I sensed in my roommate’s voice a little bit of bewilderment that I’m asking him a question that is obviously going to have a number in it, so to prove to Paul that #1 I’m listening, and #2 there will be a better than average chance that I will get the number right…I am going to do something special for Paul…and all of you who pay attention to numbers.
I’m forgoing the song lyrics between my thought changes…instead, I’m going to show you that I did pay attention to the fact Paul caught 132lbs and some ounces, the last time he was at Falcon, instead of lyrics, there will be this…
132lbs of Bass in Quarters = $2,640.00
After a series of attempts for Paul to place a phone call from his truck in Zapata, Texas, to me in my knee stress fractures forced bed confinement in Connecticut…
“db, we miss you dude, seems weird not having you here with us.”
I’m thinking it’s going to get weirder, dude; I’m about to ask a numbers question.
“So how you doing down there first time back since you caught the record of…what was it?”
“…and 8 ounces.”
“Yeah…that much…how is it going…big sacks yet?”
I get nothing for a moment from Paul who I’m sure is sitting in his truck on some dusty road in Zapata, Texas, and thinking….just how much pain medicine is db on.
132lbs of Bass = 844.8 Jelly Donuts
“…ah, db, not doing really good.”
Back up to last year, first day of practice OF EVERY tournament:
Me: “So dude, how’d it go today?”
Paul: “…ah, db, not doing really good.”
And then, as Shaw would say, “Then he goes out there and whacks them.”
I say to his answer, this, “Uh-huh.”
“db, it’s been really hard to get things dialed in, the lake isn’t like it was the last time we were here…I mean I could bring in a bag with nothing or I could bring in a 30-pound bag.”
132lbs of Bass = 16.5 Gallons of Ice Cream
And, to me, that’s the most interesting part of this sport, not so much the catching and weighing but the looking and finding.
Let me tell you something. After having roomed with two Elite anglers last year, these guys are obsessed with finding fish.
We go out to dinner, that’s what they talk about, driving home that’s what they talk about, Scott Ashmore joins us for dinner…that’s what he talks about…Steve Kennedy, I once asked him how much of the total amount of thoughts that go through his brain concerned fishing.
“Ah….” He looked over at his wife Julia who gave him that “you better not say” finger so I rephrased the question, “If you took thinking about sex out of what ever it is that goes through your head…”
And when I hear that, I always think, how lucky these guys are, how lucky anyone is to be doing what their brain was made to be doing.
132lbs of Bass = 3306 Crawfish
This week, there may be big sacks on stage.
There may not be.
Paul may set a new record, or not.
Paul told me, “…there’s 30 pounds out here for the taking.”
If that’s the case, someone will take it.
But Paul, dude, I wrote this for you, for all those times I didn’t pay attention to the numbers…I want you to know that’s a very special record you have there, one to be proud of, one that may last for a real long time.
And please know, I now realize exactly what 132lbs of Bass is…
…= 264 8oz Margaritas.
Editor’s Note: db is not lying... He is no numbers guy. He even submitted this story with the wrong record numbers in the title “Paul Elias’s 132LBS & (4ozs).” Elias’ record was actually 132 pounds, 8 ounces. Barone's talent with words eclipses this deficit.