Monday, June 22, 2015

Summer at Loyola Park

In the photo above, Alan watches two guys -- both named John -- spar.

I went up to Loyola Park to a) let Alan know what happened during a recent boxing coaches' meeting, and b) to get a workout in.  Almost everyone in the gym was new except for John, Geniece, Melinda, and Igor.  The place was full.

Here's a trick for those who tend to gag on mouthpieces like I sometimes do:  put a little salt on the tip of the tongue before putting the mouthpiece in.  It worked for me.  I went in with Erica, who hopped up and down in her corner before the three rounds we had together.  Alan told her, "Take it easy because Hillari is old."  I laughed, then Alan said, "Now isn't that the pot calling the kettle black! I have my nerve talking about who's old, and I just had a birthday yesterday!" My knees weren't cooperating as usual, so I took a lot of hits.  Erica was dashing in, getting her licks in, and quickly dashing out.

I thought she looked familiar.  She reminded me that we had sparred a few years ago.  Colonel and Kenny had invited her down to the gym.  Erica had fought in the Golden Gloves around that time.  Here's the photo of us after our sparring session back then:

Erica's very good.  I overheard her giving some solid advice to other women in the gym.  She told me that she used to box at Evanston Boxing Club, and she was planning to enter more competitions.

Melinda and Geniece sparred, and I was very glad I didn't have to get into the ring with either of them.  My old bones barely stood up to Erica.  They wouldn't have lasted against Melinda and Geniece.  Melinda also sparred with Alan, and she caught him with a rough body shot.  Afterwards, Alan said, "I am impressed with how hard she hits.  She hits like a guy!"

I made a general announcement inviting the adults in the gym to come to the boxing show at LaFollette Park next week if they want to get a match.  Alan asked me if I was nervous about the show.  Yeah, I am a little bit, but more so for the youths who plan to participate than for me.  I have to impress upon the youths that they must work hard this week if they want to do well.

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