Well, dear reader, looks like it’s time for another trip to my hometown of Evansville, IN, where she will welcome me home with metaphorical open arms, treating me to a much earned hero’s welcome.
Okay, okay, there is probably a bit of hyperbole in there. Certainly I will be greeted by swarms of old compatriots, vying voraciously for my attention. Mmmm……maybe still a dash of hyperbole. I think it’s safe to say maybe one or two people will saunter out of their homes out of a sense of obligation. Maybe even one of them will buy me a cheap, watery, domestic beer to “enjoy” or, at the very least, allow me to drink one cold mug out of a shared pitcher of Bud Light. Thanks ahead of time to whoever you are. I’m not heading back 200 miles just to revel in unfettered adulation, anyway. No, I’m heading back to go fishing.
I’m not sure why I originally started fishing. Well, I mean, I’m quite sure it had to do with my friend Shaun Knight, who likes to both fish and hunt. The thing is I don’t ever remember expressing any interest in fishing. I don’t know how I was convinced to do it that first time. I don’t ever remember a time when I would have thought, “Sitting in a tiny boat in the 100 degree weather listlessly holding a pole in my hand waiting on a fish to bite for hours on end? Yessir, sounds magnificent!”
But enjoy it I do. Part of this comes from the one-of-a-kind ambiance present at Mr. Knight’s privately owned lake, “Foot’s Pleasure Club.” No lie. I’ll post a pic of the t-shirt when I get a chance.
Cell phones don’t work, the cabins are ramshackle, the wildlife is plentiful, snakes and skunks are commonplace, the toilets are holes in the ground, the plumbing (sink only!) is the coldest water you’ve felt in your life, and the lake itself is nothing short of fantastic. It’s a pretty good-sized lake, not the bastardized version of suburban lore. Turns out sitting in the middle of a giant body of water drinking beer and catching bass can be quite soothing.
I’m still not sold on hunting though. Getting up at 3AM when it’s 30 degrees outside, dressing in layers of camouflage, spraying myself down with deer urine, climbing up in a tree and then sitting perfectly motionless all day, many times never even seeing any wildlife, well, sounds a bit tedious. But who knows. Slap a bow in my hand, send a fresh faced doe down my line of sight, and I might find it in my heart to let that arrow fly, straight and true.
Enough about killing or maiming harmless animals (I hate when the hook gets stuck behind the fish’s eye, it’s so damned hard to wrestle out of there). How about something everybody can agree on; gettin’ drunk!
In addition to drinking on the lake, including waking up in the cabin and starting off the day with a Bloody Mary, I will probably indulge in a frosty beverage in many other of Evansville’s hot spots. Namely Shaun’s parent’s home and the Gerst Haus. I like these places because I am the kind of guy who likes to actually conversate with my friends, as opposed to yelling myself hoarse through a smoky haze over a cacophonous din of music I hate.
I know it seems like, at some point, I should probably give my liver some time to recuperate during my week’s visit. But I doubt it will happen. This shall be a week of antics and hedonism. I shall eat and drink myself to the precipice, peering abysmally in to it, resisting the urge to plunge headlong. For one week I will purposely (and gleefully) replace the angel on my shoulder with Poe’s Imp, where he and the devil will drive me around the town of Evansville creating hijinks and tomfoolery the likes of which the town has never seen!
Either that, or I will drink way too much on my first night then spend hours on Shaun’s couch consecutively watching all the episodes of the 3rd season of the original Star Trek. It’s a toss-up, really. We once watched all of season two because we saw a screen capture on the box of “Mugato.” Also because I was hungover as shit.
Hell man, who could sleep at night having missed that episode? Of course, we spent about 10 hours waiting to find the episode he was in, and his 30-second blink and you’ll miss it cameo left much to be desired. You can see it here, if you would like. I seriously doubt you do, though.
Hey, looks at this, he even has his own action figure! THREE DIFFERENT VERSIONS! If my basement wasn’t already filled with worthless paraphernalia I never use, I would probably buy one of these. Still, it would look pretty good next to my pimped-out 80’s-retro-suited Adam Dunn Bobblehead…..
I know a lot of people would think it silly to spend a vacation heading to a little burgh like Evansville but I’m just heading back to break up the monotonous routine of my everyday life. Plus, a lot of times when people complain about the city they live in they are really illustrating a classic case of greener on the other side-ism. I’ve lived in the ‘Nati for about four years now, and the weird thing is I’ve spent a lot of time thinking “I wish I could find someplace more like the Gerst Haus.”
I like Cincinnati, don’t get me wrong. And there are a lot of things to do here. Baseball games, nice museums, a wide variety of restaurants and other cultural events. Yet, I do often times miss my friends and family and my familiar haunts. So is being able to view the exact same Miro painting hanging in the Cincinnati Art Museum worth the trade-off of drinking a fishbowl of icy Newcastle with an old friend?
Regardless, I’m headed down. I will drink cheap, water domestics and full bodied microbrews. I will eat pizza and deliciously greasy German fare. I will watch bad movies and bad TV shows and possibly a few good ones….although I doubt it….and I will invite friends to take place in both sharp and dull-witted banter. The week will pass painfully quickly and I will realize I didn’t have time to visit everybody I wanted to, as is always the case. When I awake on my departure morning and bid the good Shaun Knight a fond adieu, I will leave with a head cloudy with nostalgia, only muddied further by the aforementioned idiom.
Not to let this meander too far down the path of serious introspection, I will also, and most importantly, go fishin’ with Shaun Knight. Just like Danny Glover and Joe Pesci. I’ll let you decide which of us in this particular comparison is Danny Glover and which is Joe Pesci, but I can assure you I will probably be the one grumbling about how I am “too old for this shit” by the end of the week. Clip to follow:
I actually wanted to put the trailer on here for Gone Fishin’, but I’ll be damned if I can’t find it! Why, in this day and age, I should be able to find a trailer for every movie made, especially one with two of our finest thespians!
You can watch the entire film for free on Hulu, though. If you’re some kind of sick masochist.