Posts Tagged With: flashback friday

The Girl with Kaleidoscope Eyes

Deer Fly

Deer Fly

Deer flies are persistent and their bites are painful. In some places they are important pests of both humans and livestock. Strong fliers, they can move several miles from their breeding grounds in search of a meal or just following their chosen target, waiting for a chance to strike. Males are typically mild-mannered, feeding on pollen and flower nectar; females, however, feed on blood, using two pairs of “blades” to lacerate skin, soaking up flowing blood with a sponge-like tongue.

Some species have iridescent eyes, which almost makes them pretty. After nailing me but good on the arm, this deer fly agreed to sit still and let me take a few close-ups of her eyes. Actually, gripped in the jaws of a pair of pliers, she agreed to nothing, having no choice in the matter.

Deer fly

Look into my eyes…

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Categories: nature, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Flashback Friday: Tannenbaum Edition

According to the National Christmas Tree Association, 13.9 million artificial Christmas trees were purchased in the United States last year. Of course, on their Statistics page, the NCTA is very diplomatic, tactfully referring to those trees as “fake.”

More than 26 million “real” trees were harvested for festive purposes in 2014, with 15% of consumers surveyed opting to cut their own. Choosing and cutting a tree is a tradition the whole family can enjoy, as shown in this ad for rifle scopes from the December, 1962, issue of Field & Stream.

So close!

Those two know the only thing worse than having the wrong scope when a buck like that appears is having no gun at all. We’ll hope they also know how hard it is to chase a deer through deep snow, trying to get close enough to whack it with your hatchet.

At least they appear to be properly dressed.

Dressed for Success

Dressed for Success

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Categories: Flashback Fridays, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Flashback Friday Shaving Edition: Chuck Heard a Scream

The chill I feel lately is due to more than just ditching the long-johns earlier than might have been prudent. Every fall a beard grows on my face and every spring I hack it off. It’s a bit of a shock to the system, not to mention friends and the cats, but it is spring and an old man’s thoughts turn to shaving.

A barbaric ritual that has been taken to extremes, the shaving of our various body parts supports a multi-billion dollar industry that pats itself on the back for selling us razors with as many as six(!) blades because, well, we’ll buy anything. Or steal it; most modern multi-blade razor cartridges are so expensive that they are kept under lock and key, or behind the counter with the ingredients for crystal meth.

Shaving didn’t used to require a “system,” as pointed out by Remington in this ad, aimed at outdoorsmen, from 1964.

remington 64

Civilized? Maybe, at least until the “rechargeable energy cells” start to run down, turning those 4 roller combs and 348 cutting edges into a low-power clam shell, yanking dozens of whiskers at once and leaving a fellow to return from the woods half-shaved and looking like his shaving kit included a weasel. Continue reading

Categories: Flashback Fridays, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Flashback Friday: Size Matters

A better writer than I once wrote something about the measure of an angler being not how large a fish he or she can catch but how small a fish he or she can catch without being disappointed. I think it was John Gierach, whose forthcoming book is titled, “All Fishermen are Liars.”

Another writer, better than anyone ever, is credited with something to do with never lying about the fishing where others know you but especially never lying about the fishing where others know the fish. That was Mark Twain, who was pretty sure all men, fishermen or not, are liars.

fish ruler

Overstatement, exaggeration and embellishment are vital components of our fishing heritage and culture. With a wink and a nod, we chuckle at what a bunch of good-natured rascals we are, telling all those stories like we do, as did our grandfathers and others who have gone before. Telling lies is a time-honored tradition of our sport and some of us find it no great insult to be called a pack of liars. Continue reading

Categories: Flashback Fridays, Fly Fishing, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Flashback Friday: Late, but with Appropriate Shoes

It’s surprising how scuffed the back of a magazine can become when it spends six months in a pile, waiting to be photographed for a blog post, especially considering the fact that I have magazines in better shape that were printed 70 or more years ago. Some things are just not made to last anymore, or at least stand up to normal use, and I’m pretty sure the guy in this Louis Vuitton ad is about to ruin his shoes. If his shoes aren’t ruined by the water flowing over those rocks his suit will be ruined for sure if he takes another step, not to mention the damage to his coccyx .

