Fishing in my days of youth were much different than today. I’m pretty sure we were middle class but the latest and greatest fishing gear wasn’t a priority to our family unit so I made do with what was available.
Many days I competed against my friends in after school “fishing tournaments” with whatever fishing line I could find on the bank, a rusty hook and a twig I could use as a floater. I was generally late getting in the water from untangling enough line to get a smooth toss but I eventually joined the game none the less.

I would tie off the dead end to a belt loop on my pants so I wouldn’t accidentally throw the whole rig away during an over zealous toss. I retrieved the line over the index finger on my left hand at the first joint. The first time I used this method, my fishing was cut short, literally. It didn’t take long for the wet line to soften my skin and cut into my finger. This condition improved the more I fished. I spent the entire summer of 1973 with a grove in that finger that appeared to be just short of rubbing bone. There was even an inquiry and investigation my first day back to school that September when my teacher noticed it.

There are probably a number of reasons that should have kept me from participating in those fishing excursions but, I’m glad I stayed after it. Those were some of the best times of my youth.