+The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society

Flashback Friday: Phoning It In

Some people think the most important day of the year for the anglers of Fish in a Barrel Pond is Opening Day, in late April, as long as the ice is out.

Those people are wrong.

Seasoned members of the Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society know the most important day of the year is the second Saturday of February, the day they can start making reservations for the upcoming season.

It's Easy to Call Ahead!

Call by number! It’s twice as fast!

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Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Flashback Fridays, Fly Fishing, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

From the Editor: A Clarification

Quill Gordon’s recent post “I Hear the Fishing’s Been Pretty Good” included a photo of a less than clean bathroom floor, which he believed to have been peed upon. Several individuals (none of whom were suspected to be the pee-ers in question) have suggested that this may not have been the case. In the interest of fairness we have given their theory careful consideration and feel obligated to admit that perhaps someone did not actually pee directly on the floor.

We agree it is entirely possible that a group of men, over the course of several days, merely splashed or dribbled on the floor. Then, maybe, they stepped in those splashes and dribbles and the dirt from their shoes mixed with those dribbles to form “a little mud” which someone forgot to clean up by throwing down a towel and swishing it around with their foot. It has been further suggested that “Quill Gordon should lighten up and stop sounding like my wife.”

Accepting the theory of splashes and dribbles, we regret the implication that the floor had been directly peed upon.

~The Editor

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor | Tags: , , , , , | 7 Comments

I Hear the Fishing’s Been Pretty Good

Winter’s stark grays softened beneath a gauzy green veil as spring returned to the slopes of Nonesuch Mountain. A last toast to winter drained the dregs of that bitter keg so I took up the cup of spring with a nod to the transition of season, acknowledging an important milestone along our planet’s annual journey around the sun. I lifted the vernal chalice to my lips as for a kiss, and imbibed the essence of the season with intemperate relish as spring flowed like syrup, at its own leisurely pace.

Another cup appeared, brimming with the prospect of the return of anglers to Fish in a Barrel Pond, top shelf stuff, and you know I simply couldn’t resist. But I took a wide stance and held onto my hat as I quaffed because, Dear Readers, drinking from that vessel is like drinking from a damn fire hose.

ice monday

Monday, April 22

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Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor, Loons, nature, Rural Life, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Quill Gordon and the Nonesuch Mountain Meltdown

So there I was, ready to wax rhapsodic as spring returned, but winter threw a hissy fit.

April2

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Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor, Maple Syrup, nature, Rural Life, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Flashback Friday Rides Again! Russian Tiger Catchers, A Story Not About Fishing, and Then I Get to the Point!

It’s easy to get distracted while thumbing through my old magazines, looking for something in particular. Mixed in with the mundane and everyday aspects of the outdoor life are exciting stories filled with danger and daring, told by those who survived them, offering a glimpse of rugged days gone by. Like these 1950′s Russian tiger catchers, restraining a wild beast with not much more than stout wooden poles!

tiger catchers

Brought to bay by dogs, this tiger was destined for a zoo or a circus and had to be taken alive. One man has a line around a paw and, according to the article, the tiger was in a bag and headed for the truck within minutes. I hope these guys made good money, because I can’t imagine grabbing tigers for fun, although I guess you never know. Continue reading

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Flashback Fridays, Fly Fishing, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Bacon Grease and Rainbows

Seemingly endless months of partisan bickering, accusations and denials, half-truths, gossip, innuendo, and lies have finally come to an end. The mud that was slung has barely dried to dust, and some are already hatching schemes for the next time around. Some are angry, some are too stunned to speak, and others would like a chance to catch their breath and clear their head before tackling the hard work ahead. A few small voices have even been heard crying out for a time of healing.

That’s right, folks, another season at Fish in a Barrel Pond is in the past. (Surely you didn’t expect political commentary from Quill Gordon, did you?)

**********

A fly fishing magazine left behind in one of the camps this summer had a section titled “Fly Fishing Dream Jobs” or somesuch nonsense. Since I hear so often how dreamy my job must be, I flipped through the pages in search of myself. At first, I thought there must be some mistake but a second perusal convinced me there was no mistake about it. Nothing but a deliberate editorial decision could explain the absense of Fishing Camp Caretaker from that dream job list and for a while I was a tad more than miffed.

I like to imagine there is more than one Fishing Camp Caretaker in the world and I believe he, she, or they would have been miffed, too, but then I gave it some thought and not only understood the omission, but was also glad for it. I am sure my imaginary comrades would agree, it would just jerk our tears from their little ducts, against their will, to see the looks on the faces of some people who think it sounds like an easy gig, after they’ve done it a few days. Continue reading

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Fly Fishing, Humor, Rural Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Quill Gordon Wears Steel-Toed Drinking Shoes

The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society has 100 members and 1 employee, which in itself could explain my desire for an occasional snootful. Sometimes, though, it seems the issue is not as much that I partake of volatile spirits from time to time but rather the company in which I do so. Why, just the other day, someone asked me, “Gil, why the heck do you hang out with that bunch of drunken ruffians?”

