〉By Dan Gander | GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
Dan Gander is CEO of Gander Chemical Solutions, LLC. and is an amateur fisherman.
Back when I was a wee child, my father Ed Gander would take me out to Balloon Lake every Wednesday evening. We’d catch Halibut, Mackerel, and Canadian Trapfish while he’d tell me stories of growing up in the Gander household.
In those days, running your own chemical company out of your house was a lot easier. My dad would tell me all about how he would help his father make lithium compound in our kitchen while I was at the schoolhouse. And boy, did we catch some (excuse my language) effing big fish. I could catch a dozen, or even a baker’s dozen Trapfish in a matter of hours. We’d take them back home and fry them up for a delicious fish dinner for the whole family.
Of course, that was when the water at Balloon Lake was clear. Today, thanks in no small part to my family chemical company, the lake is basically one big AA battery. While the lake’s ecosystem has been completely destroyed and the environment forever altered, one nice thing about Balloon Lake is that you can now just charge your phone by dipping it in the water (but wear gloves!).
one nice thing about Balloon Lake is that you can now just charge your phone by dipping it in the water (but wear gloves!).
Chemical production ain’t what it used to be. When my father died of lithium poisoning, I took over Gander Chemicals only to find out the what a logistical nightmare it is to run a chemical company inside of your own house. Thanks to Big Government, you can’t just go about making lithium in the comfort of your own house anymore. These days, Gander chemicals had to move its main operations into our backyard. It is there where my son, Matthew, and his friend from the schoolhouse, Dan Jr. (no relation) disassemble old calculators for their synthetic lithium compound.
Like my father and grandfather, I am committed to keeping Gander Chemical Solutions a family company, so when I die soon from lithium poisoning, Matthew can pick up where I left off (the doctor gives me three years, tops, unless I “stop fishing in the lake”). But I need to dump the excess lithium runoff somewhere, and Balloon Lake just made sense to me. And yet, every Wednesday evening I still come down to the lake and fish in the brown sludge, eating whatever mutated creature that I reel in.
Facing dozens of lawsuits, a PR crisis, and a burning sensation whenever I bite into a fresh-caught Trout, many would give up and just get a new hobby. But giving up just isn’t the Gander way. And it would mean no more fish for me. And I love fish. ♦
Spellchecked by Nate Odenkirk and Nathan Mostow.