We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Rocky Marciano (Born 1 Sept. 1923), heavyweight boxing champion, was born Rocco Francis Marchegiano in Brockton, Massachusetts, the son of Pierino Marchegiano, a shoe-factory worker, and Pasqualena Picciuto. He was considered the roughest kid in the neighborhood, although he was not overly pugnacious. A star athlete who hoped to become a major league baseball catcher, he dropped out of school at age sixteen…Marciano then became a manual laborer while playing baseball on local semiprofessional teams. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1943 and was honorably discharged in 1946. Marciano kept his baseball dream alive until the spring of 1947, when a tryout with a Chicago Cubs minor league affiliate revealed that he lacked foot speed and a strong throwing arm.
Marciano had begun boxing competitively while in the army, mainly to avoid KP duty…. In 1948 Rocky participated in the Golden Gloves and advanced to the All-East championship tournament. He had aspirations to box in the Olympics, but he broke a thumb in winning a New England AAU (Amateur Athletic Union)tournament that served as a trial for the Olympics. He then decided to turn professional and gave up his job as a digger for the gas company. Experts considered Marciano too old, too short, and too light, at 5' 10" and 190 pounds, to become a successful heavyweight prizefighter….Marciano was [then] extremely well trained and took care of his diet.
Photo Courtesy of Michael N. Varveris, author of "Rocky Marciano The 13th Candle"
An out-and-out killer in the ring, instinctively swinging for blood on every punch, he is the mildest, friendliest and most loyal of men outside it.
Rocky's amazing record of 49 consecutive professional wins will probably never be exceeded, nor his KO percentage of 87.76%.
Marciano was the first and last champion in the heavyweight ranks to retire undefeated. And he only lost once in a 12-fight amateur career.
Marciano enjoyed life in the fast lane ("If you want to live a full life then live dangerously"), disliked routine, and was fascinated by the mobsters with whom he socialized and did business, such as Vito Genovese. He was a great hero to Italian Americans. Friends and acquaintances customarily gave him spending money, bought him dinner, and paid for his clothes. Parsimonious, Marciano never picked up checks. However, he was a poor businessman who made several bad decisions…
In the mid-1960s Marciano turned down $2 million to fight Muhammad Ali (then known as Cassius Clay) when he could not get into fighting shape. In 1969 he participated in a computer tournament involving former champions that grossed about $1.7 million. For this endeavor he lost nearly 50 pounds, wore a toupee, and sparred eight hours of one-minute rounds with Ali to produce a marketable conclusion. Seven different endings were prepared, with the computer giving the victory to Marciano.
One day before his 46th birthday, on August 31, 1969, Marciano died tragically in a plane crash near Newton, Iowa, while on the way to a birthday party.
Man, he was tough. It's actually painful to watch some of his fights --he didn't KO people with the clean punch, but with a sort of chopping them down like trees. Each fist was a heavy dull axe, and they just chop, chop, chopped until finally the tree just sagged and toppled over. Especially Archie Moore --the Old Mongoose --a totally different concept of a boxer artist --just hammered and hammered until he fell to pieces. Harsh, man, harsh. But it's about the Win. If it wasn't it wouldn't be what it is. Which is --something intensely interesting.
When they do those games, they use real people with some kind of device that shows up on the simulated computer bodies. The devices are planted all over the 'real' bodies so that once programmed into the computer, the digital bodies follow the actual human movements.
Buddy - Harsh is right. My parents were fans but I've never had the stomach for it, nor the understanding of why. Your description brought back to mind one of the very few times I watched a match, and it wasn't long as one of the boxers killed the other within minutes. You all will know, but I think the boxer who died was a Korean. His opponent did just what you described and hammered the guy almost out of the ring - through the ropes and down until the crowd and referees surged, but it was too late. He died right there, hanging off the ring. The reason I don't understand the 'why' is this sport seems to me to be about controlled rage. With the exception of Evander Holyfield....
I can add that I have never understood the thinking "It's all about the win." Like winning in overtime by one point in a long, hard game.... You really didn't win in my book.
I want to take a space here to tell you how wonderfully thoughtful, artistic, and entertaining your posts were when you covered for the regulars. You did an intense amount of work for each of those magnum opi, and simply reading through was pure pleasure because you managed to hit every emotion with the links and your own comments. I wish your hard work had engendered more comments, but it's the slow season, and maybe there is that element of not wanting to besmirch perfection by talking. The posts were that nicely done. You are quite the gentleman in your responses to comments - as thoughtful and conscientious as your work.
Thank you both.
And, actually, there's no such thing as perfect, esp. if it's mine. -- As in anything else, excess pride goeth before the fall.
Comments are appreciated, to correct, add, launch tangents. It is supposed to be a conversation, after all.
Now, after your kind words, I'll not be able to ever tell anyone to __ off.