Kimball and I got our high dose flu shot Monday at Evans. The new pharmacist at Evans, Ty Dee, told us that Kevin McCullough has purchased four more drug stores, bringing his total to nine.

And my shot didn’t hurt. At least not yet. A few hours after the injection, Kimball said her arm is sore now. Ty said they would take effect in two weeks.

-Davis came across an interesting tidbit. Sunday was the longest day of football in the last 50 years. It started in London and ended 15 hours later with the Chiefs and Bills game.

-If you’re interested in fishing, be sure to read Bobby Dains Taberville fishing report in this issue. I’m interested but I can’t go. Bobby said the flatheads are biting, some up to 50 lbs.

My dad would have been interested. He loved to trotline. I hated it. Dad loved to catch flatheads. He was even known to help at least one out of a log.

Bobby said to set a trotline with the baits suspended about a foot above the bottom. Baits are all live: perch, shad, bullheads, carp.

It was Friday when I talked to Bobby and a significant front moved through Sunday night. He’s closed on Monday so I can’t ask if the fish are still biting.

Dad helped a 40 pounder out of a log right beside the road at Old Pape. Wash Evans, Susan and Marsha Abbott’s grandpa, told him about.

I was home from college and Dad sent me out to the log. I found it and a six inch hole in the top of it. I knew not to jump if a fish grabbed me. As I reached my left hand in the hole, I felt something brush against it sort of like a feather. I reached on back a little farther and the log sounded like it exploded as the 40 pounder grabbed my hand. I pulled my hand out and showed Dad the bloody tooth prints that went all across the back of my hand.

I told Dad, “There’s a little one in here.”

Dad said, “Little one, my eye.” He got so excited he started taking off his overalls. I said, “Dad, those are the one you planned to wear into the creek.” He stopped undressing and came out to the log with a nylon rope and a sack of bricks Wash had evidently told him we’d need because of the size of the hole where he fish went in. Dad made several short dives placing the bricks.

There was a third much smaller hole in the top of the log father away from the entrance. I reached in the small hole and felt a big tail fanning. Like grabbing a big wrist, I pinched down just ahead of the fish’s tail. Almost instantly, it hit the bricks at the main entrance and made them squeak.

Dad got hold of the fish, got his hand in its mouth and pulled it up to the first hole I had reached in. He got the rope tied to its lower jaw and ran the rope out of the main entrance.

I got up on the bank and Dad moved some bricks and let the fish swim out. I hand-over-handed the flopping fish up the bank and put it I the back of Dad’s pickup.

I went back to school. Dad ran the log again and reached a stick in with a big hook fastened on it. Evidently there was a white or blue cat in the log because it grabbed the hook and broke it. White and blue cats have a lot stronger bite than a flathead. Glad it wasn’t in there when I reached in.

I’ve never had my hand in another log. My noodling career ended close to 50 years ago, well past the statute of limitation.

A few years ago, Dad and I set a trotline in the Osage River near a spot where I hooked about a 20 lb. flathead on 4 lb. test fishing for crappie with a jig tipped with a minnow. I thought at first I was hung on the bottom but when I went to break the line, it moved. About 45 minutes later I got the flathead to the surface. I let it go back down and got my big dipnet ready. Alas, the 4 lb. line broke in the reel.

Dad and I set a trotline at that spot. He ran the trotline the next day accompanied by his great-granddaughter, Alexia. The 53 lb. flathead had broken the trotline loose on one end. Dad had our long gaff with him and got the fish as it swam by. I think poor little Alexia was about seven at the time and was about scared to death by the monster flopping in the bottom of Dad’ boat.

The family was at my house getting ready for a birthday party and wondered what was taking Dad and Alexia so long. It was worth the wait when they arrived. Dad was beaming. Biggest fish of his life.

Come to think of it, if Dad was still alive, we’d find a way to get him to the river. KL