An Old Not Fishing, Fishing Story

Regrets: Not many. I don’t regret calling an asshole an asshole even if the asshole was a better fighter than me and more prone to start one. LOL. Yeah, my leg got broke in a motorcycle accident, but my nose didn’t. LOL.
I have one regret though that I think about from time to time. Many years ago I was active in the Harley Owner’s Group in Yuma, and my wife and I were more into appearances at charity dinners and that sort of thing. Jim Pierce of Pierce Aviation was also a HOG member and we ran into him from time to time at various community functions as well as at HOG runs and meetings. He always seemed like a nice enough guy and I liked him, but we weren’t buddies and we didn’t hang out together.
At one charity fundraiser for the Catholic High School we were seated with Jim and a couple other people who also like to fish. I had a great time. I had started fishing bass tournaments, and I had decent bass boat and it was a great time for me, although I am sure my wife was a little bored.
At one point Jim made some comments about me taking him fishing, but I kind of put him off and told him he should join the Yuma Bassmasters where he could fish with and learn from lots of people. I was mostly thinking it would be better for him, because I was still just getting to the point where I could catch a fish once in a while.
Next time I heard from Jim he was dead. When I went to his funeral I was floored by how many people spoke who loved and respected him. He was a pilot. Owned a couple aviation companies. Setup aviation fire crews in South America, and he was the one who often setup trips and fun outings for his friends and buddies. Everybody had a great tale to tell. Some had several. I’ve been to a funeral or two, but I’ve never been to one before or since with such a great outpouring from so many people.
Now, nobody is going to say anything great about me when I die. If you drink a beer and piss on my grave I’ll be thankful you remembered me at all. However, I try to remember the opportunity I missed to become friends or at least get to know somebody who was so well loved and respected. When I get the chance to fish with somebody I know and like I’m going if possible. No lame excuses. Only prior obligations or impossible will stop me. At the very least I may just learn I don’t like them as much as I thought and I can move on, but I don’t want to miss the chance to become friends with somebody like that again.
I also think when I am feeling down on myself, that somebody like that reached out to me. He was somebody. Maybe he saw a little somebody in me too.

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