Basic Catfishing

The Mississippi River offers a bountiful variety of situations and opportunities, offering enjoyment and adventure for nearly any lover of the outdoors. One such opportunity is for unique types of fishing, and even more specifically, fishing for catfish. Mississippi River catfish are abundant, widely known, and quite popular, with some species growing to enormous sizes for a freshwater fish.

The three most common types of catfish that someone will catch when fishing the Mississippi river are:

The Channel,


and Flathead.

The average size catfish will generally run from two to ten pounds, though catches in the twenty to forty pound range are not too uncommon, and a nice blue cat can come in at fifty to seventy pounds, with record fish growing to over one hundred.

Though the prospect of potentially catching such a huge fish gives an adrenaline rush to many sportsfisherman, and attracts just as many to the channels of the Mississippi, the locals who live it on a daily basis (commonly referred to as “River Rats” by its residents) have their own level of expertise, with tips and tricks that have been tried and true, sometimes for generations. There is generally a difference between what an avid sportsfisherman would be willing to do, and what a “River Rat” does quite regularly, so catfishing has a variety of popular styles.

Rod and Reel fishing for catfish is certainly most popular, and is easy enough for nearly anyone, from novice to expert, to catch the big one. An aptly named concoction called stinkbait is commonly used with this method. This can be a homemade treasure, made through trial and error with a secret recipe, or a storebought brand that came from the local baitshop. Either way, its going to stink…though for the weaker stomached individual, bottom-fishing with nightcrawlers could work well, too.

Limb-line fishing is another popular method, where a pole, usually a limb with a line tied to it, is baited and literally stuck into a strategic location in the riverbank, to be left overnight for the delight of any unsuspecting diners. Many poles can be set at once this way, with the spoils to be picked up early the next day. Caution must be used with this method, making sure that the poles are secure enough not to be taken by the fish. To avoid this, some will secure a weight and a large float, such as a milk carton, to the line. This method is an artform more commonly used by area residents in some locales.

Netting catfish is also fairly common in some areas. This is largely used by resident commercial fisherman who sell to grocers, restaurants, local residents, and the like. As with other methods, not all areas allow netting, so be sure to check the local regulations if you’d like to use it.

Another form of catfishing, called “Noodling”, is truly catfishing for diehards. This sport has been regaining popularity in recent years, often gaining renewed interest after having been handed down through several generations of a family’s history. A noodler swims in the water, fishing the shore with his bare hands. Following the river bank, he will search for caverns where the catfish tend to hide. Reaching inside these caverns will eventually yield a catfish… adept noodlers will then use their bare hands and fish wrestling expertise to land the fish. Though this sport can be very dangerous, resulting in injury, and even in death, most of its fond proponents wouldn’t catch a catfish any other way. The thrill of wrestling that thirty pound catfish out of its resting hole and into a boat, or onto the shore, has its own reward.

The method one chooses to catch a catfish is merely a matter of logistics and personal preference. Though, regardless of which method it is, whether someone is a lover of the Mississippi river, or purely a lover of sportsfishing, the crafty catfish is sure to play its starring role.…

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High-End Recreational Vehicles

Today retirees and campers prefer to have all the comforts of home. People want to sit back, socialize and experience warm weather in the winter and cool weather in the summer. Big comfortable beds, state of the art kitchens are standard in the large motor homes. These 40 to 50 feet motor homes come with a price tag of upwards of $100,000 dollars.

When you think recreation vehicles and campsites, you envision a small RV, campsites that offer a tiny space for a cheap price and an economical way for a family to see the country.

Instead of campgrounds, large recreational vehicles frequent RV resorts. Amenities at the resorts, besides water and electricity, may include golf courses, spas, fishing, boating Wi-Fi, cable TV, exercise rooms, massages and planned activities. The resorts are located in every state, Canada and Mexico so you can enjoy the mountains, the seashore or a private lake with lots of big fish. Visit a resort close to a city, enjoy the offerings of the city and return to recreational home away from the city noise.

