Saturday Story


I often think I was born in the wrong time, year, and century.

As a young man I was an avid fencer. No, not chain link, but the sword fighting kind.

It was in high school and our coach was Anton Vokov.  Mr. Vokov was a math and European history teacher who had fled Hungary in the “revolt” of 1956. He came to America, settled in Washington State and became a teacher.

He had also been a member of the Hungarian National Fencing Team.  Fencing wasn’t big in Seattle High Schools so we were always fencing College teams, or out of state students.

Fencing was something I continue today, just not as much or as fast.

I excelled as a competitive handgun shooter. I’m pretty good with a rifle or shotgun.

I played with archery as a youth and have taken it back-up.

So here I am, a man that is good with gun or blade, handy with a rifle or bow, but I’m pretty bad with my hands. I mean bad as in not good.

As a police officer I got myself talked into training for Golden Glove Boxing. Don’t ask why, I have no answer.

My trainer was a patrol friend of mine, I had gone to Kaimuki High School with his sister, and he later became one of my sergeants and a friend.

I was already in my 30’s, not exactly the optimum age bracket for learning to box. What the hell, why not.

So I started training. Roadwork and gym work 5 days a week. I worked out hard, did full shifts as a police officer, and still found some time to spend with the young lady of my life. In fact, she often met me at the gym and we’d go out after workouts.

I worked hard and tried to really learn everything the coaches tried to teach me, and practiced, practiced, practiced.

Well, let’s finish this tale. I trained hard, and thought I was ready.

I had three Golden Glove Fights, I had three second round knockouts and when I woke up fro

m that third knockout my friend looked at me and said,

“Jim, you might consider this ain’t your sport.”

I had to agree.

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