My interrogator was Dr. Calvin Butz, and the drunken ruffians in question were my friends Milt, Wally and Stinky, whose combined age is 274.

“Because I like old-timers, I guess. Why do you ask, Calvin?”

“Call me Cal. I think they are rude, offensive, and downright dangerous, that’s why.”

“They’re not so bad, Calvin. Come on, they’re old, give ‘em a break. Besides, Wally’s pretty upset.”

“That may be, but he doesn’t have to take it out on me! What’s he so upset about, anyway?”

“Well, for starters, some Nazi shot a tank out from under him once. Need more?” Continue reading

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Quill Gordon and the Nonesuch Mountain Howler

A strange sort of crazy settles in as winter comes to an end and spring begins. It is never a smooth transition, weatherwise or otherwise, and sometimes I think I’ve made it through the dark time without succumbing to a bad case of the Shack Nasties when it turns out I only repressed them.

The thaw came on early and strong this year, turning lake ice to slush and frozen dirt roads to pudding. The string of calm, sunny days felt like it would never end. Winter was done, or so I thought when, as I watched the ice disappear a month ago, a mosquito bit me hard, just below the right eyebrow. Being the first bite of the year, it promptly swelled to the size of a plum in celebration. Continue reading

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor, Rural Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Foodie Edition

Chef Gordon Ramsay evidently knows what is good for him and stayed away from here during his recent visit to Vermont. All things considered, it’s probably a good thing, but we were still a little disappointed he didn’t show, especially after taunting mentioning him in a post. It was actually a crass and cynical move on my part, to take advantage of an internet search trend like that, but it worked. The post I link to above, and the post I link to from it (Eugene, Purly and Chef Gordon Ramsay), diverted quite a bit of search traffic (gordon ramsay in vermont) my way and the hits just keep coming —two of them today alone!

I know some people are a bit taken aback when their innocent searches direct them to these pages but, unlike some practitioners of tenkara, at least a few foodies displayed a sense of humor upon their arrival. Some of them even became new subscribers to this blog. One in particular stands out, for a couple of reasons, and that is John-Bryan Hopkins, who has created the blog Foodimentary — A Food Lover’s Notebook.

Because of Mr. Hopkins, I know that yesterday was National P B and J Day. I celebrated National Peppermint Patties Day the day before, and National Have a Brownie Day the day before that, thanks to him. As long as he stays away from organ meats, lima beans and beet juice, I think me and John-Bryan Hopkins can have a groovy thing going on. But it is more than his pimping of sweet treats that makes me happy to make his acquaintance; John-Bryan Hopkins not only has a hyphenated first name, he also sports an ascot, making him the third person I know to do so. Before my outdoorsy-type friends chime in with their feelings regarding neckwear, and before my new foodie friends figure out what really goes on around here, I thought it would be nice to spend a little time standing together on common ground, celebrating both food and the great outdoors.

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Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Thanksgiving Day Angler

Some members of the Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society seem to spend more time grumbling about the conditions than they do fishing (see It’s Not Over ‘Til It’s Over, for example). I do not mean to imply that guys like Dr. Marcus Feely are the norm, or even a majority, but sometimes it seems that way, so it always does my heart good when folks show up ready for anything, even cooking paella outdoors, in a snow storm (See Pictures from a Fishing Camp: Season’s End).

The camps have been closed for nearly a month but members may fish from the main dock, if they wish, until the lake is covered with ice. Not many of them do, and after more than a foot of heavy, wet snow fell on Wednesday, I figured fishing was done for the year. The lake remains free of ice, so casting is still possible, but after struggling to get chains on the tractor, clearing the dooryard and digging paths to the barn and the chicken coop, digging out a spot for some yo-yo to fish from was not high on my agenda.

Imagine my surprise then, when I returned from a walk in the woods yesterday and found that not only was someone fishing, said angler had brought along his own snow shovel and cleared the dock (well, most of it).

When he turned to me and said, “Grab your rod, Quill, I cleared you some space, too!” there was only one appropriate response.

Fish in a Barrel Pond, Thanksgiving Day, 2011

I am thankful for anglers who are willing to shovel a foot of snow, warm gloves, and the little brook trout who took a tiny pheasant tail nymph on such a lovely day.

 

 

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Fly Fishing | Tags: , , , , | 5 Comments

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