A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Elsewhere

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by BOBLAWLESS, Oct 15, 2003.

  1. BOBLAWLESS New Member

    Posts: 2,879
    Port Ludlow, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    So I’m coming in to Telkwa, B.C. by way of the river, the Bulkley. I’ve got no car
    (it’s back up at the put in) and no plan as to what to do. I was hoping maybe I
    could hitch a ride. I had intended to get out at the camp take out and maybe beg a
    ride back up. Like the fool that I am, I drifted on past the camp and rolled on in to
    Telkwa.
    She’s not much, a handful or so of buildings, but one of them is a pub. A plan
    starts to shape in my mind.
    I go on in and it’s Friday night but a little too early for much action. I see a big
    round table full of beefy looking Canadians (are there any other kind?) and I pull up
    a chair and join. Conversation stops. I’m still in my waders, dripping wet, and I’ve
    got my over-loaded vest on with my parrot in one pocket (handle is Oleander) and
    my pocket dog (just call him Smolt if you would) in the other. Smolt says very
    little, except for the occasional belch and tiny little dog farts that are very blue.
    Oleander, on the other hand or the other pocket whatever, starts to cuss the table
    out. I mean some really filthy stuff starts to pour out. I keep a little film can in my
    number twenty pocket (I have them all numbered) and inside are rubber bands. I
    pull one out and snap it on Oleander’s beak and so quiet is restored.
    “I’m an American,” I start out, “from down south dontcha’ know.” They can’t
    believe their eyes or their ears.
    “Be damned,” one of them says.
    “Yup, I said, ”need a lift back up to the Price Road Bridge where I put in.”
    Silence now. I make a sign to the waitress and spin my hand around, signaling that
    I want to buy a round for the table. The beer comes; I take a big pull, draining the
    glass and signal for another. “Damn but that beer is good! I came all the way up
    here for just such a drink. Tasty, mighty tasty,” I said.
    Now there was a small smile here and there as they began to admire the balls of this
    ‘Murican who was apparently at ease with this whole situation. Plus they all had a
    nice, fat beer in front of them and it would be unneighborly to say anything
    untoward. Canadians are famous for being neighborly. My trick was working.
    I learned this trick as an American soldier during the Vietnam War and we must
    digress just a minute to explain.
    All that follows is the plain and simple truth so help me God and does not need to
    be embellished in any way. It will stand on its own.
    I got in the war because I was hungry and I needed to get out of town. I was 23.
    A student at U.C.L.A, I was completely and totally out of money. Not a cent was
    left, and there was no hope of any. The landlady at my apartment building was
    looking for me because my rent was two months over due and she had threatened
    me with the sheriff.
    I had this little romance with a graduate student in French literature. It started out
    as simply saying hello to each other in French and it ended with an evening that
    included some time on her couch. Unfortunately, I had misled this poor young lady
    with my intentions. While I never used the words in any way, I guess I told her that
    I loved her. It was a time in history when Eisenhower was President and Nikkita
    Kruschev was the Soviet Premier.
    The situation in the world was hard to describe but we students all thought that the
    world would probably end in a nuclear holocaust in the next few days, maybe that
    very evening..
    I told her that if the world ended, I hoped she would be in my arms so we could die
    together. I guess that’s as good as saying I love you.
    The problem with all this was that I didn’t love her because she was terribly ugly,
    vastly overweight, and had every fault you can think of that a poor young lady
    might have. I had tried, without succeeding, to look beyond her physical
    shortcomings and attempted to be the man all women long for: a man who can see
    the inner beauty of a woman, someone who will still be there for her long after the
    bloom is off the rose. Such men are men of pure gold.
    But I was a turd.
    I tried, damn how I tried; I told myself over and over that beauty didn’t matter, that
    I was a poet and poets could see things that no other human can even imagine.
    Well, enough, the morning after the big night (shall I say the disaster?), I didn’t go
    near her. She pounded on my door to see if I was all right but I wouldn’t answer.
    I felt so small. A woman after me, no money , hungry, the sheriff on his way. It
    was time to get out of Dodge. And I did. I joined the U.S. Army.
    Fast forward now to a time when I’m stationed in Germany. I’m in a laundry truck
    on my way to somewhere the place of which I didn’t have a clue.
    Suddenly, the corporal in charge and driver of the truck turns up a couple of back
    streets and pulls into a pub or a gasthaus as the Germans say.
    “Shit, I said, we’ll get busted for this. The M.P.s will get us. They’ll see the truck
    (the truck, painted olive drab with a huge white star on the doors was as obvious as
    a tank).”
    “Naw, the corporal says, no problem. They never come here. They never leave the
    main roads.”
    And so we went in. A huge round table was located in the middle and full of
    German men; men in their forties and fifties, all of them had been in the Big One
    and all were ex-Nazis.
    My leader hands me a chair and grabs one for himself and we muscle are way into
    the round table and order beers for everyone. Now the Germans seem to soften up
    immediately. We were too young to have been in World War II and so we were not
    really guilty of anything.
    The corporal breaks into fluent German and soon has them all laughing. The beers
    begin to pile up in front of us. My own German is very limited but I am not afraid
    to use it. And old man (55) is seated next to me and I ask him, pointing to some
    medals he has on his chest, “ Was ist das?”
    He tried to explain but he could see I didn’t understand. So then he pounded on his
    leg and it made the sound of wood. He invited me to pound also and I did. Yes, it
    was wooden.
    Apparently the leg was shot off in combat and by an American soldier if I
    understood him correctly. I’m somewhat offended now because it wasn’t my side
    that invaded Poland or had murdered six million Jews. It was his side. And I’ll be
    damned if I am going to feel guilty about his leg. Now he raises his glass of beer to
    me and says, “Proust.” I repeat the toast with the same word and our glasses clink
    together.
    Then I began to lie, why I don’t know and I have no idea where these next words
    even came from. But I mentioned “mina mudder ist auf Chicago.” My mother
    lives in Chicago. Then I said, “Auber minen fasser is kaput.” But my father is dead.
    He started at me with very fixed eyes.
    I knew what he was thinking.
    “Dinen fasser ist kaput?”
    “Ya,” I say.
    In der Amerikanisch Armee?”
    “Ya,” I said again.
    “Auf Japon, ya?” he asks staring very intently at me.
    “Nine,” I replied. “Auf Deutchland.” It was here in Germany that he was killed.
    I only knew the word for tank in German so I said, “Er vas ein Panzer.” I couldn’t
    go any further so I grabbed a cigarette ash tray in front of us. There was a long
    cigarette, only slightly burned in the tray. I pointed to the tray and said that it was
    the panzer and then to the cigarette and said it was my father. Then I showed him
    how the tank ran repeatedly over my father’s body until the cigarette was in shreds.
    There was not a dry eye between us.
    I raised my glass and said, “Proust.” Our glasses clinked and that is the end of this
    part.
    As I sat at the big, round table with my Canadian friends, I thought about this
    episode in my life, how bold I had been, what chances I had taken and was it OK
    for me to lie to the gentleman.
    About this time, two ladies walked in and came to the table. I asked if they would
    take $20 each and return me to my truck. They were more than happy to do so.
    The cab from Smithers would have cost $120 bucks. So it was a win, win
    situation.
    Just another memory in my life which I have shared with you. I hope you have
    enjoyed the story. It’s all true except the part about my father. At the time, he was
    alive and probably drunk in Chicago.
    Bob
    :beer2
  2. IveofIone Active Member

