April 5th, 2004

FAOL Casting Program
By James Castwell

First a test. Answer yes or no to each. For each yes answer deduct 100 points. For each no answer do not deduct any points. A passing score is 1000, so is a perfect score. Obviously, if you are not perfect, who wants you. There is no time limit but neatness does count a little.

    1. The least important thing you have to tell a student is where the restroom is.

    A. If you have answered yes to that one, you are a pompous ass and should reconsider whether there is even room in all of fly-fishing for you. Think strongly about this one. In fact. Go away and learn some other sport.

    2. Presuming you have made the test this far, do you believe that it is really important to shock the crap out of a student by blowing all the fly line and a length of backing out of the rod during your first demonstration just to get his attention, no matter how stupid you really think he is or whether you may get a hernia during the process?

    3. Always make the student use his equipment. That it may be a hodge-podge of mismatched odds and ends, hand-me-downs or poorly chosen new gear should be of no mind and offering any of your fancy stuff would be out of the question, even though you have charged the hell out of him for the instruction.

    4. After observing the first futile efforts, step smartly in and scream, "No, no, no. Not that way stupid. Like this!" Again offering you a chance to show your great prowess with the long stick.

    5. If a students form seems to lean toward casting with a high arm, bending his wrist on long strokes and not seeming to understand what stopping the rod means, ignore these as they will be easily corrected in your 'Intermediate' casting classes. To stifle his enthusiasm at this point would not be appropriate.

    6. It is always best to have more than one student at a time because you can create a little friendly competition between two by little suggestions such as, "Look, jerk, why can't you make a loop in the air like Billy over there?"

    7. Never use all of your teaching methods (tricks) as you have worked hard and they are your 'proprietary' methods. You never know when another casting teacher might be looking, or worse yet, a student may actually learn something in your class and eventually go on to teach casting himself.

    8. If you take a break for a lunch it is entirely proper and fitting for you to regale all assembled with your tales of great accomplishments about all of the fish you have concurred over your career. Newbys are always impressed by this.

    9. Taking the time to explain rod and line weights, leaders, tippets and knots is useless. They came to learn casting, not equipment. Most don't look like they would understand anyhow.

    10. You are damn good at this and will never teach for free; never, never, never. And feel free to raise any of your 'guiding' prices and even charge just for opinions like the other 'Hot-Shot' professionals do.

Well, there you have it. If you answered yes to any of the above, it's a darn shame, you must remember to deduct 100 points from the available 1000. You in essence therefore have failed to qualify and we wish you the best and, "don't let the door hit ya etc..."

If, on the other hand, you were able to honestly answer "No" to all of the above you may have what it takes to become an instructor, who knows. You see, we here at FAOL have been asked many times to also become a real organization, not just a website, and also set up a casting instructor qualifying program. Organized is something we will never be, no matter how much we might try; even if we wanted to. Each of us, you, me and the thousands of others who come to this website already are 'Casting Instructors,' whether we are willing to admit it or not. Each in his own way and each in his own style. None of us would refuse anyone help at any time and are always willing to share whatever knowledge and skill we may have, no matter how slight that may be.

Congratulations, you have passed. ~ James Castwell

Till next week, remember . . .

Keepest Thynne Baakast Upeth

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