Bill Dance does a fantastic job of showing the lighter side of fishing. Every activity or sport has the potential for bloopers and humorous moments, but for me, nothing even comes close to what happened one day way back in the glory days of my youth.

Ricky was actually a friend of my older brother, and I don’t recall why he wanted to go fishing with me that day. We arrived at the pond after a long walk across the overgrown pasture and I already regretted it. His constant complaints about chiggers, ticks, snakes, poison ivy, thirst and the heat prompted me to toss my tackle box at his feet and head down the bank to cast in peace. I was 12; he was 17. I was just a kid, while he might as well have been KVD.

“Texas rig worm,” I hollered down the bank to him as he rummaged through my box. The pond had lots of stumps and wood cover. He tied on a ¾-ounce silver spoon. I raised an eyebrow and knew I’d never see that spoon again. I suspected he’d get maybe three casts before a tree ate it. Turned out it was just one cast.

It was snagged tight. He pulled, yanked and cursed. I shook my head.

I stopped fishing and paid attention when he wrapped the line around the reel handle a couple times and started backing up to break the line. Not because he was going to lose my spoon, it was the way he was holding the rod – waist level, right at the belt-line. This might get interesting. I sat down to watch.

The hooks on the spoon straightened enough to free the lure, which shot out of the water with the velocity of a quality .30-06 rifle bullet. Thirty-five years later I still can hear the “zing” of the heavy spoon shooting out of the water. And it hit the target, too. Ricky let out an “Oooof!” as he collapsed in the grass.

After several minutes of moaning and rolling around with both hands gripping his severely bruised manhood he got to his knees, and eventually started the long, slow walk back to the house. He never fished with me again.