Kentucky Lake – or how not to choose a launch…..

Self-awareness is something I work hard to achieve.  It is not easy.  Even when my wife asked me last night if my choice was knowledge or Ego…I told her it was knowledge.  I had caught over 90 inches in an hour and a half during pre-fishing.  I just knew the fish would be there – and I was the guy to do it!  But, I just wanted to prove that I was superior…my angling skills (don’t laugh at me – keep it to yourself please) would dominate the half mile stretch on Kentucky Lake.  I was bigger than…well, bigger than everything.

Screen Shot 2020-06-28 at 6.59.16 PM

She was right…the proverbial “can of whoop ass” that on day one had been Kentucky Lake…the source of my agony – my…hell cannot remember how many now…skunk – became my ego on day two.

May arrogance, my ego – not Freud’s psychological version or definition of self – but that version where I believe myself to be bigger than my abilities (ok, so maybe the Freudian definition with the “you got a big ass ego” name calling kinda way mixed in)…told me that I could win in spite of all I knew to be true.  I should have listened to that voice that was giggling when I said I am going back to the same spot instead of that part of me that said I am bigger than myself.


Screen Shot 2020-06-28 at 6.58.45 PM


And now, here I sit.  Confessing my sins and documenting the humiliation and disappointment in my “self”…aware (more than I care to be at this point)…that I let my butt write a check it couldn’t cash…I went straight back to goose egg launch, pushed my Hobie off the shore (could have been any launch between the dam and I-40)…confessing out loud now so that I can look back at this one day and say…dumb ass…you thought…

That is it; I thought.  I thought that my ability was bigger than nature…I didn’t listen to that voice that keeps me from playing in the streets, jumping off of tall buildings on a dare or buying a bedazzler for my jersey….I told it “I got this!  Get out of my way and watch this!”.

At 9ish, I moved from that spot with my 15.75 on the board…moving to another spot that the same voice was saying “NO!!!” to….and caught a 14.25.  That is all.  At least I didn’t skunk two days in a row…I have that going for me…


Now I am more self-aware.  Maybe not, but I do have the knowledge that:

  1. I should listen to Joy more.
  2. When you feel like it is gonna suck…when they voice says hear me…listen.
  3. I didn’t win…because, well, sometimes you’re the bug. This weekend…I was the bug….and I flew straight into the windshield on purpose.


I really hope that I remember this – a public service announcement….

….day one = 0.  Statistically, when the wind/conditions/water level/lake is the same….

The results will most likely be the same…wait, isn’t that the definition of insanity – doing the same thing and expecting a different result??

Now I have more to look up….peace

Cheatham in Cheatham Lake…or how not to launch….

Today, I fished with the CAKFG.  It is the “Cheatham” tourney; the lower boundary being Cheatham Dam.  You would think with a name as great as that, I would love this event…but I loathe fishing the area.  Every year I dread the tournament because I just do not enjoy fishing the waters above Cheatham Dam; but, it is our local group, so I fish it.

Today, there were only two limits…one being mine and the other Tom Monahan.  I won the event, and because Trebor Noxim (just got what this means!!) didn’t buy in to big bass…I also won that with a 19 inch largemouth.

And no one wants to talk about the fact that I won…or by how much…on a body of water that despite it’s name I hate to fish…OH NO….everyone wants to talk about my launch.  So I guess we will just talk about that…..


I assumed there would be a crowd where I was launching, so I was there before 5 a.m..  I thought we could start fishing at 5:30…I was wrong….but that will not matter in a few minutes…and no one wants to hear about that either….

Ben Lowry, Tom Monahan and Matt Spencer showed up shortly after I did.  Little did they know that they would be yelling at Matt Spencer – after….well….after….


I backed down the ramp, knowing that it was historically a very slick ramp.  I got out of my truck, walked to my trailer and pushed my kayak off….took two steps and starting sliding backwards into the water.  I slid about 1/3 the length of my trailer and stopped.  All good…I reached to keep my kayak from floating off…and slid about 5 more feet – up to my waist – and then my feet went totally out from under me.  I face planted in the 62 degree water before the sun was up.

