Teachable Moments

Teachable Moments

Andy Dear | Sunday, 24 November 2019

A few months back I detailed in an essay entitled "Lessons Learned", how my son and I made an ill-fated attempt to wrestle with the giant Black Drum of Matagorda Bay. In the process we found ourselves involved in what I have come to classify as a "teachable moment" when we made the unwise but well intentioned decision to use some dead crab that was, how shall we say... very well aged and fermented. Well, next week we're going back for round 2, better equipped, better prepared, and armed to the gills (pun intended!) with knowledge gained from the last debacle.

   The last few days have found me in preparation mode for our upcoming trip. I've acquired some new rods better suited to the task, rigged terminal tackle in a manner more commensurate to the quarry...heck, I've even learned a few new knots to better the odds of success in this now ongoing saga of Man vs. Drum.

  As a kid, I used to spend hours, organizing and reorganizing tackle boxes. Epecially during the winter months when it was to cold to go fishing. Aside from being a possible red flag to a somehwat mild but  very diagnosable case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, it was and still is a great way, at least for me, to pass dreary winter days and still be in some semblance of direct contact with the act of angling.

  My good buddy and rod builder extraordinaire Bill Falconer once said in regards tackle craft, "It's a way for me to be doing it, when I can't actually be out there doing it". I seriously doubt Bill remembers saying that. It was a passing comment he made on a shotgun fishing trip we made over twenty years ago. It did however, like many things Bill has said over the years, strike a chord with me, and I filed it away permanently in my memory banks under "things that Bill has said that I can steal for my own future use" As per usual, I concur with brother Bill's wisdom and still find myself spending more time than is probably necessary or appropriate preparing and organizing fishing tackle....obviously the OCD hasn't faded one bit.

  Regardless of how next week's trip turns out, there is one thing I can guarantee you. ROTTING DEAD CRAB HAS BEEN COMPLETELY ELIMINATED FROM OUR LIST OF BAITS. I've relegated my experience with the wretched stench of rotten crab to the same list of bad memories as I have my  most memorable experience with Jose Cuervo Tequila. I used to rather enjoy a good Margarita flanked by the obligatory side of salt and lime. However one bad night in the spring of 1996 where I got a little TOO well acquainted with mi amigo Senor Cuervo, and I have not been able to smell, much less consume Tequila since. At least not without repeatedly waking up in a cold sweat from night terrors of being so inebriated I actually but unintentionally tried to smoke the lit end of an 8.5 inch Diamond Crown Robusto No.1 Cigar. And, in the interest of full disclosure, the aforementioned incident took place right in front of a stunningly beautiful female that I had been trying to impress all night. I'll admit.... not one of my finer moments, and a complete waste of a beautiful woman's time, not to mention a very expensive smoke. But, a true story none the less and perhaps most importantly, another eminently teachable moment in my life.

  Hope you all have a great week, and to those of you Stateside, I sincerely hope all of you have a Happy and memorable Thanksgiving.