June 30, 2011

B = Boring. Update Your Favicons Already!

Favicon?  That's one of the bad guy robots from Transformers 3 right?

Is it bad that I've never seen Transformers 1 or 2?

Not quite, it's actually the little icon that shows up shows up in your browser tab, bookmark, or RSS code to represent your blog.

For example my favicon (the black & white T!) shows up in a browser tab like this...

or as a bookmark like this...

and even in many of your dynamic blogrolls like this...

Example blogroll taken from
Fine Water Fly Fishing

Now all you WordPress folks have had custom favicons for quite a while, but Blogger unleashed them on us earlier this month through the "Blogger In Draft" interface.  Don't know what that is....yeesh...what am I gonna do with you...

Anyway, I was going to keep quiet on this, figuring you'd all eventually pick it up, but looking at my blogroll, the swarm of little Blogger "B"s unfortunately remain, and no fun little pictures have taken their place.

Where's the individuality?

So the link to the tutorial is HERE.  Get to gettin' Blogger bloggers.

I want my browser tabs & blogroll to start looking like a cracked open box of fishing-themed Lucky Charms rejects spilled all over my webpage...blue flies, purple reels, green vises, yellow waders...you get the point.

You can do it...I've got confidence in ya.

June 29, 2011

New Boots...Finally

No Wednesday Nibbles today.  Sorry, just didn't have enough randomness flowing through the email and social media circuit that hasn't been touched on already by somebody else.  I mean I could write about that damn "The ONE" rod, but I mean that's already been overexposed by bloggers quite a bit.

I did (finally) get my new wading boots in the mail yesterday.  You may remember THIS POST when I originally posed the question of what to buy and got a ton of good feedback.  You may also remember THIS POST, where I decided on getting a pair of Korkers that my local shop didn't have.  I ended up ordering them online since the retailer said they had them "in stock"...and e-commerce usually means no sales tax and free shipping.

Well it turns out they didn't.  They were just taking backorders.  Korkers hadn't even shipped the retailer's pre-season order yet.  Sounds like things are awry over at Korkers.  So after waiting like 2 or 3 weeks with them on backorder (and my PayPal account drained), I finally cancelled the order to get a refund and get something else.

I ended up getting a pair of the new Gray Ghosts from L.L. Bean.  I really don't know why, none of you guys recommended them...could just be because I like the way they looked. I'm stupid that way.  L.L. Bean also has a pretty customer-centric return policy, so if they totally fall apart, at least I feel good about having some recourse.

New boots.   Needed to bring in a friend to get rid of the New England accent that came with them.

Maybe I'll christen them this weekend and put the sticky rubber to the test, maybe not.  Most likely not since I'm gonna be rollin' thick with Lilly, but you never know.

June 28, 2011

Build It! Duct Tape Kayak

New fishing ride for under $50?  Badass.

Not me.
Don't forget the paddles either.

For the full build details, check out hyroc346's Instructable HERE.

June 27, 2011

Following Doctor's Orders

So I'm getting out of my funk.  Yeah, the one I whined about yesterday.  Haven't gone fishing yet, but thanks to the family, I've found some mood swinging medication.

Yesterday, Lilly & I went to the Phillies game.  It was her first real Philadelphia Phillies game (we took her to one as a baby) and the Double A Reading Phillies don't count.  She had an awesome time even though she looked for the Phanatic all game instead of watching Roy Halladay continue pitching like a beast.  A dose of big smiles like this make you feel a lot better almost immediately.

The rest of the therapy actually took place the day prior, almost immediately after I got home from fishing.  All dejected and out of it...I took my shower, came downstairs, and Dr. K.C. made me take a strong dose of medication to clear my head....(no, not what you're thinking)....in the form of stupid 80s comedy, aka "Back To School" starring none other than Rodney Dangerfield.

A couple of armpit farts, a little Oingo Boingo cameo, and of course one Triple Lindy...and I'm feeling a lot better.  But that's only the beginning of my recovery.

Dr. K.C.'s job today is scour Netflix or run to the Best Buy $5 DVD section, today's prescription is for some Summer School.  Yeah, I'll be fishing again in no time.