I learned that the Chinook life jacket that I always wear, even when launching, will float me.  It will also keep me from getting my feet under me…so I had a choice to make; I let go of the kayak.  And then, my hand slipped off the trailer.  So I am headed out to the river with my kayak leading the way.   I swam to the ramp and got into my truck.

No one saw it happen, but as I pulled up the ramp, I asked if someone could go get my kayak.  They asked if I was ok…I said yes and the told them what happened.


Ben went about 60 yards to get my boat.

I stood by the truck butt naked changing into some clothes I was lucky enough to have in the truck.

I looked at a gash that most likely needed stitches on my heal; I must have kicked the trailer as I scrambled to keep my kayak in tow.

Once I got my clothes on, I walked down the ramp and Ben tossed me the rope to my boat and I pulled it to the ramp – being very careful to stay above the slick part of the ramp in my (as Ben called them) hippie flip flops.

The next thing I knew, I was flat on my back.  I had somehow slipped ass over tea kettle and landed in what I can only imagine resembled getting slammed to the mat in a WWE event.


Ben asked if I was ok.


I said yeah, but that sucked.


I sat up.


Ben started yelling at Matt, who was backing down the ramp, to stop…so that he wouldn’t run me over.


I said I sat up…what I didn’t say is that in that motion of sitting up…I slid at about ninety miles an hour down the ramp, into the water, and under Ben’s kayak.  I got turned over, grabbed his boat.


I almost flipped Ben (thanks for helping me!!!), and finally got back to shore after again reaffirming that the Chinook will keep you afloat…which means it is difficult to regain your footing….


Ben got me to shore.


Matt didn’t run me over.


Ben retrieved my kayak for the second time.


I had no more dry clothes, so no second butt naked adventure….thankfully it was almost warm and the water above 60 degrees.


I finally got in my kayak.


Thought lines in was 5:30…they told me no as they laughed….


….i reminded them as the day progressed that this is how old guys end up in nursing homes with a broken hip…


They laughed…


…I reminded them it wasn’t nice to laugh….


They laughed….


There is no video….so maybe it never happened?!?!?!?!?




Remember….I won anyway…..nanny nanny booboo….so there….


That is the beauty of our community though….they were genuinely concerned that I was ok after the back flop and two swimming trips….not gonna lie, being almost 60….that “flat on your back drop” has left me a bit sore….and they all helped me to get my boat, and my phone, and my stuff ready…but we all laughed as friends.  Not at, but with each other.


So now you know why my launch was not a perfect 10….but more of a 1 or 2 (times in the water!).  remember….I still won!!!!  Dang it….


Public Service Announcement …… wear your dang life jackets.  I could have very easily been there alone and hit my head…and someone else found me in a much worse predicament, and had to call my house to tell Joy.  

You bought one.  It is free to put it on.

Happy Anniversary!! to me…..


no fishing going on…stuck inside doing meetings….saw a facebook memory that got my attention though….so decided to kill a second…or two…

On the anniversary of me being pulled from the stands of a high school softball game (twice), followed home by a county sheriff to meet with detectives after a SWAT team had swarmed my house – catching the neighbors attention….I sit here smiling.

….not because I was dragged away as my daughter cried, unaware of why the police wouldn’t let me talk to her….thankfully some other parents helped me to get a message to her…

…or because the game disappeared as “the guy in the stands” was pulled to a police car by a county cop and the school resource officer (then by the cop again after 15 minutes)…

…or because of me telling the cop within earshot of the whole crowd, now focused on us, that I WOULD NOT be censored; they could just forget that (insert expletives)…

…or because they wanted to look in the trunk of my car…when I drove a freaking truck!!

No.  But because I had written something that had so touched another human that I knew I could fake it as a writer on the internet.


