Much like my relationship to every other sport, I like the idea of boxing much better than boxing itself. The mythology of boxing as portrayed in movies like 'Cinderella Man', and Mark Knopfler's 'Song For Sonny Liston' makes me a little sentimental about it from a human angle, but when I sit down to watch it, nothing happens. Maybe I'm deficient in some kind of man-gene, but watching two guys hit each other is boring to me, and watching a crowd of people cheering two guys on as they hit each other reminds me of how bloodthirsty and herd-stupid people can be.
I wish I could lose myself in sports like Lodo seems to be able to. His response to my comment is full of passion:
Boxing is man to man--one on one. No one can win it for you except yourself. Or possibly Don King (or after this last fight--I'd say Bob Arum).
The individual personalities of the fighters take center stage. As Miles Davis said when talking about musical artists, you see a man's carriage, the way he carries himself outside the ring, and you almost already know how he's gonna fight.
The shirt's off, nothing but a pair of trunks--you're practically naked out there except for gloves. Your soul exposed. People would like to see you get hurt. How're you gonna react?
I like that there's no commercials. The fight just plays out in real time. I like the toughness, like my man Miguel Cotto. His skills have declined, but he's got such great heart! You almost respect him just as much when he loses as when he wins.
But I like the skill fighters best--Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao, and my personal favorite--Sugar Shane Mosely. Until you see a really good boxing match (few and far between these days), you haven't seen the best sports has to offer.
The biggest problem nowadays is that the skills of the boxers have really declined. Blood lust for knockouts (brought on by Tyson, and MMA) has taken over an appreciation of real boxing skills.
Good stuff. I can dig the passion, I just can't dig the subject. I had a professor in college that was nuts about Shakespeare's sonnets. He had memorized a lot of them, and would pepper his lectures with references to them. He was such a good professor, and was so clearly in love with the sonnets that I ended up buying a collection of them, and dug into them with great anticipation. Unfortunately, the connection wasn't meant to be.
I guess that's where I am with sports. I love the enthusiasm that it arouses in others, and appreciate the art that they inspire, but--in spite of the efforts of such artists as Russel Crow, Mark Knopfler, my college professor, and Mr. Grdzak--it's just not going to be for me.
And that's frustrating, because it sucks to see people getting such joy from something that only seems to make you yawn.
cross posted at Kos