Here’s the right way to treat your old man: For Father’s Day, take him where you’ll boat 437 hard-fighting fish and a 43 inch, 30 pound trophy in four days. That’s 3.7 minutes per fish – 92% of them Northern Pike. Maybe the Old Man’s memory isn’t showing signs of improvement lately, but he’ll remember this trip the rest of his days. Continue reading HOW TO TREAT THE OLD MAN
“Quit talking business! This is important!” A shocking pronouncement coming from one’s employer! I go mum. We sit behind thick glass, watching the Chicago Blackhawks clobber the Anaheim Ducks in the final game of the series. The Hawks will win this game and go on to the coveted Stanley Cup. That is correct, sir—an opportunity for a third championship in just a few years! Continue reading HAWKS
Weeks have passed since my last conscious memory. Weeks, I say! A man can lose his hat and perhaps even his pants, but to lose several weeks is inexcusable. Think what mischief might transpire over such a span of time!
I find myself crammed in the back seat of a slow moving vehicle on an unfamiliar and crowded freeway. How did I get here? I know the date by the prominent display on that infernal wireless device issued me by my employer. Continue reading KIDNAPPED
This is outrageous. I’m concentrating on my computer screen when a huge mitt grabs me by the back of the belt and plucks me from my chair. Next thing I’m dangled high over the desk, arms and legs flailing till I steady my balance and end up nose-to-nose with Big Bill Blair, our urban Paul Bunyan.
“‘Scuse me, Mr. Jonelis,” he says in a slow polite rumble that carries with it a stale smell of corned beef and cigar.
Big Bill slowly chews gum. Looks disinterested. Acts like nothing’s unusual.
I know he once terrorized jobsites for Boilermaker Local 1, but he’s supposed to be tame now—supposed to be working for me. Cripes, I even took him fishing this summer! Yet this guy just reaches across my big WWII Air Force desk and picks me up as if I were a gum wrapper. Continue reading A LOOP LONAGAN CHRISTMAS
I recognize a sharp character flaw among outdoorsmen of all sorts—an uncontrollable urge to exaggerate—particularly after an excursion to a wilderness such as northern Manitoba. Permit me to treat you to a few horror stories of the Great North Woods. I promise to debunk them all.
Mobs of Tourists
Multitudes of crude drinking-age folk and their dirty urchins shack up in run-down resorts and shabby private cabins. They dot the shores and pollute these once-fine waters. Long, loud lines form at boat ramps. Rough individuals engage in open hostility.
Huge speedboats, stinking of gasoline and oil, cut across fishermen’s lines. Meanwhile, high-speed suicide boats equipped with 150 horsepower motors shoot up rooster tails of greasy water as they propel themselves gunnel to gunnel at 70 miles per hour in a desperate competition for the rare undisturbed fishing spot. Continue reading LIES ABOUT PARADISE
Fishermen are liars!
After a superb day of fishing in the Canadian Wilderness, I prepare to utter my first exaggeration when Jonelis comes in with this monstrous THING. Look at it sir! This stretches all limits of credulity!
Naturally I object and make accusations of foul play. Just look at that fish!
Jonelis and his “Pike”
Danger and deprivation make up the joys of any wilderness expedition. Have you ever heard an adventurer speak of anything else? I have not, sir! Our bold band is bound for a rare excursion! Today, we hope to try our mettle against the Canadian Wild! Continue reading CLOSER TO HEAVEN