How it got to there:

I had an English teacher in high school who told me I should write more, then in college I wrote some papers that elicited conversations with the instructors and making me wish I had listened in high school and practiced more.

So, I wrote on a blog for several years just to let stuff out.  It was ramblings mostly, to help me through some self-induced pain and the pressures of raising a daughter as a single parent, but I would occasionally write some story that would bounce around in my head until it made it into “print”.  This blog was linked to post on my Facebook page – probably for some attention I was missin’ in my life (a therapy session for another time) – and occasionally people would ask if I was alright or hurt; based on some work of fiction.  At first, I didn’t get why, I had a disclaimer there that I wrote fiction sometimes and that the stories were stories…then I realized that maybe I was making it too close to home and not everyone could distinguish a post vs a link to the blog.

But, I also realized that maybe I could write better than I felt I was doing – ‘cause they were “buying” it as real…maybe it was ok??  I kept doing it.  I kept forming sentences, and cramming them into paragraphs…little short snippets inspired by passing conversations or by Facebook friends saying “write about this”.  Meaningless at times, deep cathartic releases at others…fiction, fact or on certain days a mix of the two.


Then in the middle of a period where I was enjoying writing some dark stuff…when I was enjoying digging into the dark corners of my (and humanities) psyche for a minute…I was pulled from the stands at a varsity softball game, taken to my house where they asked if it would be ok to search inside.


I let them.  Showed them three ring binders where I kept all the stuff I had written, answered some dumb questions….then started to post “THEY DIDN’T LOOK UNDER THE BED!” but decided not to tempt fate.

Then continued to write on the blog for many years;  Much of the original content has been removed (but still a lot of me but it is still a part of who I am, and the journey to my today.

Now I write on about tournaments, what it is like to be chasing fish or just what I feel that day; rarely non-fishing related because that has become my life; and on Anglr.  But deep inside…I am still collecting shoes in the trunk of my car, writing about homeless parents, creating incredibly bad poetry….or maybe (today) celebrating anniversaries of the day I realized I could write something so believable that folks in black with high tech weaponry surrounded a single dad’s house searching for bodies that only exist between the lines of text.  It was really a good day all in all……peace.


—————-so….here is what all the drama was about——————


This was two days before the one that sparked the events….but it was mentioned in the interrogation too….


I haven’t written anything is so long, I can hardly remember how to type.  I thought I would try to write a silly story, but today I am not in the mood for silly….so……..



the birds were singing behind the new leaves, just out of sight as he sat with eyes clinched against the morning sun.  Sunday, the name seemed very appropriate this morning and he smiled as the thought ran through his head.

he could hear her walking across the floor, probably to the bathroom

he was surprised when the door opened behind him and she pulled a chair across the wooden deck

please come back in, it is so bright out here

he didn’t say anything

I am going back in

he looked over his shoulder at her, but she wasn’t really asking him to come in; nor was she even looking at him

the sun is too bright, are you coming in….are you going to church with me today

he sat watching a cloud drift off to extinction and never opened his mouth

he listened as the door closed behind him, her…them and stood up


he walked across the drive to his truck and opened the passenger door

reaching between the seats, he pulled the semi automatic pistol from the holster and walked back toward the house

three scenarios ran through his head

they had for a few days

three very distinct scenarios


two…not that ether

he stopped at the bottom of the stairs leading to the deck, to the closed door and finally opened his mouth and uttered a single word



he placed the gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger….


after a second, the birds continued to sing

she covered her head with a pillow and cried



…this is what caused it all…..


Tomorrow, my life will be the front page news.  I made a very big mistake that will leave everyone who knows me questioning my sanity, their relationship with me.

I am sorry.

I never meant to end up in this situation, nor do I imagine my parents ever wishing their son to become the person you will learn about.

If I could set back the clock, only a few seconds…I wish that were possible.  Never have I wanted to pretend a day never happened or erase it.


I know when the fascination started.


