…we fall into that class of fishermen who fancy themselves to be poet/philosophers, and from that vantage point we manage to pull off one of the neatest tricks in the sport: the fewer fish we catch the more superior we feel. – John Gierach
It’s called “the quiet sport” and to those of us who practice it, as I have written about numerous times, perhaps most poetically here, it is part mysticism, part addiction, part that thing which my friends laugh at. Fly fishing, especially fly fishing for trout, is a complicated, though deceptively simple, activity that involves a good bit of gear, a good bit of luck, a good bit of neurosis. John Gierach’s book of essays, Sex, Death, and Fly Fishing is one of my favorite works on the subject, and, since it’s part of the 2016 reading list, I dove into it immediately after finishing Catherine Heath’s social history of the 70’s and 80’s, Behaving Badly mainly because I am avoiding reading fiction right now as I finish my latest book.
The book is a series of essays that look at those elements of fly fishing that I mentioned above – gear, luck, and neurosis – in about equal parts. Continue reading