For Sale: One fishing pole, only used once. And if you act quickly, I’ll throw in the dozen or so night crawlers out in the refrigerator in my garage.

I know, the classifieds are usually in the rear of the newspaper but I thought I’d take a moment to use the power of the column to get my pitch out there.

I was reluctant to purchase the fishing gear, but was worn down by the persistent request from my son. And, as expected, the thrill of fishing lasted for only a short time. I suspected it would be a short-lived experience, which was quickly confirmed.

At the bait shop, my son informed me he was not touching the worms unless he had on a pair of gloves. This declaration was received with more than one chuckle from the crowd inside the store. Trying to minimize the situation, I just ignored him and we headed for the door. I asked him to carry the container of the worms, and he refused.

Refusing to do a task is a normal occurrence for most eight year olds, so I wasn’t surprised.

My wife and I were convinced that this endeavor was a grand waste of money. We were convinced that the fishing pole would go the same route as the skateboard, remote control car and telescope that were must-have items at one point or another over the past years. So confident of this fate, my wife was keeping track of every dollar spent for fishing and was planning on dividing the number of minutes actually spent fishing to see how much per minute we were paying for this adventure.

Our estimates were based on about 15 minutes of a line actually in the water. We actually managed 20 minutes before some rain started falling and we decided to head back. Walking back I was wondering if fishing poles lose their value the second they’re used, much like driving a car or truck off the lot.

As a kid, I enjoyed fishing. Getting the pole ready for my son brought back a lot of memories from those times in my own childhood. Fishing with friends and family was a part of every summer break during my early years. I don’t think we were actually very good fishermen, but we always had a good time. The best part of fishing back then was just sitting on the side of some water and talking.

As an adult, I was dreading taking my son fishing. I knew his attention span was going to be too short to actually make a serious attempt. And I’m a stick and ball kind of guy, who loves sports but knew that I was not going to enjoy this experience. I was wrong. Thankfully, I was wrong.

We never actually landed a fish, but had several bites. We had two fish that threw the hook just before we brought them on land. As good as that was, it was what happened during the down time that made it worthwhile. We talked, laughed and just enjoyed ourselves. That would have been enough for me, but it got even better.

I was holding the rod and reel, looking out at the bobber. He simply and quickly leaned over and placed his head on my shoulder. “I love you, Dad,” he said. He was thrilled to be fishing, and even more so because it was with his Dad.

OK, so maybe I don’t want to sell the fishing equipment. We’ve got memories that will last us both a lifetime thanks to our attempt to drown a few worms. I think we’ll probably head out again soon.

I could use some help with something else though. He wants to catch a fish so that we can put it in the bath tub and keep as a pet. Any suggestions on how to break the news to him on what you do with a good sized fish?



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