No Trophies for 2nd Place

Ah, the stars are shining down on me! Another day on the water? Pinch me, I must be dreaming.

I'm kidding, of course. Along with strong anti-social behaviors, I'm uncomfortable with close, physical contact.

And clowns. Clowns freak me out. So if you're a clown, who is into large social gatherings and has a yen for getting all 'pinchy' and such, you may want to avoid me, since my moral compass has no rule against clown thrashing.

Social deficiencies not withstanding, the opportunity to wet a line presented itself yet again, and the aggressive, reptilian part of my brain jumped all over that like Homo habilis on a termite mound.

As usual, by Friday night I was climbing the walls with excitement and nervous energy - sleep was tough to come by and I was out of the rack before the alarm went off at 3:30.

Some of the excitement had to do with having a new fly to try out - a simple little thing that I stitched together under the silent blanket of midnight (also known as the Witching Hour).

I guess in European folklore, it was believed that evil beings (like Nancy Pelosi) were most active at this time, since black magic was strongest around the midnight hour.

Having been in a 'marriage' for 7 years, I can say with confidence that evil only slept between 10 pm and 6 am, and that it's powers of pain and punishment were at their peak during the daylight hours. Silly Europeans.

But I digress...

Earlier in the week I had been skimming some photos of aquatic insects online, and came across one that piqued my interest, so this was an attempt to replicate that. Or, at the very least, try to come close.

That's me in a nutshell - while the other kids are ooo'ing and ahhhh'ing over pictures of Megan Fox, I'm checking out bugs online. A fine use of technology which proves that my priorities are seriously out of whack...

As it turned out, the fly worked like a charm - I had tied two versions - chartreuse and white in sizes #22 and #24, and while both got the job done, the white was the clear winner this day. If both continue to produce through Autumn, I'll make them a permanent addition to my box.

Zebras and BDSPs were also productive for me today - and my friend Jerry, who is a BDSP convert, managed this massive pig on that fly...

Jerry had a good day, too, hooking quite a few, but suffered from the same 'netting handicap' that I was infected with. Some of the flies that he used with success were the Yong's Special, the experimental fly I mentioned above, and the BDSP.

And let's talk about 'today' shall we? After my last two outings, I was due for some humility. However, Fate, being the fickle feline that she is, decided humility would not be quite as deserving as a ferocious kick to the stones would be.

12 fish hooked.

2 netted.

Two of the SMALLEST fish netted, that is. Basically I got the ever-popular "You Suck! But Thanks for Playing!" consolation prize. Wah, wah waaaaaah.

Oh, and Fate will be stopping by later tonight, to kick my dog, too, so if you need me to pass along any messages, feel free to email me and I'll make sure she gets them.

For what it's worth, all the fish were hooked from the same run - we'll call this Creepy Uncle Ron's OCD Fly Fishing Lesson #249 - Working that Hole Like a Person in need of an Intervention.

Stop it, you gutter-brains.

I was running one fly and no indicator, in some tough, deep water, and before the sun lit the canyon, it was blind-fishing at its most intense. I drew first blood, but two hours in I was 0-4, with one of those being a beast of a fish - when I set my hook, it damn near bent my pole in half as it bolted for the rock on my left.

At least I think it was a fish. For all I knew, it could have been Michael Phelps.

With the water as dark as it was, and never coming close to the surface, I didn't get a good look at what was on the end of my line. But it was big, and it didn't appear to be too happy that I had ruined it's morning.

Imagine that - this is supposed to be about me, and here it is getting it's panties in a bunch because I stuck a hook in it.

Once parked under the boulder, I couldn't move it to save my life - I actually thought my line had come loose and that my hook was caught on the rock.

But after a few minutes (and quite a bit of cautious tugging on my part) it made a run back towards the middle of the river, before turning and going back to the rock - and during that time I was helpless to do anything and was simply along for the ride - which also included a snapped line at no extra charge, by the way.

With perks like that, you bet your sweet ass I'll be a loyal customer for life...

Most of the others simply shook themselves free - it was almost as if I had tied all my flies on Bendaroos instead of hooks. Which I wouldn't, really, since my son would be furious.

Tristan: "Dad! Where's all my Bendaroos?"
Me: "Um....hey! I've got a great idea! Let's go see a movie!"
Tristan: "DAD!"

But, I can't complain - I was out on the water, and I got to play quite a few nice fish, which is more than some folks. As mom would say "Ron, remember, there are anglers in Africa that don't get ANY fish..."

Good words to live by, mom.