Here we are in the middle of trout season and still a good two months away from the prime time of bass fishing on the prairie ocean, and I find myself fixated with a particular daydream.
In this dream I see myself employing a fast or panic strip on a meece pattern across the glass-like surface of a lake, when suddenly a large bulge forms underneath the fly. Then, just as suddenly, there's a huge explosion of water as the bass sky rockets through the surface with my meece pattern dangling in the corner of his jaw. Rod hand goes up, line hand goes down, hook is firmly planted in the corner of the eight... no nine, maybe ten pound largemouth.
I bet bass hate meeces to pieces. In my experience bass seem to be somewhat territorial and it would reason when they see a gray, somewhat furry, long-tailed creature meece-paddling across the top of their watery den...something primordial occurs... that basic instinct that says attack. Besides... a meece would certainly prove to be a welcomed and varied change to the mundane bass menu, plus offer up a healthy portion of protein.
Now, I don't hate meece, but I don't really like tying meece patterns. Stacking, spinning, packing, trimming, shaping oodles and oodles of hair holds no fancy for me and there are many other ways I'd rather spin my time on the vise. However, I have seen some wonderful fly tyers who create beautiful works of art spinning deer hair. So, it would seem best for me to simply be charitable to these artisans and buy their works of arts.
|Meece pattern by Chris Adams|
I do have some meece patterns given to me from other fly anglers. I don't always fish the flies given to me from my brothers of the angle, but rather I keep them as reminders of the person that gave... and the day it was given.
There is one particular meece pattern I own that has it's own story. There was a day when Scotty opened his Blue River One Stop at six in the morning rather than seven. On a particular Sunday, I arrived at Scotty's about ten minutes before opening and noticed a vehicle at the front door of the store. Before the morning was over I would come to learn the man behind the wheel went by the name of Randy.
It seemed that Randy had successfully closed one of the local drinking establishments about several hours prior. Since helping turn out the lights at the dive he had been patiently waiting for some sign of humanity - which turned out to be me.
I had driven the little brown pony (S-10) on this Sunday morning, and before I could pull back on the reins and come to a complete stop, the fellow I would come to know as Randy was out of his car smiling, and staggering, and waving, and staggering some more. He was still terribly polluted or maybe terribly hung-over. He had somehow miraculously navigated the road from the Milburn Bar And No Grill to the front doorstep of Scotty's, and he was now acting like I was a long lost friend... when in fact we did not know one another.
Now I don't know if Randy was just an exceptional congenial type guy or if it was the fact his blood alcohol content was probably close to 2.6 or something like that, and his condition had his communication process in high gear. But whatever it was... Randy was quite the talker. He quickly learned the reason for my arrival was due to my plans to fly fish, and upon learning this Randy became extremely excited and started staggering to the back of his car, beseeching me to quickly follow.
At the back of his car, Randy struggled to insert the key in the trunk latch, but once he did he revealed an absolute treasure trove of high end fly fishing stuff. To me, it looked like Randy has just finished a shopping spree at an Orvis store somewhere. He grabbed a rather large fly box that held nothing but well tyed hair flies - beautiful creations. He started plucking flies and handing them to me saying, "Here, take this one... no take two, you may loose one. Oh, take this one too, and here's another one you'll probably need." Fly after fly came my way including a nicely done meece pattern pictured below.
I couldn't get a read on why Randy was being so benevolent to me - was he just a kind, giving person, or was it the fact that intoxicated people sometimes tend to be over-generous when they are under the influence? Shortly, however, the real reason would reveal itself. It seemed when Randy approached the little brown pony he noticed the ice chest in the back of my truck - an ice chest I had most assuredly stowed a six-pack of beer for use later in the day. It didn't take long, after showering me with flies, for Randy to inquire whether said ice chest held cold beer? Seeing that he was in need of emergency care and the correct prescription would be hair of the dog, I told Randy that indeed the chest held beer, and he was welcome to tip one, which he wasted no time in doing.
It was about that time Scotty showed up and I went inside to fix a pot of coffee. I not only grabbed a cup for myself, but one for Randy too, who was still outside nursing that beer. Randy wasn't interested in the coffee, but feeling somewhat better now, he announced he would fly fish with me this morning - my lucky day I guess.
Randy lasted a full thirty minutes on the river before coming to me to say he'd decided to go back to the parking lot. He asked if I would mind if he sampled another beer and I told him that would be no problem. I watched him waddle up the road, then reach in the back of the truck and snatch two Coors Lights. That was the last time I seen him.
I keep Randy's meece pattern in a small wooden boat on my fly tying table. Every now and then I'll pick it up and remember the morning I made a two-hour new best friend and his name was Randy.
Now when it comes to meece and men we're in the same boat - which is exactly where we should stay. Meece and men don't take naturally to water. Oh sure, there are those that will argue that we, man, crawled out of the sea some millions of years ago. If that is indeed true then we've certainly lost our ability, along the way, to breath under water. And sure, we've learned how to swim and I've seen meece that can swim rather well, but the fact is if we stay on the water too long we will tire and we will drown! The same is true for meece!
So, in the next several months, I'll gather some of my meece patterns and put them in a particular fly box preparing for the upcoming pre-spawn bass season of late March and April.
Until then, I'll simply have some fun watching Mr. Jinx jack with those meeces Pixie and Dixie.