Saturday, October 26, 2013

Father-Son Fishing Trip

Brad decides that today is a good day to take his son Bob on a fishing trip.  He looks forward to spending time together and to having a man-to-man talk with his boy.
Bob:  I can't believe you're wearing that.
Brad:  What?  This is comfortable!
Bob:  Why do I have to carry all of the gear?
Brad:  You're young, you can handle it.

Bob:  I see a good spot up ahead.
Brad:  Lead the way.

Bob:  What kind of bait should I use?
Brad:  I'll let you make the decision.

Brad:  Okay, bring the rod back over your shoulder.  Move your hands just a little.  That's it.  Now as you're casting it out, release your thumb.
Bob:  Like this?

Brad:  That's good. Now bring it in just a little.  Just relax.
Bob:  I've got this.

After several minutes of giving more fishing tips and having general conversation on a variety of subjects, Brad begins to ask more pressing questions.
Brad:  So, how's school going?
Bob:  OK.
Brad:  Are you making lots of friends?
Bob:  I pretty much have the same friends that I've had for a while.
Brad:  Do you have a girlfriend?
Bob tenses up and begins to feel slightly uncomfortable.  He remembers how awkward it was when his dad had the sex talk with him, and he's hoping that this is not going to turn into another one of those.  Brad senses his son's discomfort.
Brad:  Relax, I just want to know what's going on with you.
Bob:  Nothing much.
Brad:  Yeah, I remember that I had my first girlfriend when I was about your age.  And you're every bit as handsome as I was, soooo...
They both laugh.  

They decide to move to a different spot.
Bob:  I don't have a girlfriend.  Not really.
Brad:  Does that mean kind of?
Bob:  Well, there's a girl that I like a lot.
Brad:  Who is she?
Bob:  Her name is Calista.
A wave of relief washes over Brad.
Brad:  Oh, the Knight girl?  Yeah, she's a nice girl.  Pretty, too.  Tell me what you like about her.
Bob:  Well, she's nice.  Pretty, too. [They both laugh]  She's also really smart.  And funny.  And interesting.  And a lot of other things, too.

Brad:  Well, it's good to have friends.  Nice friends.  Friends that you have things in common with.  Nothing wrong with being just friends.  In fact, I encourage it wholeheartedly.  There's no need to be in a rush at all.  But are you feeling like you want more than that with this girl?
Bob (hesitantly):  Yes.
Brad:  Does she know how you feel?
Bob:  I'm pretty sure that she does.  I wrote her a note saying that I like her and asking if she likes me too.
Brad:  What did she say?
Bob:  She started to write me back, but she got interrupted.  She never did answer the question.  Sometimes it seems like she likes me, other times I can't really tell.  She acts weird sometimes.
Brad:  What do you mean "weird"?
Bob:  Well, she just does things that I don't understand.
Brad lets out a big belly laugh.
Brad:  Well, that's a woman for you!

Brad:  Look, women are going to do things that we don't understand.  And we are going to do things that they don't understand.  Communication is the key.
Bob:  We talk a lot.  We talk all the time.  But talking about feelings is HARD.
Brad:  I know it is, son.  And saying how you feel is one thing, but showing it is the most important part.
Bob:  How do I show it?  I could buy her presents.  I'm going to need a raise in my allowance.
Brad (laughing):  Well, you're not getting a raise.  Giving gifts is good as long as it's heartfelt and meaningful.  It doesn't have to be a store bought gift, either.  Girls appreciate when you put a lot of thought and effort into something.  You could make her something, write her a poem, or get her something that you know she really wants.  Showing how you feel is not about showering someone with material things.  If a girl ever tries to convince you otherwise, you're messing with the wrong one.

Brad:  Showing how you feel is about being there for that person.  Being interested in what she has to say.  Showing affection.  Being consistent.  Making sacrifices for her.  Showing that you are trustworthy and loyal.  And once you really show her how you feel, trust me, it will speak much louder than any words that you say.
Bob:  Does that mean that I don't have to say the words?
Brad (smiling):  No, you still have to say the words.  That's part of the communication that we were talking about earlier.

Brad:  The good news is that it gets easier to share your feelings after the first time.  Once you know for sure that she knows how you feel, and once you know for sure that you know how she feels, it gets easier.
Bob:  Ok.
Brad:  And once again, I want to stress to you that it's okay to remain friends for a very long time.  Some of the most intense romances start off that way.  And that Knight girl is a nice girl, so you're going to want to take your time.  Remember, you can have as many female friends as you want, but you can only have one girlfriend at a time.
Bob:  I know, Dad.

Brad:  Check out those turtles over there.  The ones on the log.  Let me tell you what they're about to do...
Bob:  Dad, please don't!
Brad (laughing):  Well, I knew that you were expecting another sex talk, so I didn't want to disappoint you.
They both crack up laughing.

Bob:  There are a LOT of fish in this pond - I can see them.  Why aren't we catching anything?
Brad:  I don't know, I guess they're all full.
Bob suspects that it's really because Brad has been talking the entire time and scaring the fish away.

