When In Doubt, Spoon It Out

Nothing in this big ole bad world of fly fishing tickles me more than a Spoon Casting Clinic. Perhaps you haven’t heard the term (I’m working on the copyright) but I know you know what I’m talking about. It’s when you are casting so badly that your guide can no longer explain, in words, all the things you are doing wrong. So he stands flush behind you, wraps his arms around yours, holds your hand on the rod and makes the cast for you.

A Spoon Casting Clinic. I think it’s supposed to make me feel the mistakes I’m making in my cast. But it just makes me giggle.

spooning champion On the flipside I’ve learned — through years and years of hands-on-my-hands research — that talking about the Spoon Casting Clinic will, in turn, make the guys blush a spell. Ladies, I am here to tell you that the mere mention of a Spoon Casting Clinic is your most powerful tool when you’re learning this sport.

First of all if you have a grumpy guide, or a guide that’s intimidating you, just tell him you heard that he’s the Best in the West at a Spoon Casting Clinic. He’ll be puzzled at first, but when you start to explain it, he will be momentarily humbled and slightly embarrassed. For a second he’ll ponder if it’s really true. I don’t know why, but it is foolproof. Lightens-up the mood instantaneously.

If you have a young, super polite guide, go ahead and ask if the Spoon Casting Clinic is included in the price. He will grin and stammer, trying to make a snap decision whether to join you in the joke or hold on to his professional demeanor. A touch cruel perhaps, but it will give you a little spring in your step — which ironically might be just what you need to start casting like a pro!

Now I hope I don’t have to spell this one out for you, but if your guide is really really hot, uh…start casting really really badly.

Of course the power of the Spoon Casting Clinic works off the water too. Last year I was minding my own business at the bar. A real blowhard fisherman rolled into town, all amped-up to hit the water the next day. I asked who was guiding him. Ooh…I responded. Oh yeah he’s a good guide, just be careful. He’s prone to Spoon Casting his male clients.

Hey, it shut the guy up for at least a few seconds.

And ladies, if you’re the superior angler, don’t be afraid to offer a little Spoon Casting Clinic of your own. Nothing livens up a sleepy bar like a round of Hot Damn shots and an impromptu Spoon Casting Clinic.

There is, however, one thing I would caution against. If you’re skinny dipping in mixed company I wouldn’t scream “Spoon Casting Clinic!!!” just to be cute. spooning leads to forking

No no no…not a good idea. 

After all, some people actually believe spooning leads to forking! Oh good heavens. People, pah-lease…aren’t we just here to catch fish?

18 Responses to “When In Doubt, Spoon It Out”
  1. shaq says:

    In college, spoon casting was my best move…

  2. hey, it’s never too late to revisit an old skill.

    I mean did you see Dennis Quaid in the Rookie? shame to see latent talent going to waste all those years…

  3. dmj says:

    I checked in to reread yesterday’s insightful and thoughtful post. Imagaine my surprise when I encountered the post about spooning and forking. What would your parents think?

  4. Joey says:

    does knifing fit in there somewhere?

  5. fishhead says:

    Bad Fly Fish Chick. I’ve never had so many bad, good ideas from a post. My casting puts me in a league where any gal with moderate casting skills could potentially lead me in a “Spoon Casting Clinic”. Suddenly, I don’t feel so bad about my casting…

    but alas, the guy casting tight loops across the river will be getting all the attention while I am left unnoticed untangling my back cast from a Chokecherry tree. And, “spooning” and “forking” will be the last thing I’ll be muttering about.

  6. Priceless….you are a beautiful work of art, your name should be embossed along side the definition of “Talent”

    Monty Montana…

  7. Kentucky Jim says:

    Well…I believe the word is spelled “Puh-leeze”. A guy with a name like “Joey” would say something like that, huh? Sounds like he’s right out of a 1930s black-and-white.

    I’m slowly working up to get certified as a casting instructor, and so have occasion to use the technique (I’d never heard it called that) with both men and women. With the latter, it’s very important to put my left hand on her left shoulder, so she knows where it is; although I do that with both men and women.

    Look, at my age, I fall in love with every woman I meet, and they, in turn, call me “sir”. Let’s just go catch some fish, ok?

  8. Harry says:

    Now that is one extemely well written post!

  9. ijsouth says:

    Now, I am personally offended…only silverware is mentioned – what about other kitchen utensils? What about ice cream scoops and…oh, never mind – it’s just flat-out discrimination!

  10. Ashley says:

    I love it! I can think of a couple of guides I would like to take a “Spoon Casting” clinic with.

  11. courtneyw says:

    I just love it. My cast was so bad that the poor lovely guide surely had to spoon me so that he had a break from untangling my line all day. What a frustrating day it must have been for him. I think I hooked him and the Fly Fish Chick several times and lost about fifty fish. But both were pros and taught me a ton that day – never making me feel bad! What a day.

  12. Dr.Cane says:

    Beautifully written, and very entertaining : )
    This reminds me of the “aunt Jamaima treatment” gag from Stripes (the movie)).. .and makes me think my wife needs some additional casting instruction ;)

    Keep ‘em coming. . .

  13. Mysticfish says:

    I’m new to blogging and did not realize what I was missing. I really enjoyed your “Spoon it Out” post. As a guide, I can relate well to the situations. I will likely take a pause and consider my roll and positioning during the next casting instruction incidence.
    Your May 5 post is and excellent read and very insightful. I am adding you to my blogroll. Not to gloat, but I plan to carefully exercise some of your friends in the Missouri River over the next couple weeks. Tight Lines.

  14. johnnyj says:

    Hilarious…I have a female fly-fishing student that will get a kick out of this…

    -Great blog!

  15. oatka says:

    I believe this technique is what probably landed me my wife! But, she loves to tell people I left out the importance of holding the line with your line hand. I was apparently more intent on the spoon, than the casting.

    I’ve been teaching a lot of fly tying lately, and I try to avoid this technique when teaching the guys….but it could come in handy with the ladies!

  16. Don’t be telling all of our tricks, us guides have to have some fun out there. Honest lady’s it’s just to help your cast. (Trust me?) Chris bring your wife down when you come for the Salmon Fly Hatch I will help on her cast.

  17. Absolute hilarity, as only you can do it… which is just perfect! I’m down for a tshirt too :)

  18. Fredy says:


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