May 21st, 2001

By James Castwell

There seems to be a common problem linking most fly-fishers; not to mention the vagaries of psychological problems inherent to all who would choose to practice the avocation. The problem seems to be one of vision. Most can not see . . . why they should spend time working when they could spend it fly-fishing! They can not see . . . why they should waste money on food, shelter and other nuisance items when they could easily spend money on fly-fishing stuff! They can not see . . . why they should spend time eating when they could be fly-fishing!

Fortunately, this malady does not assail all fly-fishers to the same degree. However alas, it is no respecter of age nor of length of time spent at the pursuit. It can start out full-blown, or insidiously creep up and devour an otherwise unsuspecting individual without the hapless victim ever being conscious of it's progress.

Some evidence of this problem can be observed occasionally in snippets of conversation, such as: "can ya pick me up in the morning, I'm low on gas," "I don't care what the rod costs, I need a five weight!" "Naw, nothing I really need, but let's stop at the fly-shop on the way," "Gave the old one to the wife, got me this here new one," and the seldom found "Ya, she and I both fly-fish, (gives me more gear to choose from)."

This then is a salute to those so afflicted. To those in the terrible and unrelenting grip of "Fly-Fishing-stuffitis." There is no known cure as no one has ever tried to find one. Those with it have not the time nor the money nor the inclination to investigate such a thing. Besides if a 'cure' was found I am sure it would be bought up by some mega-glomerate manufacturer to keep it off the market as such a 'cure' could possibly devastate the financial solvency of the industry.

The idea of this phenomenon just kinda 'come-upside-my-head' so to speak. And it scares me some. I may have it. Some of my best friends may have it. Yes, even you may have it. If a person can remember the names of the rods he owns, but not his kid's names, he may have it. He remembers 'opening-day' but not his wife's birthday, he may have it. Has spent more on flies in a year than 'the cost to re-carpet the living room, he may have it. You see the general pattern here.

This is to the ones who have given up on the mundane way of life. To those who have decided to take a 'higher-calling' and blow all they can on fly-fishing goodies. To take the 'high-road' and go boldly where so many before us have gone. Get the gear, use the newest stuff, collect the reels, take over the 'spare room' for a fly-tying den, start a library of fly-fishing books, buy-sell-trade rods at the drop of a hat, 'grab for the brass ring!'

Remember, for some of us, it's not only, "he who dies with the most toys who wins;" - it's how well we play the game, with what, and how often. I think I can see a new meaning to the phrase, 'go for broke!' ~ James Castwell

Till next week, remember . . .

Keepest Thynne Baakast Upeth

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