They’ll Never Call Me “PUNCHY”

Chester Rico [BoxRec] was my father’s brother.
This article is from MALE” Magazine. January 1952. Vol. 2, No. 5.  [Source]


notpunchy.clear

By CHESTER RICO as told to RAY ROBINSON

A fighter is like a lush – it
takes just “one too many”
and he’s sliding down “queer
street” or winding up dead.

Chester Rico is a former lightweight and welterweight prizefighter who fought his last of 101 professional bouts in 1950. He is now driving a taxi in New York City. After 13 years of tough fights, few headlines and small purses, Rico decided he would rather battle traffic than second-rate pugilists. Although Rico’s name is not too well known, even to boxing aficionados, he has fought some able “tigers,” including Bob Montgomery, Tippy Larkin. Johnny Bratton, Beau Jack and Mike Belloise. Chester is married, has two children, lives in the Crotona Park section of The Bronx. New York. His ambition: to stay out of the ring for good, and to keep his little boy from ever becoming a fighter. Rico is 30 years old, and the skin tissue over his left eye is weary from stitches that have been taken in it. The bones in his right hand were broken so frequently that he is forced to shake hands like a ribbon clerk. His is the story of the “clever second-rates in the ring.”

 

ChesterRico

I don’t know why in hell some of these “catchers” keep on fighting! I wasn’t even a “catcher,” but I got out when the getting was good. What’s a “catcher” in the boxing game? He’s a guy who keeps taking punches around the head, maybe three or four for everyone he lands. Sooner or later a catcher ends up you know where — some of these newspaper guys call it “queer street” — and even If you aren’t a catcher, the boxing racket IS rough on a guy once he’s lost the touch.

When I lost the touch in 1950, I gave it up for good. Sure, quit before you’re punchy!

A guy should know when he’s on the way out. Nobody should have to remind him about It. I put in plenty of time in the ring — about 13 years, I guess — with about 101 pro fights and 60 amateur fights, but when my time was up, I think I knew about it.

I’m not trying to kid anyone. I was never a champ. I never got any of those big purses that you read about. But I was the kind of fighter who picked off the punches” I anticipated. I blocked, I was a counterpuncher. I wasn’t a catcher like I told you — and so in a lot of books I was a clever boxer. To tell the truth, if I was 100 years old today I could still beat some of those guys who just wade into you without looking. They were always my meat and, even when my reflexes slowed up to a walk and my arms got like lead, those were the guys I could beat without half trying.

I’m not bitter about the fight business. Sure, I wound up without much of a bank account! With a scrap-book that’s crawling with roaches. No vocation, and with a good lump over my left eye — but I’m not squawking. It could have been a lot worse — and I knew what was coming. My wife always told me I’d wind up with nothing – and I did. After all what can you save on about 10 $400 purses a year when you’re cutting in a manager 33-1/3 percent, and paying expenses for training?

Anyway, I did what I always wanted to do when I was a kid. I got to be a prizefighter. I’ll admit I didn’t win any championships, but I also didn’t get my brains scrambled. And that’s something in this racket.

When I was four years old, my folks brought me to New York from Rochester, where I was born. I was crazy about boxing’ from the time I was just a little kid. When you’re as nuts as I was about boxing, you dream of becoming a champ. And I dreamed.

My dream never came true, but I did reach the Heavyweight title eliminations in 1943. That’s when Bob Montgomery won from me on a TKO in 7, after I was way ahead on points. That was the biggest purse I ever got, too – 3,000 bucks. They didn’t come that nice for me, before that or after. I averaged around $1,500 a purse for a while, but then I slipped down to $400.

I fought in the PAL when I was a kid, but the Golden Gloves rejected me. Said I had a heart murmur, or something.

When I was about 17, I turned pro. A guy by the name of Larry La Conte faced me in my first fight. I knocked him out in the third round. My father died the year I turned pro; my mother died practically every time I fought.

male-mag-crop.2From 1938 to 1943 I had a pretty good record. I only lost about a half-dozen fights,> never got kayoed, and worked my way out of the sticks to St. Nick’s and the Garden. I was rated among the first ten lightweights in 1942 and 1943.

My manager, Jack Barrett, was a nice guy — even though it’s hard to say nice things about anyone who’s gonna cut in on your blood money for 33 1/3 percent. Frank Caragliano was my trainer, and he did a nice job. But I’ll tell you, I know how to train myself. I did a lot of road work up around The Bronx. I didn’t smoke, and I only drank beer, when I drank anything. I got married in 1943 — and even then my wife wanted me to quit. And that’s when I wasn’t even getting hurt.

The chance with Montgomery came along in 1943. It was a main go at the Garden. I really figured I could win and maybe go on to the lightweight title in a couple more fights. But Montgomery was rough, and good.

