The Greatest

 

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

I have started this blog ten times and ten times I could not write it, I could not see it, and I could not feel it. It just didn’t work. In 1971, I scalped a ticket for the first Ali-Frazier fight. In 1974, I had a credential for upstairs but was thrown out and then had to move around the Garden every half round from one vomitorium to another. (Yes, it’s a vomitorium.) I would love to tell you that Ali was a very close friend of mine, but if I did that then I would be lying. I photographed him three or four times. I ran into him in Vegas and Atlantic City. One time I met him with Bert Sugar and he went right past Bert and said, “Hey Joe D., how are you?” just to tick off the Bertster. Like many great people, Ali transcended all boxing, sports, religion. Conscientious objector, the man had amazing intellect, speed of hand and eye,  and a huge heart. He was absolutely the greatest and still is. I called Bert 17 years ago and asked him if we could call Ali to call to my son’s fourth grade class. Bert said, “Let me see what I can do.” Sure enough, he got Ali to call. Amazing stuff, amazing memories. I will miss him and the world will miss him, too. I guess he’s going to have a field day with Angelo Dundee, Bert Sugar, Budd Schulberg, and Joe Frazier. They won’t be drinking (okay, except for Bert and Budd) but they will be talking boxing. I wish I was a fly on the wall in heaven. You know what I find interesting? I laughed when he changed his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali. After that initial giggle, I never gave it another thought.  I hope that makes sense. Rest in peace, Muhammad.

Please see the video (linked below) by an old friend of mine from Sports Illustrated, Bill Nack- it says it all. He’s a professional writer, I am not.

http://espn.go.com/sports/boxing/ali/news/story?id=3171301

Angelo Dundee © Joe DiMaggio

Angelo Dundee © Joe DiMaggio

Bert Sugar © Joe DiMaggio

Bert Sugar © Joe DiMaggio

Budd Schulberg © Joe DiMaggio

Budd Schulberg © Joe DiMaggio

Joe Frazier © Joe DiMaggio

Joe Frazier © Joe DiMaggio

 

 

 

 

Fight Night June 18th, 2016

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

“I’m inviting you to join me at a boxing benefit. Step into my corner to help some great kids!”

This year’s event will be hosted by and showcasing Gerry Cooney, will feature amateur USA Boxing Federation bouts, and will include special appearances in the ring by Governor Richard Codey and Michael Costa.

In addition to general and ringside admission seats, we are offering a Pre-fixe “Fight and Dinner Package” at the Zylo Restaurant at the W Hotel.

Money raised at the event will directly help to make the dreams of a safer and happier life come true for the children of the Youth Consultation Service.

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To all the ships at sea,

I was honored to be the official photographer of the third annual Gerry Cooney fight night. It’s an absolutely great event and it will help children. It doesn’t get better than that, it really doesn’t. If you sign up, mention my name and you can assist me at ringside.

gerry cooney 1980 c copy 2

© Joe DiMaggio

Upcoming Workshop Gleason’s/ DUMBO, Brooklyn March 13th 2016

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© Joe DiMaggio All Rights Reserved

To all the ships at sea,

Gleason’s Gym is the oldest boxing gym in the United States, located in DUMBO, Brooklyn for those not familiar with the term it means -Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass. Great day, great fun, great people, great photos – join us

Brooklyn Bridge ©DiMaggio 3197 e

Brooklyn Pier & View of Manhattan from DUMBO © Joe DiMaggio All Rights Reserved

 

Happy Birthday Gerry

©Joe DiMaggio

©Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea, 

I would like to share a little story about my 35th birthday.  Gerry Cooney showed up at my studio and delivered a beautiful birthday gift.  The box was unbelievably light, but it was wrapped beautifully, it had a beautiful card. I opened it up, and it was a black negligee, size petit.  I said, “Gerry, I’ll never fit in this.”  He said, “you’ll figure out something to do with it.”  So Gerry, happy 29th birthday… oops, I mean 39th birthday, oops.  You’ll always be forever young.  In writing my memoirs, I have four chapters on Gerry Cooney, my publisher is insisting I get them down to one reasonably large chapter, which I will do.

