(Photo credit: jnthorp)
It’s one of the more unspoken double standards in angling.
On the one hand, we all bang on relentlessly about the sport needing more newcomers to sustain it.
On the other, we cannot look at More than 10,000 anglers expected at March 1 trout-park opener without an involuntary shudder passing down our spines.
Am I right?
It’s obviously a relatively marginal concern, given the hell some of my countrymen have gone through since Christmas, but the floods that have plagued Britain for two months now make me wonder what anglers should make of the situation, particularly with the world and his wife now taking a long hard look at our rivers and how we ‘improve’ them.
So this blog post from Theo Pike is welcome, collating as it does a number of pertinent links in which knowledgeable people who aren’t chasing votes explain exactly what’s what and how we might go about putting it right.
“My own call on this?” says Pike. “There’ll be no overnight solutions to our current mess of sheepwrecked uplands, maize-silted rivers and concrete-covered floodplains, not to mention the perched-and-canalised problems epitomised by the photo at the top of this blog.
“But if this winter’s jetstream propels us as a nation towards working in harmony with natural processes, rather than wilfully opposing them and actually believing we can conquer nature…without getting properly slapped for our pains…
“… I think that’ll be a start.”
I used to keep a tally of Headlines I Never Expected to Write in a Million Years. I stopped at 22.
A film director takes his parents to what is labelled a ‘secret feature’ screening at a film festival in the States. He anticipates some harmlessly entertaining movie that at least approximates to family viewing. What he gets is Nymphomaniac: Volume 1.
“That’s the movie with real sex and penetration.” His words, not mine.
Cruelly delighting in his discomfiture, entertainment magazine Vulture collars the embarrassed director’s mother afterwards, to get her verdict on Nymphomaniac‘s finer points.
And the money quote – “My husband Steve was pretty reluctant to stay for the movie. But when we got to the part where the older gentleman [Skarsgård] pulls out the Izaak Walton book and they start comparing graphic sex to fly-fishing, Steve leans over and says, ‘This looks interesting. I’ll stay awhile.”
“Casts like butter…”?!
I wondered if it was a momentary lapse by the writer, but no; Google the phrase and everyone uses it. And while going against the herd is not something I do lightly, I feel I must at least raise the question.
What the hell is everyone talking about?
“…like a knife through butter,” makes more sense, although some of we Northern Hemisphere types might like to preface “butter” with “warm” at this time of year. In its current form, though: who actually casts butter?
There’s a phrase doing the rounds among British soccer commentators of late which has sadly gained acceptance through unthinking repetition: one parrot after another referring to “stone wall” penalty decisions when they actually mean “stone cold”.
Let’s not take a similar stroll down Gibberish Boulevard, fly anglers; please…
Sam Harris, detester of gods, lover of rationality and the man behind Project Reason (“a nonprofit foundation devoted to spreading scientific knowledge and secular values in society”) has a book out and if you’re not bristling yet, you should be.
The book’s theme is lying, a human foible he clearly feels is no better embodied than in the likes of you and me.
Forget that the cover’s design is executed with exquisite simplicity, its message is stark and unequivocal (unless it’s some subtle play on the word ‘whopper‘, which I’m not sure plays out the same in American parlance)
Lying and anglers. Bonnie and Clyde. Morecambe and Wise. Entwined and indivisible.
This could be the most open-and-shut libel action ever.
I mean, fishermen being fast and loose with the truth. Where could he have possibly got that idea from?
I sense that Robert Redford had nothing to do with this one.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Just how many anglers did the Watanabe fashion house consult before launching this year’s Men’s Collection, I wonder?
“Junya Watanabe Spring Menswear 2014 takes on a hunting and fishing theme and quite alluringly might I add. These men will have no problem catching prey in these get-ups, complete with cross-body bags, camel coats and collared dress shirts. Watanabe infuses the pork pie hat with a fisherman vibe to complete a chic workingman’s outfit.”
So gushed one commentator from whatever planet it is on which fashionistas reside. Not that she was alone in spewing such guff…
“In an unusually forthcoming concession, Junya Watanabe said he “wanted to convey resort in a cool way” with his Spring collection. The resort he imagined was clearly somewhere with access to the great outdoors—hiking and fishing featured prominently as leisure activities…
“…So the backpacks—and fishermen’s bags—were the collection’s fulcrum, matched to the mutated outerwear that was another essential component of the show. An inside-out patchwork of construction has become a clear Junya signature.”
Click on the ‘slideshow’ button at the link, if you dare. And do let me know how the pork pie hat with a fisherman vibe worked out for you on the Teviot this summer.