June 26, 2011

Just Wasn't Feelin' It

Yesterday was an odd day.  Knowing a morning of fishing lie ahead, I was pretty excited while loading up my gear in the back of the Subaru, chomping down a granola bar on the drive to the creek, and didn't even mind the fact that when I got there, there were already two other cars in the small parking lot with fellow anglers pulling on waders.

See, I hadn't been trout fishing in a few weeks.  June 3rd to be exact.  Instead I've spent weekends traveling for work or away on vacation (which I'm certainly not complaining about.  I also know that I won't be going trout fishing next weekend either.  K.C. is going to visit a friend for 4th of July...actually, you all somewhat know this person, Das Teckelfrau...in St. Louis.  So it'll be Dad & Lilly all long weekend.  Just like last year.  We might do some fishing...but definitely not trout fishing. 

So waders on, tenkara rod in hand, I headed down to the creek.  But when I got there a strange thing happened.  Something I'm not sure I can say has happened before.  I just wasn't into it.  That's right...just wasn't working for me.  And I wasn't skunked either, I had caught a few brownies and had a few more hits that had I been paying more attention, a proper hookset would have landed.

I thought perhaps it was the tenkara fishing that was putting a drag on things.  You know...maybe a week of fly fishing in Florida with a fly rod & reel did this to me.  My own vanity (thinking someone might actually care about this development) actually took the time to tweet my next course of action.

After a short hike back to the SUV, the strung up Redington Classic Trout now in hand...I headed back to the water.  But for whatever the reason, things didn't change.  I kept telling myself I wanted to be there...I'm Troutrageous! after all...but my body wasn't acting like it.  I picked up another fish, but didn't take the typical snapshot.  Actually, I didn't take a single picture...of ANYTHING...today.

So what does this mean?  Beats me.  Maybe I'm just burnt out.  Maybe a change of scenery is in order.  Maybe it was because the water level was so darn low because we haven't had a good rain in a while.  Maybe I just need to invest in that carp rod after seeing all those pics and videos from the rest of you guys.  
The list of maybes could continue if I let it, but why bother.  I'm sure it's just a one day funk.  We all have them, and since I don't do a lot of "Dear Diary" style posts, thought I'd share mine.

June 25, 2011

Need Me Some (Gee)Crack

I'm a manpurse junkie.  I admit it.  I enjoy fishing with shoulder bags rather than fishing vests, chest packs, backpacks, or (gasp) fanny/hip packs.  One of the most popular posts on this blog right now (see list to right), is a review for a "$20 Tenkara Bag" I bought at Eddie Bauer a year or so ago.

Anyway, scouring the internet (as I do) I came across what would probably supplant the Eddie Bauer model, should I ever get my grubby hands on one.  It's the Geecrack Shoulder Bag Mini.  Geecrack?  Yeah, Geecrack.

This little bag appears to be pretty darn sweet...kinda like the Orvis Safe Passage sling...but much cooler.  I mean it comes in a rainbow of obnoxious colors such as orange, pink, neon green, purple, and what I'll call fashion camo in addition to the ho-hum standards like black, khaki, etc...
Your manliness is no match for the Geecrack Pink fishing bag

I've always appreciated how the Japanese aren't afraid to interject some fashion forward thinking into their fishing gear.  Here's another example different manufacturer, but may make this a little more clear...Daiwa's U.S. line is pretty slick, but their Japanese line goes to the next level.  Want proof - THIS is what Daiwa's U.S. travel rod looks like.  THIS is what it looks like in Japan.  Ever here of A Fishing Ape?  You think THIS would fly in the U.S.?  (They make a pretty pimp lookin' tenkara rod too).

Anyway...so back to the Geecrack bag...It's got all kinds of compartments, pockets, pouches, you name it.  Check the video.  Yeah, it ain't in English, and the music sounds like something from a 70's blaxploitation movie, but who cares.  Me thinks there's plenty of room for fly boxes, tippet spools, cameras, pretty much anything you'd need, including most importantly, lunch.

MSRP is 4,410 Yen which is about $55 U.S.  I've found some on eBay, but with outrageous shipping costs.  Oh well...for now...