It was winter and the neighbors had a bird cage sitting behind their house.  I took it and tied a piece of string to a stick and propped up the cage.  Then I sprinkled bird seed under it and climbed behind the house to wait.

It was a cold winter, I was 12, and it didn’t take long before a small bird had fallen into the trap.  I ran out and carefully slid the bottom of the cage in place and took them both under the house.

I spent the next hour terrorizing the small thing until I was bored with the activity.  Then I reached in the cage and took it into my hand and crushed it.  I remember the look in its eyes, the fear.   But I mostly remember the power I felt; the extreme power.


Anyway, if I had left a few seconds sooner, that car would have never hit me.  The police would have never come, found her purse, her driver’s license or the shoe.  They would have never opened the trunk to find her.

Guys, I am sorry.  I am still the person you knew.  I am still the little league volunteer, the PTO member…the father of my daughter and a nice man.

I know that by the time you finish reading the story, or hear it on the news you will forget all of that.  You will see the monster that tortured and killed for the sake of pleasure.

I should have stuck to animals, the homeless derelicts that crowd the cities.  But the fear of an innocent, the look in their eyes…the cries, oh the beautiful cries of a human as they beg and plead for you to stop hurting them.

Well, please don’t take this out on my daughter.  She is the sweetest kid and will need you guys to care for her.  To remind her that she is going to be ok.  Please.



Brussel Sprouts and Covid-19…not for me.

With the KBF event on Pickwick/Wilson/Wheeler postponed, I was all set to hook up with the West Tennessee Bass Yakker’s and fish their event on Pickwick Lake.  I have said before what a great bunch those folks are so I knew it would be fun.  That was on Tuesday.

On Friday night, the Friday before the Pickwick event….I was pushing brussel sprouts around on my hospital food tray.  Not just to pass the time, though I did create a train of brussel sprouts that I hoped to ride out of Vanderbilt, but in an effort to decide if I was that hungry.  I stuck a fork in one…picked it up…and decided not yet.  But I was getting very close!!


So planning for a series of tournaments to life altering decisions about whether brussel sprouts would kill me or not in the time it took to answer a phone call on Wednesday morning.



“We need you to go to the emergency room.”

Can I not come to your clinic?  It is just a few doors down?

“No, we need you to come to the emergency room.”

But I can literally see the entrance from the emergency room entrance….



Are you kidding me?  In the Covid-19 environment, they wanted me to come to the emergency room at Vanderbilt….in Davidson County, with the most documented cases in Tennessee…walk in and say the urologist wants me here?  The one place that had documented patients and was ramping up to deal with the rush?

The pain I was suffering due to….well, a lot of you know the history….said go.  So, I went.  I went to one place I did not want to go to with all of the concerns….and they gave me a bed to wait for someone to come see me.


A bed in the middle of the hallway.


Now, I am not afraid of much in this life.  I am a fight, not flight, kind of guy….but I felt a bit uncertain as I sat in that hallway for seven (7, 6 + 1, 1 less than 8) hours.  Around 7 pm, I knew I was being admitted three hours earlier, they even brought a tray of food to eat; there next to the closet where they kept bringing dirty brooms, mops, rags.

But a fat boy gotta eat, so I enjoyed my meal as Metro Davidson Counties finest “persuaded” a dude bleeding and cussing that he was done cussing unless he wanted more bleeding….convinced him to shut up with a less than friendly hug, about ten feet from me.


Skip next a.m. surgery details, infectious disease, endocrinologists, urologist, nurses, everyone but the janitor pulling my pants down to take a look….skip to the plate with brussel sprouts.


Vanderbilt is not the Hilton.  The meals are not ordered from room service, and are proportionate in size to the small bird seed holders I have seen in bird cages….and by Friday night…well, I almost ate something I would never consider at any restaurant.  And I was starving….almost…but not quite brussel sprout hungry…..


…and I considered my position.

