Gripping and Grinning … It’s Not For Everyone


There are sooooo many things wrong with this picture — me wearing pink is not one of them. I make pink ruggedly handsome (well, not in this picture).

Let’s start with the look on my face. It’s somewhere between befuddlement and constipation. At this point I’m not sure whether the camera just happened to catch my face weird, or if that’s what I really look like. I’m slowly coming to grips with the latter. The cigarette dangling from my mouth does nothing to make the picture more attractive, as it only proves my very weak will (don’t smoke kids). The fish is nothing impressive, although it is my first river striper, ergo the grip and not-so-much grin. Also I’m pretty sure I look fatter than I do when I stand naked in front the mirror and flex for hours (and hours) on end.

I used to want a grip and grin with any fish worth a damn. I’d take client grip and grins with any fish. I’ve got memory cards full of these from over the years. But I contend there isn’t a good one among the whole damn bunch. I also contend we would all be happier with our fish pictures on the whole if we weren’t in them. Take pics of fish, not people. People are ugly and boring, like me. The fish is where the focus should be. In the same vein, I promise from this day forward, I will never ever again subject any of you to anything like this picture again.

~ Dave

Just The Tyin’ Tip Wednesday


Some of you might remember how my last “tips” post went, so lets cross our fingers this go around….

If you’re a beginner fly tier you are using too much dubbing. I did…Steve did…we all did. Next time you pull dubbing out to wrap around a hook, take half of what you pulled out and set it aside. Then take half of what you have left, and make another small pile. The itsy bitsy, teensy weensy bit of dubbing you have left is what you will actually need. This principal works for most of the fibers you have on your tying desk, by the by. Enjoy your wednesday.

– Dave

The Great Migration



Fly fisherman are not the only animals that migrate. Birds in the winter, fish on the spawn, even Canadians out of Florida every spring; yes, the migratory nature of living things is undeniable. Yet a fly fisherman’s desire to wander takes some of us all over the earth looking for the next bite, paycheck, or vista. Some of us squash this wanderlust as we grow older and the walls of responsibility close in on us. For others home is where the truck is parked, no matter where the truck happens to be parked.

In a long standing tradition, some of our best southern purveyors of fur, feathers and good times are on their way to western locations for another season of guiding on rivers full of fish, that our dumber than ours. Another season booked out, and the possibility to live another year on their own terms is on the horizon. Sounds kind of nice right?

To you intrepid anglers; be safe, get tipped well, and we’ll see you again next fall.

– Dave

Head Colds and What Sucks In Fly Fishing


This is intended to be a running list so please feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section below:

  • Guide Drama Sucks
  • Poaching Sucks
  • Putting on waders Sucks
    • Conversely, Taking the waders off Sucks
  • Tying Blood Knots Sucks
  • 6x Sucks
  • Wind of course Sucks
  • Having a real job Sucks
  • Boat batteries dying Sucks
  • Hipsters fly fishing Sucks (wear bigger clothes)
  • Fishing for Musky Sucks (let’s be honest with ourselves here)
  • Getting front-fucked Sucks
  • Flats trolling Sucks
  • Anything under a size 20 Sucks
  • Living by generation schedules Sucks
  • Someone breaking your rod Sucks
  • Flying Sucks
  • Underwear Sucks in general
  • Blowing Shots Sucks
  • Guides Freezing Sucks
  • Floating lines that don’t float Sucks
  • Your buddies catching fish while you sit at home Sucks
  • The Moon Cycle Sucks
  • Rod Storage in rafts Sucks
  • KFC Sucks
  • Losing stream access Sucks
  • Food poisoning from gas station sushi Sucks
  • My poor decision making Sucks
  • Litter Sucks

Once my head cold clears up and I’m in a better space mentally I’ll do a “What Rocks in Fly Fishing List” just so nobody thinks I’m always a Debbie Downer….Wahhhhhhh…..Wahhhhhh……Wahh. Until then, What else?………….

