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The Bakersfield Voice Sunday, November 20, 2011

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S P O R T S

Boxing world loses a legend and true champion

W

ell, let’s see. Guess we could elaborate on Joe Frazier was smallish for a heavyweight fighter. It the scintillating World Series in which was said that Joe soaked his head in a pine tar soluthe St. Louis Cardinals trumped the tion prior to fights in order to toughen up the skin on snake-bitten Texas Rangers his forehead! Man could he pack a punch. in seven games — the A right-handed boxer normally exhibits a Rangers twice being one pitch away from left lead with a right knockout punch. In claiming the title in Game Six. But that Frazier’s case it was his devastating left was too long ago. Okay, then let’s opine hook, emanating somewhere from down about the BHS Driller’s immaculate footaround his left knee, which knocked ‘em ball record to date. Naw. Same ‘ol story cold. Ask Muhammad Ali! year in, year out. How about Bakersfield’s Ah, the Ali-Frazier trilogy back in Kevin Harvick currently standing third in the hey-day of heavyweight boxing. I the NASCAR Chase race? Um, looks like remember their first tussle distinctively. a two-man race between Carl Edwards After baseball practice at Long Beach and fast-closing Tony Stewart, so no. State in March of 1971, a friend and I venWould you go for glossing the Green Bay tured down to the Long Beach Arena to Packers since they are the only unbeaten watch Ali-Frazier I (The Fight Of The team in the National Football League at Century) coming to all from fabled midseason? Boring. I’ve got it. Can’t miss Madison Square Garden in New York. Of on this one! Let’s talk about the NBA course, most of the nation was rooting for lockout. WHO CARES! the loud-mouthed and brash “Louisville Then, it is with a tinge of sadness Lip,” Ali. Few gave Smokin’ Joe a chance. and a misty eye that I would like to Ali was the articulate, consummate showSports columnist expound upon and honor the life of boxman and Frazier was thought to be less ing’s Smokin’ Joe Frazier. The most prominent boxschooled with zero polish. Muhammad Ali made ing foil of the immortal Muhammad Ali passed away racist remarks concerning Joe during the buildup to at the age of 67 after losing a very sudden battle with the fight. Frazier refused to refer to Ali as liver cancer. This last bout Joe fought was one of the Muhammad Ali and constantly called him by his very few times that he was knocked out, as he comgiven name of Cassius Clay. Both were irked with piled a sterling ring record and was the 1964 Olympic each other. Joe more so than Ali, truth be known! It Gold champion in the heavyweight division in Tokyo. was a classic bout which ebbed and flowed — Ali

MICHAEL ELLIOTT

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S C H O O L S

ELWOOD P. SMITH/MCCLATCHY-TRIBUNE

Joe Frazier is best known for his three fights against Muhammad Ali. sticking and moving while Frazier plowed straight ahead like a bulldozer. Finally, in the 15th and final round, Frazier seemingly reached back to his roots in South Carolina seeking momentum for his left hook and floored Ali — the tassels attached to Muhammad’s high-top shoes waving at the ring lights

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above as he landed on his posterior. The world was stunned! Joe Frazier won that first fight by decision and Ali won the rematch between the two icons. The rubber match was dubbed “The Thrilla In Manilla” and so it was! The fortitude displayed by both combatants throughout the match was quite a sight to behold. It was a pure battle of wills, with neither giving an inch. Ali’s left jab ultimately proved to be too much for Frazier as he could barely see out of either eye at the end of the 14th round and Joe’s corner threw in the towel. Mind you, Joe Frazier did not throw in the towel! I believe he would have came out for the 15th and final round if not for his corner men’s deed. Perhaps one of the greatest matches in boxing annals. Upon Joe’s retirement from boxing he owned a nightclub and sang at his nightclub as well. Not just because of the loss in the third bout to Ali, but Joe always played second fiddle to the pompous, endearing, controversial Ali as the years trudged on. Ali was and still is “The Greatest,” but for that one night in March of 1971 Smokin' Joe was anointed the greatest. Joe tried hard to turn a deft ear to Ali's proclamations and slights as time went by, but he truly was disturbed and fraught with anger for most of his life due to Ali's disposition towards him. Smokin’ Joe Frazier. A legend in his own time. One of the truly iconic boxers to come along in our lifetime. Rest well, Joe, and know that you were certainly revered by the boxing world.

