Archive for the ‘Foreign’ Category

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.

Beware of what you want…

Fishing Crowd 2

(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?

Could this be fishing’s first class-action lawsuit?

Lying3Sam 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?

And a Big, Hairy, Ape-like Thing Runs Through It

I sense that Robert Redford had nothing to do with this one.

Rag trade as in touch with reality as ever

Grey pork pie hat with a band and a feather.

(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.

“And some extra padding around the crotch, if you please, Mr Wader Manufacturer…”

Pacu frito (fried pacu) gross fish teeth

Pacu frito (fried pacu) gross fish teeth (Photo credit: yrpopqueen)

Ever since the global warming debate kicked off in earnest, those of us who still remember the colon-loosening experience of seeing Jaws on the big screen have had a singular dark thought tapping away in the recesses of our mind.

Nasty fish, heading north.

If this tentative dread tended to take the form of great whites off Bridlington or Babbacombe in our fevered imagination, the ultimate predator has been usurped by a tropical tiddler, which, like Joe Pesci in Casino, seems all the nastier for being small, making its menace unexpected.

Say hello to the pacu. Ideally with your legs crossed.

“‘The pacu is not normally dangerous to people but it has quite a serious bite, there have been incidents in other countries, such as Papua New Guinea where some men have had their testicles bitten off,’ said Henrik Carl, fish expert at the Danish museum.”

Now they’re just off Sweden. That’s even more north than us (because I know you’re wondering). And many thanks to the vindictive Mr Carl, who has left us with a quote that may take days to leave my head.

“They bite because they’re hungry, and testicles sit nicely in their mouth…”

Oh lovely: trout the new heroin…

Cleared for release by Joint Staff Public AffairsI know poaching moved away from the province of the local rogue many moons ago but for heaven’s sake just how big is it getting?

Moldy Chum has this story that actually talks of “suspected ties to an international fish poaching ring…”

You died too soon, James Gandolfini (left). How Tony Soprano would have loved this new commercial avenue opening up before him.

Come to think of it: ‘whacked’, ‘Dragnet‘, ‘sleeping with the fishes’ –  maybe organised crime has found its perfect home…


[pic courtesy of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – I kid you not…]