Friday, August 10, 2012

Dawn Patrol and Muskie Fishing

the lawn needed to be cut badly. it was slow going and every few feet i had to lift the shoot on the side of the mower with the toe of my sneaker so it could belch out a clump of long neglected clippings.
i wish the heat that is making the streams so warm would burn my grass so i didn’t even have to pull the mower from the dank shed.
the humidity weighs heavy on everyhting. my new issue of the the fly fish journal wrinkled as soon as i pulled it from it’s protective, plastic sleeve. my beer can seems to have pores and sweats more then i do, leaving dark ringed foot prints everywhere i put it down. you’d have no trouble tracking me through the house.
i use the magazines as coasters and and they quickly resemble the first porn mag i ever saw, a wrinkled mess i pulled from a roadside ditch. it had endured rainstorms and the baking sun while the magazines in my house are aged by the quality of the air alone.
for the last few weeks i’ve abandoned the tricos and 7x for wire tippets and flies with eyes as big as the coins in my pockets. i know muskie are in vogue. that after a movie has been made about a fish that you are just another guy riding on the band wagon as you chase whatever the camera has turned into a star. i don’t care though. just like i refuse to let hipsters and popular culture ruin carp or PBR for me. i won’t let it stop me from peeling back the layers.
muskie are not new and i’ve half heartedly pursued them over the years, but this new water has numbers that make them less of a unicorn that they have been.
it’s been a shot in the arm, straight to the vein. one i truly did not need. i don’t need anything else to make me love this sport more.
yet somehow i feel reinvigorated by a fish that only seems mildly interested in my presentations of spun hair and too much flash. it’s funny how we adjust our standards of success. a follow is something to talk about. in the last couple years I’ve consumed every piece of information i can find about them but i know the only education that really matters happens on the water. i’ve had fish eat but still haven’t held one in my hands.
so the other day when one was hooked up long enough for me to pull the fish to the surface before it shed my offering with a shake of it’s head, i wasn’t surprised by the emotions i felt. not anger, not disappointment, not real regret… just amusement. i realize i’m not in a rush for this one. that there aren’t many new fish within driving distance of my house and that i’ll only get one chance to catch my first muskie. 
it’ll happen soon. i can feel it deep in my bones. i’ll keep casting and won’t loose heart. these log shaped, pretentious fish can sense it and we’ve got a mutual respect for each other now. almost like the girl that played hard to get but then ended up chasing you after you knew her game. i’ve turned a corner with them and we both know it. so we’ll flirt with each other a little longer but soon we’ll be taking photos together smiling because we both it’s inevitable.