This chapter tells how my small nephew challenged my friend to box and knocked him out!
| This chapter is dedicated to my nephew, Steven Wolfe, who , is a real inspiration to me of what challenges can be over come , if you have faith and fight hard enough.
My favorite Bible story has , since I can remember, been the story of David and Goliath. I guess that is probably due to the fact that I am smaller than most everyone around me due to my wheelchair . I have always loved the moment when all the village went in an instant from watching in terror as the young David was about to be destroyed by the much larger and stronger Goliath to shocked celebration of a young new hero who with one blow destroyed the giant terrible bully of the day. There have been many times in my life that I've found myself wishing for the know how and ability to beat up a bully . At least one time I'd just like to see what it would feel like, as long as I am the only person left standing at the end of my fight. My victim wouldn't even have to be a real bully. Because of my love of boxing as a sport, he could also simply be an opponent in the ring. Unfortunately, I can't ever do that myself due to my C.P. But I recently had the thrilling experience of seeing such a fight between two guys I know well. It was a boxing match between my buddy, Greg, the younger brother of my "best bud", Ed, and my favorite nephew, Steven.
The stage was set on a Monday night during football season. last year. My buddy, Greg, came over to watch the 49'ers play someone on Monday Night Football, and soon the game became so boring that we began talking about other things. Ed had told me all about his little brother and how"tough" he was. When I mentioned that to Greg, he really lit up with pride . That was the moment that we discovered that we both love boxing and fighting sports . He had just finished a 6 week training course in boxing and gotten a set of boxing gloves and a make shift ring in his garage and started to give lessons to neighborhood youth for extra cash. I told him how my nephew, Steven Wolfe , was moving out to live with me and my wife in order to escape some bad influences back home and that he might like to come over and watch boxing matches or maybe even box if we found him an opponent his size. I figured that Steve fighting Greg would be completely unfair because Greg is nearly twice Steve's size at 225Lbs. and at least 6 feet tall to Steve's 160Lbs. and only standing 5.7feet. Greg made a few jokes about how we could talk him into fighting Greg so I could see a real life slaughter. I like Steve, , but I had never in my life seen a real knockout in person and a little devil on my shoulder made me wonder if maybe Greg, with his size, might truly make one of my sport dreams come true by knocking the little guy out. I couldn't even imagine that happening the other way.
Soon Steve arrived in town and began going to Greg's house with me, hoping Greg might show him a few things. Greg , being more assertive and loving to poke fun at Steve with lots of "little guy" jokes, almost immediately started taking cheap shots about steve's size.. Steve takes a joke pretty well and didn't let it get to him much. But Greg was having a lot of fun at Steve's expense . Steve was starting to get defensive. One night I was the one who mentioned to Steve and Greg how disappointed I was about not having seen either him or Greg fight yet. Nobody Steve's size had been around at the same time as we had been.And most of the other guys were a little intimidated by Greg's size and confidence.
Steve thought about it for a few seconds and then suddenly challenged Greg to fight him. We all thought he was joking because he was grinning from ear to ear. But then he explained why he thought it would be great. He explained "wouldn't be risking much." He could always quit if it got too intense and claim he had" at least challenged a big guy." " But if he won he could accualy teach Greg a lesson and have great story to tell him mom and friends back home. I had just the few days before started talking about writing a book based on my life , and had been looking for ideas for interesting stories. I joked that if Greg and Steve fought it out that I could write all about it and tell the story. Both of them lit up at the idea.