I needed to walk, but I would pace in the room to stay out of the hallways.  I didn’t push the nurses’ button unless total desperation called for it…and until that night I never asked for some crackers or a popsicle (I finally got that hungry only to learn they had sandwiches!!!  Someone shoulda told me that)…

…but again, I didn’t ask for anything I did not have to ask for….

…I could feel it in their voices, I could see it in their faces…the uncertainty is very real.  They would tell me thanks for being patient (a patient – hahahaha) and not getting upset.  I would thank them for being there…for not saying “I am out of here” in the midst of all that was occurring in another part of the building.


When I left, I was hungry, but I was alive.  I was going to walk (well, they don’t let you walk) out of there and go back to the relative safety of my home while everyone there is willing to risk themselves to care for us day in/day out.

I guess what I am saying….is thanks.  Not for the brussel sprouts….but for doing your job in spite of the unknown, in spite of all I am sure you see outside of this new threat.

Thanks to the doctors, the nurses (not for poking me, but for the laughs and the phone charger and the crackers), the cleaning staff, the food workers (who were so fun to talk with), the guy who pushed me out to my car, even the pharmacy that kept me there three hours longer – I do realize that you guys are under a lot right now….thank you.


I will be hoping you all remain safe….peace.

Oh Nuts! I almost missed the B.A.S.S event!

Back from the inaugural Huk Bassmaster Bass Nation Kayak Series powered by TourneyX and presented by Abu Garcia on Lake Logan Martin in Pell City, Alabama.  And it was incredibly awesome to just be a part of it all!  I am working on a more comprehensive recap about the guys who did well….but I wanted to give my personal perspective, views and how it went down for me.


Let’s see…..woke up around two a.m. Tuesday morning, was going to leave but Chuck Mizer had just sent an IM to several of us that he was sitting around exit 48 in Nashville.  He had timed his trip (unfortunately) just in time to cross paths with the tornado.  He was ok…but cars were all over and debris was in his path.  Sadly, several across Tennessee in its path were not so fortunate and I hope everyone takes time to think about the families.

After reading this and asking if he was ok, I decided to not rush leaving.  I finally left Clarksville around 7 a.m., sat in Nashville for about an hour, then made it to the Lake around mid-day.  I checked out the first spot I had mapped out and the parking lot was full so I moved to a place I had not mapped, but had passed on the way; Poorhouse Marina.  I went to the back of the cove, where water moving into the cove turned to rapids, and caught many white bass and around 65 inches of bass; for every 20 white bass, I caught a large mouth.  Due to medical reasons I may discuss in a minute, I only fished about two hours….I hadn’t been in a kayak but five times since December 12th.

I checked into the hotel, and had to do some wound care.  It seems I had busted some stitches…the doctor told me not to get into the kayak…but did you read the first line(?); inaugural BASS!!!…I was not missing this thing.

Anyway, day two I headed way north and found myself sharing a muddy swift moving creek with Jake Harshman.  I pedaled maybe a mile and a half against the current and just didn’t feel that I was going to catch fish….and was certain that I could not maintain that for the duration of a tournament in my present condition….so I loaded up, drove around a couple of hours, met Ron Himmelhaver for lunch….then back to the hotel.  I knew that my pre-fishing was done when I checked the stitches….but hey….I had some hope that Poorhouse would at least get me a limit.  I knew that the odds of me fishing for nine hours was slim anyway….and my odds of winning – a dream I had before the surgeries – was low…but I was fishing if it was only twenty minutes!!!!!

Then at the launch on tourney day….I got there two hours early, thinking I was going to be the first one there and was five in line….by launch time, there were over thirty kayakers at the ramp.   I knew my spot was small, so I hoped no one would go that way.  And they did not….and the fish did not either.  It was blown out from the rain.

I forgot to mention it had rained all night….was raining….and had no intention of stopping…well, it finally did.  After the tournament!  But during….you had tiny drops of rain mixed with giant drops of rain….with intermittent bouts of rain.  Rain…rain and more rain.

