Friday, August 14, 2009

The Pawning of Murph

Greetings everyone. Glad to know everyone keeps coming back for more edge of your seat nothingness here. So everyone sit down, shut up and hang on for the latest ride in the diaries.

Mud got a 4 day weekend from work and he and the fam came out for the weekend. They spent Friday at the Zoo with Red and Tough Enough. Then they spent Saturday morning at the local car museum for their anniversary. Not sure how he swung that one, but I have to give him a thumbs up for one of the coolest ways to spend your anniversary!

Friday night, Mud and I snuck in a fishing trip to the same lake we spent 4th of July on with Fidge. The weather was perfect, if you were a duck or inside. It was raining and raining. A check of the RADAR showed it was going to be raining most the night. But we don't get out that often, and the sunny days certainly weren't proving very successful so why not go out in the rain and play ducks?

On the way to the lake, Mud was complaining about how I sent Murph home with him after their last visit. I thought it was a wonderful idea to pack him in the Mud Machine when no one was looking. I had a great week with out him around. Sounds like he behaved himself most the week. Fool gave himself away though, when Mud was packing up the fishing stuff for the weekend, Murph hid a few things from Mud. But Mud, being the ever vigilant man he is, did a second check of the fishing gear and noticed the missing items.

We got to the lake, launched with no problems, motor started with no problems. There were a couple redneck yachts racing around the lake, but they mostly stayed away from us. It was fun watching them trying to pull a redneck on a tube, and barely moving them. But we had bigger fish to fry... err rather catch.

It rained steady for the first hour or so. Between the redneck water sports and a rather good crappie bite, we barely noticed. We were pulling up halfway decent crappie every few minutes. I should say Mud was pulling up decent crappie every few minutes. I was getting skunked pretty bad. Then I had the hit of all hits. A monster. The gargantuan beast took my green/yellow grub on a 1/16th ounce jig like a semi hitting a deer in its headlights. My super stiff ultra light rod bent in half and the fight was on!

A few seconds later we landed the whale and got it safely into the boat. I was exhausted by the long fight, but knew I had to make sure it was a legal fish. I brought out the ole De-Liar scale/tape combo. Man if that thing could talk. Countless stories of all the big ole fish ole Nimrod has measured with it. I bet it could have its own BLOG diary. I stretched it out to the legal 14 inches and compared it to the whale in my hand. I took a double, then a triple take. I looked at Mud and then back at the fish.

She was just a hair shy of 14 inches, I mean like 13 inches and about 99/100ths. Just a hair short of being legal. I about cried. I then recalled some of the Yooper tricks Yoop talked of from her youth. I tried but nothing gave that fish the extra oopmh it needed to be legal. With tears welling up in my eyes, I put the fish back in the water. Maybe they weren't tears, it was raining ya know, nonetheless I was not happy to put back the Goliath.

We fished on. Mud continued his assault on my manhood, amassing about 6 fish in the basket before I had my first keeper. However, I did get the biggest, and the smallest fish of the day.

We received a call from Book who asked if it was raining. Dumbfounded Mud said yes and ended the call. A few minutes later it was Grey Beard calling. Again asking if it was raining. Grey Beard confirmed the RADAR indicated it was going to be raining for a while. News flashes even when we're on the water! But not five minutes after Mud disconnected with Grey Beard, the rain stopped and did not start again.

By time we pulled anchor and went toward the boat launch, I had started a comeback on the creel. Since numbers really don't matter, I won't bore you with those details. Lets just say Mud and I had out best day of the season. Not saying much, but at least we are moving forward not backward.

Looking back I realized we somehow had left Murph at baseops when we left. I am certainly not complaining but Mud and I each found out later Murph was not happy with us. On their return trip, Mud and family experienced an odd situation with the Mud Machine. They were cruising down the road when they heard what they first thought was a backfire. Turns out Murph had rigged the Mud Machine so a large amount of gas vapors got trapped in the muffler and at a set point ignited. Making a pretty spectacular boom. Blowing the Mud Machines muffler to pieces. Wish I could have been there, it sounds like it was a blast!

A few days later, I was putting new brakes on the Yoop machine. Got the corner in the air, tire off. I got up to go get some stands and tools, I walked about five feet and Murph jumped out of the bush, gave the Yoop machine a big ole push right off the jack onto the ground. I stood dumbfounded at first. I couldn't believe my eyes. When all was said and done, and simple 45 minute job turned into a 2 hour ordeal. I'll be damned if I am gonna let Murph keep me down.

Back to the drawing board. I thought I had pawned Murph off on Mud. I expected Mud to pawn him off somewhere far far away from me. But NOOOOO... he brings him back to my house. I had it all planned out and then the joke is on me. I will get rid of him one day, soon I hope there are only 48 days left until bow season, and I really don't want Murph as a hunting partner again this year.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Rainy Day Bath

I know everyone is on the edge of their seats waiting to hear the latest adventure of ole Nimrod and his friends. Well wait no more, the latest entry to the diaries is upon us. This adventure was from the past weekend. Mud and family were over. I had asked him for some help clearing a few trees outta the front yard, eat a fancy dinner off the grill, hit a local fishing hole and have a campfire for the kids.