I thought Steve must be crazy .Greg and I laughed for almost a minute. Greg had had some lessons and as a heavy weight and couldn't imagine Steve, as a lite weight , having the nerve to "insult" him by challenging him. Greg said this to Steve, and he laughed and agreed it might be nuts to fight him but also added the old saying " the bigger they are : the harder they fall." and followed up by taunting Greg back just a little by questioning him as to whether he might not be just a bit afraid of a challenge. Greg seemed to me to be trying to wiggle out of actually fighting while at the same time saving him own pride. He claimed "It wouldn't be fair of me to box you because I never fight anyone who didn't insult me by actually challenging (me). Steve, without even hesitating challenged, "ok , Greg, I do challenge you. I think I am a better fighter than you , and might be able to beat you even though you are bigger." "And if you don't fight me I am going to assume you are afraid." Greg looked intimidated , but agreed as if he wasn't worried. I wondered if I was a little bit selfish myself for being willing to let Steve really go through with it just so I could have a laugh. But I decided that , hey, he wanted to and he could "always quit." And I also thought about how spectacular it would be if he Steve actually won. It would be so great for Steve and anyone watching, even if it would a disaster for Greg and his ego. and the perception most people had of him. But that wouldn't be the worst thing to happen either since Greg's ego did seem a little inflated . So I decided to let them do it if they both followed through and just not favor either one . So I told both of them " may the best man win."
.Greg acted like he was so anixous to prove he wasn't afraid to fight Steve that he invited us over the next evening. He told me on the phone "don't worry; I really don't think he (Steve) will get hurt too badly." What we didn't know until we arrived was that Greg had also invited a garage full of people to watch him. There were six neighbors of all ages . He lives in a neighborhood where everyone knows each other and are friends. Several people were for Steve , partly due to his size ,but also partly due to his likable personality. But the others were laughing at the fact that Greg was going to destroy him easily too. The one thing everyone had in common was the knowledge that Greg would end it fairly quickly. Soon they both put on 12oz gloves and head gear to match. The audience was off the matt, and the three video cameras ready. Then someone pushed the button on Greg's boxing timer as everyone counted down together "5! 4! 3! 2! 1! fight!" Steve stopped fidgeting and Greg stopped slamming his gloves together, as he had been doing in order scare Steve more as the bell rang and both of them came out of their corners.
They both came out fairly aggressively and each threw about the same amount of test punches at each other as the circled around the garage, with Greg looking a little cocky as Steve complained to us all several times about Greg's longer reach, usually after Greg landed a good jab. Suddenly, Steve saw an opening and bent down just a little and slipped in a punch in the stomach. Greg flinched and made a slight grunt but then resumed his attack. Steve didn't seem to notice that Greg was suddenly more humble and quiet----and slow. I seemed to be the only one watching who noticed Steve had just hurt Greg.
I think Greg was becoming humiliated too because he tried to pretend like everything was normal, yet it wasn't. They both went back to sizing up one another. I think Steve was still caucious ,and I think Greg was buying time to get his wind back from that hit. They circled and Steve tagged Greg with a good right to the front of the face. They circled and then Steve landed two more and a shot to the liver with his left. This time Greg really reacted as he bent over to the side with a OOF! sound followed by a delayed moan. Then he landed a one two combination that sent Greg into a panicked rage. He finally did land a wild left to Steve's head ,followed by another. But Steve stayed calm and on his game.
They both backed off for a second. But Greg seemed to be even slower that before He was hurting badly, Steve was now less timid in his style and was suddenly stalking Greg, who had given up his cocky smile. Steve now appeared to be the one on the hunt as Greg looked worried and in pain. Steve landed a right to Greg's temple that seemed to rattle him. But Steve but didn't follow up. Instead, he calmly backed up and tried another that missed. He then tried an underhand type of body shot that missed. Then the crowed Greg was so excited about inviting started making comments. One kid exclaimed "hey ,Steve, how much do(you) charge for lessons?" That rattled Greg. But he seemed to just give him try after try, We could all tell the punishment was taking a toll on him. He was hurt, and humiliated. Finally , on Steve's third try---- He slammed a straight right into Greg's upper stomach. Actually, he buried his glove into it. That was a home run shot. We all heard the thud , as well as the loud "AWFFF! sound of all air leaving Greg's lungs. The look of shock combined with agony on Greg's face was priceless. His eyes started watering too, and one of the kids ask ",is he crying?" He was . Steve backed up just for a second as everyone made comments of " Oh my God," and ", Oooh!" Then just as Greg failed to stand back up and was returning to being bent over moaning, Steve's face showed the look of a dog that saw he had a real chance to have the bone fired and missed a left hook and instantly landed a right hook to the side of Greg's head. Greg staggard as we all felt the winds of change begin to blow. Blood was now in Steve's eyes for the first time, while agony and fear were all that could be seen in Greg's. Greg staggered backward and raised his head as if he might be trying to straighten up but couldn't make the body do the same. Steve pursued , wound up and landed a 3 hit combination a pro might have been proud of. First, he landed a huge left upper cut to Greg's face His head snapped upward. Then he followed up with a huge right uppercut, and then a huge left hook right on the right side of Greg's chin . . Greg's head in about three seconds snapped up , then to the right--then after Steve paused for a second, as you could hear one guy yell, ' HIT him again"! Steve's eyes brightened as he started to unload again. Greg's pain filled expression went blank as his knees buckled and he dropped like a rock. First Greg's butt hit the floor . Then, as he sat there dazed and expressionless for a split second ., his lifeless upper body bounced back so hard we heard another thud as his arms landed out to each side. Nobody even counted . It was obvious that Steve, after pumblling Greg for two minutes, had just knocked him OUT COLD!. Steve, a right handed guy knocked Greg out, with a (left hook).