….sorry, blown out…yeah, so I knew I couldn’t cover water…so I started slowly and methodically beating everything that looked like it might have a fish that didn’t already have a kayak sitting on it.  I was literally throwing a lure I fish for crappie with, just trying to get a limit.  It was a small lead jig head on a tiny spinner…with a three inch(ish) Kitech swim bait.

At 12:30, I finally caught my fifth fish….could feel the need for some wound maintenance knowing that my doctor was going to be asking some questions about more busted stitches….so I loaded up and called it a day two hours early, but happy to have made it that long.


What I really want to talk about are the folks I fished with, not just at that ramp, but at the tournament as a whole.

Gotta love 'em all
Gotta love ’em all

Many knew my condition and were shocked to see me there, and offered help….many offered sympathy…many just flat out made fun of me and made up new names to call me.   I never knew there was so many ways to make fun of losing one of your “boys” or “jewels” (seems to depend on where you are from on what you call it) and that there were so many gifs….so many jokes….sooooooooo many!!!  Even people I had just met joined in….and it was all good natured fun – ok, at my expense…..

….but let me tell you this….even those who made fun of me, and joked did so with such compassion and understanding (most joking with a hand on my shoulder in support) that I was moved once again by this community.  From Ron Champion stopping me to make sure I was ok, to Scott Beutjer just flat out laughing (not at, but with me), to Arlie Minton and all the guys at the ramp offering to load and unload my kayak….God, I love this bunch of people!  So much!


Now….all that being said……I didn’t pre-fish as I wanted, I didn’t cover the water I normally would…but I fished the first BASS kayak tournament!  YES SIR…..I WAS THERE!   And I finished 43rd out of 230 registered anglers…..qualifying for the kayak classic!   Far exceeding my expectations only a week out of surgery number two!


So….sometimes it isn’t winning….it is just being a part of it all.  ANYONE and EVERYONE who thinks they might want to try one of the bigger events….and are a bit intimidated….just know that you do not have to be.  This bunch will have your back and help you through just about everything…..they are family.




Bored so let’s talk boards….should just shut up I know….but….too late…

Bored….reading the new rules for Hobie BOS concerning boards while perusing the social media posts that, although I have been homebound for days, I seemed to have missed.


My mind is saying STOP, SHUT UP, DON’T DO IT….but I have to talk about tournaments somehow….

….So…here we go…against all reason….


I applaud Hobie for seeing a potential perception problem for the sport and taking swift and immediate action on the boards and changing the rules.  Although Ron Champion did nothing to violate the rules – there is a strong public perception that he was doing something wrong; and when tried in the open courts of Facebook and Instagram or Twitter….facts are not really introduced.


The pic introduced as exhibit A would probably cause a jury to question the validity of the measuring system, and may be considered as altering a board…but that is purely a subjective view.  My Hawg Trough has a slight permanent bend from riding on the back seat of my truck.  Was it bent too far??  Laid on a table, it was as perfect as any other.  Where is the line?  The rules stated nothing about the amount of deflection allowed in each picture…nor was there any way to calculate it.  My board naturally curved from use.


Anyone who has done an MSA (measurement system analysis) knows that a tape or ruler is an imperfect system and allows for variation….for accuracy, it will fail every time.  But it does allow for fairly repeatable data – but is highly operator dependent; and a bit subjective too.


…..remember when iCatch tried to fix it with that shoddy software????…hahahaha


….but be it imperfect…it is the device we must all live with; and it (IN MY OPINION) is a much better system than bagging fish and toting them around all day.


To reality…..and what now seems like full disclosure on my part….


Who has not “leaned” on that fish that was just shy of the next ¼ inch line to get that tail over?  Spinning it, turning it, pushing it…seeing how far can you open the mouth without making it look open?

Who here didn’t know that you cannot gain inches or quarter inches….but you could get the tail over that next quarter with just a little weight if it is close enough?  Especially on the Hawg Trough??


