The Evil Cleat

I hate this particular boat cleat with a passion.
     What you're looking at here is pure evil.  You may not see it at first, but this guy has snagged fly line, tripped me in the dark, and caused me to lose my grip on JJ's boat more than once while waiting at the dock.  Combine this little bastard with a northern pike and you have what could only be described as the most god awful thing on the whole damn planet.  Don't believe me?  Than listen to this...
Madison Musky Addict
     I got a call from my buddy JJ of Madsion Musky Addict Guide Service a while back asking if I was interested in meeting up with him for a little early morning musky action.  Obviously I was up for some fishing, the only problem was I didn't have a musky rod.  I had broken my Mojo Musky rod while kayak fishing on Monona the week before so I hustled out the door and headed straight for Cabelas in search of my next St Croix musky rod.  After much deliberation (I'm horrible at making decisions) I decided that I would try out the Premier line.  Specifically the 7 foot 6 inch 2-6 ounce casting model.  I liked the way the rod balanced with my Revo on it, and the full cork handle gave it a beefed up feel in the hand.  I wandered the aisles a bit longer and then headed home to get the rod rigged up and ready to chase some freshwater wolves.
     Leaving the dock the following morning JJ was quick to notice the new rod and jokingly asked how long this one would last.  JJ has had the very honorable distinction of being the angler that is with me every time I blow up a musky rod.  Usually I go through 2-4 a season, and every time I destroy a St Croix rod he's right next to me asking if they are really worth the money (they are).  He's also quick to bust my chops about being a brand whore, but is always nice enough to loan me a rod so that I can finish out the day.  Fast forward an hour or so and you'll find us on Lake Monona and in our usual groove.  JJ running the boat from the front and me bomb casting open water from the stern.  After a while my carpel tunnel got the best of me and I sat down the new rod to rest my hands and drink some coffee.  That's exactly when the EVIL boat cleat jumped into action.  As I lifted my rod to start casting again it grabbed my new St Croix and we heard a slight CREEAAAKKKKK.  JJ quickly joked that it was a close call and I of course had to chime in and add to the karma by saying it would probably break today.  In fact I even said, "Bet it will explode as I set the hook on a northern pike.  Two casts later I set the hook...BANG!!!
I swear to god, it just exploded!!!
     The rod just exploded, it was crazy!  JJ grabbed the net and came running towards the back of the boat only to bust out laughing as I swung the little pike over the side.  This of course got me laughing and soon every other angler in the vicinity turned around to see what was so funny.  As I held the fish up for a picture I couldn't help but think of that damn boat cleat.  I can't say for sure, but I think it may have been in cahoots with that little pike the whole time.  A crazy conspiracy theory I'm currently running with every time I get on JJ's boat.  I keep my eye on it certain that it's just buying time until it strikes again and ruins another rod, snags my fly line, or catches my shoe strings.  Pretty sure this winter I'm gonna buy JJ some of those fancy removable ones for Christmas.  All I know for sure is that if you book a trip with Madison Musky Addict this fall beware.  That boat cleat may just be waiting to get you too.
In all honestly though, I like catching pike.
     Tight Lines.

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