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hairwing530 02-28-2013 03:45 PM

Did You Know...?
I was going through my journal today for 2012, and it carried an entry that detailed an incident that I was privy to here on the AuSable River in the fall of '12. Let me set the stage...

An elderly friend and I were fishing a gentle run of the river not far from the house when we heard the approach of a pair of canoes. As we usually do, we both picked up and waited for them to pass. Rather than merely saying "Hello" and heading downstream, they paddled into the shallows near the bank and launched into a vulgar tirade about fly-fishermen in general. It wasn't pretty, and it was all that I could do to hold my temper in check!

So, just in case you haven't been told of our sorry plight as being one of "those fly-fishing XC#$@G$," here's the scoop...

Did you know:

that fly fishermen think they own every river in which they wet their boots?

that fly fishermen are the biggest bunch of self-absorbed and self-righteous (insert vulgar description here)?

that fly fishermen are not in touch with reality? (After all, who would spend that much money on catching a fish?

that fly fishermen think themselves superior to everyone else?

that the sporting of fly fishing should be outlawed as "cruel"?

Once finished with the tirade, I offered the following responses...

Did you know:

that fly fishermen as a whole have improved every river in which we've wet said boots?

that fly fishermen are not really "self-absorbed..." just more in touch with their/our surroundings?

that fly fishermen are more aware of the painful "realities" that often affect our rivers?

that fly fishermen don't see themselves as "superior," just better at some things than others.

and last but not least, that fly fishermen ARE NOT guilty of cruelty in its many forms??

The tirade made me wonder... Is this the way that we fly-fishermen are preceived by John Q. Public? I pray that we're not. But, such a verbal assault does cause one to wonder...

Your thoughts?

Jerry, aka hairwing530

rockriver 02-28-2013 03:52 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
You sure as heck did a lot better than I would have. I'd be banned for life here if I wrote what I'd be telling them. I respect everyone; however, I expect the same from them.

osok 02-28-2013 04:01 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
I do not believe that sportsmen and women believe that of fly fishers. No sportsman would talk like that about another sportsman. They were just total jerks and are probably just what they were saying about you. I've been around some fly jerks also. Just not very often. I have to just shake my head in disbelief sometimes and let them have the area I'm in so it will not ruin my day. Some people are just unhappy people and want everyone around them to be unhappy.

What I thought of fly fishers before I became one was of a person who could perform tricks with a rod that I could only dream about.

newby 02-28-2013 04:08 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
Being Irish, my temper would not have yielded so affable a response. Kudos for doing the sensible thing and reasoning with them, not returning the insults.

If they have a lick of sense they'll remember your level headed response next time they see a fly fisherman.

hairwing530 02-28-2013 04:25 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
newby... I, too, have a bit of Irish blood running through these veins. The truth is that I'm Scot/Irish/Polish, which can be a stubborn and volatile combination. And, there was a time when my patience would have run short rather quickly. But, 15 years of battling brain cancer-- three tumors to date, and I'm in full remission and my record is 3-0 --has mellowed me a bit.

Still, I can show you the bite marks on my tongue, even today. As my grandfather was fond of saying when his Scot/Irish blood was boiling, "they had my hackles up..." But, I wasn't about to let it ruin the day for my elderly friend. It was his last time standing amidst the waters of the AuSable River before he took his leave for a better place. I still miss his sage wisdom, even today... Jerry, aka hairwing530

shimloom 02-28-2013 04:42 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
Your repsonse proved who was the better person. I allow people to present their point of view no matter their attitude. You handled it well and won a small but important victory. Well done!


jsquires 02-28-2013 04:53 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
I do know some folks who hold some of the views you mentioned. Ironically, several of those guys own rifles for which they paid upwards of $6,000 and spend huge amounts of money to harvest planted birds and game and like to call it "hunting."

A couple of observations: I challenge anyone to walk a stream that is open to all and then walk a fly-fishing-only stream and compare the amount of litter on each stream.
And my observation has been that in most instances fly fishermen care more about the total experience and less about the kill count than non-fly fishermen.
If those observations lend in any way to my having a superiority complex, then so be it.

fly_guy12955 02-28-2013 05:15 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
I bet they were drinking. But, still,,that thought was in their mind. Stupid on their part.

All my people are Irish,,,,,,,one party or the other would'a been taking descriptions of the victims to the police.

oarfish 02-28-2013 05:17 PM

Re: Did You Know...?
John you are a gentleman! glad I was able to meet with you last weekend.


jsquires 02-28-2013 06:46 PM

Re: Did You Know...?

Originally Posted by oarfish (Post 531914)
John you are a gentleman! glad I was able to meet with you last weekend.


Thanks, Rick. It was nice to meet you, also.
I hope you enjoyed the show.

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