Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene

Fishing Fools

It certainly has been an unusual year, and it all started when my friend Eugene (see Careful with that Axe, Eugene) told me of a fish he had seen. Even allowing for his usual inflation percentages I had a hard time believing him when he described its immense size. Certain that between the two of us we could catch any fish that ever swam, I went along with his plan to hook this behemoth, hoping at least to prove the outrageous nature of his exaggeration.

Only one bait would do for a fish such as the one Eugene described and I knew it was best to gather such bait early, before the warmth of the sun made them active and more difficult to subdue. Starting at noon was certainly not to our advantage but it was good sport nonetheless and it wasn’t long before we had a good supply.

Gathering Bait

Gathering Bait

Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing, Humor, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment

New Gear, for Fishing Guides Only!

Brothers and sisters, another season is nearly upon us!

Here at Fish in a Barrel Pond that means a steady stream of anglers, all running amok, and demanding just a bit more attention than any of us might be able, or willing, to give. Combining my experience around outdoors folk and anglers, with some ingenuity and good old Yankee know-how, provided by my friend Eugene and his pal Purly, I believe we have come up with a system that will benefit you, the working guide, no matter how many clients may be in your charge.

The first part of our System is based on an Australian concept, introduced to us via our research facility in Sweden, and is really quite simple.

Staging areas, boat launches, and parking lots can be hectic places, especially with a bunch of confused, belligerent anglers milling around and getting in the way. Conceived as a way to keep groups in one place so I could have a little peace and quiet once in a while, we have adapted our Original Angler Containment Area™ to your needs, creating a lightweight, portable solution that you can use anywhere. (Complete kit $9.99 does not include curbing, plastic chairs or water. Pretty Floating Rings™ sold separately. Comes with Basic Instructions™)

Notice how those anglers, like so many of their kind, naturally gravitate to water that could not possibly hold fish. What a nice way to keep them out of your hair, yet close by, where you can keep an eye on them! The addition of Pretty Floating Rings™, in bright primary colors, allows you to increase the numbers that gather by exploiting their natural competitive instincts, and for an even greater haul of anglers, promise cookies.

Early prototypes of these Angler Containment Areas™ included tall fences, but anglers had to be coaxed in far enough to not escape through the gate before it slammed shut. In an effort to address issues of aesthetics, as well as reduce the number of serious injuries, the fences and gates were replaced with buried wires and the anglers were required to wear electric shock collars, which they were told were benign and only for identification purposes. When they entered the Angler Containment Area™ to eat cookies and show off, the system was turned on and, once the yelping stopped, they seemed content. For a while, at least.

But there were problems with that system, and it was in overcoming them that we were inspired to create the component that is going to change the control and containment of anglers forever! Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing, Humor, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene | Tags: , , , , , | 16 Comments

Chef Gordon Ramsay in Vermont?

According to the Woodstock Early Bird, Chef Gordon Ramsay — or, at least his film crew — is in Vermont this weekend. Dear oh dear oh dear.

Considering what I’ve made up learned about him, I am not surprised to hear he and his film crew have become separated. Hey, it happens. I am not surprised he has finally made it to Vermont, but I don’t think it’s because of Vermont’s “foodie” culture or special culinary stand-outs. I just hope he hasn’t brought his lawyers with him.

It’s been nearly two years since his encounter with my friend Eugene and his pal Purly. Frankly, I expected to hear from him much sooner. Better late than never, I guess.

From the archives, dated March 30, 2010: Eugene, Purly and Chef Gordon Ramsay.

Yo, Gordo! If you’re looking for me, I’ll be the guy in the icy water, working a shovel. Come on over.

 

Categories: Humor, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Return of Quill Gordon

It was a dark and stormy night. Some say my friend, Eugene, was riding a door strapped to a couple of compressed gas cylinders; others say it was some kind of jet-propelled ironing board. What he was riding is not important now but all accounts agree that at about the time the river was cresting Eugene shot downstream in a long, horizontal spiral like a bottle rocket.

Over dams and under bridges — in some cases over bridges — Eugene rode the raging floodwaters of Irene through the night and into the next day. And the next and the next, eventually drifting into Long Island Sound, where he was sighted aboard what appeared to be a horse trough, using his trousers for a sail. Plucked from the water by a passing pleasure craft, Eugene was then taken ashore, where he was tended to by a group of lovely women who, it turns out, were the stars of a television show about themselves. It also turns out they were drinking quite a lot and things became, as Eugene put it, “a tad competitive.”

The general consensus, once everyone was sober and Eugene found his trousers, was that it would be best if no one ever spoke again about what had just taken place, so the next time you happen to find yourself searching the internet for the truth behind this September’s firings among the cast of Real Housewives of New York, read those articles twice. Notice how carefully all parties avoid any mention whatsoever of my friend Eugene. Continue reading

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene | Tags: , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Vermont Hand Crafted Tenkara Rods

Tenkara is an old Japanese method of fishing, conceived as a way to yank fish from small streams. Generating a lot of interest lately, its American adherents are practically swooning. It turns out that my friend Eugene has been using similar methods for years and his desire to simplify the gentle art of angling (see “… teach a man to fish …”) has naturally led him to Tenkara. Feeling uniquely qualified, he is anxious to share his expertise. He’s also fairly sure he can make a buck or two doing it.

