Whirlygig: 42

Out on the Town

Sep 5, 2002 at 2:06 pm

Catch and Release
Summer is officially over since Labor Day is behind us and classes on most campuses have resumed, but Cincinnati weather is superb this time of year. It's my favorite season, in fact, with the crisp morning air and blue skies.

I always look forward to the return of sweaters and fireplaces. Still, though, I try to sneak in a few last summer activities like swimming, sunbathing and rollerblading. This week, I found myself wanting the last lazy days of summer to last just a little longer.

Contemplating the upcoming Eco Challenge on Sept. 15 made me find a friend to run with at Sharon Woods. It seemed a perfect setting with the pond and the trees all around as we struck off from the playground. I guess I haven't been there in a while, because I was surprised to find the path closed at the bridge for upgrades. The loop became a turn around but still long enough to build a sweat and a tinge of regret for agreeing to participate in the damn Eco Challenge.

My friend laughed and said, "Better you than me."

Yeah, I get crazy this time of year thinking I can still run with the big dogs when I'd be better off staying on the porch drinking a margarita.

Oh well, it'll be fun with six in a river raft, two of whom I've dated past and/or present.

You see, it seems I'm perfecting the style of "catch and release" dating. It's a fishing term that Dick's son used in describing his newly single dad's way of burning up the town. If the shoe fits, we all have to wear it.

I have fond memories of boating and fishing with my grandfather growing up. I can still remember the pride I felt when I could bait my own hook. It was a special treat when my grandpa would let me drive the boat at Lake Erie. I loved the feeling of power and control when I was at the helm.

As much as things change, they stay the same, because I still like independence. God knows that I'm a flaming heterosexual and love companionship, but who says the one on your fishing line is the one you have to keep forever and forever? Forever is a long time. Trust me, I was married.

There are wonderful things about being married, which I recall as being a sense of security and stability that are lacking in most dating situations. When single, it's always uncertain who will be at the holiday celebrations. Well it is when you practice the catch and release method.

Still, there are a lot of fish in the sea, and sometimes it's exciting to dress up, show some tan lines and flirt over a cocktail. You get a feeling of power knowing that you can say "yes," "no" or "maybe" to the rest of your life with this person. In my case, you can't be first but you could be next. Guaranteed it will be fun whether I throw you back in or you go fishing again to see what's out there in the sea of life.

That brings us back to the life raft and the fact of two fish in the same boat. Hmmm. I wonder if Morgan's provides life jackets. I might need one if the guys start comparing notes.

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