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Saturday, June 29, 2013

Fishing a couple of small lakes from shore

Wednesday I fished the lake in the parkland along the Patuxent River I first visited and described on January 18th of this year.


To me, it's just as pretty in the summer as the winter.

Then on Friday I hit the "lake" at the Izaak Walton League where I caught a nice bass as well as multiple bream which I also got on the other trip.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Three's a crowd...

Some time ago I read an article in an outdoor magazine where the writer reminisced about his boyhood and when his father decided that he was old enough to go hunting without an adult.  His father gave him permission to have a friend along on these hunts, but absolutely forbade him to go with two boys.  That father apparently felt that a third party significantly changed the dynamics and that three boys were much more likely to indulge in bad behavior than two.

I've often thought about that story and have always felt that the father displayed wisdom in setting down that rule.  I'll leave it to the behavior scientists to analyze, but the point seems to me to be true about humans in general and not just young men. 

It came to mind Monday when I was canoeing in the reservoir.  I was drifting along casting to the shoreline for bream and thinking how quiet and restful the moment was when the peace was suddenly disturbed by the presence of three male teenagers moving through the woods.  They were loud and profane and I instantly became alert to a possible threat, but they either didn't notice or ignored me.  Most likely they were harmless and no worse than I was at their age.  I don't know if they were there to fish or for an illegal swim, but I soon paddled across the lake to get away from their noise.

As I resumed fishing I had the intuitive thought that two of them would have been much more than one third quieter, that the addition of boy number three increased the sound exponentially.  Obviously, I don't know this for a fact but I believe it based on my memories of my own boyhood as well as the article read long ago.

After catching a few fish I hurried off the water when I heard thunder rumblings getting closer.  The chatter of the three boys was still carrying across the water, seemingly louder than the thunder.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Bride and Groom

Daughter Rebecca and Sean with Stephen Koch who performed the ceremony on Sunday, June 16, 2013.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

June 16, 2013

Rhythms of June: 

A poem for my daughter's wedding by Doug Jones

 As the solstice draws ever near
Completing a cycle of the year,
The sun ascends into the sky.
Long, hot summer days stand by.

What treasures do we see in June?
Crape myrtles and magnolias bloom.
Mayflies emerge from clear, cool, streams.
Fireflies dance through warm evenings.
Nature's gifts:  earth, air, and water,
And the month of June gave us our daughter.

June rhythms
Rhythms of June

June vacations at the beach-
Little girl's hand stretching to reach
Her mother's, placed there to reassure
Fears of crashing waves.  She's made secure.

June rhythms
Rhythms of June

They've marked the tempo of her existence
Mattering not how far the distance,
Through summer camps, proms, and graduations
Her life in tune with the vibrations.

June cell phone call from Manhattan's streets,
Woman's voice  says, "I should be at the beach."
June rhythms guiding her body.

So it is fitting that this June day
We gather here to observe this phase,
The union with a fine, young man.
They've shown already that they can
Create a world of their own
Stronger than one built alone,
A  shelter from the harsh outside
Where gentleness and support abide.
A world I felt first on a cold, wet, night
In a cozy apartment in Crown Heights.

June warmth
June rhythms
June love


Monday, June 10, 2013

Bruce Springsteen

Although his name sounds Jewish, it's actually Dutch.  His ancestors immigrated here over 300 years ago, but the family incorporated Irish and Italian members along the way.  In other words, he's very American, and I've been a fan of his high energy rock and roll for 40 years.

I recently finished reading what has been described as his definitive biography, Bruce by Peter Carlin, and enjoyed it very much.  One major benefit of reading it is that I'm listening again to his music which I hadn't been doing lately because as Springsteen fans go my fanaticism is mild.  For example, I don't often listen to the channel on satellite radio which plays his music and nothing else, and I don't believe I've ever visited any of the internet sites that feature All Things Bruce.  But I invariably come back to his music, and I'm never disappointed when I do because it always lifts my spirits with its passion.

Early in his career there was a famous quote by a rock critic who later became Springsteen's manager and after seeing a live performance stated that he had seen rock and roll's future and its name was Bruce Springsteen.  A less famous but I believe more fitting quote from someone else said that Springsteen was less rock and roll's future than he was the culmination of everything in the music that happened up to that point.  That quote doesn't appear in the book and I've forgotten who said it, but it was meant as praise for the unique way Bruce incorporated country, soul, Top 40, and more into his recordings and live performances.

I'm not certain how many Springsteen concerts I've attended, maybe as many as 10 or 12 going back to 1974, and each time I find myself swallowed by the combined energy of the performers on stage and the crowd in a way I wouldn't allow myself to be at, say a political or religious event.  I don't know if rock and roll has supplanted politics and religion for people like me, but the feeling sure feels right.  Hey, that sounds like a Springsteen lyric.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Little Paint Branch

On Tuesday I explored this stream near where I grew up in College Park.  I didn't spend much time there as a kid because it was on the other side of U.S. 1, but I do remember a friend taking me to a swimming hole a little ways downstream.  The unauthorized swimming trip got me in trouble with my parents.  That was almost 60 years ago.

Although I had read an fairly recent report by someone who had some success fishing this stream, I only saw and caught a few small minnows.

Human activity and the usual abuses are evident.  The majority of the trash trapped by this downed tree seemed to be plastic water bottles.  A  few years ago I promised myself to never buy those things.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

On the Bay with friends

Spent a very pleasant Wednesday fishing the islands of the Eastern Shore.  Although our expressions in this photo look a little grim, we had a fun trip.  That's Colonel Ski with me on the stern of the boat.

Lou fly casting from the bow.  We caught a lot of fish with spinning rods,but neither Lou nor I were successful with the long rod.

Capt. Pete works hard to put his clients on fish and wanted us to get more speckled trout than the couple we landed.  None of us were disappointed, however, because we had plenty of action from the plentiful rockfish, plus a croaker, a spot, and a red drum.  To the captain's right is Chumbucket, the Internet legend.