View Full Version : Saving the Weenie

01-31-2010, 12:41 AM
Saving the Weenie

Ken and I fish from an inflatable boat that belongs to my brother. He has been kind enough to loan it to me for our annual McCloud trip for the past two seasons. It has two green pontoons and has been dubbed “The Green Weenie” by my imaginative compatriots. My brother has two rules when I borrow the Weenie: 1) no Power-Putty, Glitter-Goo, or nightcrawlers may pass over its gunnels; and 2) treat it with greatest care or never ask again to borrow it again. No problem for me on either count, as I know how very serious Rick is about his boat.

Monday, our first afternoon out on the lake for the week, Ken and I puttered around the coves and outcroppings throwing flies and generally getting limbered up for the rest of the trip. We watched schools porpoise around us feeding on an emerger that we couldn’t get figured out, but we stayed there until dark-thirty trying. The evening wind eventually came up and brought the chill with it. So, I strapped on my headlamp and we buzzed back to the dock, probably the last boat on the lake.

I brought us alongside the aluminum landing and we disembarked cleanly. Ken took the truck keys and started up the steep concrete ramp to back the truck down, while I pulled the Weenie up the ramp to remove the battery and motor. I noticed Ken was struggling to back down and, sure enough, he yelled at me to come up and help him since he couldn’t see a thing. After huffing up the ramp and pulling along side the driver-side door, we started to back down together when I caught a reflection of what I presumed to be another boat approaching the dock. “Great,” I said. “Now we’ve got to hustle out of the way for these guys.”

After another step or two, I noticed the other boat was moving further away from the dock and had no lights. It was then that I felt that gripping, diarrheic sensation of panic and sprinted, full speed down the ramp to the end of the dock, watching the Green Weenie bobbing merrily away, un-tethered, into the night. Ken was hollering at me, wanting to know why I abandoned him and at the same time, still slowly inching down the ramp toward his only point of reference, my erratically bobbing head-lamp.

I realized very quickly that time spent considering methods of rescue would only delay the inevitable and increase my chances of never getting to use the Weenie again. So, in an instant of ill-advised desperation, I shed clothes hastily and carefully placed my headlamp on the end of the dock as a beacon of hope and orientation for the return swim. As I jumped, I thought I heard Ken holler, “How am I doing?”

I don’t know how cold the water of McCloud Reservoir is. As a reference, you can use the fact that healthy trout live in it and its main source is Mt. Shasta. Or, you may be able to relate more to the mental image of a fifty-something year old man momentarily stunned and breathless because his grapes have withered instantly to vibrating raisins. It is that cold. Fighting the fog of pain, I began a frantic swim for the Weenie, while I worried if my own would ever be the same.

It was only when Ken opened the truck door, standing knee-deep in water, that he realized something was wrong. After repositioning on the ramp, he strolled down the dock hollering my name. I saw the light from my headlamp sweep past me and then focus on the boat ahead of me, with Ken’s booming voice asking me what I was doing, but I couldn’t answer because my testicles were tangled with my tonsils.

After reaching the brass ring on the end of the pontoon, I grabbed a quick breather and reversed course. I was able to respond (weakly) that the boat had blown off the ramp after I removed the battery. Ken nearly fell off the dock laughing and proceeded to coach me along and let me know that he came close to putting the truck in the lake, thanks to following my well-placed beacon at the end of the dock.

It took me at least a half hour to regain my body temperature under a hot shower back at the cabin and my voice finally returned to normal when “everything” fell back to proper elevation. I called my wife immediately thereafter and told her the whole truth before the story got back to her, embellished by my helpful companions. She thoughtfully and considerately reminded me how utterly stupid I was for risking my life for a boat and that she was going to visit our insurance man to up my life insurance the next day. I thanked her for being so understanding and headed in to eat dinner and suffer the ridicule I knew was well deserved.


01-31-2010, 01:42 PM
:lol: OMG Mike,
That is a funny story(Iim sure it didn't seem to funny while it was happening).Thanks for having the "balls" to share it with us.
Will :clap:

02-01-2010, 11:17 AM
The green weenie should be yours after that, and your brother can ask to borrow it! Funny stuff!

02-01-2010, 01:07 PM
Now THAT is up to par with what I expect outta Mike, both in reality and prose. Freaking awesome story. :)

02-03-2010, 01:52 PM