I really had him for five rounds. Then that left eye of mine started to go, and it was curtains. My right one was pretty bad, too, and the blood was pouring out of the skin above both eyes. I must have been some mess, but that was one way for Montgomery to win. In boxing, when you draw blood-if you’re smart-you’ll follow it up, go after it. Just like they say a shark goes after blood.

From that time on, I had a left eye that would start to bleed if you looked at it. The boys in the trade knew about that weak left eye, too. It was their business to know about those things.

For a while, I was still a good enough boxer, and quick enough to keep the sluggers away from the skin over the eye. But a few years make a lot of difference in a guy’s style and his speed and his ability to block punches.

By 1945, after I served a little while in the Army~ the eye was really giving me a hard time, and my right hand was getting smashed almost every time I fought. Bones seemed to be weak in the right hand. I can’t count the number of times I busted bones in that hand. When I did I had to lay off a while, take it easy.

Then I fought a guy named Charley Smith in Detroit. Funny thing, but until that fight I never thought much about getting hurt in the ring, getting knocked punchy, O( getting knocked cold. As a matter of fact, nobody’d ever really knocked me flat. Some of my fights were stopped, but those were TKO’s-and I always landed up on my feet. .

But Smith really put it to me. He was a very good puncher. He knocked me down three times in two rounds, worked over my eyes until I was completely blind. It was the worst licking of my life. I was almost a “catcher” that night — but only because I couldn’t see what was going on. You sometimes wonder, if you’re not a fighter, what keeps a blinded boxer in there, hitting at air, and a target he can’t see. It’s heart, pal. If you don’t have that, you should never be a fighter in the first place. I know I had heart, and that night I had nothing else.

Even after the Smith fight, and getting my eyes shut up like a clam, 1 had heart for the game. A guy with heart keeps fighting even if he doesn’t seem to be going anywhere- and I guess by 1947 I wasn’t going anywhere in particular

I kept getting the same story at home. My mother kept telling me to quit. My wife did the same thing.

“Look.” I told ’em. “I like to fight, or else I wouldn’t be in there.”

“You like getting your hands all cracked and your eyes all bloody and puffed up?”, my mom and wife used to ask me. “What do you think you’re getting out of it?”

Hell, I couldn’t really answer that one. But I kept saying, I liked boxing — and it’s the only thing I know how to do.

No fighter sits down and tries to figure out where it’s all getting him. If he’s a champ, he’s on the top of the world-dough coming in, big reputation, everyone crazy to meet him. But if he’s going no place- like m.e, in 1947- he doesn’t want to think about it much. When I took a bad beating, I thought aboui it a little, but as soon as I started to train at Stillman’s or Bobby Gleason’s Gym in The Bronx where Jake La Motta also trained, I stopped thinking about anything else. That’s the way it is with fighters. That explains why so many guys fight ’til their heads are ready to fall off.

In ’47 I lost almost as many as I won, and in ’48, it was the same story. Nobody was really killing me, but for the first time I seemed to lose heart about fighting. If you’re half-way intelligent and realize what’s going on, you know there are no title fights coming your way, no big purses. And then you know that everything isn’t all okay with the game. You’re always lip against a bunch of people who 52 tell you where you’re gonna fight and who you’re gonna fight. These are the same people who choose their own champs. It didn’t matter much to me by 1947, but it still kinda got me, the way this thing operates. It’s as if the Reds and the Browns win the baseball pennants, but the owners decide a World Series between the Yanks and the Dodgers will mean more money- so the Reds and Browns just don’t get to play. You know what I mean-that’s what they do in boxing. Look at Harry Matthews today.

That’s the way I was thinking a coupla years ago. Then I came up against Julio Jiminez in San Antonio in 1948. Julio beat me in 10. I didn’t feel so good that night after the fight and, when I woke up next morning, I looked at my left ear in the mirror and it was puffed up like a monkey ear or a big balloon. Funny, but in all the years I’d been boxing I never came up with a cauliflower. Some ·boxers like to let people know they’re boxers just by looking at ’em. They sort of take pride in cauliflowers bashed-in noses and all the stuff that the sportswriters call “trademarks of the ring.” I always felt I could do without ’em. For me, not to be marked up at alt, was a sign that I was a pretty fair boxer.

The ear kept puffing up. I thought this was it. When I start getting big cauliflowers, keep getting my right hand busted and my left eye blinded in every fight, maybe I ought to get out for good.

I phoned Jack Barrett, my manager. “Jack, this isn’t for me anymore. I think I’m gonna quit ,” I told him. He said, “forget about it, you’ll be. okay, we’ve got another bout coming up next month.

I didn’t quit then. And I even won that fight the next month with Maxie Starr. But from there on it was had all bad. I kept losing ’em, and the ·eye kept annoying me more, and getting worse.

