Do we fish too much? Is it possible to fish too much?
Nah, you are probably thinking, but have you ever given serious thought to this possibility?
I, for one, know that I do not fish too much, but I wonder if some of my friends have “problems” with fishing. So I decided to develop a questionnaire to help ferret out the few people who might be fishing extremists.
I challenge you all to take the quiz. Don’t be too harsh on yourselves. A few yes answers are perfectly normal. Just how many yes answers might indicate that you have a fishing problem is your decision. Just how many times I answered yes to these questions is none of your dang business.
Here goes, be honest with your therapist.
Do you ever fish alone?
Do you ever fish with others?
Do you take vacation time to go fishing?
Have you ever taken a sick day to go fishing – ever?
Have you ever become irritable when you haven’t been fishing for a few days?
Do you consider 4-wheel drive vehicles, prams, jet sleds, drift boats, and Lowrance Fish Finders as “essential” fishing tackle
Do you ever fantasize about fishing during meetings at your workplace?
Do you fantasize about fishing when drifting off to sleep?
Do you mentally re-enact the day’s events after fishing?
Do you tell fishing stories in normal social settings?
Are your non-fishing days commonly interrupted by phone calls from friends who are a) on the river; b) asking for a fishing report before going on the river; c) reporting the conditions encountered on a recent fishing trip: or d) asking to borrow your boat/truck/spey rod/a dozen flies/Type-3 shooting heads?
Is your Christmas wish-list dominated by fishing items?
Have you ever forgotten an important birthday, anniversary, etc because you were thinking about fishing?
Do you believe that Thanksgiving, Christmas, Labor Day, Memorial Day, and Martin Luther King Day, are intended to provide fishing opportunities?
Do you feel more at ease in social settings when conversing with other anglers than you do when discussing politics or unemployment rates with normal people?
Do you believe fishing more will make you a better salmon/steelhead angler?
Are names like Lee Wulff, Lefty Kreh, and Jim Teeney familiar?
Does the phrase “Clouser Deep Minnow” and/or “Green Butt Skunk” make you smile?
Do you own tippet nippers? Waders?
Do you think Polaroid sunglasses were originally invented to make it easier to see salmon/steelhead?
Have you read, or heard about, or intend to read The River Y?
Do you want to fish the day after you have had a successful fishing experience?
Do you want to fish the day after you have had an unsuccessful fishing experience?
Have you ever postponed an opportunity for physical intimacy with a partner in order to prepare for a fishing trip?
Have you ever overheard a friend/partner/work associate refer to you as a fishing freak show?
Would you prefer to hang out in a fishing retail store than Home Depot?
Have you ever taken physical risks while fishing (using a graphite fly rod during a thunder storm; fishing from a pram during tornado warnings; negotiating Class V rapids by straddling a log in order to get to a great fishing hole; paddling 30 miles offshore in a float tube, and so on)?
Have you ever wondered if fishing creates disharmony in your personal or professional life?
Do you believe that it is possible to catch a steelhead/salmon during every month of the year?
Have you ever felt moody because you believed that you should have gone fishing last weekend instead of whatever it was that you did?
Have you ever had difficulty concentrating on normal activities the day after/before a fishing trip?
Have you ever continued to fish when injured or ill, because “this could be the day”?
Have you ever spent money on fishing tackle that you should have invested in food, mortgage payment, retirement fund, or repaying a student loan?