1. Always bring a First Aid kit.
Keeping you alive was always top priority for dad, and with all those sharp objects and live animals, things can get pretty crazy on the boat.
2. Don’t scare the fish.
Being loud is second nature when you’re young, but in order to catch a fish, you need to shut your trap.
3. If the sun’s up, the fun’s up.
There’s nothing like starting your day minutes after you’ve gone to sleep. Dad always told you that fishing at the crack of dawn is essential. It’s like that old expression: “The early worm catches the fish.”
4. Bug spray, SPF 30, and WD-40 are the liquids that will save your life.
A little WD-40 on the line blocks the human smell and gives you better distance on your casting, while the bug spray and SPF keep you from dying a mosquito- or sun-related death.
5. Know what you’re fishing for and know what to use as bait.
This is a classic parent life lesson: always know what you’re trying to do before you do it. Some fish love worms, some love insects, some love shiny things, some love a chase. Just remember that all fish aren’t created equal.
6. A little Alka-Seltzer goes a long way.
If there’s one thing Dad had in bulk, it was Alka-Seltzer. Most fish are attracted to bubbles, so you can rig up a tiny tube next to the jig and sink an Alka-Seltzer with your bait. Hello, dinner.
7. Fishing is a distance sport.
Know the depth of the water beneath you so the bait isn’t taking a dirt nap, and determine the optimal fall speed for your worm. That’s key to getting more bites.
8. Fish don’t want to be caught, so keep your eyes peeled.
Dad was always so good because he was patient. Play some Candy Crush or talk about school — but remember — keep your voice down! Didn’t you read rule #2?
9. Watch your line.
Know the difference between a curious nibble and an opportunity to hook a monster. That’s the difference between coming home with a billion fish for dinner or a billion excuses for the family.