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Oceans For Emotions: Catching fish on the fly

March 4, 2011 at midnight
Updated March 3, 2011 at 9:04 p.m.

Elaine Wheat

Editor's Note: This is the third of I don't know how many articles titled: "I Cried Till I Laughed, Article Three."

By Elaine Wheat

"Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might."

- Ecclesiastes 9:10

As we continued to sit around our beachwood fire telling our scariest fish tales, Tommy stood up and framed by the fire light announced that everyone else's flimsy, scariest story would pale in the light of his.

I Cried Till I Laughed, Article Three

Tommy told how he had always thought a soaring seagull was the prettiest sight in the world. Because of this, he had pictures of seagulls hanging on the walls of his beach house, had read the book, "Jonathan Livingston Seagull," and played the CD of the song by the same name that was written by Neil Diamond on his trips from one fishing spot to the other.

Tommy confessed his everlasting love for seagulls that lasted until he had his scariest time in his life with a seagull.

While he was fishing off of the crabbing bridge at Magnolia Beach, he saw the tide turn and the water was literally rolling with big reds. With his best rod and reel, he threw as far as he could, hoping to hit in the midst of the redfish.

Almost instantly, he felt a mighty jerk that almost ripped his rod and reel from his hand, but he didn't see the splash where the dead bait hit or the swirl of the spotted tail fish taking it. He said his young son Matt just stood there pointing skyward and yelling, "You caught one Dad!"

His family and friends turned around expecting to see supper, but Tommy and Matt just kept helplessly looking skyward. It was then that everyone realized that Tommy hadn't caught anything, but that beautifully, beloved bird "Jonathan Livingston Seagull" had caught Tom, hook, line, sinker and bait.

Tommy told how everyone within eye shot of this predicament of man catching flying bird had a suggestion of what to do with it that ran from just cut your line, or get it in carefully and we will have seagull for supper. Tommy just kept battling his flying catch of the day.

Being tender of heart, Tommy slowly pulled in the seagull, until he could hold it in his arms. Now that beautifully pictured bird turned into the wild animal that he was, as he took his mouth with the hook in it, bit Tommy, all over the arms and hands, knocked Tommy's glasses off with his wing, and in final disgrace, pooped on him. But even through the pain and stink, Tommy held him until he could get the hook out of his mouth, thrust him skyward with a "fowl word" that wasn't in any song or book about seagulls.

Dear Lord, even though we cried till we laughed at Tommy, we were thankful for the people who care enough about your world to help heal its hurts.

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