©Joe DiMaggio

©Joe DiMaggio

©Joe DiMaggio

©Joe DiMaggio

©JoeDiMaggio

©JoAnne Kalish                                                      One point low blow.

 

Gerry Cooney

To all the ships at sea,

As the line goes, “Where have you gone Joe DiMaggio?”  Well, the short answer to that is, as my friend Willy Nelson would say is, “On the road again.”  Haven’t had any time to do any blogging, tweeting, or social media, and if I did have time for that, I was probably having a martini, and once I have a martini, I don’t feel like blogging.  Guess what… I haven’t had a martini yet today.  Let me share one of my old friends with you.  Gentleman Gerry Cooney, the number one heavy weight champion a few years back. He’s not only one of the sweetest men God put on this Earth, but his love of his fellow man and especially children is amazing.  He’s dedicated himself to YCS which is an organization that takes care of the children that have been neglected by everybody.  They’re success rate is totally astounding.   Great people going great work, and making great children into great men and women.  It’s truly a beautiful thing.  If we all lived our lives that way, this truly would be a paradise.

Each day YCS cares for approximately 1,500 children, by providing either residential care or in-community and in-home services. Some of the children are separated from their loved ones and have been affected by trauma, others are unable to live at home because of intellectual and developmental disabilities that adversely affect their behavior. Whatever the child’s special education, mental health or behavioral health needs, the caring YCS staff is prepared to offer individualized services to both the child and family. With your support, we can help our children find hope, and cultivate strength and resilience for a brighter future.

http://www.ycs.org/

 

©JoeDiMaggio

©JoeDiMaggio

Cooney and Kalish, getting ready to rumble.

The Sugar Man

To All the Ships at Sea,

I have a very dear friend that I have the utmost respect for. She constantly reminds me not to use certain terms. Well, I know she’s right and for the most part, I always listen to her. I’ve decided to take two words out of my vocabulary. One word is “no”…not in my vocab. Second word is “but”…not in my vocabulary (do I occasionally slip? Absolutely). Anybody following my blog knows that my dear friend Bert Sugar has moved on to the Irish Bar in the sky, where the double cutty sarks are wrapped around the perfume of cigar smoke (there was a day when you could smoke in bars). While researching for my book, Shooting From the Inside Out, I came across this note the Sugar man sent to me. I’d like you to look at it, read it, close your eyes and just think good thoughts. On that note, I wish you health and happiness.

All the Best,

Joe D

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The Fire Within

Hi to All the Ships at Sea,

Keisher McLeod- Wells aka “Fire”, is one of my dear friends. She is one of the most beautiful, lovely, talented, hard-working people I know. Unfortunately, Fire has had a major tragedy in her family. What she’s done, is taken all of the responsibility and done the absolute right thing. I wish her nothing but great luck and God speed.

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After friends and family, photography and filmmaking is my life. The three photos above, in my opinion, are excellent. Unfortunately I have a problem with them, I don’t know who took them, there’s no copyright on them and when my studio manager put them in Photoshop, there was no copyright on the back. Therefore, the photographs then become public domain and the photographer, and I must say a very good one, is not going to get his/her credit. All fine photographers have to work very hard at their craft and their art, I really need to know who made these photos and then that photographer needs to protect them. Sir or Madam, you did a great job. For purposes of the blog ONLY, we’ll call it ©Fire 2013.

All the best,
Joe D

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Yuri Foreman in the Spotlight

©Joe DiMaggio

©Joe DiMaggio

Hi to all the Ships at Sea,

Yuri, one of the protagonists in my full length documentary film, “In This Corner”, has started his long, arduous road back in hopes of securing his hundred and fifty-four pound title, with a one-sided win, at BB Kings last Wednesday. Personally, I’d like to wish Yuri all the luck in the world. For those of you who don’t know, when Yuri’s boxing career is over he will become an Orthodox Rabbi.

All the best,
Joe D

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