Category Archives: Funny

How the whole thing started (part 2)

I am an information junkie. When I get interested in something, I devour as much as I can to learn about the intricacies of whatever the subject might be. I had spent several days scowering the internet on everything i could about fly fishing. I watched videos of Joan Wulff and Lefty Kreh as they showed the basic mechanics of the cast. I would sit at my desk with a thick highlighter and practice ten and two, ten and two.

So, returning from the debacle at the fly shop, I strung up my rod and went outside to practice. The one thing I remember is hearing that awful crack each time I came forward with my cast. My research had informed me that unless I carried a suitcase of flies to the river with me, I needed to fix that issue. I slowed down my ten and two and finally reached the point that I could lay down a solid ten feet of line in front of me without issue. By nightfall I felt okay with my cast much in the same way a teenage boy feels okay around a girl that he knows is way out of his league. He likes it, he enjoys it, but in the back of his mind he knows that once she sees through his charm to the large zit on the end of his nose, the whole gig is up.

I guess in retrospect, it was a blessing that we were fishing from a boat. I had fished area lakes in a boat many times so I kinda know the score. This also meant that I didn’t have to buy waders, but I had seen enough about fly fishing to know that I had to have a vest to hold my gear. Downstairs, in a bag of old yard sale stuff, I found a cheap khaki hunting vest that would have looked good on Marlin Perkins or Jack Hannah, but me? Not so much. Of course I had nothing to put in it but a plastic cup of Pheasant Tails and a three pack of leaders. Minimalism at its finest.

Saturday morning. The big day had arrived. I was up and gone before daybreak. The boat ramp that was our rendezvous point was about forty minutes away from the house and as I drove I tried to run through what I had read. I was actually getting nervous! Not about the fishing part of it, I had been catching fish my whole life. I was nervous about how I was catching them. I hate being labeled a greenhorn.

Its funny how odd things linger in your memory. The first thing I noticed when I reached the boat ramp and stepped out of my ride is how much colder it was right at the river, and I thought to myself that the water would have to warm up a bunch before the fish would feed. Shows you how much I knew.

Neither my buddy nor I are small boys. Our collective weight would bring top dollar at a cattle auction, so when he showed up with our watercraft I began to get worried. The “boat” was a hard plastic kayak kinda thing that was small and light enough for him to load in the back of his truck, and when we shoved off and headed upstream it did not escape my attention that we were mere inches from taking on water, yet remarkably it moved our middle aged spreads across the surface quite well.

We rowed upstream for several minutes through a thin wisp of fog that hovered inches above the water. Occasionally I would see a ring of a fish on the surface but other than their interruption the river was smooth as glass. I was amazed at how quiet everything became as we headed toward my date with destiny.

When we stopped rowing and set the boat free, I cast and fixed my gaze on the orange stick on foam indicator. I really didn’t know what to expect; then it happened. I have no real recollection of the hookset, or the fight, all I remember is that the indicator went under and then I was holding a 12″ brown. I was amazed at how smooth and cold it was, and how this was the prettiest fish I had ever seen.

“Meet your mistress.”, my buddy said with a twinkle in his eye.

Another boat, a real honest to God boat with room and a trolling motor came downstream to us. I knew the two guys from highschool and after a few pleasantries it was suggested that I get in with them so I could stand up and cast. That is when things started to get interesting.

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A theft for Feathers

A young American was recently arrested in England. The unique thing is what he was arrested for. He stole bird pelts from the Natural History Museum. It is also worth mentioning that this guy (22 years old) is one of the most amazing fly tying artists I have ever seen.

By itself this is bad, but when you start considering the deeper and perhaps darker side of the story it gets interesting from the view of an angler. Was this talented young man so obsessed with his craft that he felt the only way to improve upon it was to use feathers that are essentially unattainable? Was he so fueled with obsession that the risk involved in what he did became secondary to what he envisioned as the end result?

I guess we all sit and dream about what we don’t have and think we need. Personally I would love to have a long list of rods, some top of the line Sims waders, and a Saracione reel; but I cannot imagine being so desirous of them that I would case a joint and steal them.

Several years ago I worked at a fly shop and my manager was fired for theft. I also helped apprehend those who would come in and pilfer flies. Flies? C’mon now! Didn’t understand it then, and don’t now…but I do have an opinion (big surprise).

