James is also in the summer day camp at the field house. I saw him in the hall and greeted him. The camp coordinator asked if he was in my boxing class, and I affirmed that he was. "That boy is about to get put out of camp," she said. James is the quietest kid in the boxing gym. Surprised, I asked, "For what?" I was told that James keeps walking up on the other kids and daring them to fight him.
Some kids think just because they are showing up at a boxing gym and jumping around that they are the new Muhammad Ali. I'm sure hoping James is not thinking that, because, unfortunately, James will find out the hard way that's not the case if this bullying stuff keeps up. I like James, even though I'm constantly frustrated by the fact that the kid seems to be in his own world most of the time. Plus, James is very unfocused and uncoordinated. I cringe when he spars. I don't dare put him in any boxing shows right now, and fortunately, his parents agree with me.
Maybe I will talk with him about his behavior, without letting on who told me about it. I've mentioned before that I'm not in the business of training bullies. On the other hand, maybe I should not say anything. Saying the wrong thing to the wrong person and experiences the consequences is very good lesson to learn for most kids.
Another kid saw me counting change. I must have been in a mood, anticipating what I would face later at Garfield Park. "I would like a quarter," the kid had the nerve to day. "Ask your mother to give you one," I replied without taking a beat.
The rain came down later, so the boxing show probably would have been canceled for that reason, too. I got turned around on the way back (my sense of direction seems to be much better when I'm on public transportation), and I ended up taking a longer way home. I passed Clarendon Park where Alan was the boxing coach for about thirty years. I've always thought the program there should have never been shut down. I'm still confused as to why it was.