Because the motor coaches are 40 to 50 feet long, they require a large space to maneuver. Resorts have large drive through lots for rent and for sale. When an owner finds a place the wants to return to each year, they can buy a lot and have a space available whenever it's needed. For a fee, the resort will rent the space out for the owner during the time the owner is away.

If you are in the market to buy check out several locations before making a decision, but with people living longer and baby boomers retiring, the resort lots are a good investment.


Resort directory
RV Basics: Knowing How to Buy an RV can Save You Money…

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Book Review: The Old Schoolhouse HomeWork

Running a homeschool can be a challenging, but rewarding, lifestyle. Not only do you have the responsibility of teaching your children, but much of your time is spent with your children. In a world where a two-income family is the norm, this can pose a problem. If your husband's job (although dads can teach, they are usually the breadwinners in the homeschool family) doesn't bring in enough income, moms might be tempted to throw in the towel, send their children back to school, and go to work. After all, how many good jobs are going to offer the flexibility that homeschool moms need? That's where a home-based business can come in. This Old Schoolhouse HomeWork: Juggling Home, Work and School Without Losing Your Balance, is a e-book written for moms that have started or want to start a home-based business.

Business Inspiration

HomeWork is a book full of business ideas. The book contains stories written by homeschool moms that have started earning money at home. One mom started a home business bringing new life to old clothing while living in a motor home, another mom started selling Usborne Books. In many of these cases, the children were able to help out with the business, learning valuable skills in the process. In every case, parents had to find a balance between teaching, managing a home, and managing their business.

Home Business Tips

If this book inspires you to start your own home business, or if you have already started your home business and need a little extra help, HomeWork also provides helpful tips on running your business smoothly. A chapter of this book is devoted to business finances. It doesn't make sense to operate a business that isn't making money, and keeping good records will help small business owners learn what works for their business… and what doesn't. Spreadsheet examples are provided to help you set up your business's bookkeeping. I was immediately able to use the chapter to improve my own writing business's record keeping.

Another chapter is devoted to organization. Most homeschoolers are flooded with books and school supplies, and a business only adds more items to keep track of. HomeWork not only delves into managing your stuff, it also discusses managing your time. Homeschool moms are often busy, especially if they are running a business. It is important to keep your priorities straight, and this book can help.

General Opinion

HomeWork is well written and interesting. It is written from a Christian perspective, but it provides helpful information that can be used by members of any faith. If you haven't started a home business but would like to, HomeWork is inspiring. If you have your own home business but are having trouble balancing it all, this book helps you see how other people have done it, and might be of help to you. This book also provides an appendix with links about different types of home-based businesses and general resources for small businesses.

Whether you are thinking about or have already started a home-based business, HomeWork is an inspirational resource.…

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Laughing Is the Best Recreation

As an independent filmmaker with a "day job," I don't really have a lot of free time. But when I do have a free night, I love to head out to a local comedy club, kick back, have a few drinks and laugh the night away while watching creative people do one of the hardest most nerve-wracking things a person can do: Get up in front of a bunch of strangers and try to make them laugh.

Some of my favorite comedians include: Louis C.K., Mike Birbiglia, and Eugene Mirman. However, you won't see anyone famous unless you live closer to a big city. If you don't live close to a big city, no worries, you can always hit up the local scene and see some great up and comers. There is just something magical about heading out to the local comedy clubs and seeing these new standup comedians cutting their teeth early on in their careers. These are people just like you and me, except they had the courage to get up on stage and risk bombing mercilessly. The stage can be a cruel mistress, but if the jokes are hitting it can be one of the best feelings in the world.

I think one of the reasons I'm so fascinated by stand up comedy is because I am utterly terrified to try it. I have such a tremendous amount of respect for anyone that is willing to stick their neck out like that. It takes a unique kind of person to be able to pull it off. Perhaps someday I will overcome my fear and try it. I think I'd be good at it if I weren't deathly afraid of it.

Watching comedy on television isn't nearly as good as seeing it live. So if you have the opportunity to go see some live comedy I suggest you do it. The best part is hanging out with the comedians after the show. I've met so many great people. Plus if they ever get famous I can say "I knew them when".