    Posts: 3,050
    .
    Ratings: +1,064 / 0
    Bob,
    Could you hum a few bars of the LikkerDikkerStikker polka? Ive
  3. T Dub New Member

    Posts: 148
    Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    Thanks BOB!

    I would buy “The life and times of BOB LAWLESS”.

    TDub
  4. Bright Rivers Member

    Posts: 513
    Bellevue, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    AAAHHHHH! Thank you Bob. I'm reborn.

    Romance. Betrayal. War. International intrigue. Drinking, belching & farting. And just enough fly fishing to make it relevant.

    That oughta last me until November.


    "If I don't catch them today, I'll catch them another day." Art Flick
  5. Hal Eckert Member

    Posts: 615
    West GLs
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    "Take nothing but pictures leave nothing but your tracks"


    Bob, sind Sie Nr. eine, großes Material. Ich kann auf der Hochschulzeit, Vietnam, Deutschland und selbstverständlich dem Fliege Fischen beziehen.

    Ausgezeichneter

    Herr Eckert

    Bob

    That was great and I can relate to much of it being it looks like maybe 10 years younger than you as you can see from my deutsche message above. Keep it up I love a good fly fishing fiction or non fiction story.

    Were you and english teacher ?

    :thumb

    BG
  6. Mike Etgen Not Quite A Luddite, But Can See One From Here

    Posts: 1,433
    Port Orchard, Washington, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    RiverFishing

    You know, what makes a truly gifted story-teller, in my opinion, is the ability to allow the listener to find something beneath the obvious.
    And to make you feel you're right there.
    I could hear you tapping on the wooden leg, I swear.
    You did it again, Robert. Well-done, and under pressure at that!


    :thumb

    Mike
  7. Paul Huffman Lagging economic indicator

    Posts: 1,414
    Yakima, WA.
    Ratings: +130 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    There's an old pilot story that goes thusly:

    An American Airline Pilot backed away from the terminal in Stuttgart, Germany, circa 1981, and picked up his taxi instructions from ground control in rapid, heavily accented English. The pilot asked for a repeat of a portion of the taxi instructions, adding he was unfamiliar with the taxiways at Stuttgart. Ground, in an impatient tone: "American Flight 451, haf you never been to Stuttgart?" American Flight 451: "Well, yes, I have, but it was several years ago. Back in 44-45. I didn't stop."
  8. troutman101 Member

    Posts: 702
    Seattle, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    Thank you BOB:thumb
  9. gotchasr Member

    Posts: 333
    Kirkland, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    Great story. Well worth receiving your flies a few days late. :p
  10. Dan Member

    Posts: 621
    Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA.
    Ratings: +1 / 0
    Howdy Bob,

    Thanks for the memories. I was commissioned in 1975 and my first duty station was Flint Kaserne, Bad Toelz, Germany. I was one of the first Americans since General Patton to obtain permission to fish the Isar River above Bad Toelz around the town of Lenngries. I really got my first taste of dry fly fishing there. It took a lot of moxie to seat yourself at the Stammtisch. Sounds like you've still got it.

    Petri Heil!

    Dan--the 10 years spent in Germany during the Cold War and there when the wall came down

    "There are none happy in the world but beings who enjoy freely a vast horizon."
  11. BOBLAWLESS New Member

    Posts: 2,879
    Port Ludlow, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    A New Story By Bob About His Trips to B.C. And Else...

    Black Ghost:
    Yes, I was an English teacher at the beginning of my career. But most of my time was devoted to history and psychology.
    My love for fishing goes back to early childhood and it is with me yet. I don't have the strength it takes to teach anymore but I can still make a big splash with my fly line.
    Bob, the I told a lot stories in my day..:professor :thumb