Sunday, May 13, 2007

A Mother's Day Angling Post

Today is mother's day so it is only fitting to reflect upon the impact that my mom has had on my life. Frankly, she has been the most important source of support for me from the day I was born. But since this is a fishing history blog, I would be remiss to overlook her role as an angler. Although she grew up surrounded by extraordinary wealth in Japan and probably never considered fishing beyond gazing into the coy ponds, when she met my dad (who was born with a fishing rod in both hands) and moved to America, she indulged him by going fishing whenever he wanted. Here she is in 1954 holding a 24 pound northern. My father had lost a northern earlier both of my parents swear was twice as big as this one. My dad was so depressed he didn't want to fish anymore, but my mom convinced him to cast out again, and this is what he caught.

It's funny how fishing moms shows up in the strangest places. I was reading a recent biography of Sandra Day O'Connor, the first female U.S. Supreme Court Justice, and discovered this mother of three is a dedicated fly fisher. The following anecdote shows her interest in fly fishing very well:

"She went fly-fishing whenever possible, and worked to get better at it. Roy Herberger...a longtime friend of O'Connor, recalled being on a plane and noticing a woman up a row and across the aisle, casting with an abbreviated rod and reel. 'I thought, what in the world is that woman doing?' Herberger got up from his seat and discovered it was Justice O'Connor casting with a mock fishing reel. 'In between reading briefs, she was working on another skill to be more competitive,' he said."

From Joan Biskupic, Sandra Day O'Connor: How the First Woman on the Supreme Court Became Its Most Influential Justice. (New York: Harper, 2005): 293.

It just goes to show you there are lots of fishing moms out there, including my wife.

So here's to all of the fishing mothers--and non-fishing mothers--on this mother's day. May it bring you the peace and love you deserve.

--Dr. Todd

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