There are (were??) no rules to prohibit this….sorry.


We all joke that with a meat tenderizer (or size 12 boot) we could have finally caught that limit on a hard day….turning 10 inchers into 12 inchers….with a glazed look….


….even with the Ketch board – which is a much better measuring system for the record…a slightly more rigorous amount of pressure can get that tail over the next quarter if your first pic doesn’t clearly show it.


So again, to Hobie (and others who will most certainly follow)….I applaud you for getting in front of it.  Perception becomes reality all too quick….and those with little experience are swift to say “this is why I don’t…this is why I will not”….and start accusing the whole kayak tournament serious as failed.   Makes me sad.


And to all of those who say they will no longer fish out of a kayak……because you are forced to use a more accurate tool to measure….


….well, I just don’t know what to say to you.  Hope you change your mind.




For me….still hoping I can take my Ketch board to Logan Martin….then to whatever is the next weekend…and the next….





Help…or a grown man crying….

I am about to lose my mind up in here!!!!  I am going to ramble, rant and well, pout for the next paragraphs….sorry I am not sorry.

The good!

Last night I was blessed to be on Topwater Live and talk about how fortunate I am to be writing about fishing….and fishing the larger events.

If y’all get a chance, check out those folks…especially if you are in the Michigan Area….they have a lot of great things going on and are growing their influence in the area.  They are working to grow fishing in their area for all ages….it was impressive to learn more about them.  I expect great things to continue up there (ok, too cold for me right now) as the season gets into full swing.

Thanks Mike Anderson for having me, and the kind words.  Thanks Kyle Van Leuven and Grant Bennink for making me feel like I was someone for a second.  Great production and informative content for all anglers.  You guys really have it together.

The bad!

I missed the Tenvitational – had to leave Seminole early….missed Lake Fork…..will be missing Santee Cooper…..and there is an extremely real chance that I may not be able to participate in the inaugural BASS event on Logan Martin!  If I do make it, it will most likely be with no pre-fishing and no blessing from my doctor…and….who am I kidding…if I only ride down and fish two hours…I am going!!

There is a local tournament Saturday that I am contemplating fishing for at least a few hours….because I am going insane watching all the fishing on social media and need to know if I can manage a kayak on the water.

The ugly!  (personal share warning – but it is my blog so I can)

I had back surgery on the 12th of December…..was back at work and fine by the first of January.  My back feels better than it has in years and I was ready to go.   I was freaking pumped to be in the best shape I have been in for a long time!  45 lbs heavier from the restrictions that the back had forced on me…but dropping that fast by walking every day.

Just before that surgery, I had some swelling in a region of my body that brought great discomfort.  It did not hurt, but it became difficult to function….mostly to pedal a kayak.  I pushed myself to go to Lake Seminole because….well, because I have to fish!

Anyway….the swelling started causing me much pain, so much that on day two of Seminole I had to place myself on the physically unable to perform list and head home before mid-morning.

Did I say getting old is not for the weak yet??

Anyway….February 10th, I had to go into surgery to resolve the issue……and it was the most painful thing I have ever been involved with…..until last Friday, Feb 21….when I realized that there were some very serious complications (almost passed out at work on Thursday and had already backed out of Fork) and I had to have a second and more invasive procedure….and I found out that I only thought I had hurt the first time.

The Moral….

I wish there was some moral to this story…..some health warning I could give to help everyone avoid this…but there is not.   After years of fighting, Taekwondo, falling on fences…more fighting, football…then 12 years of coaching girl’s softball; taking line drives from kids who could hit, really hit….the damage seemed to add up.


So……..not sure why I am crying out here….except to say…..someone get me out of here!!!

I need to be on the water fishing a tournament soon…!!!



Ok, that hurt……back to the couch and ice pack.

so about Logan Martin…..if y’all happen to see me, DO NOT TELL THE DOC!

It will be virtually impossible to miss this one….no…not virtually impossible….it would be unacceptable!