Louis Vuitton shoes

Not that those shoes are intended for use as suggested by this ad, unless they have fancy aluminum crampon bars attached to the soles, but even then their finish would surely be marred. While it might be hard for some to imagine a reasonable person wearing those shoes anywhere but to the office or a funeral, my experience at Fish in a Barrel Pond is with fly fishers, not reasonable people. Continue reading

Categories: Flashback Fridays, Fly Fishing, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Flashback Friday: Shooting in the Streets Edition

Like so many winter days gone by, last Friday was spent on a tractor, re-arranging piles of snowflakes, as was a good part of Saturday. That’s the excuse we’re using for the failure to post Flashback Friday: Valentine’s Edition, but just between us, there never was such a post to begin with. Stay tuned for upcoming words about winter (spoiler alert: we’re a little tired of it) but, in the meantime, here’s a little something about a time when heavily- armed men roamed the streets of Indianapolis and the sounds of shotguns meant things were looking up.

Two men (behind hydrant and partially obscured behind lamp post) discharging shotguns in downtown Indianapolis.

Two men (behind hydrant and partially obscured behind lamp post) discharging shotguns in downtown Indianapolis.

According to a story by Clare Conley in the December, 1963, issue of Field & Stream magazine, the gunmen in the photo are actually civic-minded folks, members of the Junior Chamber of Commerce, stepping in to save their town from an infestation even worse than zombies.

Shooters Solve the Pigeon Problem!

Shooters Solve the Pigeon Problem!

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Categories: Flashback Fridays, Humor, nature | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Flashback Friday: The Style Issue

This young man is featured in an ad for Louis Vuitton on the back cover of The New Yorker‘s recent “Style Issue”. He can scowl all he wants but I think he looks scared.

LV model

We can’t see what he’s scared of but I imagine that, having shown up for a sailing cruise with a pile of fancy matched luggage and stylish shoulder bag, he might not quite be up to the good-natured ribbing he’s taking from the crew. I know I’d be tempted to throw him overboard. Stylish or not, Thurston Howell VI there just doesn’t fit in, even if (or perhaps because) he has a silly gold anchor charm hanging off his pocket. Personally, I think he should ditch the tie and go with something a little more casual, like an ascot, but thank goodness fly fishers aren’t hung up on style, right? Continue reading

Categories: Flashback Fridays, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Flashback Friday: Born to be Mild

In 1960, when the Outdoor Recreation Resources Review Commission of the United States Forest Service conducted the first U.S. National Recreation Survey, “off-highway motorized recreation” was not included as a recreational activity. A few people were driving into the back country with motorcycles or 4-wheel-drive vehicles but not enough of them to register as a population-wide activity.

Fifty years later, to say things are different almost gets it.

According to the 2008 Forest Service report “Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation in the United States and its Regions and States: An Update National Report from the National Survey on Recreation and the Environment (NSRE)” retail sales of new All-Terrain Vehicles and Off-Highway Motorcycles more than tripled between 1995 and 2006, with 1,034,966 units sold in the last year for which statistics were available. An estimated 8,010,000 ATVs and Off-Highway Motorcycles were in use on back country roads and trails during 2001-2003.

We sure do like our internal combustion engines.

In the spring of 1967, Outdoor Life featured ads for motorcycles aimed specifically at fly fishers, with Suzuki touting them as an environmentally friendly solution to pollution.

suzuki

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Categories: Flashback Fridays, Fly Fishing, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 3 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

Flashback Friday: Got a Light?

I sometimes carry a pipe in the evening, puffing on some Captain Black when the mosquitoes are particularly aggressive. Some evenings are just not complete without a nice cigar but smoking no longer holds the allure it once did. There was a time, though, when (male) anglers were almost expected to smoke and the image of an angler with a pipe in his mouth became darn near iconic.

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Categories: Flashback Fridays | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

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