Thursday, May 19, 2011

Karma Giveth, Taketh Away, Then Giveth Again...

A week or so ago I was fishing a small state park pond behind my house when I stumbled upon a tangled mess of spinnerbaits, perhaps six in all, that had obviously fallen from someone's tackle box.

Having been in that boat before, I left them, figuring that someone might be looking for them. But the next day, when I went back to fish again, they were still there, in the same spot. I debated leaving them yet again. They weren't even decent spinnerbaits, just cheap, generic no-name baits like you get from the dollar-a-bait bin at the big box stores. But I figured if whoever lost them hadn't found them by now, they probably weren't going to. So I threw them in my bag and went on my way.

A few days later I was fishing a different public pond, caught a bass, and in the course of digging through my tackle bag for the digital scale and camera, I took my main spinnerbait box out the bag and put it on the ground beside me.

You see where this is going, right? Now fast-forward a few mornings later when, while reorganizing my tackle bag, I realized my spinnerbait box was missing. A frantic search of my garage turned up nothing, and with a mounting feeling of dread, I remembered that I had left my spinnerbait box sitting on that pond bank. To make matters worse, I had taken a six-weight fly rod with me that day, and yep, you guessed it, I had shoved my bass fly box into my spinnerbait box.

I hopped into the car and rushed back the pond, but as I walked the bank I knew I wouldn’t be finding my spinnerbait box. At least fifty of my best, most expensive spinnerbaits, gone.

Plus my entire collection of bass bugs and flies, wiped out. And nope, I don’t get 'em for free. As a certified bottom-rung nobody, I pay full retail just like you. I was sick. It's going to take me a long time to replace what I lost, so as the saying goes, let the purpose of my life serve as a warning to others.

Now the pragmatists among you may chalk this up to my own stupidity and nothing more, but I don't think so. Don't get me wrong, I'm pretty damn stupid. But I think in this case the Karmic fishing gods are punishing me twenty-fold for the unpardonable sin of stealing another man's fishing tackle. It's a clear sign: I should have just left those damn, cheap-ass spinnerbaits lying there for some other sucker to pick up. Lesson learned...

So remember, if you find a piece of lost fishing tackle, no matter how small or cheap it may be, just leave it alone, because no matter how tempting free is, you will pay for it one way or the other. Take it from me. Don't mess with your fishing Karma, it's just not worth it. You've been warned...

I wrote that a week or so ago. Every word gospel truth. People who don't fish can't really understand how traumatic losing your beloved (and pricey) tackle can be. To those of you who think it silly to be devastated over the loss of a few spinnerbaits and flies, well, I can only assume you've never had to pay nine freakin' bucks for a titanium Terminator.

But I digress. I commiserated my tale of woe to fellow F&S blogger Tim Romano who had experienced the same unfortunate thing last year. Two days later I get a package in the mail from Tim, and in it is a box containing a nice assortment of bass flies that went a long way toward replacing the flies I had lost.

Tim's a class-act and a super-nice guy (and if you haven't picked up a copy of Flyfish Journal of which Tim is art director, go do so immediately. It's a great rag.) and he certainly didn't have to do what he did.

Thanks, Tim, truly. When we hit RMNP this summer for greenback cutthroat I'll have to buy you a...oh, I dunno, whatever it is that dudes in Boulder buy each other. Chai tea? Soy beer?

(I kid, I kid...Tim knows I think Boulder's a cool town...) 


  1. Hate that you lost those boxes but look on the bright side - after Saturday you won't need them any more.

  2. Been there done that. In fact I put my bow case in the back of the truck a while back and forgot to shut the tailgate. I did manage to find the bow case with everything in tact but i did not find the dog kennel that i had borrowed from a buddy. And no the dog was not with me that day.

  3. I know - I was too trusting - who would steal a man's tackle box? I left mine in the back of the truck and it was gone. I had all my bass lures, several antique lures that were my grandfathers, that he'd given me, lures from my late Uncle Jack, and a very nice fly reel my wife had given me for Father's Day. That was 1982 and am still lamenting the loss.

    Then there is the knives. Sigh.... JW