“Without a doubt it's the largest operation ever undertaken”
“That's what you said about the Glossary”
”Yes Paul, but this work encompasses the Glossary and therefore by its very nature must be larger”
“Yes, I can see how that would work”
“In order to accomplish this feat I'm having to completely stop all thinking and become one with my computer – in short I am becoming the Bionic Man”
”It has become my very reason for being; my raison d'etre. When I have completed this task I may well decide to simply lie down and die”
“…are we still talking about the contents page Steve?”
“Yes Paul, so far three weeks of my life have gone into its production, but it could have been many lifetimes; it's like Dr Who's Tardis in many ways, a Portal within Sexyloops leading ever deeper into the Huge Void where all things have become one and distinction has merged to become the inseparable”
“You haven't finished it yet, have you Steve?”
“No, not yet Paul but I'm working hard on it”
Which is why we still have the crap navbar.
I've actually had rather an interesting week filled mainly with flycasting stuff. Last week, or the one before (it's difficult to remember sometimes but it feels like an awful long time ago – making it possibly the one before), I announced that I'd be taking the European FFF Masters exam in the Netherlands next (well now; this) month. And having marked out the required distances with crocket hoops in the garden (as you do), I've come to the disturbing conclusion that my casting needs a tune-up. All I can say is that anyone who has taken and passed this exam is a damn fine flycaster. Which is exactly as it should be of course.
The great thing about this exam is that it's going to make me a better flycaster; in fact it has already done so and I can now cast left-handed and to the extent where it actually looks like I can cast left-handed, which is a major step up the ladder (erm, quite literally). Sure it's not super-sexy feathers-on-nipples left-handed flycasting stuff yet, but still, it's pretty sweet and it's starting to really GO somewhere. This is something I've been working at for years but not until recently with any great degree of commitment nor success.
I am now determined to get the entire Windcutter line out there – not because I'm some dick who simply wants to get the whole line out there for the sake of doing so – I'm not quite this base thank you so very much. No: it's just annoying me, that's all. And worse: it's become an obsession.
I fully expect to accomplish this Sexyloops Casting Challenge this week. I am about two yards short right now and those two yards (which may as well have been two miles for what it was worth this evening) I believe can be found hiding within the application of the “Stop”.
Another interesting feature of the Arden Left-hand Style is that it is completely different to the Arden Flip-flop Cast, which it now appears is the exclusive reserve of my right-handed casting. The left hand is much more of a “pushing” stroke - which is strange, but not so strange perhaps as the rocking motion I make with the balls of my feet and the small whistling noise I use to accompany the passing of the loop.
It was actually an awareness of my feet that was most responsible for this cast finally coming together after the twenty odd years of hard and dedicated practising – actually it was not an awareness of my feet, but rather of where they were in relation to the ground.
About four of five months ago I went for a Karate lesson under the misguided notion that it would be good for me, which is wasn't, but one of the things I took away was the knowledge that the Instructor felt his centredness to be in his stomach (or “gut” as he liked to call it). I have a few different types of awareness but I think that the bit that's “me” (which may or may not be my soul) is located in my solar plexus and is the bit that “feels” – you know like “Oh wow, look at that sunset, it fills me with a nice glowing feeling – and right here; in my solar plexus.” You know the sort of thing I mean... anyway:
And my mind (or the bit that thinks), I've come to the conclusion, is somewhere else “I know not where” but definitely not contained within my body - or at least not in any physical way - for when I'm living in my mind I'm not feeling that I'm here and I've detached (which is where most people seem to be incidentally, although not completely and therefore consciously), which is odd since everything is within your mind – until you stop thinking of course… hang on where was I going with this…
here – if you are thinking about your casting (or anything) then you are not really here, you are living in your mind, and not only should flycasting require you to fully be here, but it can also take you there. In fact I reckon that's why we fish.
I can't wait to answer question 28 in the European FFF exam; “What is fly casting all about?” Are they in for a surprise :-)
Sean said: “I do wish you wouldn't do that”
“I said: I do wish you wouldn't do that”
“I'm not doing anything!”
“Yes you are Paul; you're falling asleep in the bottom of the boat again”
“But the fish aren't on”
“I know; that's plainly obvious by the very fact that you are sleeping in the bottom of the boat”
“Well what do you want me to do about it?”
“Pretend they are… and put your life jacket on”
And so it was that Sean and I drifted around Rutland for many hours, me fast asleep in the bottom of the boat, Sean fishing on relentlessly. It could have been a Mugwai hunt and with about every bit as much hope for success. You see I kinda figure that I have this thing sussed out now: when the fish are comatose, so am I; when the fish are feeding, then I'm fishing. It makes sense to me and the clever bit is working out when you should be fishing and when you should be comatose.
“Damn, just missed one!”
The funny thing about Muddler Minnows is that they don't really look like anything. I mean sure, okay, yes they look like a little fish, minnows even, but that's not what I mean, and yes agreed wounded fish do swim across the surface leaving a little wake, but that's not the point, and yes I'll also concede that sedges lay their eggs by furrowing across the water surface but nothing, absolutely nothing on earth (with the exception of mice - perhaps) behaves like one of Sean's muddlers.
And there ain't exactly a whole load of mice swimming around Rutland that I've seen of late.
Trout are funny things… give them a nice tasty sedge or midge pupa or an ant and they'll resolutely ignore it. Pull one of Sean's enormous and badly tied muddlers across their noses and they'll whoop for delight and do everything in their power to catch up with it, rip it to pieces, demolish it and - here's the most alarming part - actually eat it.
I'm sure that there is a message in there somewhere, but I don't wish to look too deeply in case I should actually find it.
This week I've got two flycasting videos to watch, one of which I'll review. I have to work on my backhand switch (this time over water – oh and interestingly I've discovered the open stance to be a great Switch delivery). I have to stop thinking. I have to cast the whole damn line with my left hand. Just a normal Sexyloops week really…
Oh and Pete's coming down for a bit of shooting head over-the-fence casting, Jon's driving over for a bit of distance with your toes casting, Sean's driving round for a spot of bad Muddler tying. I may go fishing; I hope so. There may be a contents page. There will be a Mugwai and talking of which I was trying to work out what the first time visitor to Sexyloops would make of this fine page.
See ya :-)