I fought a fellow named Arthur King in New York ·City in November, 1948. King beat me bad. It was a 10-rounder; I lost all 10 rounds, and I knew it. Ruby Goldstein, the referee, gave nine of the 10 rounds to King. And if the fight had gone 50 rounds, King would probably have won 49 of them. He wouldn’t have knocked me out, because I still didn’t “catch” many that night, but I didn’t do anything to win the fight. I just stood there, blocking and weaving, but I was slow and stale. Ruby did me a favor by giving me a round.

I began to wonder. Here I am dropping fights that I used to win easy, and losing almost every round. When I went to bed at night I had that cauliflower ear, a headache, and no money in the bank. I couldn’t stop thinking of how much better off I’d be doing something else, anything, as long as a little money was coming in. and my brains weren’t going out.

There were a few more for me to lose after the Arthur King fight. I just wasn’t winning a thing anymore; the purses were getting smaller, and I didn’t really have much heart for the business that I was once crazy about.

I must have lost a half-dozen in a row the last couple of years I stayed in the racket. Because I wasn’t a “catcher” I never took much of a beating in any of ’em, but my eyes usually opened up in the first round of each fight, and then it was just a matter of how many punches to my eyes I could block off. If that’s fun, you can get a kick out of jumping off bridges.

I decided, once and for all, it wasn’t for me anymore. And so I quit about a year ago. Hacking around New York, especially late at night, is no picnic, but you can make more doing that than fighting 12 losing bouts a year.

I have no regrets about fighting, even though I wound up with nothing, like my wife always warned me.

My advice to some of the “catchers,” though, is to get out now, while you can still think about things. Or else there’ll come a time when you can’t think — not even if your life depends upon it.

And don’t think it won’t!

***

[Source]


Some Additional Photos

Chester_Rico

Chester Rico

Chester Rico

Bob Montgomery blocks a left hook by Chester Rico in the 1st round of Fight (113678) 8 January 1943.

Bob Montgomery blocks a left hook by Chester Rico in the 1st round of Fight (113678) 8 January 1943.

 

BOB MONTGOMERY (L) vs. CHESTER RICO (R) at MADISON – 1943

BOB MONTGOMERY (L) vs. CHESTER RICO (R) at MADISON – 1943

 

 

New Old Bar

AM/FM Phonograph and 8-Track.

Oh yeah – AND LIGHT SHOW!

(Turn your sound up)

Gretsch G5440LSB Electromatic Hollow Body Long Scale Bass Guitar Black Hardshell Case G6297

Gretsch G5440LSB Electromatic Hollow Body Long Scale Bass Guitar – Black ($900.00 new)
with Original Gretsch Hardshell Long Scale Bass Case G6297 ($169.00 new)

http://www.gretschguitars.com/products/basses/electromatic-bass/g5440lsb-electromatic-hollow-body-long-scale-bass-rosewood-fingerboard-orange/

Condition: Like New! MINT!

The G5440LSB Electromatic Hollow Body Long-Scale Bass is a stylishly seismic new Gretsch bass guitar armed with two powerful new “Black Top” Filter’Tron humbucking bass pickups that endow it with an electrifying deep-end voice and identity.

Its single-cutaway hollow and bound body resonates with full bass tone and balance, and features sound-post bracing and elegant bound f holes. Other features include a maple neck, bound rosewood fingerboard with 22 medium jumbo frets and hump-block pearloid inlays, three-position pickup switch, classic “G” arrow control knobs, rosewood-based four-saddle Adjusto-Matic™ bridge and “G”-cutout tailpiece.

2013 Guitar Catalog (PDF)

General

  • Model Name: G5440LSB Electromatic® Hollow Body Long Scale Bass, Rosewood
    Fingerboard, Orange
  • Model Number: 2518000512
  • Series: Gretsch® Electromatic Collection
  • MSRP: $1299.00
  • Color: Black

Body

  • Body Shape: Electromatic® Bass
  • Body Material: 5-Ply Maple
  • Body Finish: Gloss Urethane

Neck

  • Neck Material: Maple
  • Scale Length: 34″ (864 mm)
  • Number of Frets: 22
  • Fret Size: Medium Jumbo
  • String Nut: Delrin
  • Nut Width: 1.6875″ (42.8 mm)
  • Neck Plate: None
  • Neck Finish: Gloss Urethane
  • Fingerboard: Rosewood
  • Position Inlays: Hump-Block

Electronics

  • Bridge Pickup: Black Top Filter’Tron
  • Neck Pickup: Black Top Filter’Tron
  • Controls: Volume 1. (Neck Pickup), Volume 2. (Bridge Pickup), Master
    Volume, Master Tone
  • Pickup Switching: 3-Position Toggle: Position 1. Bridge Pickup, Position
    2. Bridge and Neck Pickups, Position 3. Neck Pickup
  • Pickup Configuration: HH