Brad:  Remember, I am always here for you.  Whether you need advice, someone to talk to, or anything else, I'm here.  I know that you're at that age where you think that you know everything, but trust me, you don't.  I thought that myself at your age, but I learned that I really needed my dad more than ever. 

Bob knows for a fact that he can go to his dad for anything.  He knows that he can depend on his dad, because his dad has been there for him every day of his life.  The words that Brad speaks are that much more meaningful because his actions back them up.  Bob thinks that his dad is pretty cool, even though he dresses funny.

Bob:  I love you, Dad.
Brad:  I love you too, Son.


  1. Awww... this has me all warm and fuzzy.

    You're such a great writer and storyteller. I love these outdoors scenes, too. Where were they taken?

    BTW, Bob is definitely Brad's mini-me.


    1. Thank you so much Debbie! This was a fun story to do. My husband had quite a bit of influence in this one. These photos were taken at The Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, OK in Stuart Park. The museum has several different gardens, and Brad and Bob actually spent quite a bit of time there. They have more photos on Flickr.

      I agree that Bob and Brad resemble quite a bit. If only Brad had some of Bob's articulation, Bob would not have had to work so hard in this story. :)

  2. Fantastic! I was so into what they were saying. Good advice Brad! As always your scenary is right on target...keep em coming!

    1. Thank you, TGM! I have more ideas for stories than I know what to do with. I'm going to do my best to get as many of the ideas out of my head and into photos and onto this blog as I possibly can. :)

  3. I really enjoyed your story. Great advice.

    1. Thank you, Veda! I appreciate your comment.

  4. Awesome! I loved it! I agree with Debbie, you are a great storyteller. I took in every word, I hope that Bob does too. ; )

    I LOVE your pictures (scenes).

    1. Thank you, Georgia Girl! It was such a beautiful day out there, and I'm really pleased with how the photos turned out. It was fun. :)

    2. I like Brad and I've always liked Bob ;-) Good to read a Bob-background story. Uncanny how much they look alike in spite of coming from different manufacturers.

      Lovely scenery, too. Fit for a Roxanne-story ;-D

  5. BTW, I LOVE your background photo with the American Teens Dominique and Benjamin with the others. Make a nice variety of young people in different sizes and colors ;-)

    1. Thank you, D7ana! I like seeing Brad and Bob together. I do wonder how they ended up looking so much alike coming from different companies. Whatever the reason, I'm glad for it. They look so cute together.

      Thanks also for your comment on my background photo. My young ladies are in an uproar. They say that the ratio of males to females is out of whack (not enough boys). They say that I need to get some more boys in here, and soon!

  6. Everything about this is just perfect. Perfect photos, perfect story and perfect advice. This would make a great educational tool for pre-teens. It should be printed up and passed out in class rooms.

    1. Thanks so much, Muff! I wish that every little boy could have a man in their lives to not just teach him how to be a man, but to show him by example.

  7. Nice story and really good advice. It's also good to see a father and son who have a strong, positive relationship.

  8. Great story and awesome pictures! Bob is very lucky to have such a great dad. It's also good that he seems to recognize that. Sometimes the sons that have always had the great dad, don't realize how blessed they are.

    1. Thank you Vanessa! Bob is very close to his dad and wants to be like him when he grows up. But Bob is also just entering the rebellious stage, so there could be a few sparks. I don't think that it will be anything too serious, though. Bob has been raised well.

  9. Aww! I agree with D7ana. They look so much alike! I guess is was the look of the times. This was a really great story with feeling out there! This is the type of talk a lot of young men need! Great story and great post!

    1. Thank you, Ms. Leo! Brad seems like he enjoys talking with his son, so I'm sure that Bob can look forward to much more advice coming his way.

    2. I posted this on WLBDA, and thought I'd post it here also.

      When I was preparing for my father-son fishing trip blog post above, I knew that I would need input from a man, so I of course turned to my husband. My husband's father died when my husband was a young man, and my husband told me that he had not cried when his father died. I had a really hard time imagining that, because when my parents died, at times it felt like I would never stop crying (I still cry sometimes).

      The day that I wrote the blog post linked above, my husband and I spent the day together at the museum where these photos were taken. I asked him a LOT of questions about his father and the advice that his father had given him as a boy. I asked him what advice he would give our son if we had one. I asked him what kind of advice he gives to his nephews. My husband helped me get good pictures and he snapped that last photo of Brad and Bob above. In my blog entry, some of the things that Brad said came from my husband's father, my father-in-law that I never met.

      The next day, my husband came to me and he told me more stories about his father and some of the things that they had done together when he was a boy. He told me that his father had been a good man and a good father, and my husband cried. Right now I almost want to delete everything that I've written here because I don't know how to really express my point. I hate seeing my husband cry (I'd like to see him cry over a movie once so that I can laugh, but that's another story...), but something about that moment made him so much more relatable to me. He was crying over his dad, which I have done countless times, and THAT I could understand. And it was not lost on me that it was a doll related activity that brought about the conversations that brought about that level of emotion.