Eugene has tried his hand at home decor (see “A Craft Project With My Friend, Eugene”) and he has dabbled in the culinary arts (see “Mouse Pie”). His qualifications are indeed unique but I sometimes wonder about him as an entrepreneur, especially when he involves his pal Purly (see “The Disappearance of Ethan Allen”). Still, I do what I can to help them out, usually against my better judgement.

With a reminder — nay, a plea — to obey all fish and game laws, I give you:

EUGENE & PURLY’S FREE RANGE, ORGANIC, RENEWABLE, HAND CRAFTED, VERMONT ARTISANAL TENKARA RODS  Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing, Humor, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Mouse Pie

 

The leaves are turning, early it seems, and around here that means more people from other places will be showing up to see them.  Every small town and village tries to get those people to stop, linger and spend money by hosting craft fairs, food fests, art shows, etc. and ours is no exception. My friend Eugene and his pal Purly are looking to get in on the action with a booth on the green where they can offer up real, honest to goodness Vermont food, educate folks about a different way of life and maybe make a few bucks along the way, even though their first experience with food and outsiders didn’t go very well (see “Eugene, Purly and Chef Gordon Ramsay“).

When Eugene stopped by this week, searching for ingredients, I was happy to help. Unfortunately, he and Purly originally wanted to serve up Teriyaki Beaver on a Stick but beaver season doesn’t start until November and all I had to offer was a couple of frozen hind quarters (freshness is of utmost importance). They were, however, able to come up with an authentic recipe they could use and for which I can provide ingredients in abundance. It’s a win-win, as they say. Continue reading

Categories: Humor, Rural Life, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Eugene and the Dangers of Shatter Proof Glass

When word got out, a couple of weeks ago, that I was going to make the 30 mile drive to the closest thing we’ve got to a city around  here, my friend Eugene jumped at the chance to tag along. He must have jumped, although he could have dropped from a tree for all I know, into the bed of my truck just past Peavy Flat, where the road narrows and you have to slow down so as to not run over Purly Coutermarche’s dogs. By the time I noticed him back there it was too late to turn around and take him home so I agreed he could come, but because I didn’t want to get a ticket for having a passenger in the bed of a truck on the highway I covered him with a tarp and told him to stay out of sight. Continue reading

Categories: Humor, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Eugene, Purly and Chef Gordon Ramsay

It is not uncommon in these parts to run into a celebrity from time to time. Most stay below the radar, preferring to not call attention to themselves, but others cause quite a ruckus. It should come as no surprise that one such recent folderol should involve my good friend Eugene.

Eugene has been wintering with his pal Purly, at Purly’s place above the swamp on the far side of Peavy Flat off Lower Skunk Hollow Road. It’s a cozy arrangement and it works well for them, which is good because otherwise he would be staying here with me. He stopped by the other day – to “borrow” something – and he filled me in on the goings-on over the hill. When he told me about the “cocky little British guy” he and Purly had run off he had no idea who he was talking about but, considering the details, it was clear to me he could only be describing Gordon Ramsay, famous chef, restauranteur and television star. Continue reading

Categories: Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

The Disappearance of Ethan Allen

My good friend Eugene is shacking up this winter with his pal Purly, at Purly’s place, above the swamp on the far side of Peavey’s Flat. It’s a good arrangement now that they’ve worked out some of the logistics and division of duties. For example, Purly does the cooking now which has significantly reduced the number of grease fires. Eugene does the washing and ironing has done well so far, although he has to mop a lot.

They are trapping beaver, mink and muskrat together again this season, encouraged by the great success last year of their line of Local Organic Hand-Crafted Artisanal ladies’ undergarments that they called “Beaver Fur”. Continue reading

Categories: Humor, Rural Life, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Teach a Man to Fish …

This story no longer lives here but there are just too many links to it for one man to strip out and those Error 404 Not Found notices aren’t very polite, so you are seeing this instead.

The short story “Teach a Man to Fish … ” has been converted to e-reader format and is now available for both Kindle and Nook as part of Quill Gordon’s Story Time, Tales of the Outdoors for Anglers and Others!

The Blurb:

“Invited to fish a secret, forbidden honey hole, Quill Gordon can’t resist. Rigging up his favorite antique rod, he envisions delicate casts to difficult fish, but when he arrives he finds that not everyone shares his definition of ‘sport’. Featuring Quill’s unusual friend, Eugene, and Eugene’s unusual fishing methods, an early version of this humorous short story first appeared on the blog The View from Fish in a Barrel Pond in September of 2009.”

The Links:

“Teach a Man to Fish … ” for Kindle (Amazon)

“Teach a Man to Fish … ” for Nook (Barnes & Noble)

The Cover

teach a man cover2compressed

Categories: Fly Fishing, Humor, Stories About My Good Friend, Eugene | Tags: , , , , , | 9 Comments

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