Hardware

  • Bridge: Rosewood-Based 4-Saddle Adjusto-Matic
  • Tuning Machines: Gotoh Die-Cast
  • Orientation: Right-Hand
  • Pickguard: None
  • Control Knobs: G-Arrow
  • Miscellaneous
  • Strings: NPS, .010-.046 Gauges
  • Unique Features: Hump-Block Fret Board Inlays, Bound Body Top and Back,
    Bound Sound Holes, Bound Fingerboard, Knurled Strap Retainer Knobs,
    Adjustable Truss Rod, “G” Cutout Tailpiece

Includes Original Gretsch Hardshell Long Scale Bass Case G6297 ($169.00 new)

The Gretsch G6297 is a custom hardshell case designed for Gretsch long-scale hollowbody basses. Specifically, the G6297 fits Gretsch G5440 and G5123 series hollowbody basses. The G6297 is built to last, offering vital protection to your precious bass. It’s made of solid wood and covered in rugged tolex. The comfortable molded handle makes carrying your bass easy. Grab a Gretsch G6297 hollowbody bass case and protect your investment!

  • Designed for Gretsch long-scale hollowbody basses, specifically the G5440 and the G5123 series models
  • Robust wood construction
  • Durable tolex finish
  • Plush lining
  • Molded handle

Salvador Dali – In Search of the Fourth Dimension (“En Busca de la Cuarta Dimensión”)

“In Search of the Fourth Dimension” – 1979

  • “En Busca de la Cuarta Dimensión”
  • “Alla Ricerca Della Quarta Dimensione”
  • (Sometimes referred to as “The Search of the Fourth Dimension”)

Limp clocks, geometric shapes and figures. A pentagram emerges from a cliff face.

“In search of the fourth dimension” by Salvador Dali (1979) is an allusion to different meanings related to four dimensional: polyhedral forms (hypercube), the myth of Plato’s cave, religion, projections and the theory of relativity of Einstein.

  • Signed: “Dali”
  • Numbered: 218/300
  • Embossed
  • Print Size: 29-3/4 x 31-3/4 inches
  • Frame Size: 37-3/4 x 30-1/2 inches
  • Weight (unboxed): 15 pounds.

Click images below to see them full size.

Print

Please ignore the reflection in the upper right.
Print Size: 29-3/4 x 31-3/4 inches

FullFrame Size: 37-3/4 x 30-1/2 inches

SigSignature

Emboss1Embossing and numbering “218/300”

Emboss2Embossing and numbering “218/300”

CoryAttached Article

217[1]Image of the original painting.

 

Provenance – Original owner. Acquired in 1984 as a gift from personal friend Edward “Ed” J. Cory, owner of Cory Galleries in San Francisco, CA. in 1984. Mr. Cory was an authorized dealer of Salvador Dali’s works.

References

Molotov Cocktail – Alexander Kosolapov – 1989

Details –

  • Original serigraph screen printing
  • Signed and numbered by the artist.
  • Edition # 52 of 95
  • Includes original receipt, gallery postcard
  • Weight (unboxed): 19 pounds

The Molotov print has sold all over the world for up to $7,000.00 USD.

Provenance –

  • Purchased new in February 1992 from the now defunct East-West Gallery (owned by Granovsky Galleries) in San Francisco, California.
  • Framed print now being sold by the original owner.

Alexander Kosolapov (Born 1943, Moscow, U.S.S.R.) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Kosolapov

Post-Soviet artist Alexander Kosolapov has lived and worked in New York City since 1975. In 1978 the Sots-Art movement was founded by Russian émigré colleagues Komar and Melamid. Kosolapov worked within this Soviet Nonconformist Art movement, which combined elements of Socialist Realism, Western Pop Art, and referenced Dadaism within a conceptual framework. With irreverent references to Pop Art, Kosolapov often appropriates forms of food product and commodity logos as abstract symbols of Russian ‘state’ power and uses Soviet political symbolism in his imagery.

Molotov Cocktail Original painted in 1989, this work neatly demonstrates Kosolapov’s interest in binding together the brashness of American consumerism, Soviet avant-garde aesthetics and communist propaganda. He focuses attention on the way in which multiple, often apparently incompatible meanings are generated by a simple confluence of text, color and imagery.

PLEASE NOTE IMAGES BELOW SHOW SOME REELECTIONS. PRINT IS IN MINT CONDITION.

2015-10-09_18-00-44Sample Image from Web

IMG_0051Framed

IMG_0052Signature

IMG_0053Numbered “52/95”

IMG_0054Detail 1

IMG_0055Detail 2

IMG_0056Detail 3

IMG_0057Detail 4

IMG_0060Postcard (included)

IMG_0072Inside Postcard (included)

IMG_0073Outside Postcard (included)

receipt

Original Receipt

 

References: