Welcome to Just Old Flies

Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying materials, they were created and improved upon at a far slower pace than todays modern counterparts; limited by materials available and the tiers imagination.

Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you will fish the flies. Perhaps . .

Part Seventy-five

Life in the Fast Lane

By Old Rupe

When a person reaches my age he's supposed to be able to slow down, at least a little. It sure didn't happen. What did happen was that everyone still wants a piece of me. I'm viewed as a non-producer when I'm out there on my stream or boat. I've even heard hints about converting all that useless time I spend on the computer into dollars. Once when the family saw the price of flies in an Orvis Catalog I was asked what the difference really was. When I explained that it entailed a little more skill and the use of premium materials the comment was, "Well, if you can't get $1.75 for each one maybe you could get $0.90 or so." I casually slipped in with a comment that I could teach the family to sort hair and feathers and trim finished flies, and since I'd be marketing them myself they could do the packaging while I spent all my time tying. Since I was the only one that could tie, the rest of the family would have to pick up the associated jobs that I wouldn't have time for. That sure killed the fly tying adventure.

The place where I work has real difficulty in accepting the fact that I only work seven days out of fourteen. When they need someone extra I'm expected to jump at the chance. I have no life outside the store in their eyes.

Now since the kids are out of college and gone, it's not money it's my time they want. I fear this worse. I now face not only the loss of my fishing time but I'm tortured with events and occasions I would not force my dog to attend.

The fast lane takes a detour this year . . .

Dave and I will fish Lake Erie a lot. We can do it almost for nothing and since he doesn't encroach on my Fosters supply he has become a preferred player. He can fish one-handed till his shoulder heals.

I need to go keg fishing for catfish on the Ohio River one last time. There is something about watching a fish pull a bobber under that turns Old Rupe on. Especially if the bobber is a pony keg and the fish is six feet or better. I have the well rope and I am trying to get a hook made. It has to fit around a Mothers Oats box. If the Pattonsville bunch are still around it would make a nice weekend. I thought about combining that event with a pig roast. I hope no one drowns.

I would also like to spend three days on the river just fishing from shore for smaller channels, cleaning and eating what I catch then and there. A few long necks and catfish. I would just sleep in the back of my truck.

I want to hit the grass beds in Sandusky Bay and East harbor for nice pike on a fly.

If my river is down then I will probably spend a week on the AuSable in Michigan.

New Brunswick, Trapper and the 'We Love It Lodge' will have to do without me this year. Trapper is a super person and the lodge merits a stop on anyone's trip, but I will pass this year. No fiddle heads for Old rupe. Salmon will be in short supply on my table. I never kept them there anyway.

I have planned my act for this year pretty close. Harry Tommer has promised that my boat would be in the water April 15th. If Harry's alive then I can count on fishing the 16th. My bass boat and pond boats will be ready the first of April. I had that scheduled too, but there is a little delay on that for now.

I already have all the toys I need.

Dave and Jerry have first pick, but if they aren't there a free fishing trip is available. I only go out with two people at a time. Me and one other. I clean the fish in the evening and provide a ratty trailer for my guests. Ribs and Fosters come with the trailer. If you know how to contact me you know me well enough for a long weekend.

I now am tying in anticipation. Everyone else is doing without.

I'm going fishing. I hear some terrorist just bombed the fast lane. Old Rupe

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