Neil where should I start? From the three guys in a boat that waded the boat through my run in the Box Canyon of the Henry's Fork - while I was standing there fishing it - to the four-letter expletives that erupt as seemingly "normal" speach from many, if not most, who wade all up and down through the water I'm either fishing or working towards fishing - to those guides who block off almost the entire river as you try to float by in order to get to less crowded water downstream, and then curse you for "molesting" their run...
I love this sport and go out of my way to advocate for it and to help others enjoy it as much as I do, yet, there seems to be an increasingly growing group who feel themselves "entitled" to exhibit whatever behavior they want to as they pursue their day's activities.
Just look at many of the other flyfishing forum sites out there to see the vulgarity and crudeness of those who advocate to love the sport we all share. I have joined to and then left many of those sites in favor of FAOL. The problem you see on those other sites appears to be spilling out to on-stream experiences, and then many of us must be subjected to a crude diatribe that would make any of their mothers blush and frankly ruins my on-stream experience. Many whom I have approached and asked kindly to desist, have basically launched into a lecture about how if I didn't like it then I could (take your best guess here), and why don't I just leave?!?
The sad part is that many of these are professionals and/or have some professional grade skills and many of them would be great mentors to those just embracing the sport, but I wouldn't want to leave the care of one of my sons, my wife or a friend in their care.
When is enough, enough? Whose job is it to remind these fellow anglers that there are others on the stream who may not share their so-called "passion" for doing things the way they do it? I have a lot of fun on the water most of the time. Sure, I try not to let the actions of others dictate my experience on the water, but sometimes its impossible because they are so "in-your-face" about how they feel, what they say and what they do. Yet, I cna have a great day, catch a lot of fish or not, lose some real beasts, or not, and I don't have to utter one curse from my lips in order to do it. I don't have to offer a colorful commentary on how to do this or that or whatever it is the other guy may be doing wrong. I don't feel the need to do it and I don't do it. Self-control, restraint, and just plain, common courtesy go a long way towards allowing all of us to enjoy our days on the water as well as each others company, even if we are strangers.
A bit more than my $.02 cents worth, but something I'm very passionate about.
Neil, thanks again for raising this subject. I hope to hear others passionate responses.
"There will be days when the fishing is better than one's most optimistic forecast, others when it is far worse. Either is a gain over just staying home."
Roderick Haig-Brown, "Fisherman's Spring"