Last July I had the honor of being the only writer from Nor Cal to hitch a ride on the final day of the ESPN Great Outdoor Games bass fishing competition at Folsom Lake. I was covering the event for The Fish Sniffer Magazine and our Bass Angler News pullout section
The ESPN / BASS Communication Director arranged with the area Triton rep to provide a driver for one of the boats to escort me on the water for the day. I got to watch and photograph the legends of our sport compete at my home lake for the first time, sure they had been to the Delta and Clear Lake earlier in the year, but those are southern fried impoundments. This was Folsom, finesse bassing at its best, and I was going to se how they performed in perhaps the toughest conditions we face, Folsom in the summer.
Even after watching Denny Brauer, Rick Clunn, Davy Hite, Peter Thiliveros and others compete against eventual winners Gary Klein and Shaw Grigsby, I was taken by something entirely different; a cameraman.
I watched a professional move around in the boat that day, Wes Miller, a cameraman for JM Associates out of Little Rock, Arkansas was like Spider Man; he was all over the place. He was standing on motor cowlings, and perhaps my favorite was when he sat on the trolling motor bracket straddling the pedal, filming up while Gary Klein fished over his shoulder, and explained what he was doing.
After coming home from the day I began relating the events to my wife, Christina who chuckled and said; "you just spent the day working with 10 of the best bass anglers in the country, and you're all fired up about a cameraman. Don't you think there's a story in that?"
She was right, so I went to work, I pitched the idea to Shaw Grigsby, Wes Miller, JM Associates and eventually Gary Klein, I perform all the interviews and write the majority of the article; now this is where the first punch happens
I had a nagging doubt in my mind about whether my intended destination would receive the article with the enthusiasm I would desire. After all, I was going to be submitting to Bassmaster Magazine itself.
I struggled with the concept for a long time, and eventually more than halfway convinced myself that they wouldn't publish article, as it wasn't a "how to", or "tournament news” piece. As it turns out, I was wrong.
I sat down last week to read my new Bassmaster, and as I have for the last year, reminded myself to submit the article and photos, until I got to page 81, there was my piece, only it was written by Steve Price, Bassmaster Staff Writer. I had blown it, royally.
All of this to say what? Is this article here to try and let the world know whose idea that was, perhaps a bit, but most importantly it is to serve as a constant reminder that I can't go through life "living chicken", as Gary Dobyns would say.
I close with two things, first, I am going to publish along with this piece, on Westernbass.com; the never before publicly read article that, if you wouldn't mind helping me for a minute, picture it as it should have been, on page 81 of Bassmaster.
Secondly, allow my own situation to cause you to make that move at work you feel you should, love your family the way you should or start the motor and run to the other side of the lake when you have that hunch Because, if you don't... it's fair to say that somebody else might
Don't wind up look at your opportunity as I did; from the bleachers, get in the game, I finally am.