As is the case most every day, as soon as I finish at work I immediately start thinking about where I could go fishing. I have my favorite spots that I like to go, I have spots that are closer, but not as fun, and then there are the "kid friendly" spots......LIARS!!!
After a particularly hard day at work, I was ready for a fishing trip. I made my way home, and immediately started recruiting for little fishing buddies. I'm not a smart man, but I am smart enough to realize that my chances of going fishing are greatly increased if I take a child with me. If I take both children, I am immediately elevated to a godlike status and promptly nominated for "Father of the year", an honor that has eluded me for years. After two successful recruits, I felt like this might actually be my year.
Item #1 GETTING READY
quick change of clothes...and convincing Savannah that her shiny black shoes with the bows and buckles were NOT standard fishing attire, we were off.
Fishing poles.....check, check,....and check
oh yeah baby...were going fishing.
Soon after arriving at the "kid friendly" spot, I quickly set up Savannah's princess fishing pole. I put all the standard stuff on and was ready to toss her hook in, when she stopped me.
Me: What bug. (one of her many nicknames)
S: Ummmmmmmmm.......can I swing? pointing to the swing set off in the distance
M: Not right now, we are fishing right now.
S: k....but ummmm....dad.....
M: *gritting teeth (its that whole "Father of the Year" crap) ......what!
S: ahhhhhhh.....I sorta haffa go to the potty.
At this point I am grateful that my thoughts don't verbalize themselves cause all I'm thinking is stuff that my kids ought not hear. Instead, I muster up as much patience as I can ...
M: k, sweetie, you might have to wait for just a few minutes while I help Gabey baby get his pole ready.
S: nnnnnnnnnnkay....but I hope I don't pee my pants.
I think this is where I let out my first audible "damn!"
To avoid a potential disaster I convinced Gabe to just fish with my pole that was all ready set up to fish while I took the princess of pee to use the bathroom. Thats right, I'm totally on top of this parenting stuff.
When I returned to the bank where we were fishing, I looked out and couldnt see Gabes' bobber anywhere. Upon further inspection, it was RIGHT BY THE BANK. Apparently, Gabe was totally distracted with the prospects of dressing our worms up in blades of grass and giving them all swords made out of twigs and fish hooks. I sorta got the feeling that the kids didnt quite share my zeal for such a fishing excursion, but in one last ditch effort, I picked up Savannah's fishing pole, put on some powerbait....cause it was pink, and went to cast it in. First attempt at the cast, the hook probably went 2 feet....behind me. I think this is when the group of kids fishing next to us looked over and had a good laugh at my expense. Yeah,....thats right, yuk it up funny guys, I'll show you. I reset the pole and cast it out........as I watched that impaled worm with the red and white bobber above it, go sailing through the air, I think to myself "nicely done, you should have your own fishing show", what I actually hear from the group of kids...."HEY DUDE....NICE PRINCESS POLE!!" Gabe saw the fury in my eyes and quickly hid all the worm swords so that I wouldn't go and hurt somebody. Instead, he diffused the situation by asking if he and Savannah could just go play. "We don't really like fishing...but we like to play. You can fish and we'll just go swing. Don't worry Dad, I'll keep an eye on her." Reluctantly, I agreed. I'm a stupid man.
Ten minutes later, after getting them on the swings, gathering up unused fishing stuff, and collecting the fragments of my shattered ego, at least I was fishing again....but not for long. Shortly after I had resumed fishing, one of my friends pulled up with his family, as well as my wife.
Them: Have you caught anything?
Me: No, not yet!
Them: Hmmmm, so where are the kids?
Me: (looking over my shoulder towards the swings) ...they are right over.........CRAP!
Cheryl (my wife): hmmmm....yeah.....NICE.....I'll go find them.
Now, don't be fooled, although this is a true story, my time line may be off just a bit. The point remains that while I was fishing....by myself at the kids pond, my kids were off doing lord knows what. The rest of the night is a blur, I remember the kids coming back to the pond....barefoot and muddy as hell. Cheryl was barefoot and muddy. Nobody was smiling...except the group of kids that were mocking me! I had visions of my wife becoming Bear Grylls as she extracted our children from the muddy abyss. I'm glad that nobody was seriously hurt, but I do feel like I should retract my application for "Father of the Year".