As usual Murphy was right by my side from the get go. We visited for a while and decided we should get the trees done so we could get on with the rest of the day. We step outside and it is a nice soaking rain. Not pouring, but the kind of rain you love for a garden, just not to work outside in. Mud and I dropped the trees to the ground, surprisingly causing no damage to anything but the trees. Murph must have been on a toilet break or something.

The 3 of us took a short break to fill up the saws and dry off a little. I grabbed the bottle of bar oil, and put the last few drops in the saw. I looked at Mud and laughed. Stuck my head in the door and told Yoop and Book we would be back in a few, had to run to the hardware store for some bar oil. I think Murph put it in the engine of the old Chevy, but I don't have proof.

A minor set back in my world and we were back in business. I had left Murph at the hardware store, hoping he would go home with someone else. We scooted back, minus one, and in a short time we had the trees cut into family sized portions. No problems at all.

Mud and Red stacked it all nice and neat while I cut it into proper portions. Then they both help drag the brush out back for rabbit and bird piles. Again no problems at all. I was now praying Murph would not find his way back. There was a nice old couple there he was talking with I think they took him home feeling sorry for him.

The next few hours went well. Cooked up the wieners and brats, warmed up some baked beans, and opened the bags of tater chips. Dinner fit for a king. We ate them down, and sat around talking about whether or not the clearing of the rain would hold up long enough to get some fishing in. Since we were already soaked from the tree cutting, we decided to give it a whorl.

Packed everything up in Muds beast and set off for a little lake down the road. I had taken Monkey to this lake for some shore fishing earlier in the year. It is off a campground and only a few miles from the house. We got there, located the launch amongst all the twists and turns of the campground. As we pulled up, I noticed the sign, in big BOLD letters... “No motors allowed. Gas or Electric.” Strike one.

After about 30 minutes we found our way out of the labyrinth of the campground back out to the road. Another few miles down the road were two other lakes, nearly twins that are supposed to hold decent fish. The map of the area showed they had public launch sites also. I navigated Mud to the first, drove down the road a few times, right were the map should the public launch but I'll be damned if it hadn't disappeared. Right off the face of the earth. Strike two.

We slid down the road to the twin lake, and found the launch... I think the township should invest in some signs to mark them though. As we approached I studied the old, worn out sign. Only thing I could make out was the lake name. Nothing prominent stating other restrictions. As we got closer I noticed the next issue.

Turns out the people Murph went home with lived on Lake twin #2. He beat us to the launch and turned the launch area into a muddy, soupy mess. Being Mud's truck is a big ole heavy 2 wheel drive Goliath. I quickly pointed the launch out to Mud. I said well I guess we can fish for a little bit from shore. Strike 3???

He stated “We can just carry the boat to the water.”

My first thought was “ummm... no.” But then I figured why not. What could really go wrong with carrying the boat from the trailer, through a few feet of muck into the water. I have done worse things for less money. Ball 1.

Mud backed the trailer up to the edge of the mud. We unstrapped everything, organized it a little and started rolling it off the trailer. So far so good. She was a tad heavy, not real cooperative, but we were getting the job done.

Just as the stern was in water, not mud, we started to get into it nearly knee deep. It wasn't mud, but nice thick, sticky, stinky, sucky, squishy muck. The kind that critters you don't want on your skin live in. But we were almost there. We could see the nice soft, sand just a few feet away.

We got ready for one last push out of the muck, when my sandal got sucked in and came off my foot. Not being one to see the obvious signs that come from basic things, I dug out the sandal and put it back on my foot. We readied for the push again and once our momentum was moving toward the lake, Murph jumped out from behind a bush, forced my foot to the bottom of the muck and pushed me by the shoulders into the muck. He could have waited until I was in the clean water, but nope. He felt the need to make sure I was covered in the nice stinky muck from my ankle to my elbow.

We were in a little Podunk town, but I don't think Yoop would have liked me seeing if the local female population at the bar liked the smell of fresh lake muck. I bet they would have been all over me though. Anywho, after a long little laugh we got the boat in the water, I cleaned up a little in the lake and off we went.

It was a windy day and the fish seemed to be holed up waiting for the Pocono race to come on the next day. Mud and I found a few small pan fish at the windward side of the lake. We were really into them.. Instead of catching a limit of nice fish it turned into a contest of who could catch the smallest fish. I was a tight race, but I think Mud won. The clouds started to roll back in and we made the trek across the lake back to the launch.

As you can imagine, getting the boat back on the trailer was not easiest thing in the world. Not nearly as hard as putting it in, but it certainly not the funniest thing. Mud has Red at the hand crank of the mini winch. Mud and I each took a side and we slid her up through the muck, onto the trailer.

Things to remember if you are on a fishing adventure with me and we face something out of the norm. Get back in the truck and drive home. Don't come up with a plan to overcome anything. Just cut your loss and head home to some cold beer and hot dogs.

Oh and by the time we got back to the house, it was raining to hard for the campfire for the kids.