learn

A girl can dream

When I was about 12-years old my best friend Leslie and I were inseparable. We’d let her dad drag us anywhere on the weekends just to spend time together. This typically involved one of two things we had zero appreciation for: cars or fish. I spent many a Saturday perusing vintage cars lining the streets of Celebration, oblivious to the purpose of the trip and cautioned not to touch anything. One weekend we changed it up a bit and went to what was my inaugural fishing tournament. Leslie, her father, and her brother were ecstatic, and I was dreading it.

We managed to achieve junior fishing licenses, which I was sure would never come in handy, and we didn’t catch a single thing. The tournament concluded with a raffle drawing that featured progressively fancier prizes. We each got two tickets to better our odds and as the drawing concluded, Leslie switched a ticket with me in desperation. In the only stroke of luck I have ever had, I won the grand prize: a fully-loaded tackle box with some snazzy professional fishing pole. I was called on stage, photographed, and interviewed by a couple of fishing magazines who informed me they’d print my picture. Leslie was positive the ticket was hers, but unfortunately for her…we’ll never know for sure.

For the last decade that junior fishing license has been my sole relation to the sport. The mag picture’s were a temporary claim-to -fame (until my knees were in Good Housekeeping, of course), and I inevitably re-gifted my prize to my dad who was as happy as I pretended to be on stage, but a raffle was the closest I’ve been to participating in fishing, or any outdoor sport.

When I moved to Tennessee for college I learned more than I ever wanted or needed to know about hunting and fishing. The first local’s room I walked into had a mortifying collection of shot guns lined up above his bed for example, and I was persuaded to print a hunting centerfold in the campus newspaper when duck, or deer, or whatever season opened one week. My typical go-to when I met hunting or fishing fanatics was that junior fishing license in my wallet. I’d whip that baby out like unquestionable proof that I hold my own on the subject, but I would literally rather talk about anything else.

I have to recognize that both of my grandfather’s adore fishing, and my dad is biologically addicted, but laying out on the boat is as participative as the women in my family come. Until April 26.

Drum roll please..

Because on that day…after 64 cover letters, two internships, six interviews, and three months serving pancakes to mean old people stuck in their ways (sorry, tangent)…I have finally landed a job at none other than Field & Stream magazine!!!

Utter confusion. I’m familiar with this reaction as I interned at Good Housekeeping when I could barely bake burnt brownies and had no knowledge of domesticity whatsoever. But having flashed my junior fishing license at the Editor-in-Chief last week (no I didn’t really, but I should’ve), I will be filling in for their Editorial Assistant for three months while she works in Sweden. I am entirely thrilled after being deprived of editorial for a bit, and was enchanted by the office decor alone. Field & Stream is 115-years old, so they have generations of loyal reader’s, but the challenge of evolving with the ever-changing industry–just like GH. They’ve not only met that challenge, but set the standard having won a 2009 ASME General Excellence award (a big deal).

As one of my interviewers said, it’s good to experience “a little bit of everything,” which I was completely tickled we agree on. I learned 125 years-worth of good housekeeping advice in the fall, but more importantly participated in the production of a very popular magazine on its anniversary. I am confident I have so much to learn at F&S far beyond hunting advice. I could not be more grateful for a new experience. I officially work for a magazine! The first perk: telling everyone I know in Tennessee that’s no stranger to camo and inevitably subscribes. Priceless reactions, my friends.

Stay tuned. My big apple adventures are about to get wild.

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