It turns out he was right, and on my first night of ice fishing with him and his friends I learned that the problem wasn’t the lack of a heater, the problem was the smell.
I come from a long line of tough, macho men, and I have never lived up to that legacy. I am just a bit more delicate than all the other males in my family, for whatever reason. My dad, and his dad, taught me how to hunt, and to fish, and encouraged me to play sports. I was never a big guy, though, and the thought of bashing heads with other kids didn’t appeal to me. I did like fishing, that was fun, but even then I felt like I was a big wimp. My dad and his pals would go ice fishing with no heating aside from a winter parka. This is how macho they were, because most other sensible people have a space heater in their ice shack, but nope not my dad! He said that only wimps needed to use a space heater, because real men would generate their own heat. It turns out he was right, and on my first night of ice fishing with him and his friends I learned that the problem wasn’t the lack of a heater, the problem was the smell. Imagine six big, beefy, hairy, working class guys crammed into this tiny space for hours on end, and tell me what you think the air quality was like. You actually can’t imagine it, because there is no ventilation at all and the body odor and belches just build up into a kind of fog. A smell so bad you can taste it, which is far worse than a lack of heating to me.