– Dave

Hell Week For SCOF…Let The Paddling Begin

I know we haven’t posted in a bit but that is mainly due to the fact that Steve and I have been locked in a room for the past week, with nothing more than two cases of PBR, a Costco pack of Snicker bars, and a laptop, putting the final pieces of the puzzle together for the Spring Preview issue. Who knew making a magazine was a bunch of work? Those dudes at the Drake make it seem like they poop well written essays for breakfast and piss out some amazing photography for lunch, as a matter of fact. Well I am happy to announce that next Thursday the preview issue will be live and soon after that I plan on going off the grid for some much-needed fishing time as well as a long overdue colonic.  So while I am stuck in the shop today I decide why not bring SCOF readers some hilarity, while at the same time giving everyone a little window into my world. This video has been out there a while yet still has not been picked up by the Discovery Channel, can’t figure that one out. Enjoy…me.

– Dave

Local Rules

Today I strapped on my snowshoes Kaczynski-style, and ventured out into the real world. I was apprehensive at first, thinking that in the four days I had been removed, the world must have changed. It wouldn’t have surprised me to see dogs and cats living in perfect harmony, hover cars zooming around, or even a world where trout had evolved to be the dominant species on the planet (kind of like Planet of the Trout). I am pretty sure I freaked out the lady behind the counter at the gas station because as she handed me my smokes she mentioned something about a wild look in my eye. I couldn’t hear her though as I was to busy screaming at the guy behind me in a fit of socialization overload. I eventually regained my composure enough to get on with my wifey assigned task of gift shopping (with a side stop at Lexington Avenue Brewery). Down at the brewery I noticed a poster that sums up our shopping habits here at SCOF.

I was personally kind of hoping that Speedo’s would be the new black, but I digress. This year has been a rough one for most of the fly fishing industry, but none have been hit harder than your local flyshop owner. I am not the first one and hopefully won’t be the last one to say that it’s a good thing to support your local flyshop. The guy who stands across the fly shop counter from you does not drive a Benz, or have millions tied up in Halliburton. He definitely will listen to you every time you have a picture of your newest slab, and he also will probably let you take every rod in the rack out for a test cast while full well knowing you are gonna be back next week to do it all over again. He does all this while making barely enough money to support a family, but the real kick in the nuts is, the poor bastard probably gets to fish even less than you. So this holiday season, we here at SCOF feel that it’s time we all clear our collective “shop rat” consciences and go buy something from the guy down the street. Lord knows he could use the business.

– Dave

Fly Tying Apathy of the Worst Order

An apathy has set in at my tying desk, and it reeks of stale alcohol and dried out epoxy. I have been snowed in for the past couple of days high atop the mountain in Dave-landia, and one would think that I would be swimming in my new pile of freshly tied hook and fur like Scrooge McDuck pulling a full gainer into his money bin. At last, my desk sits full of materials and no flies. I have attempted to motivate myself in the usual ways. Two days ago it was self-flagellation. I woke up, looked in the mirror and said to myself, “Dave, you are ugly, not worth a shit as a human being, and no one will like you unless you tie three dozen flies today.” I spent the rest of the day feeling pretty bad about myself…you know, my mom never hugged me enough type of stuff…and never got around to tying a single fly amongst all the self-loathing. So, yesterday I tried financial incentives. I told myself that I would tie flies on a bonus system similar to those Wall Street fellas. I then realized that I, like Wall Street, was paying out my own bonus, and tying it to performance wasn’t all that necessary. So I am now 20 dollars richer (took it out of wifey’s wallet), and I still haven’t tied a damn thing. Today I am withholding sex from myself until a dozen or so flies have been completed. I have high hopes for holding myself sexual hostage from myself, because if it doesn’t work, tomorrow I will try some new age positive reinforcement and spiritual centering…and we all know that crap never works.

– Dave