If you don't know where any comedy clubs are near you I suggest using There you can search for comedy clubs in your area.…

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Book Review: the Midnight House by Alex Berenson

The Midnight House by Alex Berenson is the fourth book in the John Wells series and I must say that Berenson gets better with each book. This book starts off about six months after the end of The Silent Man. Wells has spent the last six months recovering from the trauma of losing Exley and the United States coming withing minutes of a nuclear attack. The six months he spends in New Hampshire allows him to breath and exercise and once again debate with himself the pros and cons of what he does and once again he is unable to come to a satisfactory decision.

A call from his old boss Shafer once again drags Wells back down to DC and back into the world of spies and intrigue and illusions and once again it is personal. Members of a secret force working out of Turkey are slowly and methodically being murdered one by one and the three that are left are all under suspension due to some fancy financing while on assignment. Like Berenson's other books this is a book that debates the rights and wrongs of the law and the current position that the United States is taking in the war on terror. Unlike books written by Vince Flynn. Wells is much more conflicted about his position to defend the United States and while he realizes that it truly is a fight for life and western society it is also one that is layered with ambiguity and self doubt and maybe a little bit more about Wells trying to look for redemption for his earlier crimes but the reality is that the earlier crimes were not truly crimes but actions that needed to be taken and actions that have caused extreme upheavals and loss in the personal and professional life of John Wells.

The story moves quickly and is fast paced. It is apparent that Berenson has a fair amount of insider information and is up to date on the current weapons and tools that are being used by the United States Government in the war on terror. He is also able to draw three dimensional characters that readers can understand and while they may not agree with the characters positions Berenson gives us the ability to look a little deeper into their psyches and while they are not actions I support or encourage it is obvious that Berenson believes in redemption and the power of education through entertainment.…

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Rent a Recreational Vehicle or RV

If you have ever seen the movie RV with Robin Williams you may wonder what the attraction is in going on vacation in a recreational vehicle. We have done it and the movie RV just makes us laugh because so much of it is true.

When you go on vacation in an RV you have some moments when you wonder why you are doing this. It can be work to go on vacation in a recreational vehicle. You have to clean your vehicle, dispose of waste, and drive a lot. It is not exactly a relaxing trip to take and it can be expensive especially with the gas prices we have now. But the memories you take home with you are something that can't be taken away from you.

When you go traveling in a RV you will meet up with the noisy neighbor at the campground. Maybe you like to go to bed early and your camping neighbor likes to stay up late. Or maybe you like to stay up late and your camping neighbor wants to get up early. Sleeping schedules are not the same with most people and you will have a neighbor who is noisy.

In an RV your family will experience closeness. Be prepared for that if you take the family on an RV trip. After all you are stuck in close quarters for the length of your trip. Going on a RV trip is a great way to bring a family together and get to know them. You all pitch in together and do a lot of activities together.

When you go on an RV trip you get to see the country from the road. You can travel to places far from civilization and still stay in a comfortable place with beds and a bathroom. You will have your kitchen along with you with everything you need to prepare a meal.

A recreational vehicle is a large vehicle and you can take a lot of things with you on your vacation like your bikes. You can take bike trails and see some of the backcountry. You can take outdoor games like volley ball complete with a net. You can tae all the things you need to have fun and be comfortable in a RV.

Traveling in a recreational vehicles is not the type of travel for everyone so before you buy a RV I suggest taking a trip in a rented RV. You can rent an RV in many places. Check the RV dealer near you to find out more.…

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Top Ten Songs in Sports

Music is woven into the very fabric of what it means to be human. At its core, music is artistic expression of the diversity and complexities of human emotions and experiences. Sports are a manifestation of mankind's insatiable appetite for competition, his indomitable spirit, and his constant need to meet and overcome challenges. When blended together in the precise dosages, music and sports have forged many indelible moments into the hearts, minds, and memories of humanity. When done properly, the marvelous fusion of the artistic and the athletic has helped to raise the profile and enhance the value of each individual component far beyond what they would have been had they stood alone. I have taken to the task of compiling a musical top ten list in sports in order to highlight those instances where competition and composition collided to produce majesty.

