impossible to do when no one else comes in. I don't want to spar each time I'm in the gym anymore, and I worry about hurting a kid if and when I do. Having a lot of people in a boxing gym helps bring energy to the place. When there's hardly anyone there, the energy is very low.
Sometime when I was out at an employee training at Garfield Park earlier this week, new ropes were put up around the gym. Unfortunately, the old canvas hadn't been changed out, but one thing at a time. When a couple of the kids were sparring on Friday, one attempted to run out of the ring to avoid incoming punches. "Can't do that anymore," I told the kid. Now I find myself repeating, "Don't lean on the ropes!" I don't want to have to arrange for the ropes to be tightened so soon.
Technology is another rival I have for the attention of the youths. They look at me crazy when I tell them that I primarily use my cell phone for my job at the insurance company and have it turned off at other times. Most of the kids have cell phones, and they fiddle with them all the time. "I can't live without my phone," one of the teens told me. Oh, they could if they really tried. Technology is nice, but I'm glad I didn't grow up with what we have today. It seems a lot of youths are addicted to it.
A new kid appeared to be very interested in what I own at home. The kid attempted to beg me out of several items including old video game systems, in-line skates, and an MP3 player I have that doesn't work so well anymore. I don't know if it's because the kid doesn't have those items at home, or like so many kids think, "If I ask for it, someone should just give it to me because I want it." I did tell him I could part with old boxing equipment that I no longer use. I'll bring those items in next week.