Blows to the Head: How Boxing Changed My Mind by Binnie Klein

By Binnie Klein

A provocative story of an not likely contender and her midlife transformation via boxing.

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Sample text

As much as boxing has pitted ethnic groups against each other, it has also presented rare opportunities for minorities to advance. It’s hard to feel just one way about this. The last Jewish champ was Mike “the Jewish Bomber” Rossman, who held the light heavyweight crown in the late 1970s. Mike’s father was actually Italian, but he chose to go by his mother’s maiden name. He turned pro at the age of seventeen and had to fight illegally because he was underage for professional boxing, but he won twenty-two bouts in a row.

Only people had the hope of enduring. If only my parents could have had the benefits of Prozac, which was decades away from development. My mother did have Miltown (the Valium of that era), prescribed by Dr. Stern, her psychiatrist. We never knew what Dr. Stern said or did, but I heard that at one point shortly after my birth, electroshock therapy was 51 proposed (as far as I know, the treatment was not carried out but I have no definite proof either way). While my mother is in the kitchen making me a tuna sandwich, I take the thermometer into the bathroom and run it under hot water.

He’d joke about being like Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman. ” Fat black bucks in a wine-barrel room/barrel-house kings with feet unstable. We understood nothing about the racism in the poem; we just loved the way my father dramatized Lindsay’s innovative rhythms. Boomlay, boomlay, boomlay, Boom. Ernest Lawrence Thayer’s “Casey at the Bat,” one of the most famous baseball poems ever written, was a more wholesome tale: But there is no joy in Mudville—mighty Casey has struck out. Julius felt that he himself had struck out, and reminded us of that frequently.

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