My dear, sweet, lovely wife called me from work, one day and said;
“My sources tell me that Ted Nugent is going to be at the outdoor expo at 2:00 p.m. so if you are not busy, go and meet Ted.”
“Wow!” I thought to myself. I had just read an interesting article in which Mr. Nugent discusses why he chooses to hunt. I thought it would be nice to be able to express my appreciation of his article in a way that was dignified, and meaningful; instead of being among the many, “star-struck groupies” who walk up and say; “Your Ted Nugent!”, As if he didn’t know.
After arriving about an hour early, I decided to walk around to see the sights. There were many displays from super-sharp hooks, to super-invisible fishing line, boats, knives, bumper stickers, and even a virtual reality fishing demonstration where you simulated catching a fish. It was nice, and outdoorsy-like.
While I was walking around, waiting for the autograph session to begin, an older gentleman invited me to sit down at his fly tying display and he would teach me how to tie a Woolly Bugger Streamer. Awesome! The gentleman, who owned a fly shop,”up-north”, expertly guided me through all the steps, being sure that I performed every step on my own, and before long I was at the final phase, which I would always remember as the best part. I was to tie in the grizzly hackle, and wrap it up the body! When I wrapped the hackle around the body of that Woolly Bugger streamer, it suddenly became clear to me why a fish would be fooled into thinking this was a food item.
I could imagine the streamer drifting throughout the current, the buggers undulating maribou tail waving mysteriously, as if it is moving the streamer forward throughout the water into the feed lane of some unsuspecting fish who is thinking of little more than having some breakfast when… GOTCHA!!! I bought the BIG kit which included all the items; including the vice, to get started in the fly tying game.
Anyway, I was all excited at the prospects of all the flies I was going to tie that I had forgotten the calm, cool questions, and comments I was going to discuss with Ted Nugent about hunting, fishing, and the whole “circle of life” thing. Before I knew it I was shaking his hand and saying; “You’re Ted Nugent!”
Oh well, such is life.
**Note- When I say “flies”, I am using a generic term which also includes “nymphs”, and “streamers”, as well. **
Once I got home, and started tying flies, straight away. And I must admit here that some of those first attempts were not pretty. However, when folks have a passion for something, they learn to suffer for their work, hoping to improve their craft. My suffering was no less, and I could wait until the time came when my flies would be mistaken for the real thing.
That time came sooner than expected, when my own dear, sweet, mother came to visit. She was staying a couple of nights with us, and after the long first day, retired to bed early. Seeing an opportunity, I thought I would get some flies tied for a trip I was planning in a couple of weeks. When I finished, I left some of them on the kitchen table for my mother to find, and appreciate when she came out for coffee in the morning. She found them, alright! The whole house was awakened early that day by my mothers shrieks, cusses and what sounded like pounding on the table.
You could imagine my delight when I came to the kitchen see what the fuss was, and found my mother flailing my freshly made flies from here to thunder with a fly swatter. She thought they were real! I could only hope the fish did, as well.