Going fishing is very much like making love to a beautiful woman.
First of all, clean and inspect your tackle, carefully pull back your rod cover, and remove any dirt or grunge that may have built up while not in use. Then, extend your rod to its full length, and check that there are no kinks or any wear. Particularly at the base, where the grip is usually applied. Make sure you've got a decent float, the appropriate bait, and that there's plenty of shot in your bag.