David Parkin on not boxing clever, ring names and Christmas cheer

IT seemed a good idea at the time.

After a boxing training session I was chatting about fitness to my friend Nathan Lane of Campfire PR.

I told him he lacked stamina and he told me he didn’t.

One thing led to another and suddenly a challenge was laid down that we would box each other at the gym for three two-minute rounds.

If it does anything then knowing that a bloke is going to try to knock your head off for six minutes does focus your mind on getting fit.

Particularly one who a few years ago went into serious training and took part in a competitive cage fight.

It wasn’t pretty, but then two blokes rolling around in a ring surrounded by fencing wire never is.

Nathan is one of my oldest friends and one of the best public relations operators I know.

I couldn’t tell him that before we entered the ring because he might have thought I was lavishing praise in order for him to go easy on me.

Anyway I survived the experience and landed and avoided a few decent punches but must have taken one or two because I’m still nursing a bruised rib and did struggle to chew my cote de boeuf at our post-fight celebration at the Foundry restaurant in Leeds.

Perhaps the mind plays tricks, but my memories of delivering a graceful and powerful performance were underlined when a video of the boxing match was produced by Jonathan Clough of Researchbods who trains with us.

Set to the opening operatic music from Raging Bull – Cavalleria Rusticana Intermezzo – we looked honed, sleek athletes.

That was until another video arrived with our boxing matched speeded up and set to the Benny Hill theme.


TALKING of boxing, praise is being lavished on a new film executive produced by Martin Scorcese called Bleed For This.

It tells the story of professional boxer Vinny Pazienza, who after winning the world title was involved in a near fatal car accident and told by doctors he would never walk again.

Not only did he ignore them, but teaming up with Mike Tyson’s former trainer Kevin Rooney, he returned to the ring to win a world title a year after the accident.

He also gloried in having one of the best nicknames in boxing: The Pazmanian Devil.

When he fought one of his title fights it brought together two of the best nicknames in boxing.

Vinny “The Pazmanian Devil” Pazienza v Hector “Macho” Camacho.

When Vinny fought middleweight Roy Jones Junior it was pitched by promoters as: The Devil v Mr Jones.

I never got to see that fight but did see Macho Camacho take on Mexican great Julio Cesar Chavez in Las Vegas.

And I also saw one of the last fights of Panamanian great Robert “Hands Of Stone” Duran.

He was boxing in Miami against a man who possibly had one of the world’s worst boxing nicknames.

Ray “The Rat” Domenge.

To be fair to him, he did enter the ring with a rat’s head mask on.


I SEEM to have missed out on the drinks do’s so far this festive season.

My dog was ill last week which ruled out trips to the Christmas beanos hosted by KPMG and FDYL.

And coming towards the end of this week I was starting to get worried that I wouldn’t attend a Christmas party.

So when Richard Larking of Progeny Corporate Law invited me for a festive drink yesterday I think he meant just that: one drink.

What he probably didn’t mean was for an interloper to turn up to his team’s Christmas party, drink a lot of red wine and dominate the conversation.

But in fairness it was about the third Christmas party that the team at Progeny have enjoyed.

Even they must have been tired of Johnny Crew’s stories.

What it did do was provide plenty of topics of conversation, including guidance on how to smuggle two reindeer out of a restaurant hidden down your top.

And Progeny were great hosts. I didn’t buy a drink all night, missed my last bus and the last thing I remember was dancing on a table.

I can’t wait for next year.

Have a great weekend.

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