For clarification purposes, when I talk about music in sports I don't necessarily mean that the song has to be about sports or that the song had to be specifically written for a sporting event. My criteria in forming my list was to examine those songs that have, for some reason or another, become so associated with a sport or sports franchise that they are virtually inseparable. So, for example, "Sweet Caroline" by Neil Diamond has been adopted by my hometown Boston Red Sox and their fans as the official song of the team since 2002. Even though that song has nothing to do with baseball, the city of Boston, or the people of Boston, it has become so ingrained into the identity of the franchise (since they sing it the middle of the eighth inning of every game at Fenway Park) that it now qualifies as a sports song in my evaluation for this list. Sadly, however, "Sweet Caroline" did not find its way to this Top Ten. Without further ado…

  1.  "Roundball Rock (NBA on NBC Theme) – John Tesh.

For the legion of NBA fans who were weaned on Michael Jordan games in the '90s like I was, "Roundball Rock" was our lullaby. The moment we heard the initial chord progressions we knew exactly what that meant: the NBA on NBC, and most likely, another national television appearance and virtuoso performance by our idol, His Airness. I still get goosebumps hearing this beautiful, instrumental ditty. This is just yet one more reason to say nightly prayers of thanks for the musical genius that is John Tesh.

  1.  "New York, New York"- Frank Sinatra

Composed by John Kander with lyrics written by Fred Ebb and originally performer by Liza Minnelli as the theme for the Martin Scorsese film of the same name, "New York, New York" has become synonymous with the success of New York City sports franchises. Most notably the New York Yankees play the Frank Sinatra rendition after every home game. For better or for worse, I cannot think of this song without conjuring up images of those loathed pinstripes; and I cannot think of the most recognizable American sports franchise (sorry Boston Red Sox and Dallas Cowboy fans, its true) without hearing Old Blue Eyes "start spreading the news."

  1.  "Eye of the Tiger"- Survivor

"Eye of the Tiger" is possibly the most covered song in all sports arenas; it unquestionably is a top workout song in all gyms, public or private, on this planet. The theme from Rocky III arouses images of the indefatigable strength and determination that we love to witness in our champions and heroes of sport. It is often said that sports are a microcosm of life; if this is true, then "Eye of the Tiger" promotes the perseverance and courage needed to succeed not only in the athletic arena, but also in the game of life.

  1.  "The Victors" (Hail to the Victors) – University of Michigan Wolverines

When conducting this list, I knew I had to include a major college sports fight song to represent America's obsession and intense loyalty to their alma maters. My decision came down to the fight songs of four schools: Ohio State, Southern California, Notre Dame, and Michigan. After much intense deliberation and a strenuous elimination process, I had to select "The Victors" to represent college athletics in this musical list. With all due respect to fans of the Buckeyes, Trojans, and Irish, the Wolverines' fight song is the most recognizable tune in all major collegiate athletics in the nation. However, if you disagree with me, feel free to just substitute your alma mater's or favorite university's fight song in place of "The Victors" in the number seven slot on this list. You won't offend me at all.

  1.  "Star-Spangled Banner" (National Anthem) – Francis Scott Key

The singing of the national anthem has become as prevalent in and integral to professional sports in America as billion-dollar television deals and overpriced concessions. The ubiquitous presence of our nation's anthem at the start of sporting events, however, has not dulled or waned my anticipation to witness the spectacle because you never know what you might experience during each performance. Easily one of the most difficult melodies to sing, the "Star-Spangled Banner" has been tweaked and rearranged many times by various performers in hopes of modifying the tune to fit their unique vocal abilities in order to belt out a memorable performance.

The singing of the anthem always provides a spark of entertainment for me. Whether it engenders an act of kindness by then-Portland Trailblazers coach Maurice Cheeks or is a complete train wreck the likes of which Olympian Carl Lewis and actor/comedienne Roseanne will never live down, there's entertainment fodder for everyone when the national anthem is involved. And once in a generation you may happen upon a transcendent outpouring of talent like Whitney Houston at Super Bowl XXV.

