"What became of the hat?" a manager asked.
"Mead is wearing it," Walker said. "But I didn't care about the hat. It didn't fit so good."
Johnny Attell, who had been part of boxing for many years as a fighter, a manager and a matchmaker, always had a story to while away the afternoons on the Beach.
"I learned how to make matches from the best matchmaker we ever had around here," he said. "I mean Lew Raymond. He knew a good match when he saw one and he knew how to deal with managers. One thing he never did was to drive a hard bargain, because he always said if you drove a hard bargain the manager would go back and tell the fighter he was being gypped and the fighter either would try to run out on the match or he would make a bad fight.
"Lots of times I saw Raymond give a manager more than he asked for, just to put him in a good frame of mind and get the best out of his fighter. And when he was being hard pressed for terms he had a trick that almost always worked. He and the manager would get to a point where it looked like there was no fight, and then Lou would unhook his watch chain from his vest and hold it out.
" 'Here,' he'd say, 'take my watch and chain if you want. Take anything I got. But I can't give you that extra 2%.'
"That usually would clinch the deal. But one day after a long tussle with a manager he said to me, 'I will never do business with that guy again because he's no good. Do you know what he did? When I held out my watch and chain he tried to grab them!' "
Attell learned quickly when he was working for Raymond.
"Flyweights were going good around here at the time," he said, "and we matched Ernie Jarvis, an Englishman, with Wee Willie Woods. Just an hour before I start for the fight club they call me and tell me Jarvis is dying. They had him in a doctor's office and Raymond and I rushed over there, and there he is. He is laying out on a table, and he looks as if he is dead. He ain't dead, but he is nearly dead. The doctor says it is acute indigestion. Can you imagine how we felt? It's the night of the fight and we have a good sale and this fellow is dying.
"It seems he ate pickles and milk in the afternoon. Cucumbers, he called them. I ask the doctor if there's any chance of saving his life, and if there is, can he fight that night. The doctor says he don't know.