Monday, May 24, 2010

Bloomers and Bat Boys

Connecticut Attorney General Dick “Richard” Blumenthal is now revealed as a lying weasel. He’s been saying, or allowing people to believe, that he served in Vietnam. He didn’t. He served during Vietnam, which isn’t the same thing.

It is tempting to hop on the high horse and demand that Blumenthal not only drop out of the Senate race, but should resign from everything, give his wife a power of attorney, and emigrate to a bat cave in Tierra del Fuego.

But upon sober reflection, we believe Blumenthal should stay in the race for the Democratic nomination, and indeed should be elected to the Senate. Any man who can lie in public about military service for years — and think he won’t eventually get caught — is so loathsome, so vile, and so filled with hubris that the only logical place for him is the United States Senate.

Besides, it would be pretty rough on the bats.


Pushing 80 and everything's green (except my wallet).  I haven't dug out all the warm-weather stuff yet, and at these temps this silk blend, vintage Brooks Brothers jacket is a little on the warm side. Time for the poplins.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Blatant and Shameless

I tidied the other day, because a lady was coming over and I didn't want her to think I live in a goddamn cave.

As usual, I got distracted when trying to force some sort of order on the stacks of CDs and books, fly boxes and stray bow ties, and unearthed the 2001 record We Are the Boggs We Are

I popped it in and it still sounds like someone got drunk at Folkways Records and let the really weird stuff out of the vault.

This is punk roots country, I guess, in a similar vein to what the Pogues did in Rum, Sodomy and The Lash, minus the Irish bathos.

If anybody can understand the lyrics please write in and tell me what they mean.

So be good and go to the Amazon link and buy it so I can make 13 cents.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Soft-Hackle Wet Fly

A simple and often overlooked pattern is the soft hackle fly. It is incredibly versatile. It looks like nothing in particular, but a great many things in general.

And it can be fished upstream or down; dead drift or on the swing; solo or as par of a tandem rig; just under the surface or with weight.

Last fall on the Esopus I "matched" a late mayfly hatch with this Plain Jane soft hackle fly. As you can see in the photo, the fly got pretty chewed up.

The soft hackle is especially effective at mid-day, in sunlight. It gets fish up out of their comfortable, low-light lairs when nothing else will.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Gratuitous Pop Music Criticism (part one)

Yo La Tengo's alter ego band, Condo Fucks, has a CD out called "Fuckbook."


It's a little disappointing that a band as smart as YLT thinks they need to get laughs by using the word "fuck."

Any moron can say "fuck." Like this: Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck.

What the fuck. Fuckin' A. Fuck you. Fuck me. Get fucked. Fuck off.

Fuckin' brilliant, if you give a fuck about such things.

In any event, the "Fuckbook" disc has the band charging through covers of Richard Hell, the Beach Boys, Slade and the Kinks, among others. It's one-take stuff and was probably recorded in a really big bathroom.

And it's fucking great. Go fucking buy it already.

Why I Live In the Country (part one)

Route 44 in Salisbury, Conn., about a quarter mile from the N.Y. border.

Friday, May 7, 2010

New Frontiers in Literary Criticism

As part of my quest to make blogging pay something, I hereby introduce quick 'n' dirty book reviews complete with links.

When I go to the Scoville Memorial Library in Salisbury, Conn. I usually wander in the stacks without any real goal, hoping something will grab my attention.

(This is how I decided to re-read all the Robert Parker "Spenser" novels — and work in another Amazon link.)

This week's author is Jane Langton, a writer of detective fiction with a distinctive New England flair; featuring gumshoe/attorney (as opposed to white shoe lawyer) Homer Kelly.

I began my investigation into the Langton ouevre with Dark Nantucket Noon, published in 1975 and one of the earliest in the series.

A woman is murdered while watching a solar eclipse at a lighthouse on the ass end of Nantucket, and the prime suspect is a dizzy poetess. I have to say it didn't start out too well.

But once the Homer Kelly character is introduced and the rather inventive plot gets going, I found myself hearing familiar themes.

Familiar to a reporter on a small New England weekly, anyway — skulduggery in land use, malicious gossip, old money vs. new money vs. old-timer with no money.

I could have done without the lengthy quotations from the Old Testament and the poetry, though.

Still, I am looking forward to reading more of Homer Kelly's adventures.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Keeping Secrets

If the adage "You're only as sick as your secrets" is true then I am one hurting puppy after yesterday afternoon's activities.

No, I wasn't at the Nekkid Dwarf Trapeze finals. I wasn't testing out my new raincoat on a street corner near a parochial school. I wasn't even driving with an expired registration sticker.

I was allowed access to a small brook somewhere in the Northwest Corner of Connecticut. For keeps.

I'm in.

It's slightly bigger than the Mt. Riga brook, which I have written about elsewhere. It runs out of a pond and makes its way down a mountain. Several miles of access are posted, and now I am allowed in, to fish for brook trout in spots that receive little or no fishing pressure.

In my introductory ramble yesterday I caught and released a dozen wild native trout, most in the  seven- to eight-inch range (which is pretty big for a brookie).

But part of the deal is that I not identify (in print or blog) the stream, the town, the property owner — or anything.

By the way, since I am trying to get some money out of this here blog thing, I recommend Taylor Streit's "Instinctive Fly Fishing" , available from!!!

Got that?

Anyhoo, if you are a beginner or a veteran, this is the single best general book about our sport I've read. Lots of really good stuff, about stream approaches, reading the water, not being a jerk, and so forth.