“Isn’t insanity...doing the same thing, over and over again,” yelled Jay between cursing buffalo bur and groundsel, and trying to manage a 70 ft double haul...
“...but expecting different results?”
“Why yes...yes it is.” I grinned...“Einstein, I believe...” (These sorts of things can be amusing when you're not the one trying to catch the carp.)
More cursing got him more distance on the next cast, but the line went too far to the right -- three times in a row. And the same thing again and again can make a person start to feel insane, you know. Strangely, even good things. Yes, your mother was right about the German Chocolate Cake. After a while, you’ll start to craving lemon meringue. Even holidays and leftovers; plunge pools and puppies. You are glad when things change -- when the stream settles out, when things grow up and you aren’t cleaning pee-paper off the floor anymore.
For while humans may indeed be creatures of habit -- habit is not always repetition, and repetition is not always the same thing. There are fine lines hiding in all of that, and you find them through practicing scales for hours upon hours, or casting into a lake again and again.
Yet while we can in fact learn from our mistakes -- from our crumpled hearts, plans, and casts -- that doesn’t always mean we can fix them, or change what we’ll do the next time around. Like that woman who always ends up with the jerk -- who has the bad-boy attraction, again and again. You can come to know why you do what you do (admittance is the first step, after all), but for whatever reason, sometimes you just can’t not do it again.
Which...strikes me as a lot like carping.
And casting for that matter.
Both derivations of insanity.
And then when the line goes to the left a few times, snagging on some reeds, he spits -- get your head in the game -- over the highway noise, over the kind of drone that’s suddenly realized because you can’t hear something else (one of those things that isn’t a problem until it’s paired up. Like some people with people, or like bacon with chocolate.)
Yet the carp stayed put, humping in the mud like a dog with its stuffed animal -- but not looking nearly as guilty when caught in the act.
With its back out of the water, biding more time.
Just enough...until the head got in the game.
Until something different happened.