The Contender, Alfred
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, Junior
The gym from the Condender
The gym stared down on Junior. Ever since his spectacular basketball season he had been convinced that if he could play basketball, he could play any sport. However, he knew he couldn't just go out for any sport he could. Junior wanted to find a sport that suited him, a sport that he would enjoy. After extensive research online and reading books and pamphlets he decided on boxing. In boxing it was you versus him. Another reason for choosing boxing was to increase his fighting skills. An added bonus would be to be able to actually fight in some matches, not just train.
So there he was staring down Donatelli's gym. I can't let this get to me, if I can go to school off reservation I can definitely go into a gym even if they turn me down, thought Junior. So he started up the steep, reckety steps. He saw a sign on the way up reading Dr. Arthur Corey, Dentist. As he started nearing the top he saw there was a dim light coming from the top door. Junior took a deep breath and then opened the door.
The gym wasn't as nice as he thought it would be. The only light came from bulbs placed on the ceiling. The ring was blood-stained from years of use. The gym was bustling with life though. The speed bag going like a rattlesnake, the heavy bag sounding like a sub-woofer. Crunches and pushups were being pounded out on the mat and the steady rythm of the jumpropers tied everything together making the gym sound like a band.
While Junior was standing in front of the doot staring and trying to take it all in Alfred had noticed him come in and was sizing him up. He looked to be five feet eight inches tall and one hundred twenty five pounds. Alfred got the feeling that he was just another kid who got beat on one too many times and was looking to bulk up. So he went over to inquire as to why he was here.
"Hey kid what's up?" asked Alfred.
"Hi, uh, I was wondering if well, um, I could, maybe, train here to be, well, a boxer really?"
"Well what do you want out of it?"
"You know, why did you come?"
" Well, I wanted to take up another sport and boxing seemed like fun. Oh and it might protect me," Junior feebly explained. At this point Junior was really wondering why he had come; his self-confidence was losing momentum. It was as just as Alfred had thought, he had wanted to protect himself.
"I think you should come with me." Replied Alfred.
They walked by the mats as everyone continued on with there: life as usual. Some of the boxers on the map did stop what they were doing though to eyeball Junior. That just made him wish he had chosen another sport. I don't think I can do this he thought. They went into the locker rooms and into the back past the showers towards Donatelli's office. Junior's old meak self was coming back. Alfred knocked on the door and popped his head in then explained the situation to Donatelli. He then held the door for Junior who then came in and sat down on a rickety old chair that had been left out in the rain one too many times.
"I here you want to be a boxer. What makes you think you have what it takes?" said Donatelli addressing Junior.
"Well, I just thought I could join and train. I didn't really expect there to be any requirements."
"Uh-huh, so you just thought I would let you in here and train even if I thought yoiu wouldn't amount to anything?"
"Well, yeah," replied Junior.
"You're fairly skinny for your height," It was a statement.
"I was hoping to build some muscle," replied Junior.
"So I heard. Let me explain something to you. I think you have what it takes, but don't think you have the motivation. So I'm going to assign Alfred to be your personal trainer. He'll tell you what to do," explained Donatelli indicating that Junior was accepted.
He had done it. He had gotten accepted to train for boxing. He knew it would be hard, but he would push through it.
"Ready for the worst three weeks of your life? 'Cause that's what it's going to seem like with the motivation I'm supposed to give you," said Alfred indicating that Junior's work in becoming a boxer had just started.