Feathers ’n Fins

Posted Jan. 02, 2009, at 11:33 p.m.

The way I see it, making New Year’s resolutions is like fishing with frayed leader. That, however, isn’t the only reason I’ve turned to making what I call New Year’s intentions. Let’s just say the fact that intentions allow more wiggle room than resolutions has something to do with it. Assuming, then, that you spend too much time and money on rods and guns and dogs, not to mention all of the associated activities, you know of what I speak.

For starters, I intend to clean my guns immediately after hunting season, put new backing on my salmon reels before fishing season and replace the screw long missing from a pillar on my lucky Medalist reel. I keep wondering, though, if replacing the screw will jinx the reel. There’s no waffling, however, in my intentions to re-place the frayed rope on the boat trailer’s winch, tack new leathers and stops on the oars, and to wear my lifejacket instead of sitting on it. Likewise, I fully intend to repaint my decoys, varnish my snowshoes, pack baskets, paddles and the gunnels on my canoes and double-ender boat. Leaving nothing to chance, I’ll mend my smelt net, patch my waders, put new plugs in the outboards and ice auger and add an ounce or two of fuel stabilizer each time I fill the gas cans. Furthermore, I intend to give my English pointer, Bud, the benefit of the doubt when his bell stops in a thicket I think is too trashy for any self-respecting partridge or woodcock. Or for me.

All told and all kidding aside, my most pressing New Year’s intention is to make sure there is water in the tea kettle before turning on the burner. Otherwise, I’ll be reminded again of the adage stating that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Have a healthy and Happy New Year.

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