I have discovered the secret that every fisherman would love to know. It is the secret of how to have a lake all to yourself, each and every time. Allow me to explain.
My clever plan calls for adding giant speakers to my boat. Once on the water, if there are more boats in the area than I prefer or in a fishing spot that I selfishly believes belongs only to me, I'll simply endeavor to entertain the masses by loudly playing those all-time favorite fishing songs known to anglers everywhere. I now own a complete selection.
Once those remarkably peppy tunes hit the waves I suspect all outboards within sight will ignite and then I'll be able to gleefully count the rooster tails vanishing in the distance. Neat idea, huh?
This strategy was recently dumped on my desk via the masterfully efficient U.S. Post Office from a rather clandestine musical outfit known only as the "Thursday Night Fishing Club."
I opened the odd-appearing package slowly and carefully, not knowing what the result might be. Inside I discovered a wonderfully worded epistle for "Immediate Release" and four CDs, the primary one of which was titled "All Gone Fishing." The other three CDs were apparently highly prized consecutively numbered volumes of "The Best of the Thursday Night Fishing Club." The package also contained a five-pack of Gary Yamamoto Custom Baits.
The baits I knew I could use. Yes, sometimes Christmas does come early!
The CDs? Well, that's another tune entirely. However, being a dedicated outdoorsman and not wishing to doubt anything fishing, I chomped on this cheap ploy hook, line and sinker. According to the official release the catchy tunes featured such "country music legends as George Jones, Merle Haggard, Porter Wagoner, Bobby Bare and Jerry Reed all singing the praises of wetting a line and getting out on the water."
I have listened to each and every song in honor of Gary Shiebler, the "award winning singer-songwriter" and founder of Nashville's Thursday Night Fishing Club. It was a dedicated effort on my part, the kind that brings a tear to your eye - both of them, continuously.
How can I ever forget, even though I wish I could, the enchanting rendition of the all-time classic "Beer, Bait and Ammo" by George Jones or the wonderfully catchy "Hey Bubba, She Fishes Better Than You?" Other memorable, even infamous tunes, include the eerie but inviting "Tellin' Lies and Tyin' Flies" and the remarkably happy sound of "Too Much Beer and Not Enough Bait." Admittedly I'm no expert when it comes to music, but I'd say the latter is most certainly destined for No. 1 on Billboard's country music charts.
In fulfilling my commitment to keep you, the valued reader, fully informed, I share with you the very personal revelation that writing these lines has taken much more time than usual - the reason being is that I have been constantly distracted by the incessant replaying of ghastly harmonies in my head, from the tortuous tune "Walleyed Again" to Lorrie Morgan's version of "Something Fishy's Going On."
In an effort to release the demons, I chose to share the songs by vocalizing them to my fellow writers. I read somewhere that such a method can be an important part of the healing process. Now, as I sit in a completely empty newsroom where chairs are either overturned or still spinning on their pedestal, and the loud echo of a slamming door has faded way, the songs are actually beginning to win me over.
However, it remains apparent that my choices ahead are quite limited. I'm an optimist, but this livewell is half empty. I either have to learn to enjoy the whimsical songs or go drown myself. An internal debate rages in the brief moments between alternating lines from that coveted all-American ballad "The Front of the Boat" and the fearful and lasting message delivered by "White Cap Hell."
Wait! Fortunately, dear reader, future editions of this vaunted column are assured!
I have just learned that I am a possible candidate to receive a complimentary bag of new "PsychoDad" baits. I think they'll go great with my new music.