Thursday, October 08, 2015
Three Strikes and Out
The photo above shows the ring in the boxing gym at Simons Park, where Marty is the coach. I was at their boxing show.
I had a feeling that the evening would not go well. Call it women's intuition, a hunch, or whatever. I couldn't shake it off. The first indication that my feeling was justified was when Eric failed to show up. Just when I thought I had been stood up by my fighters again, De-Fetrick came in to weigh-in. He was able to get a fight, which I was happy about.
De-Fetrick's fight was the sixth of the evening, and he was in the red corner. I put the gloves on him in the middle of the fourth bout. It took longer than necessary because De-Fetrick was playing around on his cell phone. "Could you tape my fight?" he asked. "I can't," I answered quickly. "But all you have to do is to push--," he started. I cut him off. "I'm the coach. I can't tape the fight and work the corner at the same time," I said, wondering why De-Fetrick's common sense hadn't kicked in. He eventually found someone else to tape it.
Less than thirty seconds into the first round, De-Fetrick's opponent sent him down to the canvas with a straight right. I winced. Shifty, the referee, gave De-Fetrick an eight count. Not long after the action resumed, De-Fetrick took another right to the face. I knew Shifty was going to stop the fight, because my fighter was wobbling; the punch was a stunner.
De-Fetrick yelled and cursed at Shifty, demanding to know why the fight was stopped. I demanded that he come back to the corner. "It's over," I told him, but De-Fetrick didn't want to hear it. "I don't understand that! I still can fight!" De-Fetrick yelled. My explanations about safety in amateur boxing, and the fact that De-Fetrick had been knocked silly had no effect. "Why the eff did this happen?" he said to me, just as Tommy walked up to defuse the situation. I took a step back on the apron and gave him a look. There were so many things I could have snapped back, but I opted to keep quiet at that moment.
Tommy tried to talk sense to him, but that didn't take, either. De-Fetrick snatched the second-place trophy from Shifty and stalked out of the gym area. Moments later, he returned, watching the fight on his cell phone. Ernest, the coach at Fuller, tried to communicate with him, but De-Fetrick waved him off.
A second later, he came to me, asking me to look at the video. "I don't have to look at it, because I was standing in the corner. I saw what happened," I snapped. De-Fetrick then began to raise hell about "dirty fighting", accusing Shifty and the other fighter of not playing fair. He had the colossal nerve to tell me that I didn't understand what he was trying to say. "What do you think boxing is? You can't get angry every time you lose a match! This is what happens during matches!" I yelled back.
Tommy heard us and came over to intervene. "I'm not going to argue with you. I'm done," I told De-Fetrick. Tommy tried to explain the rules again to him, but all he got for his efforts was an attitude. My fighter told Tommy to "eff off". De-Fetrick was told to leave the premises.
Now he is not able to fight in any Chicago Park District boxing shows. I technically can't put him out of my gym, but after tonight's antics, I don't really want De-Fetrick around me again. The whole situation was embarrassing.