I have noticed that my better half, Elaine, sometimes has a much better perspective about what I’m doing than I do. Since your spouse knows you pretty well, it’s tough to slide things past her that other folks wouldn’t question. It’s humbling.
This whole thing began way back when we were dating. At that point she was up for going fishing with me. One time I led her sneaking down a bank to where there was a small cove full of bass! Excited, I told her to wait for me and not to cast until I got back. I tried to factually explain that she had a mean slice to her casts, and that she might get hung up in the nearby tree.
I hurried up to the car, got better lures and hustled back over the hill to find Elaine, disgusted, holding her pole, other hand on her hip with the line going straight up to the top of the designated 15-foot tree. She was mad. Trying to prove me wrong she had tried casting the lure and it had gone right where I predicted it might go. Now it was my fault because I had told her not to do it – and then predicting a negative outcome had meant I didn’t trust her casting. Well, no, I didn’t. I think I would handle it a bit differently now – and not laugh so hard.
As newlyweds we were living in Los Angeles, with me training for the 1976 Olympics at UCLA. On the weekends I would head to Castaic Lake, rent a boat and get my fishing fix. On one trip I invited Elaine to fish with me. The bluegills were hungry and before the bobber and worm could settle down the red and white float would pull down with another fish. That’s when I noticed that she was carefully inspecting each fish before releasing it.
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“I am sure that’s the very same bluegill you caught a minute ago!” she said.
Same size, same place – same fish? I’m still not sure if she was serious, but she had me on the ropes. From that point on, when I would come home and tell her about my success, she was always suspicious and would bring up the point that we were probably just catching the same stupid fish over and over again.
On another trip, she was walking along the bank while I cast. I hooked a nice fish and I was just beginning to reel it in when I had a sudden shoulder in the ribs and a hand reached out and grasped the pole. I had no chance at that point as she fought the fish in, a nice 2-pound largemouth. I was shocked. “Honey, you said you didn’t want to fish?” She calmly replied, “I didn’t want to fish. I wanted to catch!” How long can you live with someone and still get surprised? To this day, when I have a fish on, I always look behind me to see if she’s nearby!
Many times I’ve come home after a bad trip and she will ask me why it was off. I’ll explain, “The moon phase was wrong, etc.” She’ll innocently ask, “So if you knew that, why did you go?” Yeah …why did I go?
I have an awesome wife who “knows” when I gotta get on the water and puts up with my craziness. Hope you have a spouse like that – even if they suspect you’re just catching the same stupid fish over and over again!
Never give up!