— quotes by Thomas McGuane

I was reading Thomas McGuane long before I started fly fishing. But when I succumbed to the intensely fulfilling piscatorial passion, the celebrated American writer acquired even more significance, becoming a favourite. The reason for my deepening admiration is his writing about fly angling, for McGuane is one of the very best authors to turn his pen to what he refers to as ‘a calling.’


Does fishing mean anything? That’s the kind of question to make any self-respecting angler shake in his waders. Even McGuane. The Montana-based author and avid fly fisherman posed the question during his 2016Trout & Salmonid Lecture在蒙大拿州立大学图书馆,多十年来组装了令人印象深刻的永久系列,致力于钓鱼。

Born in Michigan, where his longtime friend, the late Jim Harrison, was also born, McGuane has ranched in Montana for close to half a century. He raised cattle and broke champion cutting horses when he wasn’t fishing with friends (Russell Chatham, Richard Brautigan, Guy de la Valdène and Harrison) and some of the world’s best known fly anglers, or writing novels (运动俱乐部,丛林扒钢琴,九十二,阴凉处,巴拿马,没有人的天使,需要一些需要的东西,保持变化,除了蓝天,草的节奏,驾驶在轮辋上), short stories (To Skin a Cat, Gallatin Canyon, Crow Fair),剧本(Rancho Deluxe, 92 in the Shade, The Missouri Breaks, Tom Horn)或非小说(活水,一些马,上游:在美国西北的飞行钓鱼,马).

他的1999年钓鱼回忆录The Longest Silenceis acknowledged as a contemporary fly angling classic.外面的机会他的1981年的运动散文集合,同样很棒。


麦克望蜿蜒更多地宣传他的笔记,比读取他们的读物,比如一条自由乐溪,而不是个人的轶事和历史,幽默和哲学,生态和友谊,同时挑剔了他的谈论主题的问题。他仍然随便会谈,但偶尔会参考另一个作家或哲学家,包括亨利大卫梭罗和罗德里克哈格·棕色,何塞·奥格拉Y Gasset,Johan Huizatea和E.O.威尔逊。

他秉承,随着讲座的讲座,他的妻子问他:你知道答案吗?“我在那个人上几乎是彻底的布尔,”他带着微笑。这是他从受众中引发的笑声中的第一个,其中包括A.K.(Archie)最好,飞行绑在吉尔厄和常规钓鱼伴侣的John Gierach,以及SweetGrass Bamboo Fly Road联合创始人Glenn Brackett。

麦格恩通过质疑飞钓的治疗价值来从怀疑的角度开始他口腔冥想。他记得遇到一群伊拉克和阿富汗战争退伍军人。所有人都遭受了挥之不去的身体和心理损害,并致力于通过学习飞鱼来培养蒙大拿术。McGuane承认,他最初将练习驳回为“一点点偏远的 - 我们将给他们一个爱好解决他们的问题?”他测验。虽然'它似乎并不是一个好主意。。。我留在听证会上是有点工作。


Lefty Kreh

Lefty Kreh


(To support his examples of fly angling’s therapeutic value, McGuane could have mentioned the Casting for Recovery program that has helped untold breast cancer survivors for a number of years.)

McGuane denies that fishing is either a hobby — ‘it’s more than that’ — or a sport. ‘All of us who fish a lot don’t want anyone to call it a sport.’ Admitting he doesn’t know what to call it, he suggests (with a bemused chuckle) . . . it’s ‘a calling. . . like the priesthood.’

He describes fishing as ‘slow, difficult and personal,’ contrary to a YouTube video he once watched where an angler demonstrating a new technique crowed, ‘I’ve already got 15 outta this hole!’ ‘That doesn’t strike me as spiritual,’ he notes dryly.



他记得当他在马萨诸塞州阿姨的池塘里抓住他的第一个小溪鳟鱼时感到不知所措。'钓鱼者的伟大驱动器之一是a fish because they are自然完美的象征(italics mine)。’

After asking what makes people fish, McGuane recalls his father’s and uncle’s aversion to using lead ‘in any form’ while fly fishing. Dry and wet flies and streamers sans lead were the only patterns worthy of fly fishing. ‘Lead was considered to be contrary to the spirit of things.’ Although his Uncle Ben scornfully described fly anglers who used lead as ‘booger-eating morons,’ McGuane sheepishly admits he carries split-shot in his vest. (His crass weakness would be forgiven by most contemporary fly anglers.)


McGuane refers to the 20th century Dutch philosopher Johan Huizinga when he considers fly fishing in terms of fun, which is neither ‘frivolous,’ nor ‘superficial,’ but possesses ‘profound aesthetic qualities.’ Fun and play ‘ventilate our monotony,’ he says, quoting the philosopher. The first characteristic of fun is ‘freedom,’ which feeds ‘man’s imperishable need to live in beauty.’ Fly fishing is ‘rooted in the primeval soil of play.’


Then he turns his thoughts to the concept of home waters. Dismissing the importance of a passport to contemporary fly anglers with adequate means, he insists that, ‘abandoning home waters because you can spend more and fly farther is a low idea.’ (From reading his angling essays, it’s clear McGuane has done his share of fishing in exotic locales.)


近年来,麦格纳已成为'Avid Semey Caster。'这种优雅优雅的双手铸造方法'通过罢工之间的时间,这可能是几天。

He recalls a day steelheading on the Bulkley River in British Columbia, when a couple of young fishermen in hoodies offered him a toke of ‘infamous BC bud.’ When McGuane declined, one of the young men looked at him askance and quipped, ‘How in the world can you fish for steelhead unless you’re stoned? There just aren’t that many bites.’ ‘I was already on the narcissistic high of spey casting,’ he replied.



McGuane pays respect to the growing number of women who are taking up fly fishing. He tells an anecdote about the bedside confession of an elderly woman who landed a monster Atlantic salmon years previously. With her last breath she taunts her son with the declaration: ‘You’ll never get a 50-pounder.’


Recalling the last century, the most violent in recorded history, McGuane asserts, ‘all signs suggest we’re actually at war with the Earth itself.’ Unless something is done, ‘you can kiss cold-water fishing goodbye.’

Beginning his talk on a note of uncertainty, McGuane ends on a graceful note of optimism by remembering Sasha, a Russian fishing guide who bears the ‘fragility’ of three tours in the Chechen war: ‘But I’ll be OK, I’m with the river now,’ the guide told his American sport.

(有一个可爱的麦克风播客与蒙大拿捕鱼指南和首次亮相短篇小说作家Callan Wink(Dog Run Moon: Stories) at纽约克电台小时,#43:夏天在城市。他们对吉姆州哈里森的深情谈论,其中包括其他主题。)