C E L E B R A T I O N S

Optimal Hospice Care pays tribute to local veterans BY RHONDA FRANKHOUSER Community contributor

T

PHOTO PROVIDED

Fruitvale Junior High School students Morgan Swann-Malamma and Max Hudgens practice lines during a dress rehearsal for the school’s annual production of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.”

Fruitvale students ready for ‘A Christmas Carol’ BY ALICIA HAMMONS Community contributor

F

ruitvale Junior High’s advanced drama class is pleased to announce its Fourth annual production of Charles Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol.” Directed by drama teacher, Alicia Hammons, “A Christmas Carol,” will take place on Friday, December 2 at 6:30 p.m. Prices are $6 for adults, $4 for children or FJH students. Students should attend with a parent or guardian. Dickens wrote the novel primarily to address the poverty of England’s poor. At the time, many were trying to make the bakers close their shops on Sundays. This infuriated Dickens because many poor families took their Sunday meals to the bakers to be roasted. Closing the shops would deprive many of their only hot meal of the week. Most funerals at the time were for children under the age of 10. Those that

If you go Fruitvale Junior High’s “A Christmas Carol” DATE: Friday, December 2 TIME: 6:30 p.m. (doors open at 6:05 p.m.) Show runs about 45 minutes, no intermission PLACE: Fruitvale Jr. High Multipurpose Room 2114 Calloway Dr. COST: $6 for adults, $4 for children or FJH students. Students should attend with a parent or guardian. did survive grew up poor, without an education, and forced to continue the cycle of poverty. Many of Dickens’s characters were based on his real-life family members, including his sister,

Fan, and her crippled son. “A Christmas Carol” tells the story of a mean and bitter miser, Ebenezer Scrooge. Scrooge is not sensitive to the plight of the poor and doesn’t care about anyone but himself. In the course of one night, he is visited by his former business partner and three other spirits who try to urge Scrooge to become a better man, and to care for others. In the spirit of this great tale — and to ensure that no one in our community goes hungry this holiday season — we are asking everyone who attends to bring one can of soup for our soup drive. There will be a $1 discount to each person who brings in a can of soup the night of the performance (limit one discount per person). Please come and enjoy this terrific production — we look foward to seeing you. Have a blessed holiday season!

he team from Optimal Hospice Care and their friends and family members paid tribute to our nation’s veterans by participating in the 2011 Veterans Day Parade in Bakersfield. In spite of windy weather, they were proud to walk alongside the vintage fire truck owned by Nathan Maragoni, waving to enthusiastic onlookers and veterans alike. In addition to participating in the parade, Optimal Hospice also recognized the contributions of current patients and caregivers who are veterans by presenting them with a special Certificate of Appreciation signed by their care team as well as flag lapel pins and patriotic door hangers hand painted by the Optimal Hospice Youth Volunteer Group. Optimal Hospice Care is proud to support the “We Honor Veterans” campaign sponsored by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Association. As a We Honor Veterans provider Optimal works to ensure veterans have access to quality end of life care. To learn more about the We Honor Veterans campaign, visit www.wehonorveterans.or g. For more information about services provided by Optimal Hospice Care or to inquire about volunteer opportunities call 716-4000.

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PHOTOS PROVIDED

A vintage fire truck owned by Nathan Maragoni carried the Optimal Hospice Care Team members down the parade route during the annual Veterans Day Parade downtown on Friday, Nov. 11.

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TOP: Optimal Hospice Care volunteers, Julie George and Laurie Reese, who were joined by other Optimal youth volunteers, participate in the 2011 Bakersfield Veterans Day Parade. LEFT: Clinical Manager, Marissa Hansen, heads up the Optimal Hospice Team at the 2011 Veterans Day Parade in Bakersfield.

G A R D E N I N G

T I P

Protect delicate plants before the first frost hits

N

ow is the time to spray all your frost tender plants with Wilt Proof made by Bonide. This is a one time application to help protect from frost damage. At Robby's Nursery, we have already sprayed our citrus, hibiscus, bougainvillea, palms, and bird of paradise to name a few!

~This gardening tip is a first in a series of weekly gardening tips from our Voice readers. This week’s tip is from Kathy Robinson of Robby’s Nursery. Do YOU have a gardening tip you’d like to share with our readers? Post your gardening tips and photos of your garden on The Bakersfield Voice’s website at: www. bakersfieldvoice.com.


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4 THE BAKERSFIELD VOICE

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2011

The Bakersfield Voice 11/20/11  

The Bakersfield Voice 11/20/11

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