The Banana Boat.
Google (or perhaps Bing, as I’ve heard it’s pretty decent) “bananas and fishing” and you’ll find countless explanations supporting the assertion that bananas and fishing don’t mix. While I’m superstitious to a degree (with regard to hats), I don’t necessarily buy into this particular load of discriminatory bunk. I like bananas and eat one nearly every day. The potassium is supposed to be good for preventing muscle cramps, and if you’ve ever suffered a muscle cramp, you know how intensely uncomfortable they can be. When the cramp hits, you drop everything you’re doing and give full and involuntary attention to the pain. Aside from the obvious discomfort, the second worst thing about cramps is that they occur at any time they want–most often when you least expect, or want it. Like, when rowing a drift boat. That’s just a hypothetical scenario, though, as I don’t suffer from cramps because I eat bananas.
So I came to the recent conclusion that bananas, as a particular foodstuff, have nothing to do with bad fishing (unless you don’t eat them and develop a cramp while fishing). I assert that the issue is not the bananas themselves, rather the color: Yellow. Yellow is bad. And yellow is the color of The Hornet.
The Hornet is Marck’s yellow and black Clackacraft 16LP. I’ve known Marck for years, but when he acquired The Hornet a couple years ago, he was immediately promoted to the position of “best friend”. The Hornet quickly attained an exhalted status as well, as Mrs. Marck was forced to park her expensive German SUV in the driveway to make room in the garage for the boat. This makes perfect sense to me, and I’d do the same thing if I had a drift boat and Mrs. Unaccomplished Angler had an expensive German SUV.
I’m trying to remember the first time I fished out of The Hornet. It was on the Yakima River, I know that for certain. I’m pretty sure I got skunked. But there’s more to fishing than catching, and I do recall feeling fortunate to have the opportunity to be a passenger in Marck’s new boat. Since then, I’ve fished out of The Hornet countless times. I’d be exaggerating for the sake of literary grandeur if I said I got skunked every time I set foot in The Hornet, but I’d be lying if I said I caught fish every time. What I can say with all honesty is that the last several trips on the Yakima have all been aboard Marck’s boat, and the last several trips have been frustrating, humbling excursions with skunkings and more small fish than before I was stung by The Hornet. I’m beginning to think I’m allergic.
Oddly, Marck seems to be less ill-affected by the color of his boat than I am. I’ve never fished with him when he’s been skunked, and I’m reasonably certain that he’s never actually been skunked. Now, one might point to the seemingly obvious explanation: Marck is a fishy dude (whereas I am not) . Okay, I’ll buy that. But I think there’s more to it. When I’m on the oars, Marck is catching fish. When he’s on the oars, I’m not catching fish. See where I’m going with this? Perhaps the Unaccomplished Angler is simply a superior oarsman. Yeah, riiight. At least I’ve never suffered a cramp when rowing.
Lest one should think that I resent The Hornet, let me go on record as saying that this is not the case. She’s actually quite a beauty to behold and a pleasure to row. Clackacraft boats “Fear No Rocks”, which is a good thing, because I do. Luckily The Hornet is responsive and easy to maneuver, and when I’m on the sticks, most rocks are avoided. With her bold combination of colors, we regularly get comments from other anglers–most of them questioning Marck’s NFL allegiance (we live in Seahawk country, and we’re still seething over the loss to the Steelers in Superbowl XL: Roethlisberger did not cross the goal line and the ruling on the field should have been upheld). So rest assured, the color of the boat is merely an unfortunate coincidence in that regard. Pittsburgh fan or not, she’s a stunning vessel, and I’ve yet to see another one like it. Maybe there’s a good reason for that.
I’m submitting a request to change the name of the boat to The Banana. Fear No Cramps.