“Ain’t stupid twice”

Published 12:22 pm Tuesday, May 7, 2024

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In every marriage, there is a time when the husband says the exact wrong thing at the wrong time. This past weekend marked the one-year anniversary of my grave mistake, and it was only fitting that my wife and I went to the same place. 

The short story is we went fishing a year ago. I packed up all my gear, and we went to the river. When we got to the river, I had assumed my wife had packed up her gear. Her waders were still at home because she assumed I had packed up her fishing gear. At that point, I decided that I should try to put a fire out with gasoline by saying, “I didn’t know this was a guided trip.”

I quickly dodged the laser beams shooting out of my wife’s eyes in response and realized that I probably needed to ask the dogs if they had a spare bed. 

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Last week, my wife suggested we go fishing, and I happily obliged. The morning of, I told her I would pack everything up and not to worry about it. I double-checked everything, and we headed up the mountain. As we got out of the truck and headed towards the tailgate, I mentioned how I sure was glad I didn’t screw this trip up.

“You didn’t pack my rod,” my wife responded.

“What?” I thought. I for sure counted two rod cases when I packed up the truck.

“I have been using mine, and it is hanging up on the wall in the garage. You hung it up there earlier this week.” My wife was speaking in the annoyed but gracious tone of someone who knows they are right.  

Unlike last year, I said the best thing I could. “You are right. Do you want my rod?”

She said she would just take pictures for an article, but the disappointment was palpable. We walked to a spot to fish, waded in, and I started fishing. In no time, I had caught my first fish. She netted it and took it off the hook. I thought, “Hey, maybe it is a guided trip, but I’m the client.”

I offered her a chance to fish, and in a flash, she had my fly rod in her hand, ready to catch her own. We spent the rest of the morning laughing with each other, giving each other a hard time when we missed fish, and laughing about how we fish the same piece of water differently. Every time we caught a fish, we relinquished the rod to the other.

What could have been a repeat of last year with my mistake turned into one of the most fun fishing trips we have ever had together. My daddy always says, “My momma may have raised an ugly boy, but he ain’t stupid.” I was stupid with my response last year. So, I guess I would amend the end of the saying to say, “he ain’t stupid twice.”