Fists of fury

johnlsullivanI started boxing tonight. Lamont’s been asking me for years if I wanted to try it. Since I am extra strong right now on account of boot camp and Yoga, it seemed like a good time to start. He busted out the wraps and showed me how to put them on. We did some basic form things. We did shadow boxing and then went in the ring and I hit for a little. Then I hit the bag.

It felt good. My first thought was how my Dad would have gotten a kick out of it. He probably would have relayed some tips. Dad loved watching boxing. Having grown up a tough kid from Washington Heights, he seemed to know quite a bit about it, too.

I also thought of my big Bro Bri, a boxer himself. He trained at Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn before he got married and moved to the burbs. His boxing equipment is all set up in the garage out there. With two young kiddos, he doesn’t have a lot of time for it these days. But he still has a cool, massive Celtic cross tattoo on this right arm, a permanent reminder.

And lastly I thought of Poppa, our Dad’s Dad. John Kenny was a boxer in the Navy as the family lore goes. (It was one of the few things we actually knew about his past). He got punched in the face so many times he could push his nose totally in. I entreated him to show off his nose-smushing talent to my friends when ever they came over. He always obliged.

Boxing’s connotations for me: Family, Fighters, Irishmen. This should be a fun challenge. It is frustrating not being immediately skilled. But that means I have something new to work on.

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