Tuesday, January 29, 2013
What a Piece of Craft, The Chronicles of Peeber, Part 1
Last summer I sold a boat. It was a 15' side console jon boat that I had set up for carp fishing in lakes. It had a poling platform, dual batteries with an inboard charger, a custom floor and front deck that I built, etc, etc. It was sweet, but with a toddler and a mountain relocation I really didn't have time to go, or a place to take that boat. I traded down for a raft with a fishing frame and since that suits my water here....I expected it would be my one and only. Then came the carp cup......where we fished out of Ryan's IPB flats boat on some crazy fishy water just absolutely filled with carp. Unfortunately that water is 2 hours away, so I stopped by some potential nearby carp habitat on the way home, and then dove into craigslist head first. Being poor-ish is hard sometimes, but it forces you to be creative and resourceful. I had an old('66-ish) Johnson 20 horse buried in the barn that I had earlier presumed dead, or at least not able to live without a feeding tube(and what kind of life is that, anyway?). Turns out that being poor-ish also has honed my mechanical skills(or possibly just my motivation), because she now runs like a '70s 15 horse..... Motor fixed, I went into serious craigslist mode. Found some real gems, but the universe just wasn't cooperating. So I waited. And I was restrained. I think I looked for a month before I found 'the one'. That's 2 lifetimes in patience challenged years(months/days/minutes), and I am severely patience challenged. It's a thing. The challenge with buying cheap(really cheap) jon boats is that they are bought and sold in a matter of hours. There are so many dream chasers out there who have always had an imaginary boat parked in the garage(who am I kidding - the front yard) right next to that badass 1984 Trans-Am, and mountain of Busch Lite cans(ie, the retirement fund). What that means for successfully obtaining one of those dream snatchers is precise timing and decision making. You find it, you go. You'll know it when you see it. As you haul ass down the highway, dropping responsibilities like my mom drops f-bombs(seriously), the anticipation builds. You are convinced that this is an incredibly good deal, and you're sure this guy has no idea what he's giving away. He must be more broke than me... Poor fella. Hard times. Too bad, so sad! It's mine now sucka! 100 miles of road eaten alive, and a last minute scramble to find an ATM in a trailer park of a town(or a town that's just a trailer park), you pull into the driveway(the front yard), and there it is right behind the retirement fund. It's your NEW bote! You have to remind yourself to remove the shit eating grin and pull back on the excitement reins, because this guy is hard times. He's experiencing a profound loss. He's giving up on a dream. Also, you need your game face. You're fully prepared to hand over the benjamins you're clutching in your pocket, but he doesn't need to know that just yet. Time to have a look see. Point out all the faults. Make sure he knows that he's asking too much. I don't know why, that's just how it goes. The problem with this scenario is that you now see all of the faults, and that shit eating grin has started to slump. Hmmmm. He explains away the dents and the holes, and offers to include the 40 crappie rod holders for another 50 bucks. I got unother battrie, too. This un werks just fine, but ye have ta clamp this wire to this'n, and wiggle this'n just a......Oh shit. What have you done? This boat is a near worthless, hole ridden, broken, dented, illegal hunk of scrap metal, and the trailer isn't likely to get you home. The shoe's on the other foot. Who's wearing the shit eating grin now? The ride home is a little different. It's slow. Real slow....cause the trailer is violently swinging side to side while at the same time bouncing, bouncing, bouncing. Welcome to reality, dumbass. You just bought a boat.