No rest for the weary

The season’s halfway over. I’m a little frustrated. As I write this I’m sitting in 34th place in the Toyota Tundra Bassmaster Angler of the Year standings. That’s most certainly not where I want to be. Nevertheless, things are looking up, or at least I hope so.

We’ve got some time off and then it’s on to Toledo Bend in the second week of June. I can’t wait. It’ll be the start of the second half of the season and the start of my kind of fishing. I’m thinking (hoping) I’ll be able to move up in the standings and, when all is said and done, end up with a respectable year.

I’ve told you about that hawk that sometimes sits on my shoulder and talks to me. Well, he hasn’t been all that kind so far this year. Basically, he’s telling me to get my butt in gear and catch more fish. The bad thing is that he’s right. That’s exactly what I need to do. You can say whatever you want about this sport but in the end it’s about catching fish. Either you do, or you don’t.

For the next few weeks, though, I’ll have plenty to do besides sit around and wait. I have an almost continuous schedule of work with my sponsors. That’s one thing a lot of guys who want to turn pro don’t truly understand. To be successful in this business you have to take care of your sponsors. It’s not about doing what you want. A lot of times it’s about doing what they want.

Here’s the thing: They’re in business to sell products and make a profit. They don’t pay us (professional anglers) money because we’re pretty. They pay us to help get the word out about new and exciting products. That’s what I’ll be doing.

Those two things — catching fish and getting the word out about new and exciting products — are not really different. The best companies combine the two. (I’m talking about every single one of my sponsors, here.) They make high-quality equipment, tackle and lures that help guys catch more fish. So, it’s all really one and the same.

When I’m not working for them, I’ll be spending time with Becky and the kids. I really enjoyed our short vacation last week. In fact, I enjoyed it so much I want to do it over and over again. It’s one of those things that the more of it you get the more of it you want.

Do you suppose anyone ever gets tired of vacationing? I doubt it. Maybe the real rich do. Not all the rich, just the ones who don’t work and are on vacation all the time. But I’ve never met anybody like that so I really can’t say. Heck, I can’t even imagine that. I’ve had to work all my life. I’ll probably die of old age someplace fishing a tournament.

That’s enough for now. It’s time to stop preaching and do something useful, something like go play with the kids.

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