  1.  "We Are the Champions"- Queen

Attend any sporting in the world where they play music in the stadium and try to NOT here this classic played. I dare you.

  1.  "Chariots of Fire"- Vangelis

Created as the main theme for the British film of the same name, "Chariots of Fire" is such an inspirational and uplifting piece of music that perfectly parallels the inspirational and uplifting biographies of Harold Abrahams and Eric Liddell. I get chills up and down my spine every time I hear that magnificent score.

  1.  "Take Me Out to the Ballgame"- various

This time-treasured song can be heard sung at every baseball park in America for at least six months and 162 games every year. Baseball is the national pastime and this is baseball's official theme song. While you can hear the simple beauty of this jingle at every baseball park in America, no rendition of this beloved song is more precious than the performances at Chicago's Wrigley Field during the 7th inning stretch.

  1.  "Monday Night Football" Theme- Hank Williams, Jr.

While baseball may still be America's pastime, football has long since taken over as America's passion. With the possible exception of the release of the latest Madden video game every August, nothing is more synonymous with football in America than the "Monday Night Football" theme. Growing up, the only way I knew it was time to go back to school and that a brand new NFL season was upon us was to listen closely for Hank Williams to inquire, "Are you ready for some football?" I know I cannot be alone on this, right?

  1.  Olympic Fanfare and Theme- John Williams

The magnitude and reach of the Olympic Games numbers well into the billions of people affected. The global impact and appeal of this once-in-four-years international display of athletic competition is due in large part to the marvelously sublime score written by John Williams. This epic piece of music transcends social, racial, political, and religious affiliations and highlights to the valor, grit, toughness, and victory of the human spirit. Williams' beautiful piece captures and puts on prominent display the striving for hope that is at the essence of humanity.…

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Book Review of Dune: House Harkonnen

The prequels to Frank Herbert’s Dune, conceived as a trilogy by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson, continue in the second book entitled Dune: House Harkonnen. As in the first book, Dune: House Atreides, the authors begin to answer some of the questions and fill in some of the gaps left in the Dune saga, which some thought ended with the death of Frank Herbert. However, as shown in Dune: House Atreides, Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson are able to advance the story of Dune in a seamless style that captures the reader’s imagination and leaves one with the desire for more.

In this second installment, Dune: House Harkonnen, the reader gains quite unpleasant insights into the psychology of the Harkonnen family. The only members of the family with any humanity, Abulurd Harkonnen and his beloved wife Emmi, cannot escape the brutality and depravity of their son Glossu Rabban and Abulurd’s half-brother, Baron Vladimir Harkonnen. The Baron and his nephew seek not only revenge upon their own flesh and blood but also upon House Atreides and Duke Leto, with devastating results. As we follow the Baron and the na-Baron in their heinous and bloodthirsty quest to quench their thirst for ever more power and wealth, we are given insights into the family dynamics and begin to have a little understanding of the reasons for the Baron’s violent and vicious temperament.

Even as we are thrown into the world of the Harkonnens, we also are shown the machinations of the Padishah Emperor Shaddam IV as his plans to gain power over CHOAM, the Spacing Guild, and the Bene Gesserit proceed. It is brought home throughout the Dune saga that “he who controls the spice controls the world,” and the plan set in motion in Dune: House Atreides by Elrood IX to have the Bene Tleilaxu create a synthetic spice is continued by Shaddam. However, as C’tair Pilru continues his efforts to harass the Tleilaxu who occupy his home world of Ix, we discover just how high the price is for this creation.

Back on Caladan, Duke Leto is, unknown to him or his household, still the target of the wrath of the Harkonnens. The subtle means used to attack the Duke come through the manipulation of his concubine Kailea, daughter of Earl Dominic Vernius of Ix. As Kailea falls prey to the plan set in motion by Baron Harkonnen, a wedge is driven between her and Leto, leaving the door open for the young Jessica, who is brought to the Duke by the Bene Gesserit sisters as they push forward their plans for the eventual birth of the Kwisatz Haderach. Yet Leto resists the urge to dismiss Kailea, because of their son Victor, which actually only aggravates the situation.