I couldn't believe my eyes. I had just witnessed the real life version of "David vs. Goliath." Steve's utter look of shock was priceless. He had no idea what to do next .He just paced around for a few seconds and then joked ", no worries; huh huh." most of us stood there, seemingly as stunned as Greg really was. Then , each guy with a video slowly walked up to Greg's limp body and began recording his humilation from different angels: one from behind his head; one from his feet up and one from the side. One boy quipped ", well now I guess I know what a knockout really looks like." One girl quipped ", well I guess he's not as tough as he thought he was." And the brother responded ", he's sure not as tough as (I) thought he was. ha ha ." Moments passed and someone asked what should be done for him , just as Greg started twitching. I got really nervous and wheeled my chair closer to try to see if he was hurt badly or not. What surprised me, though, was the fact that Greg's eyes were not shut as you might see on a T.V. show. They were wide open and kind of rolled up into his head. I was a little scared. Steve even pleaded ", oh no: don't do that....." Finally ,after about twenty seconds the twitching stopped and we all shared a moment of nervous laughter. Steve crossed over Greg's body and leaned against the wall, crossing his feet , as he just relaxed and admired his handy work. A kid took a close up of Steve as the kid said ", well, I guess you won." . Just as someone took a cell phone picture of Greg's face with his eyes wide open yet rolled back in his head. But just then, Greg seemed to kind of just snap awake. He tried to jump up after laying there a second, figuring out finally that he might have lost. But on his way up he looked as if he learn that the air was still knocked out of him as he folded back to the floor. So a bunch of people started laughing again as a couple helped him slowly get up . He had been out cold longer than the fight it self had lasted.
One of the kids started to count Greg out , but another joked "why bother?" Steve began to look at ease with his new position as the new champ as he started walking around Greg's body, taking closer looks at his blank stare to the point of almost studying it. People, one by one ,started patting him on the back. He went from uncomfortable modesty to accepting by grinning and saying thanks.
Finnally , after time passed , Greg seemed to slowly move. At first his twitching started again for a few seconds but then the horrible moans of a guy with the air knocked out of him. He still just stared at the garage lights. They were on. But (Greg) was out. After groaning and failing a couple times in failed attempts, he managed to stand up. After standing on his own for about 30seconds with a blank stare on his face and then collapsing into the corner of his garage and being smart enough to stay down, he finally rose and began to understand the fact that he had just recieved the butt kicking of his life in front of his friends and a lot of kids who had really looked up to him, by the friend he loved to pick on so much. He stared at Steve in disbelief and ,choked for the words to ask "what happend," Steve stood in front of him toe to toe and said clearly, with almost a" challenging smile bragged, "I knocked you out!," Then, Steve offered sarcastically to "go more rounds " if Greg wanted to . You are right. He didn't want to. I was still grinning from ear to ear, and said to Steve ", I can't believe you knocked him out .". The friends began rewinding and reviewing the video. Greg hobbled off into the house for awhile and returned with very red eyes. I am not saying that he cried . I am not saying that. Well, yes I am . Steve went outside for fresh air and to except more praise from new friends who seemed for feel better talking about the disgraceful defeat of Greg away from his face as Greg sat on a step for awhile, regaining his senses as people came in and out of the house offering jokes at Greg's expense. He was pretty wobbly for a bit but in about 30minutes seemed for the most part recovered. I kind of felt a little sad for him as he sat there, trying to act as if he was 100 percent normal and recovered though he wasn't. One boy named Matt was still quietly recording as Greg was doing this . I noticed Steve had re-appeared , and he and the boy would glance at one another and grin as if the boy might be saying, "Wow, you messed him up good" , and Steve might be saying ", yeah it feels really good", all while Greg just stared off , trying to act normal. He wasn't , though. He was a man in shame. He had a head ache for 3days ,we later learned, and bruised ribs too. I think his ego will take many months to recover---if ever.
