Sunday, February 12, 2017

Having Some Real Talk

Tyler's grandfather showed up with him yesterday.  I talked a little about how Tyler keeps goofing off in the gym.  His grandfather also told his grandson the importance of focusing on what he does during training.  But as soon as his grandfather left, Tyler went back to his usual ways.  I decided to lay some real talk about boxing.

I told stories of guys I knew who slacked off and how a general lack of motivation and determination had cost them winning fights.  I also pointed out how some of those same guys had been injured, some seriously, because they hadn't done enough work during practice.  "Don't come crying to me when you lose a fight, Tyler.  All I'm going to say is 'work harder' the next time you're in the gym," I told the boy.  I wasn't saying any of it to be mean.  That's just real talk for people who want to compete in boxing.

Whether Tyler really listened or not was doubtful.  Whenever his grandfather is there and says, "Show me something, boy," Tyler obeys him without a fuss.  But when I tell him something, I get ignored.  I have let Tyler know many times that I don't appreciate his attitude.  However, I don't think the kid gets how the attitude truly disrespects, disparages, and irritates me.

He kept going on about Davion and James not being in the gym.  I explained that Davion has other things to do on Saturday and that James can't come back until his grades are better.  But Tyler kept mumbling about it.  He's also aware that the teens don't come in regularly, and he made comments about that. "I'm not calling anyone to see where they are because my assumption is if they signed up, they wanted to be here.  It's not a good use of my time to always be on the phone.  They just will not be able to compete if they don't train.  Tyler, you should be happy that the gym is empty because you don't have to wait on people to use the equipment.  You should be happy that place is all yours," I curtly said.

After Tyler left, I noted that Jada didn't show up, either.  Her mother was so concerned about putting her daughter into the last slot that was open for that class. I honestly don't know how that girl is going to learn the sport; she's already missing days, and she can only show up once a week.

Tentatively, a sparring session will take place this week at Portage Park, involving Marlon's fighters from that park, Barry's fighters from Loyola Park, and one fighter of mine, Tyler.  I hope that session takes place, and I hope Tyler shows up.  Maybe after mixing it up with the other fighters, Tyler will finally get that boxing is no joke.

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