Cermele: How Not to Introduce a Newbie to Fishing

In my post of October 1, I mentioned that I had stripers on the brain. So, I attempted to get them off the brain and into my hands Sunday. But that's a little tough when a 30mph northeast headwind is blowing all the line off your spool and down the beach with every cast. Yes, it was an uneventful morning, but I use every outing as a learning experience. This trip, I learned how not to introduce new anglers to the sport.

I candidly snapped this photo while having a good chuckle with my buddies. This young lady accompanied her boyfriend (we'll suppose) to the surf, and when this photo was shot, the "boyfriend" had walked back to his truck. He left his lady holding his rod and facing down a frosty wind and chilly sea spray. Mind you, this is also at 6 in the morning. She didn't get her beauty rest.

As the boyfriend struggled to cast in the gale, the girl stood with arms crossed and her hood pulled down over her face. I felt bad for her, but worse for the dude. I can sympathize with the conversation that happened before this trip.

"I promise if you can just get up that early, we'll tie you into a bluefish and you'll have a blast."

I've said those words before, and you're so sure it'll work out when you say them. Of course, you have to know when to pull the plug or risk the person you're trying to inspire never wanting to fish again. My wife is a fine surfcaster, but she only ever gets the chance in comfortable conditions. If I think I'll need to wear a neoprene dry top, I know she needs to stay home.

Have you ever pitched a huge build-up to a rookie, only to be let down at crunch time? - JC