Fish Ain't Needy by Mark Usyk

Need. NEED? What do you really need? Let's be honest, all anyone truly needs is food, water, and oxygen. Something to eat, water to drink, air to breath. Everything else we need these days was invented by humans before us and has just exploded to proportions to huge to be contained. Imagine someone trying to cradle a full grown rodeo bull in their arms like a baby, trying to rock it to sleep. As the gate is thrown open. That's about as realistic of an analogy as I can paint. It looks ridiculous in your mind, and to think about all the things we've convinced ourselves we absolutely need today is just about as insane.


You don't need a 60" flat screen TV. You don't need a 5 bedroom, 3 bath house for a family of 3. You don't need a brand new truck with a monthly payment almost equal to the mortgage payment on that house that you don't truly need. You don't need a trimmed and manicured lawn, and you damn sure don't need to work 70 hours a week to afford all this stuff that you don't need. But somehow we've been convinced that it's all perfectly normal, and we all need to be normal.


I don't need someone to tell me that I'm doing it right or wrong, failure and success are the only teachers I need. I don't need a politician to save me from myself, I'm perfectly content basking in my self-inflicted destruction and subsequent rebuilds. All I really need is to fish. And the fish? All they really need is food, water, and oxygen. I'm a little jealous. That may be a deep rooted attachment to what I’ve come to need... To be where the fish are. Where nothing is really needed except a fly rod and some luck. Life can be as complicated as you make it, or as simple as you allow it to be.


Imagine if the fish were as lost as us humans! The conversations at the fly shops might just be a little different. "Hey, Joe, what are they rising to today do ya think?" "Well Larry, Bill was down on the river about three hours ago and said he had some luck on a little Starbucks double mocha latte dry fly at first light this morning, but then the bite tapered off and he switched to a flat screen streamer. He said the plasma screen that worked so well a few years ago is a big loser now, threw all his in the trash can out front and bought a dozen of the new high definitions in that corner bin over there. Said they worked like a charm, but as the hatch went on, he kept having to tie on bigger and bigger, almost like the fish were getting bored with what he was offering and he had to keep their attention. Bigger and bigger seemed to do it as he figures. But the hot spot seems to be down just below the train trestle on Fridays a little after 5. The far bank, the undercut bank just downstream of the trestle, if you can time it just right so that the fish are leaving the bank with their pay checks burning a hole in their pockets, you can throw damn near anything from tiny dry I-Pad soft hackles with any kind of a high definition dropper in practically any pattern, or you can chuck huge, meaty, gaudy SUV's and they'll take pretty much whatever passes in front of them. But by sun rise Saturday morning, that hatch is pretty much over and you won't see a trout until probably after noon or so."



Fish don't need anything except all that we used to need. Food, water, and oxygen. There's that evolution theory that we all came from the ocean, we all evolved legs and arms from fins. Science can argue it all with research up the arse, but I think a little common sense says it's pretty obvious that we did, and the fish just stayed simple while we became so smart we ended up dumb. I don't need anything except a fly rod today. Now I'm going to go choose the right one out of the pile of gear in my fishing room built on the back of my house and then load up my lifted Jeep with the winch and drive half a mile over to the creek to catch some chubs. Just another day.