I want to be a Brownline guide, the fellow that props up a dusty 4X4, slouching nonchalantly while fingering all the sandwiches. After this weekend’s whirlwind tour of waterlike substance – and culverts containing same – I may have been hasty when I swore, “I will never guide again.”
Brownline fish are sophisticated, but not overly so; ATV’s mean we don’t have to carry “the Good Squire’s” luggage, don’t have to be quiet or stealthy, can discard beer cans without guilt, and yell helpful tips from the safety of the berm.
Blueline Guide: The Potamanthus Regenerarius will be coming off at 10 AM, we need to secure a vantage upstream so the “limp hackle, partially-reticulated-CDC-emerger sans Carapace” can be fed downstream without drag.
Brownline Guide: Put that big green fugger over by them bushes.
No. Them other bushes.
A little mystique will appeal to the 5 Star resort crowd; just enough to make heroic at the watercooler, and it wouldn’t hurt to nickname fish the “Ghost of the Flats”, or the “Phosphate Razor Blade,” adding local color.
Danger adds to our ability to charge huge bucks – so carrying some high powered, scoped cannon would be appropriate. It takes the attention away from your gut when silhouetted against the skyline.
Blueline Guide: Every so often you may run into a bear, just yell and it’ll scare them.
Brownline Guide: “Remain calm, hopefully we won’t run into any “Fescue Jaguars”, it’s mating season – them udders can get verrry sensitive – tear a man to pieces.
How old you say your daughter was?”
My ATV can carry a cooler in front and luggage in the rear. Slide to a stop in a spray of gravel and muddy water, pose woodenly, “Kemosabe, Big Fish – him upstream.”
Blueline Guide: That’s okay, a little bleach and it’ll be as good as new.
Brownline Guide: Kemosabe, him no ride, him smell like butt.
We can dispense with the silliness, no insect mating rituals or environmental issues, just things you don’t want on you, things you want to bite, and things you shouldn’t step in.
Blueline Guide: There’s a rather rough element at that bar, mostly loggers – if you want a couple drinks afterwards, the lodge offers …
Brownline Guide: Pass your sleeve over the neck before you hand her back, friend.
With the rural-urban interface close at hand, a Brownline guide can make a helluva spectacle, a Wild West show complete with irate farmers, gunplay, and the Big Showdown…
GangBanger: We’ll start with the Pasty Face’s wallet, Holmes, then maybe we’ll want yours too ..
Brownline Guide: I ain’t been paid yet, draw that Smokepole and see who sucks dinner through a straw (wink, wink).
A couple “Alexander Hamilton’s” to pay the actors and watch the superlatives fly – makes me misty eyed, kinda what I thought guiding would be…
Blueline Guide: Today, we have a piquant roast duckling with a Rosemary Garlic rub, and Mango Chutney…
Brownline Guide: (from the bridge above) … you want that SuperSized?
I might miss the tinkle of crystal dinnerware – just a little bit …