An idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person’s mind.

At the time, it seemed reasonable that I should be planning my opening day muskie trip in early February.  Where to go, color patterns, size … you know the process.  I was online using the Navionics apps when my wife walked by and asked me what I was up to.  Planning the opener I replied.  The fact that she knew what “the opener” was and approximately when “it” was, will give you an idea of how frequently the topic is mentioned at my house.

You’re obsessed was her curt reply as she continued on past me.  I carried on with my work and now have a good plan in place with several options to accommodate water conditions etc.

I was in the basement sharpening hooks the other night when her comment came back to me – you’re obsessed.  I’ve never really thought about it that way.  I work with my fishing partner and we talk muskie pretty much every day at the office and planning trips 4 or 5 months in advance seems pretty normal.  We follow muskie forums and guides online year round and there is never a shortage of topics to discuss, baits to buy or videos to watch.    Once a month we have a Muskies Canada chapter meeting and there are 30 or 40 other members that, to a greater or lesser extent, are all doing the same type of thing.

A strange thing happens though when you go outside of the “muskie world” and start to talk about “normal” activities.  My sister in law was in town last month and couldn’t believe the wall of baits in the basement.  A very modest 150 lure collection of muskie baits seemed crazy to her and why would I need 5 different rod/reel combinations to fish with?  What’s with the survival suit and $3K worth of electronics ??   You’re obsessed.

I remember the look on my neighbors face at the cottage when both of my girls knew exactly what phase the moon was in and when the prime time slots were for fishing.  “How could teenage girls possible know that?”  They both rolled their eyes in classic teenager fashion and just looked over at me – Dad’s obsessed with muskie fishing – he talks about “prime time” constantly.

Maybe these “rules” are not so normal either:

  • if the season is open and the launch is not plowed in with snow – we are going fishing
  • safety trumps all, but temperature, rain/snow, moderate wind and personal comfort are not safety factors
  • if there is a storm that makes conditions unsafe, we sit in the parking lot until conditions change – post frontal can be good – or we get out in front of the storm – pre-storm is even better

When people say muskie fishermen are obsessed, I try to explain the thrill of catching an apex predator.  The adrenaline rush, the intense battle, holding the fish up for the grip and grin photo and the satisfaction of a good strong release afterward.  The fact that guys that have been catching muskies for 30 + years still have the same reaction.

An idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person’s mind.

Ok – I’m obsessed.  I don’t have any more time to think about it.  I’ve got to get ready to work a 4 hour shift at the Muskies Canada booth in our local outdoors store – talking to people about muskie fishing.  It’s a great place to meet “normal” people or maybe convert a few over to my version of normal.