You will have noticed the lack of Fishing Report features on this here blog, this summer. I have avoided going out fishing with Arthur through the last several months – though Arthur, too, has been avoiding, in his spectacularly non-communicative way. But now that Wayne is here visiting, you would think there would be fishing reports.
Actually, Wayne and Arthur have just now gone out fishing in the boat for the third day running. And I’ve avoided going with them. This has forced me to acknowledge a very difficult emotional truth about myself:
I hate fishing.
I didn’t used to hate fishing. I used to rather enjoy it, I think.
But nowadays, Arthur’s spectre hangs over my shoulder and whispers to me, inevitably, that I am doing it wrong. That was Arthur’s habit in the best of times – he’d tell me I was doing it wrong, or worse, just barge in and take over, because he wasn’t always great at explaining how to do it right. He was better at demonstrating. But at least in the past, his telling me that I was doing it wrong was accompanied by an effort to teach me how to do it right.
The last vestiges of that mentoring behavior evaporated last summer. It was in that moment when he announced to me, forlornly, that he’d forgotten how to deploy the downriggers on the boat. That left me doing everything, while he just watched sulkily.
And yet… he still found it in himself, later on that same trip, to tell me that I was doing it wrong. I think it broke something inside me.
So there is just no way I want to go out fishing with Arthur. Nevertheless I have neither the self-confidence in my own ability, nor the cruelty toward Arthur, to somehow go out fishing without him.
So I’ve been miserable. And I’m done fishing, I guess.
That’s too bad.
I’ll be glad when fishing season is over and the boat is back in the barn, and the people around me stop talking about fishing constantly.