Opinions

Thank God I'm a Fisherman

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(Photo: Walker Smith)

I am a breed of outdoorsman who loves, appreciates and respects this magnificent creation with which we've been gifted. I am committed to doing anything and everything I can to preserve it. I will not back down from those who seek to hinder my way of life. I will not fall victim to the rampant negativity in today's world. I will smile, laugh and cherish this special blessing I've so graciously been given.

Thank God I'm a fisherman.

I wake up before daylight—while the neon lights of downtown continue to shine upon the manmade jungles of concrete and conformity—and submit my body to the harsh elements of the sun, wind and rain. The aches, pains and lack of sleep will never outweigh the freedom I find in The Great Outdoors.

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I willingly use every last ounce of my mental and physical energy in pursuit of these special creatures the Good Lord created. I fight, each and every day, with calloused and bloodied hands to become closer to my heart's deepest desires; to the convictions laid upon my soul by my creator.

Thank God I'm a fisherman.

I feel most at home when I'm farthest from it. I embrace a lifestyle away from the mainstream. I ignore the criticism from those who fail to understand this passion. I choose lesser-traveled dirt roads; not the ones paved by society.

Thank God I'm a fisherman.

I don't value my worth by worldly riches. I find solace in a golden sunrise, in the sound of waves gently lapping against a rugged northern shore and the sting of the year's first sunburn on my face.

I find humility in the never-ending pursuit. I find hope in each cast.

Thank God I'm a fisherman.

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I don't put much credence in the promises of politicians and figureheads, for they do not know the wild spirit inside of me. I will scratch, claw and fight until my dying breath to continue doing what I love most. I will never compromise my beliefs or lie down and quit when others say it's impossible.

Thank God I'm a fisherman.

I am a breed of outdoorsman who will cherish the finer things of this earthly life. The high-fives with an old friend. The crack of a cold drink after a hot day on the water. The thrill of catch and release. The pride of an undeniable brotherhood.

Thank God I'm a fisherman.

The fish do not know whether I'm a college graduate or a high school dropout. They don't judge my many shortcomings or critique my successes. The sunset doesn't discriminate against the tired, the weak or the poor. It won't lie, cheat or steal. On my roughest of days and on my best of days, the lake is there. The fish are there. They are and always will be my still points in a turning, turbulent world. They will never let me down.

Thank you God, for making me a fisherman.