All Quiet On The Western Front
~Gabe Fonte & Sam Elliot
There Is Still Good In Evil
“We are forlorn like children, and experienced like old men, we are crude and sorrowful and superficial—I believe we are lost.”
-Erich Maria Remarque-
The Power of Hard Times
Rolling With The Punches
“Only the good die young”
He was 73, healthy as could be. He was the happiest man alive. When he saw my sisters and me, he would smile from ear to ear. My grandfather was working in his garden at his house in Framingham at the time. It was the summer of 3rd grade. I was going to start at Fenn in a few weeks. My mom was at his house, paying bills or doing grown-up stuff like that. She went to check on him, it had been a few hours, and there he was, on the ground.
All Quiet On The Western Front
We Can Only Wonder
“Only the dead have seen the end of war.”
~George Santayana, 1922
We can only imagine what they went through. All Quiet On The Western Front only gave a glimpse of what the lost generation went through. The bombs, bullets, gas, starvation, feelings, thoughts, the mental and physical torcher. It makes you think deeply about their lives. Reading All Quiet On The Western Front makes my head wonder all I can do is try to feel the pain—no sleep or food, endless battles, shells going off around you, the question of if I'm going to live another day—All I can do is imagine.
“Diversity is the one true thing we all have in common”
If you know me, you know I love to fish. That’s all I do. If you ask me what I did over the weekend, fishing will always be in my answer. Just the other day I caught my personal best largemouth bass. The fish was pulling my kayak around the lake! As Fitz would say, a Nantucket Sleighride. When I got back to shore I took some pictures and she weighed in at 5.1 pounds. Not even the smile on my face in the pictures can capture that moment. There’s nothing else like it. If you give a man a rod and reel and he catches the fish of his life, nothing can capture such joy but to be there in the moment.
Life To The Fullest
No One Makes It Out Alive
~By Gabe Fonte
Big Ol’ Billy Bass
By: Gabe Fonte
Sometimes You Need To Take Risks
BAM!!! As I set the hook on my personal best fish, I fall off the tree and into the water. As I pull myself out of the dirty water back onto the fallen tree, I realize I still have the monster fish on. That fight was the biggest fight I had ever fought from a freshwater fish. I landed him, walked back to shore balancing with my rod in one hand and a 5lb 14oz fish in the other. When I got back to shore I was so overjoyed I yelled. I thought to myself about how I chose to walk 20 feet offshore on a slippery, wet tree, over the murky, parisite-filled lake with no one around me to help me. I did it anyway because when you take risks, you can get rewarded.
Taking risks always has a positive outcome or negative outcome. When you're about to take a risk, you think about what you are going to do and how bad or good the outcome will be. I remember that before I stepped on that log I thought to myself why I should or shouldn’t do this. I thought about what could happen. I get to explore, I get new places where I can't cast to from shore, who knew I could catch the biggest bass of my life. However I could have fallen in, fell and hit my head on the tree, and there was no one around me and I didn't have my phone. I concluded that it would be worth it. This was one of the most rewarding risks I had ever taken. Sure I fell in and caught the biggest bass of my life, but it is one of the best days of my life.
Live life to the fullest. Everyone takes risks every day, mine was to walk 20 feet out onto a fallen tree over murky water just to catch a fish that you don't even know is there. Take that risk, who knows maybe you’ll catch a Big O’l Bass.
A Pheasant In A Bush
By: Gabe Fonte
A Dog, A Man, And A Gun
“If you can't kill a bird with two shots, it doesn’t deserve to die”
~ Nono Andrea
My joy is in the field, and when I'm in a field, gun mounted on the shoulder, dog on point, looking down the barrel to see a pheasant, with its beautiful feathers spread flying, nothing else in life matters. Over this year, I have grown a liking to skeet shooting, hunting, and guns in general. This winter was my first year hunting with a gun. I have been multiple times with my dad before to learn the safety, how it works, and everything else you need to know about hunting. 14 years old, side by side Beretta 12 gauge in hand, and when I stepped foot on that field, I felt happier than I had ever felt in a long time.
It's great to be out in a field with nothing but your dad, a gun, and a dog. In the 4 hours that we are walking, finding, and shooting birds, I have many emotions. Starting with seriousness. In some of the photos, you could see how focused I was on finding the bird, keeping the gun pointed away from my dog or dad, and being on my toes. There is nothing worse than a pheasant flying up out of the reeds and hitting you in the face (learned from experience). Another is respect. When you shoot that bird, watch it fall, then pick it up off the ground, it’s sometimes still alive. You must put it out in the most humane way (snapping its neck). Finally, joy. Joy is everywhere on the field. You can be walking along and Rex (my dog) goes on point. Your body is filled with adrenaline and you become overwhelmed with happiness. Or if the bird is getting away and you shoot the perfect shot, it’s incredible. I love being out there. It's the best feeling in the world. Away from the electronics, away from civilization, away from your problems, it's a wonderful place to be. To end it off I want to say that I do not like killing things just to kill things. I do it for sport, but I kill them humanely, dry cure the bird, pluck it, and then eat it.
Being in the great outdoors is like my second home. Whether I’m fishing, hunting, camping, or just going for a walk, I just can't get enough of it.
By: Gabe Fonte
“Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it.”
There's a cool breeze on a glorious, beautiful fall day on the Deerfield River. I look down and see the crystal clear waters. Ahead I see whitewater rippling on the top of the water from the beautiful rocks submerged in the river. I have my waiters on, fly rod in hand. I see an adult mayfly and land on the water. Time to match the hatch, I put on an Adams dry fly immediately. Before I cast, I take in the beautiful scenery of the Berkshire mountains. It’s so peaceful. It’s one of those places that you will never get bored of. It thrives with life, birds, trees, plants, and, most importantly, trout. I begin my cast. Forward, back, forward, back, forward. My line goes shooting out into the transparent water. I watch the fly drift on the top of the water. POP! A blowup. I wait a few seconds, set the hook, and I'm on. As I fight the gorgeous fish, I rethink my life. I realize how special this place is and how lucky I am to be here, doing my favorite thing in the world, fishing. This place has beautiful scenery, fish, and one of the best memories I have.