I never really told Steve or anyone else, but he now kind of represents the fight inside of me. I have always seen myself as a "David", facing an able bodied world I kind of view as "Goliath ," which I have to fight each day and not know who will win until that day when I breathe my final breath. Steven fought the "giant, " Greg---- and won. Wow , he won big. Seeing Greg fall was one of the most exciting things I have ever seen.Even though I know my friend was in pain awhile , had the air knocked out of him badly ,lost his club title and has a very bruised ego, and got knockouted out . It was great seeing my little nephew take his title. I am one who always says boxing is just a game, but I do have to admit that I gained a lot of respect for Steve because of that fight, and as much as hate to admit it, yes , I lost a lot of respect for Greg. I had just thought of him as somebody who didn't lose to a guy like Steve. I guess Steve was right about big guys falling harder. Steve was so excited on the way back to my apartment. He just kept retelling how he had had a feeling Greg wasn't so "tough". As surprised as I still was , I was proud to admit it. What I expected to be a lesson for Steven for my and Greg's entertainment turned out to be a lesson for Greg. But I wouldn't take back the chance to witness that for anything in the world.
I'm glad he didn't have to go to the hospital that night . Maybe he should have. I think maybe he had a concussion. But it would have looked even worse if he had gone. And , Greg, I have to give you credit. At least you were right when you so confidently predicted you would probably "not hurt(Steve) 'too' badly." Sorry, Greg. But that was just too easy, lol..
Also, Steve offered Greg many chances for a rematch. Greg always refused. But Greg tried to pretend he was willing if he knew Steve wasn't within ear shot, which caused me to lose what remaining respect I might have had for Greg. So, Greg, I have to tell the whole world now: You have the height, the weight, the reach, and, the training . But the best fighter won, buddy, fair and square. Sorry, buddy.Steve is the better fighter. And, he is tougher on the inside too.
I really thought you could beat Steven up. But I think the surprise of seeing him daze you so badly , and then reach up and put his left glove into the side of you chin like that , and really finishing you off by scoring the knockout really proved the point.
And Steve, I am sorry I ever under estimated you, buddy. I had been best buds with Greg's older brother , and he thought Greg was pretty tough. so I did too. Besides, Greg is is big guy . He said he would beat you easily. I believed him. I'm Sorry.
But now that I know that not only did you knock him the heck out cold, but you also gave him a fair chance to prove it wasn't a fluke. So Steven, I announce here in front of my readers my official verdict "Ladies and Gentleman". "The Winner". "by Knockout". and "New Champion". Steven Wolfe!
You earned your way into my book as one of my favorite stories to tell. Greg had been so excited about being in my book that I almost feel sorry for him being in it this way. But Greg, if you hadn't be such a bully and had had a little respect for Steven as an equal, this never would have happend to you.. You insisted before the fight that I write all about it in my book. So now you have it. I have mixed feelings about it , but I am keeping my word by writing this. Steven deserves to share his story, and it's a good one. But face it . You are famous now. Like Goliath, you got beaten down by a smaller hero. Steven. Unlike Goliath, you get to live. You don't get any proceeds from this book, but , beaten and more humble, you will live. The end.