he happens to have parkinson's disease, so, when he's being interviewed on the radio or tv and people find his speaking uneven or halting, that's what's happening.
he's also about six months older than me.
and i have no idea if he's a good person or not, but the man is nothing if not tenacious.
i'm not into boxing. i don't like the violence. but i get that at its highest levels, boxing is choreography, and drama, and thinking, and strategy, and large-muscle-memory based in rigorous and extensive training and hard work. and i saw part of the hbo special about the upcoming fight between oscar de la hoya and manny paquiau, and then i've been listening for interviews with freddie. he's absolutely fascinating. i'm listening to him talk about training his fighters, and there are about twenty things he's planning and working out about his fighter all at once - psychology, pacing, fears, plan a in the ring, plan b in the ring, what to say and what not to say, and so on. this is big big business, and it's not won based on who can hit the hardest.
i heard him in an interview with jim rome a few days ago say, about boxers:
eddie says, that thing they truly are? that's what'll come out, and fight.
i got very tired earlier this week. i started to get mad. sad. discouraged. worried.
my awesome wife said, "when we are afraid, or tired, we lose good judgment. we lose the ability to see what is real and what isn't."
and she was right. because i rested, and rested some more, and cried and got quiet, and when i was more clear, it's not that i talked myself out of what i was feeling; it's that what i was feeling at the surface wasn't truly, truly what was inside me. what was deep within me is hope, and strength, and i'm up. i got hit. the first rush of pain was sadness, discouragement, worry. but then i went down into myself further. and what came back swinging was hope and power and peacemaking. swinging. sort of. still wobbly. but here. some days i want to go back to the corner and sit. some days i wish i'd never gone into boxing in the first place.
lots of people never get into the ring.
lots of people hide over in the corner.
lots of people won't train, won't listen, won't swing, won't cover.
lots of people will train, will listen to their trainers, will swing hard, will cover up, and will find who they are past the pain and shock and fatigue. but it takes guts and endurance.
who are you when you get hit?