2020….new boat, new truck…new attitude…same outcome…hope not!!

What do you do when you can’t fish?  Well, I put new line on reels, replace hooks, reorganize tackle…and name kayaks for the new season.  Ok, maybe silly…but I am going to have fun with the rest of my days on this earth!  I have worked too much, still do…so why not enjoy it?


I spent an afternoon making some new vinyl to first, cover a skunk I picked up fishing with the West Tennessee Bass Yakkers….making it “no skunks” for 2020…


….second, adding some love for the grandkids….keeping them as close as I can…



….and a shout out to my biggest fan….my wife….she gives so much so I can fish….


and…finally……for the 2020 season…after hours of deliberation….

….I would like to introduce you to Hobie Ki-Yay (other chuckers).





yippee kiyay.

An expression of joy. An exclamation used to startle or frighten an opponent.

Modified….Hobie Ki-Yay….decided not to use the rest of the expression made famous by Bruce Willis, so…..other –


  1. a person who throws something.


So, all you other chuckers out there…..let’s get 2020 started!

I haven’t been fishing in a kayak since…dang…December 8th….add up the last three years and I hadn’t missed that many weekends totaled!!!!  I need to get out of the house before I totally lose it!

Well, first I am going to watch the Titans in Kansas City (TITAN UP!!)…..then let’s get 2020 started!




Caney Fork guy out of water…or a Hobie guy in a NuCanoe world

Last weekend was an extremely tough one for me.  My Joy was at St. Thomas with her dad, so I was home without her (he is home now! And so is she).  I had worked too long a week and was completely exhausted…and the real problem; there was no tournament.  Did you hear me…no tournament to fish!….

So what do you do when you have no tournament…after you stop shaking and mourning the fact…you (well I) go to BassPro and get a Ram Mount for the new Hummingbird….order a Hobie mount to attach the Ram Mount to….then drive to Kingsport to pick up a kayak I had won a few weeks ago.

Normally, I would not promote this kayak for a couple of reasons….

  1. I am on the Caney Fork fishing team.
  2. I am on the Hobie fishing team and dedicated to the brand.

…but I had won the kayak, a NuCanoe Flint, while attending the Fishing for Soldiers event a few weeks ago.  I had bought a few raffle tickets to support the cause –  providing custom trained Mobility Assistance Service Dogs from Smokey Mountain Service Dogs.  The kayak had been donated by Frontier Outdoors in Kingston, Tennessee (1218 Gallaher Rd, Kingston, Tennessee 37763).

At first, I thought I was in the wrong place…one end of the building is a shooting range…and I could hear gun fire…and I was a Caney Fork guy in a Frontier Outdoors world….but once I talked with John, and we came to an agreement that I was not going to let Joy buy a kayak from them today…and no, he still couldn’t have her number…all was good!

We did stand out front and talk for a long while…long enough to watch an unfortunate soul get pulled over, perform two sets of sobriety tests – still not sure how it turned out, but it couldn’t be good….and I learned that these two are my kinda folks….in a not all good kinda way…but they will treat you right if you get by their shop.   They are some pretty awesome dudes, and I love their commitment to the Fishing for Soldiers event and to the kayak community.

My butt will most likely never sit in the kayak, our daughter was going to buy a kayak; now she will not need to look any more….but I want to say thanks to John Miller and Brant Williams for donating the kayak…and for welcoming me to their store even though I was sporting some serious Caney Fork/Hobie vinyl on my truck.

 So…if you can’t get by Caney Fork and need a Hobie in the Knoxville area….go see John and Brant at Frontier Outdoors…support those who are willing to support others….

And next year….sign up for the Fishing for Soldiers event….it is a great tournament and you get to give back a little….and maybe just win some cool stuff (also won an H-Crate from Hobie and a cooler from Stanley!).

And thanks again for the kayak guys!  I appreciate it…and the conversation.  Hope to see you again!