Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Bottlebrush Fly

I have been searching for a great fly, one that people will pay for, is so easy to tie that 30 an hour is a piece of cake, and nobody else ties it. My retirement would be paid for at as little as 10 hours per week, tieing flies while living in the Bahamas.

While searching for Berroco Crystal FX eyelash yarn to tie Singlebarb's Mutt fly, I bought a skein of Martha Stewart's Black and Charcoal eyelash yarn. The "eyelashes" are really long, much longer than on the Berroco Crystal FX, and I like the effect. A bottlebrush fly is the result, easy to tie (only marabou for the tail and a body from the eyelash yarn. I haven't seen it in the water but it looks like an extra long wooley bugger with a thinner body (and I'm a proponent of thinly bodied flies).

The variations shown, from bottom to top are: Two unweighted bottlebrush flies. The middle fly has the eyelashes cut shorter with a slight taper. The next fly is weighted with lead wraps producing a thicker body, but still less than a normal bugger, and with clipped fibers. The fly at the top of the screen is a weighted beadhead bottlebrush with the fibers cut.

The yarn is 100% polyester (78% polyester and 22% metallic polyester). It is best to trim the fibers with a regular pair of scissors as the polyester is tough to cut through -- and should be bullet proof against trout teeth.

I will be testing these on the lake this spring and summer -- maybe they will be great and I'll be the only one using the -- so be it -- but they look great!!

Take care,

Monday, February 20, 2012

Chipolte, Chipolte, Chipolte

Okay -- I have just gotten back from 13 sessions of professional tennis at the SAP Open in San Jose (watching, not playing lol). I lucked into baseline front row seats and as long as I keep buying them, I get to keep sitting in them. My daughter at UC Davis and my son at Cal State Chico came at different times to help watch and root.

One thing we do is live off a diet of Chipolte burritos and bowls during the week. Great stuff and healthy -- much healthier than I normally eat. Thus, a new idea popped into my head.

First, a little background -- I am morbidly obese and have been an overeater for 35 years -- got divorced at 220 lbs fifteen years ago and am now over 320 lbs. I've been beating myself for decades over my lack of will power and compulsive overeating. It was / is horrible and feeds into a cycle of overeating, loss of self respect, etc (yeah, not much fun reading this)

HOWEVER, it turns out that I am allergic to wheat (gluten). It turns out that when one is allergic to a food, craving of that food becomes part of one's daily routine. My kids encouraged me to go gluten free and I was afraid of the cravings for wheat -- if they were so bad when eating wheat (pizza, breadsticks, pasta, cookies, etc), what would they be like when not eating wheat?

WITHIN 24 HOURS THERE WERE NO CRAVINGS. I am now no longer hungry all day, and can walk by the 3-dozen cookie packs in the grocery store without buying one and devouring it within 24 hours. No, I am not telling you what to do -- just found out that when I eat wheat I want pizza and cookies and pasta. When I don't, I am not interested in them.

SO, I decided to make my own Chipolte refrigerator. In the first picture above you will see containers filled with: turkey, ham, grated cheese, black beans, sour cream, salza, brown rice (forgot the shredded lettuce). I also forgot hot salsa (got the medium and my first bowl was too mild). My first bowl was good, but I have a ways to go.

If Tom Chandler finds this post -- yes -- I will make one with a hot dog and slaw --- but on the weekend -- not the night before school.

Tight lines all -- I'll be fishing for the perfect home made Chipolte flavor.