Letters: Fishing outing should include sunscreen

I had to agree with Joe Macaluso’s recent proposal that we “Build More Piers for our younger Fishing Peers,” as that ties in so much to our need to better “bait and catch” bigger fish in our lives — holistic intergenerational relationships.

Also, recently I became much more acutely aware of the need to take better care of protecting my own skin when fishing, as I was recently found to fortunately have a treatable episode of superficial skin cancer on my arm — due to many wonderful outdoors experiences being unprotected from dangerous ultraviolet radiation from the sun. I’m now sporting a fishing hat to help remind me to be more vigilant with proper lotion with an SPF of 30 or higher.

Our oldest son, Andrew, joined me a few months ago to discover a true local fishing gem with some nice piers: Greenwood BREC, off of La. 19. Besides many areas for outdoor activities like walking, cooling off per the water park etc., we had fun fishing on some nice piers — even with shade keeping away a lot of direct sunlight in the middle of the day per the Activity Center there; we even caught a few bream to boot. We usually catch and release most of the fish we’re blessed to pull in, so we and other folks of all ages can share the joy of fishing and catch them again — when they’re bigger. I have to admit to not using any protective lotion on that outing.

But the most important aspect to fishing is really “catching:” that is, catching on to the really critical part of life — building lifelong relationships with loved ones. All of us in the family have enjoyed many fishing and “catching” outings.

My late Uncle Arthur, who with his brother, Uncle Junior, helped run the old Kleinpeter Grocery Store on Jefferson Davis and Bienville in New Orleans, passed on some of his treasured fishing poles and gear to Andrew. Some of my relatives have had their own bouts with skin cancer that I just thought would “never affect me.”

How can I forget the first fish I caught as a kid in New Orleans at an Audubon Park lagoon? I attended a fishing retreat this spring sponsored by Catholic Community Radio, where I caught my first red fish and trout near Grand Isle. Once again, at that retreat, I hardly used any protective lotion.

So while we certainly can enrich ourselves and family relationships through outdoor activities, don’t forget to protect your skin. Looking forward to Waddill Park and the great exotic food to boot.

Keith John Paul Horcasitas

social worker

Baton Rouge