My husband has recently taken up bass fishing as a hobby, and I am encouraging him to go pro after only three months. I’m not motivated by the daydream of being on a magazine cover standing beside a sunburned man wearing a tackle vest and smiling like crazy while holding a fish by the bottom lip, or even the promise of having my laundry room smell even more like a pond. I’d just like to recoup some of the money we’ve spent on fishing lures before we have to start dipping into the kids’ college fund to buy groceries, mostly because the kids don’t have a college fund and I like to eat.
Part of the trouble is that lures must be changed not only annually, but seasonally. Fish eat different baits at different times of the year, so anglers must adjust the contents of their tackle boxes accordingly.
Additionally, fish learn to recognize lures that previously hooked them, and they won’t bite the same bait more than once or twice.
Fish are attracted to realistic lures that resemble their actual food, such as flies and frogs. They are also attracted to unrealistic lures that resemble Christmas tree ornaments. Basically, fish are attracted to everything in the world. Therefore, a fisherman must buy everything in the world. Because if he fails to purchase what the fish want and they cease biting, the world will stop. Or, at least he won’t have any new fish to brag about, which is basically the same thing.
Catering to the whims of the fickle fish, an angler must continually purchase new types of lures. My personal theory is that the fish don’t give two worms about the color or size of the rubber frog on a hook. They just go along with the scheme while stashing kickbacks from the bait companies in the Bank of Creek and smoking Cuban cigars through their gills.
“Summer is almost here. What should we start biting for the new season?” one fish asked his buddy between puffs.
“I’m thinking rubber worms with a small nail in the nose. The anglers will like it because they’ll think it’s a new twist on an old classic. Plus, I own stock in the lead industry. That business could really use a boost – lead sure took a nose dive when humans discovered it was bad for babies.”
Rather than hatching news ways to twist old classics, my personal theory is that fishing lure designers find new materials by getting whiskey drunk and rummaging around on the floor of a Las Vegas showgirl’s dressing room.
“Hey, look a sequin!”
“That’s not a sequin, that’s a beer can tab.”
“We’re not drinking beer.”
“Good point. Okay, I have no idea what that is. Let’s put it on a hook and sell them for $32 apiece.”
The way I see it, we have two options. Either I start stockpiling rice and call it “the kids’ college fund,” or Jim is going to have to take up a less expensive and addictive hobby, like high stakes gambling or money laundering.