Routine versus commitment


I was driving and was listening to 660 WFAN yesterday…the host was taking about something Bill Parcel told a player about his future. It had a lot of similarities to what we do…

Some us get to a certain point, they find success and they are content with it. They hit the same holes day after day, or when they feel the tide or wind is right. It becomes a routine…..either going to your local beach or driving hundred miles to Montauk. The distance does not matter. The frequency does not matter. It’s still a routine.

Then you got those who go above and beyond what we consider “routine”. They drive three hundred miles because of a phone call. They take day off on a minute notice because they have a “feeling’ that this storm is going to bring the big girls to the beach. They fish crazy hours and still find ways to function somehow. In this group, some get eaten alive by the fishing bug, get divorced or lose a job. Yet ,they are others who are just as possessed that seem to function just fine. There is no rhyme or reason as to whose fate will be what at the end.

From upcoming September issue with Bill Wetzel

“When  I got my first truck ,I was living out there constantly . Fishing to a point where I some friends pulled me to the side. I wasn’t going out, I wasn’t doing anything, I was just freaking obsessed, too obsessed. My friends pulled me to the side and they were like “Bill, you know what are you doing?”  I said, well I’m fishing…”You never go out, you never do this, you never do that,” they said. Dude, I’m just fishing. That’s all I’m doing. When you get to that point you start to lose touch with your friends, your family. I mean I was fishing to the point where if I was sick I would still go fishing. You are afraid you are going to miss a tide, you are afraid you are going to miss a wind, and stuff like that. You are always afraid you are going to miss something.  You don’t want to miss that big fish bite.”

Regardless of which camp you belong to, as long as you are content, it doesn’t really mater. Only an imbecile would look down on a weekend angler because he is not “hard core”. Some of the happiest fisherman I met were the ones who did not care if they ever caught something. Subsequently, I got to know a lot of obsessed surfcasters who were absolutely crushed because their best friend got a 50 and all they got was bunch of forties. I guess God made us all kind

There is no denying that to be on the top of the food chain, you need to be in this camp. I have yet to met a surfcaster who just goes through his routine and catches fish at will. If they do, its usually because they were obsessed at one point and now they are taking a foot off the gas and living off their knowledge. And there is no doubt in my mind that to become a top surfcaster, or a very successful one (whatever that means) one needs to make a “commitment”. A commitment beyond fishing places you know, places you are comfortable, hours that fits your schedule.

I’ve done some very, very stupid things over the years. Many which I regret today. Most of them when my kids were small. I look back and cringe on just how selfish and obsessed if was with catching big fish while my wife begged me to lighten up. Thankfully she stuck by my side…but I owe her a debt of gratitude.

This is nothing more than a rant from a person who’s been smelling paint fumes all weekend. It’s all good, regardless if you have a routine or you are reading this on the rock two hundred yards from shore at 4 AM. On the end of the day, if you are happy with what you do, even if you get out once a season…..who are we (or anyone else) to tell you otherwise. Routine or committed, it’s all good as long as you having fun


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7 comments on “Routine versus commitment

  1. Barry D Thomas Sr

    Took a fifty last December, As far as I can see has not changed the Time I fish or the Enjoyment level. still fish the same local areas. I’m FAR from Obsessed

  2. bunufish

    I really enjoy surf fishing, well maybe enjoy is too light of a description, but my friends seems to call it an obsession or an addiction. There was a point when I had to make a choice between fishing and taking on other roles in church such as coaching volleyball for the teens and coordinating events. I thought I’d be less content, but you know, things are alright. I even got a few friends hooked… I’ve been called a mistress (i guess u get that when your friend’s husband is always with you at odd hours of the night… but dangit, he could have said no).

    Then I got married… and everyone I know, said, “well that’s it… kiss your fishing time good bye”. Was I worried? maybe… but even that’s worked out since my wife loves surf fishing as much as I do. Nothing like experiencing the MTK fall run to make an impression.

    Now I’m expecting a baby, our first… and everyone I know is saying, “well, that’s it… kiss your fishing and sleeping time good bye”. Am I worried? maybe… but I guess it’s a change in my life’s routine. I don’t know if she is humouring me, but the wife and I plan on taking the baby out with us to surf fish as soon as it’s safe.

    I dunno if what we’re doing is routine or committed, but we plan on having fun… with marriage, family and fishing. I hope the baby can make it to MTK this year… I think that would make a nice photo, Baby and the Blitz.

  3. Gerad D

    My wife keeps telling me I’m going to die fishing . I tell her just as long as her and my son are happy when I leave the house I’m ok with that. I told her I’d rather die like that then in a hospital bed. We all choose our own paths , don’t get mad if your feet hurt at the end of yours.

  4. frank ward

    I JUST GOT MARRIED AND ALREADY HAVE A 3 YEAR OLD GIRL WITH MY EX GIRL FRIEND. MY WIFE NOW KNOWS HOW MUCH I LOVE FISHING AND ALL THE READING I DO, THE AMOUNT OF TIME I AM IN THE GARAGE SPINNIG RODS. COMING HOME FROM WORK AT 10 PM GETTING A PRODUCTIVE TIDE RACING DOWN TO THE SPOT. SOMETIMES I WOULD EVEN JUST RUN IN AND RUN OUT JUST TO GET GEARED UP AND GO. I BAILED ON HER ALOT, AND SHE IS ONE PERSON WHO TOOK A LIFE WITH ME AND A CHILD WHO ISNT HER OWN. SHE EMBRACED MY DAUGHTER AS HER OWN AND TREATS HER AS HER OWN. SHE HELPED IN MY TIME WHEN MY EX WAS BRUTAL TOWARDS ME, SHE WOULD SAY TO ME “Frank go grab your gear go out for a few and release some steam” i love my daughter and my wife very much, and would be who i am today with out them. i realized that i have a family and bills have to be paid, dinner needs to be on the table, clothes on my daughters back, family obligations need to be attended. my wife knows the extent of my fishing and fears one day i wont come back, but she will never tell me not to go. i love fishing with all passion, its been bad to me and been to good to me, i learned alot over the years by just listening to others whom i fish with and are amazing fisherman. i am happy with the way i fish and there are times i go to montauk and block island when life allows me to and i take full advantage of it. i guess my moral is you dont have to give up the one thing you love the most, even if you dont get to do it all the time or as much.The fact that your love and passion for fishing is as alive as a highschool boy staring at a playboy magazine. you will always be branded at heart with fishing. for me its surfcasting

  5. Slimy Skate

    So true. I am happy when surf casting.
    Last Friday morning I went casting off a west end jetty. I was supposed to pickup a friend at 12:30pm to head out east to launch off at 4:30pm to head offshore to Dip (end up at Fishtail, instead).
    Saw schools of Bunker or snappers splashing on the outgoing and got me all excited and lost track of time. At 12:30 I was just walking back to my car with numerous voicemails & Text msg “Where the f#@$ are you!” on the cell.
    Heavy Friday traffic to east end, didn’t shove off till 7:30pm.
    Thought my friend and the Captain would throw me off the boat when I fell asleep because it sucks steaming out in the dark offshore(Moon was overcast). They where pissed, but I did enjoy the casting at the jetty even though I didn’t catch.

    S.S. ~>


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