Fishing ads of distinction

Take this to a hundred other companies in the fishing trade and they’d spit the dummy.

“Where’s the product?!”

“It doesn’t even mention fishing?!”

“What the *** are you morons on…?!”

If that’s you, allow me to offer you an alternative view of this sales pitch.

Some of us like the soft sell, just as we like being told a nice story in a world full of ugly ones. Nor do we regard “less is more” as an accidental oxymoron.

So we read this, enjoy the whimsy and may well subconsciously remember the firm responsible next time we’re in the market for eyewear.

And there are more of us than you think.

Banana Ad

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Kayak mag gets to the bottom of it

KayakIt’s a purely abstract exercise at my age but just as I’m intrigued by the idea of snowboarding yet underwhelmed by skiing, so I’m beginning to warm to the kayaking concept when boat fishing generally leaves me cold.

A minimalist thing, perhaps; ski-sticks and engines scratched from the equation, but whatever it is, I respond to kayaking in a way I never have to watching a grown man yank repeatedly on a starter cord.

That musing aside, I refer you to the latest Kayak Bass Fishing Magazine in the hope that the article on  page 60 may have some crossover benefits for those of you in long-term relationships with a boat seat. If not, well, I’ve had less-welcome extensions to my vocabulary than ‘kayak butt’. Hopefully, you have too.

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Ain’t no sunshine? Then they’re gone

a-fly-rod-of-your-own-9781451618341_lgOn a roll-call of supposedly hard and fast rules that stand on shaky ground, this thing about trout ceasing to co-operate in bright sunshine is due some serious review.

Just days after filing an article on a great day’s fishing beneath near-cloudless skies at Tinto Trout Fishery (see our 500th issue, out on  August 16) I start reading John Gierach’s latest book, A Fly Rod of Your Own, and encounter this:

“The day was unseasonably chilly, cloudy and rainy with a leaden sky…The weather felt more like October than August and would normally have been promising for trout fishing, but Snake River cutthroats don’t care for gloomy days. They’re friskier when it’s warm and sunny…”

None of this makes the basic premise unsound, of course, but it does serve as a cautionary reminder that the only thing set in stone in flyfishing are bridge supports.

When the conversation flags at the pub this evening…

Not really on-point with a fishing blog, save for the fact that the man who said it was a keen angler, but this fascinating interview with the late American writer, outdoorsman and one-time hell-raiser,  Jim Harrison, throws up one of those trivia gems whose repetition  would make any of us sound like a real man of the (outdoor) world…

“Here the Harrisons started telling me about the rattlesnakes. At the dawn of creation, Mon­tana received a generous helping of them. Until recently, an ungodly amount of the serpents considered the Harrisons’ prop­erty home turf… In 2003, one rattler, startled by Harrison’s beloved English setter Rose, reared up and nailed the dog. Rose lived but was so neurologically damaged that Harrison had no choice but to put her down. This was war. On one sanguine afternoon, Harrison shot twenty rattlers. The creatures kept turning up until he hired a local snake guy to find their den, which was gassed. The snake guy filled two barrels with dead rattlers. The thing with rattlers, Harrison said, is this: you have to kill the alpha male. If the alpha male leaves the den and does not return, he will not be followed. Harrison smiled as though this had all sorts of other implications.”

60 BOOKS EVERY OUTDOORSMAN SHOULD READ

The headline is from Field & Stream. The books, you’ll have to read for yourself but as for their titles, none come better than this. Click image for more details

what-did-i-just-eat-bill-heavey

I don’t know what it is about American publishers, but for covers, paper quality and titles, their books scream “read me” in a way rarely emulated by their UK counterparts. This is just the latest example. Would make me smile every time I saw it.

They still advertise like this…?

Every now and then, my assumption that western civilisation evolves at a more or less even tempo receives a jarring wake-up call. Today is one of those occasions.

Somewhere in Ohio, apparently, it is still 1978.

How the years slip away and Benny Hill’s face moves into crisper focus, as I watch someone called Joe Jordan and R&R Bait & Tackle combine their promotional efforts around  a single theme. And fishing.

Joe at least, might just have got away with his part of the deal, so willing was I to extend him the benefit of the doubt and assume that the bikini’d young woman who opens the clip is his wife or girlfriend. On reflection, he may feel that the part where he has to check what her name is should never have survived the first edit.

This, however, pales alongside the advertising intermission at the 33-second mark. It’s not the body of Bikini Woman number 2, holding up an ‘Open Seven Days a Week Sign’ in the floats aisle, that lingers in the memory, so much as the body language.

This is either a model, slowly coming to terns with the fact that she’s drawn the day’s short straw down at the agency, or else a long-suffering staff member mentally calculating  before our eyes what ‘taking one for the team’ will cost her employer in bonuses and free bait.

We return to Joe and his associate, reeling in bass and pike in northern Michigan, before popping back to R&R at the 4:47 point, where a young woman in hot pants (probably the accountant) wants to tell us that you can’t go wrong with Weld-craft fishing boats. Lest there be any doubt on that score, the camera cuts to a photo of the said vessel, with another woman in a bikini draped across its back end, clearly savouring every second aboard “the most reliable, durable boat on the planet”.

All told, this peek into Joe and R&R’s parallel universe runs to almost 12 minutes, and even as you hope that there might yet be some ironic, self-aware punchline that makes everything all right, the clip blindsides you once more, closing with a quote from St Paul’s letter to the Philippians – I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength.

Whether it’s Joe or the proprietors of R&R Bait and Tackle whose strength needs occasional replenishment isn’t entirely clear.

The ultimate camera case? I was persuaded…

Secondary reason for posting this: those of you serious about your fishing photography have probably spent enough on it to make protecting your gear a priority while on the road or in the air. For you, the people at Pelican Cases believe they have the answer (hat tip to Moldy Chum for the link)…

Now, the primary reason for posting this: those of you in your mid-50s and older, who grew up watching British TV – how far did you get through this video before a certain episode of The Persuaders came to mind (where the denouement starts at the 49:07 mark)?

“You wouldn’t believe what I’ve been doing to that case…”

I set the bar at five seconds…