In Dune: House Harkonnen, we also learn how Duncan Idaho gains his status as a Swordmaster of Ginaz and how a feud between two other houses draws him and House Atreides into the politics of the Imperium, which threatens Shaddam’s power and control of the “known Universe.” In addition, we meet Gurney Halleck and discover the source of his deep-seated hatred of the Harkonnens.

As always, the Fremen of Dune, though isolated from the Imperium at large, have their own plans – plans that will eventually impact the entire universe. Liet-Kynes, son of the Imperial Planetologist Pardot Kynes, also begins his own journey of discovery, which will eventually put him on a collision course with Shaddam.

In Dune: House Harkonnen, the “feint within a feint within a feint” continues as the rebel forces on Ix and Dune continue their efforts against the brutality of Shaddam and the Harkonnens. In addition, House Atreides begins to make moves that will later bring them into the position of being a major player in the power struggles that are taking place in various corners of the universe as created by Frank Herbert and upon which his son Brian Herbert and the science-fiction writer Kevin J. Anderson have continued to build. Dune: House Harkonnen, as was Dune: House Atreides, is a very satisfying prequel to the original Dune saga.

Herbert, Brian and Anderson, Kevin J. Dune: House Harkonnen. NY, NY: Bantam Books, 2000.…

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The Top 5 Most Annoying Sports Sounds

According to a recent ABC News poll the Vuvuzela, made famous by the FIFA World Cup, was voted the second most annoying sports related sound of all time. But, what might be annoying to some may not be annoying to everyone. Some of the most annoying sounds voted by readers of ABC's news website are part of the culture for a certain area or what identifies the fans of a sports team.

This article will discuss the various sounds and instruments many sports fans all around the world find annoying. Whether it is watching the World Cup Match or a baseball game on TV, or being in the stands at a sporting event and having to sit behind someone blowing or hitting a noisy object or instrument.

Cow Bells –

The cow bells are something a lot of fans have used over the years at various games, but usually not a large amount of users, just the occasional ring of the bell can be heard. The cow bells became famous after the Tampa Bay Rays started handing them out as promotional items at their games.

I myself have been at a Red Sox vs. Rays game on the day the bells were handed out. I wouldn't call the overuse of the bells annoying as much as I would the people deliberately ringing them in the ears of Red Sox fans. Throw some alcohol in the mix and you might see a fight or two break out in the stands.

The Tomahawk Chop –

The Tomahawk Chop started at Florida State University and became famous during the 1991 World Series when fans of the Atlanta Braves adopted the chant to support their team. Many people complain the noise some of the fans make is just too much and is up there with Grunting during a Tennis match by the players, We Will Rock You by Queen, the YMCA by the Village People and the Gary Glitter sports staple Rock and Roll Part 2.

The Tomahawk Chop also has the distinction of being labeled racist and insensitive by many people and several Native American groups have pushed to have it banned at sporting events. The level of the sound depends on the fan making it, and a lot of times ego and alcohol play a big part in this being named an annoying sports sound.

Drums –

Drums are a staple at any sporting event, from football to basketball and baseball, you are guaranteed to find several fans beating a drum and chanting during a game. The drums at the games usually come in all shapes and sizes and many fans sitting in the stands have complained and pushed for the drums to be banned.

But you will also find many sports fans who enjoy the drums and call them a little nuisance. The most die-hard fans to get the drums going are usually football fans who enjoy getting dressed up, wearing their team colors in paint on their bodies and dancing around before or during the game. Many teams, like the Atlanta Braves still hand out drums during special occasions to little kids who come to see the games.

Vuvuzela –

With the FIFA World Cup Soccer matches in it's finally stages the Vuvuzela has been one of the noisiest and most recognizable musical instruments on television right now. Many viewers have taken to online message boards, YouTube videos and social networks to vent their frustrations at the often piercing sounds made by the vuvuzela's.

