The debut (and retirement) of ‘Mack Truck’ Menzies
February 1, 2008
Since starting with the Truck News team, James Menzies (our editor) has been very accommodating in allowing me the freedom to determine the subject matter of this column. I appreciate his trust howeve...
Since starting with the Truck News team, James Menzies (our editor) has been very accommodating in allowing me the freedom to determine the subject matter of this column. I appreciate his trust however I fear the “gloves will be off” after he reads this.
I’m going to let you in on a little-known secret. James, mild-mannered journalist by day, is also a prize-winning boxer by night. Okay, maybe I shouldn’t use the word “prize” or for that matter “winning” but he does lace up the gloves. You can imagine my surprise when he announced he was training for his first official fight. He was actually going to get in the ring and trade blows with another human being. No more plastic clown punching dummies, this was the real thing.
His fight was part of a charity event held in late November (I never did find out what that charity was but rumour has it, a short guy with a bad afro was involved.) Weighing in at just over 200 lbs, James was fighting in the heavyweight division. His Gorilla-like opponent, sporting arms the size of tree trunks and tipping the scales at 220 pounds, didn’t scare him a bit. A day or two before the fight, James assured me that I shouldn’t worry if it looked like he was being beaten to a pink pulp. You see, he had a plan, he was going to dance and prance his way through round one until his opponent was exhausted, then go for the jugular in the final two rounds.
Fight night arrived and a large contingent of Truck News staffers made their way to the downtown venue. We found ourselves sitting beside a large group of Menzies supporters (AKA his family).
As we waited, the tension built.
“In this corner, weighing 202 pounds, hailing from Brooklin Ontario, please welcome James ‘Mack Truck’ Menzies.” The crowd roared -at least we did anyway. Dressed in bright red satin shorts and red muscle shirt, James bounced his way into the ring throwing punches wildly in succession. I have to admit, he looked good but I think his intro may have contributed to the final outcome. He built a good sweat just getting to the ring.
The bell rang and James’ plan took effect. He danced his way to the centre of the ring and tapped the Gorilla man’s gloves. What happened next was a blur. Gorilla man came out swinging and swing he did. I mean, this guy was like the Tasmanian Devil on a pork chop. Despite James’ best efforts to “dance and prance,”blow after blow connected. I knew at that point his game plan was out the window.
Long story short, James lost that round, won the second and the third was a dead-heat (at least in my opinion). It indeed was a night to remember. The final bell rang and our warrior stood in the middle of the ring, soaked in sweat waiting for the judges’ decision.
After the fight, James announced it was his first and last ring appearance. A decision most welcomed by his friends, family and especially his fiance, Jessica. As for the final outcome, the next time you see James ‘Mack Truck’ Menzies, you’ll have to ask him. All I can say is that his swollen face is looking better these days. •
-Rob Wilkins is the publisher of Truck News and he can be reached at 416-510-5123.