Passion about fly fishing is one thing that I have in abundance, and I can see how my passion if left unrestricted could become an obsession. What if, for the sake of conversation, a Saracione reel became so important to me that I dwelt upon it all the time. What if my financial status would not allow me to buy it but I became convinced that the only way I could fish would be to have one. What if I felt that the only thing left for me were one of those reels. What if I became so obsessed with it that I were willing to break the law to get it? It wouldn’t take much more than the opportunity being provided before I started formulating a plan to get it.

No doubt all of us have sat and daydreamed about a certain rod. Perhaps even envisioned ourselves using it with great success. Maybe the young man lay in bed at night and mentally tied flies with these feathers to the point that it became a little to real for him.

I think it would be safe to assume that this young man has some issues that go beyond tying flies with exotic feathers. Though I am not schooled in the study, I would say that there are some psychological issues that were fueled by his desire to tie “the perfect fly”.

I make no attempt to offer excuses for this fellow. Wrong is wrong and he should face the punishment for his crime.

Within each of us is the desire to have great gear, good flies, all the accessories, but none of those things are really necessary to fly fish. The first year I was involved in this sport I used a box retail package that set me back thirty bucks for everything, yet I enjoyed what I was doing and I caught fish.

I would truly love to have a bamboo rod made by Harry Boyd and one made by Bill Oyster, I would love to have an Orvis Helios, I would love to have a lot of things that enhance my sport. But I don’t have to have them to MAKE my sport.

Perhaps someday, after restitution has been made this fellow can come back to the states, live a full life, and never fall again. The true test won’t be while he is incarcerated. The true test will be when he sees that which he does not or can not have and is faced with the demons that started him into the nightmare he is currently enduring.

Here is a link to the news story.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1333607/Edwin-Rist-steals-bird-pelts-worth-millions-Natural-History-Museum.html

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Eye candy for the soul!

Since the southeast is being bombarded by the cold weather and too much rain, I figured there may be others like me that are sitting at home with nothing to do. Grab your favorite beverage, sit back and enjoy.

The 2011 International Fly Fishing Film Festival ( IF4 ) Commercial from Nick Pujic on Vimeo.

An Epic Tail (Walk) from firebird media on Vimeo.

468 x 60 Fly Fishing

Stalking Reds from firebird media on Vimeo.

Fly Fishing short from John Griber on Vimeo.

Giant Tackle Clearance Sale 468x60

To fortapte menn -Fri flyt from salmo trutta production on Vimeo.

EASTERN RISES | TRAILER from felt soul media on Vimeo.

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Sometimes Fly Fishing and Religion don’t mix

How many times have you heard fly fishing and religion in the same sentence? How often do you read about the spiritual nature of the sport and how the soul is placed at ease whilst angling?

Well, let me tell ya…fly fishing and religion met in a very unique way for me last night, and being one who is always up for a good laugh, I thought I would share.

There is a fella starting a new company here in the U.S. and one of his products are hooks. I was fortunate enough to receive a free pack of scud hooks in the mail from him and in a fit of absent mindedness I laid them on the kitchen table.

My wife was not home and I was trying to get four kids ready for our churches evening service. If you have never tried to get four children ready to go anywhere quick, it is like trying to put four spastic rainbow trout in a greasy sack. Chaos.

So my youngest (2 yrs.) comes walking into the kitchen and sees the pack of hooks. I dash over, grab them and just shove the pack into my pocket as I shuttle the oldest two into the van and try to get the wild man which is my son to not wear his sandals to church. I pick up the littlest one and put her in her car seat. ZOOM! We are off to church.

I deposit my kids in their appropriate classes and head to the sanctuary. Our church is very contemporary in our evening service. Lights low in the pews, loud music, it is a real event. Anyway, when the music starts we all stand up to sing when this incredible pain shoots into my thigh. I am thinking muscle cramp and sit back down. This is when I realize that the hooks are in the process of doing that which hooks are designed to do. Amidst the praise and worship I am being impaled!!!

“Gotta get to the bathroom”, I think to myself and step out of the pew. The trouble is that with every step the hooks are digging into my leg. So, I walk stiff legged, much like Chester on the old Gunsmoke series, to the bathroom. Thankfully upon stepping into the stall and dropping my trousers, I see that the barb of these three assailants has yet to go below my skin. Removing the hooks was easier than I thought and after wiping the small trickles of blood from my leg, I returned to the service in time to hear one of my all time favorite songs (Revelation Song for those who might want to check it out).

So in closing, what did I learn from this? 1) Don’t leave hooks where a two year old can get them, 2) When leaving the house for anything other than fishing there is no need to have hooks in your pocket, 3) sometimes fly fishing and religion meet and it isn’t peace, serenity, and well being…sometimes its downright painful.

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