A vuvuzela is a long traditional horn in South Africa where many cultures identify with it outside of sporting events. But the instrument seemed to go viral and explode overnight. It has been parodied everywhere from Jimmy Kimmel to Jay Leno to the Daily Show, and has spawned its own fan pages on the Internet and countless jokes on Twitter and Facebook. The noise got so bad many times before matches started officials had to ask the fans not to play the vuvuzela's during games or press conferences. But it seems the instrument is here to stay and has already started popping up at many other sporting events around the world. Time will tell how long the vuvuzela has before it fades out of sports fans sounds to make during a fame.

Thunderstix –

If you don't know what a Thunderstix is, you might consider yourself lucky. The Thunderstix was voted the most annoying sports related sound in the ABC News poll. These inflatable plastic tubes first became overwhelmingly popular when the Anaheim Angels made it to the 2002 World Series championship. They have since popped up elsewhere at other sporting events. Fans love them because the louder they are the better they are for cheering their team on.

Basically with the Thunderstix you bang them together and they make a lot of really loud noise. But, the average TV viewer might not hear the scope of the noise since the stix have a way of making a loud noise in the general area they are being played in. The sound they make is more of an annoyance to the people around you in a sports stadium.…

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Women and Fly-Fishing – a Brief Introduction

The key to fly fishing is to find someone who knows something about it. Under ideal conditions, everything about fly-fishing is excellent. You'll be standing in a body of water that is ideally suitable for your standing comfortably without the water reaching your nose. If you're extremely lucky, the sun will be shining, the temperature will be well above freezing and the surroundings should be natural and rustic.

Although I've tied my share of flies, this in not a treatise on fly-tying. In the worst possible situation, you can generally buy flies and attach them to your fishing line without a great deal of anguish. Don't be surprised that many of them resemble bugs. It appears that fish are attracted to bug or bug substitutes. But it's the ancillary equipment that's more important.

What you don't want to do is try to stand in a body of water in conventional clothing. You'll need waders and most likely, you can get any color you like as long as it's military green. I believe that I've seen some in camouflage but the green is probably easier. And don't expect too much in the way of shoe fashion. The boots need to be sturdy, brown, waterproof and ugly in order to be useful.

Headgear of some sort is required. One of the givens of fly-fishing is that you'll likely be out there for hours, throwing out your line over and over, theoretically teasing the fish to attack the pseudo-bug that is your fly. If it's sunny, you'll want a hat that you can secure to your head somehow. If the wind hits you, wading after a floating hat is not easily accomplished. Your goal is to find one that will shade your face and your neck without looking like you're going to a fashion show or a construction site.

And finally, the obvious rod and reel. Although I didn't buy either, I am aware that you can go from a very reasonable investment to a down payment on an Italian villa for equipment, there is no direct connection between the cost of your rod and reel and the size of the fish you can catch. Keeping all things in perspective, if you plan to do considerable fly-fishing, it may be worth the investment for top-notch equipment. If it will be once or twice a year, the more modest gear will certainly suffice.

Most important is the act of getting out and trying it. Patience is an attribute that is vital. After having participated in fly-fishing five or six times, I have had an actual fish in my hands once. We didn't eat him, primarily because I had left my net on the bank of this tributary and he managed to slither out of my hands. But it's a good time, an excellent outdoor pursuit and something that doesn't require the skill of hunting or backgammon.

Just for the record, many women take the sport of fly-fishing very seriously and I mean no disrespect to those women who are accomplished at the sport. My background never included fly-fishing and as I participate in it later in life, it's quite an adventure.

I'll be getting out there this spring, as soon as the ice turns to water. I suggest that you do the same, making certain that you have someone there to assist with all of the procedures and paraphernalia. You'll be glad you did it.

Please note that these observations are entirely as a result of my own enjoyment of fly-fishing. I strongly suggest that if you would like to know more, do more or catch fish on a regular basis, please visit a sporting goods or recreational facility for training and supplies.…

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