Musings from Bernard Yin focusing on various California trout issues
with a little rock and roll, food, technology and California livin' thrown in
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
The Do Nothing Method
I was recently treated to a quick evening session on a small Sierra foothill pond by Mark Lloyd.
This provided me with a chance to revisit fishing for Largemouth Bass for the first time since my buddies and I would sneak into golf ponds in San Diego while in college.
That was eons ago and eons are substantial units of time. As I paddled out into the pond, I began instinctively casting towards cover and waiting for a take. That's bass angling 101 fer cryin' out loud! There wasn't much response from any fish at first but bobbing around at dusk on a pond is a great joy unto itself. It was already a great evening. I jokingly complained to Mark about the fishing. Suddenly while nudging the popper along in the shadows a small bass took and the skunk was off. Stoked, I brought the hunt up a notch and began casting in a more intense fashion; working hard at dropping the popper as close to branches and overhanging limbs as poss. Barely 10 minutes into our session, I made a cast and a calm came over me so I just let it sit and sit and sit. In hindsight I don't even know what compelled me to just let it linger there. Maybe I was trying to get a drag free drift! *Yes kids that was a joke!* Suddenly the water exploded with a larger fish that went deep, then it pulled in circles and then bolted for cover under some branches. No dramatic jumps but a solid fight. I hooted and hollered like an idiot. Fearful of losing the fish in the submerged branches, I pulled back hard and was lucky enough to turn the fish without losing it. A little more fight and to the boat he came. Not a hog but not a small fish either, I felt rekindled the thrill that TOWBs (Those Obsessed with Bass) feel.
So let's wax philosophical here. As a kid, anything that had to do with fishing caught my attention. A short-lived subscription to Fishing Facts magazine left the phrase "Do nothing method" echoing through my skull. The author of this one article raved about super laid back presentation methods. This phrase stuck with me and I have cited it frequently when musing over so many aspects of life. Sure, a call to action and being motivated is important but if you stand on the beach, a wave will wash towards you whether you dance a jig or lay down and take a nap. In other words, at times in life, too much effort is wasted effort. Neil Young's guitar solo in Down By The River has a famous one note passage but it's far from lazy. Get it? Ok I'll stop ranting! Now let's consider that the "do nothing approach" to still requires something else: FOCUS! See where this is going? Zen and the Art of Bass Fishing! Take a step back from your NASCAR-flavored how-many-sponsors-ya-got? approach and let that popper sit as you contemplate the cosmos! Now back to our regular programming: Earthly Pleasures Without Shame. Good times, good times. Thanks Mark!