Greetings from Anderson, SC home of the 2008 Bassmaster Classic. For some reason, Sportsfly's executive team thought it would be a good idea to send the FlyMaster out to promote Sportsfly at a **** fishing event. Relax....make the most of it. Ok, let's set the stage. It's 7am. It's cold, windy, and people are wearing jackets with more patches and emblems than a legion of dorky Boy Scouts. The hideous stench of bass permeates the air and the FlyMaster is forced to use a paddle boat to negotiate his way around this god forsaken lake while other reporters have stylish boats with engines. Note to self; I do not fit it here.
First thought. Are fisherman athletes? One look around the docks and answer has to be no. The girth on some of these guys is monumental. John Daly looks like Richard Simmons compared to this crew of mulleted ragamuffins. One thing is for sure, the wider your waist and the bigger your coat size, the more ridiculous sponsor patches you can wear. So what makes a Bassmaster? Seems to me that the Bassmaster must have weather-beaten skin that resembles a piece of rhinocerous hide left in an oven for 27 days. The Bassmaster must have a twang in his voice, a deliberate almost simpleton delivery, and the penchant for using colloquialisms that only other Bassmasters understand. For example, the FlyMaster asked angler Bobby Lane, "what does a good piece of bass feel like?" Lane's response was, "a piece of bass wiggles like Jennie Marie in the back of a Chevy after a few licks of shine on Saturday eve." What the? My response was, "can I meet Jennie Marie?"
Anglers who battle for the Bassmaster Classic embrace odd quirks that help them get in the zone. Timmy Horton cut his signature bleach-blond locks and donated them to charity. That was sweet, but I was more hung up on the fact that a grown-ass man went by the name Timmy. When does he become Tim? Cliff Pace, a crowd favorite, pumps his fist and shouts "I showed that bass who's boss" after every catch. Dude, it's a fish; they haven't evolved in 30 million years. Dave Wolak ate 4 pounds of scrambled eggs and pigsfeet at the pre-dawn meal in order "stock up on energy for the day." Fat slob. Rumor has it he sticks a hook into his Aorta, pulls out a lumpy mass of his congealed blood, and uses that as bait. Sick ****.
The day is progressing and anglers return to homebase for the weigh-ins. Anglers reach in their bucket pull out a bass and weigh it. The crowd cheers while the fish reacts like a fish out of water, barely clinging on to life as they are held high like the Lombardi Trophy or Stanley Cup. What if the fish went on strike next year? What would happen? My bass eye is not trained so I can't tell the difference between a 12 pound 8 ounce bass and a 12 pound 13 ounce bass, but the crowd sure does know. A heavy-set lady named Patrice wearing a bright orange Cabela's hat reminds me of the excitement and titilation she felt when Kevin VanDam held up a 14 pounder last year. I chuckled because she said titilation and boy did this 400 pound lady have some huge titilations. But, that's the Bassmaster Classic in a nutshell. For a city slicker like the FlyMaster, who might be deemed homosexual in nature around these parts, this is like being trapped in a nightmare joke, but for Patrice and droves of other mouth-breathing, Travis Tritt fan-club members, the Bassmaster Classic is simply titilating.
FlyMaster Signing Off...For Now!