June 23, 2011

Congratulations Are In Order

Occasional Troutrageous! guest poster "Spurky" dropped me a note yesterday to let me know he's been added to the YakDaddy Pro Staff.  You might remember (or not) that his first guest post was an informal review of the YakDaddy, so I guess in a way this is coming full circle.

Image from www.yakdaddy.net

You'll notice in the pic pulled from the YakDaddy website above, Spurky was selected because he was the first customer to use the product in an Emotion Fisherman Pro, and helped develop the compatible mounting hardware.  Pretty cool to see a manufacturer using actual everyday customers as testers.

If there's anyone who is more deserving of this honor, I don't know 'em.  Spurky is a genuine good guy and I'm sure will be a great ambassador for YakDaddy.  Who knows...maybe he might even have time to drop in here every now and then...

Congrats & good luck Spurky!

June 22, 2011

Wednesday Nibbles - Cleaning Out The Cameras Edition

So not a real edition of Wednesday Nibbles this week.  Since I just got home from a weeklong vacation, I chose to clean out the family's collection of cameras instead.  That said, there's a few photos/videos that haven't been posted yet...but also probably aren't worthy of their own post...so maybe it is Wednesday Nibbles after all...anyway, here they are...(make sure at minimum you scroll to the end).

I caught a lot of bluegill in the canal behind the in-laws' house.  I did get my bass before I left...even though it was panfish sized...

Sanibel Island is littered with shells.  I think there's more shells on the beach than sand.  Here's K.C. with her score.

Sanibel is also very pet friendly.  Was glad Bil, the Spanish Water Dog could tag along.  Also glad the in-laws don't have a cat.

Another picture of Lilly & I in the surf at sunset.

We ate a lot of food.  Not a single calorie do I regret.
Hot Pastrami
Jaxson's sundaes - yes, I got my ice cream
Calamari remnants.  They didn't go uneaten.
Strawberry french toast

Lilly.  I love this kid.
West Siiiiiiide!

And then there was this dude at the airport...
He was dressed...well...sort of like Alex P. Keaton's dad from Family Ties, except he rocked this hat with a tiny feather pointing out the top up front.  He was a sight to behold.  

And, I hate to say it, but he ate like a monkey...perhaps a gorilla.  I was waiting for him to poke a stick down a hole in the floor, pull out ants, and start munching.  I've got video (edited for time - this went on for 10 minutes) to prove it - BTW, he's squatting like a baseball catcher in the aisle, not sitting on a chair.

Very entertaining while waiting to get on a flight.  Things start getting nutty at about 0:26.

Yes...I'm an awful person.  Karma will surely catch up to me. (It actually already did cutting my URL short in the movie credits.)

Sooooooooooo...to make up for it, time for the blog love...which are a simple congrats to two fellow bloggers (actually 5 this week).  

The first are the fab four that won the TU/OBN Montana Fishapalooza contest -  Pretty awesome (& after reading each of their winning posts, well deserved).  They're seemingly in for what should be the trip of a lifetime.  As a regular reader of all 4 blogs, I'm really looking forward to following along as they document their journey.

Second shout goes to Ben @ Arizona Wanderings.  He got a nice post from TC of Trout Underground fame yesterday.  His Mini Hoppers (which I am proud to have a few in my arsenal) have been deemed by the Czar of Mt. Shasta as quite possibly the ultimate small stream fly.  Lucky for you, Ben gives a full tying tutorial on his website, or for those that are bobbin & vise-challenged, sells them too.

June 21, 2011

Who's The Idiot That Brought the Knife to the Gun Fight?

...that (of course) would be yours truly.

Before I get into this story, let me set the stage.  It's Father's Day 2011...about 9ish in the morning.  I'm on vacation with the fam in Boca Raton visiting the in-laws.  The plan had been to shoot down to Dania Beach and get some Dad's Day lunch & ice cream at Jaxson's Ice Cream Parlor.  Seriously...if you haven't been, go there...and if you're in Florida...make that immediately!

I'm sitting outside, watching Lilly swim in the swimming pool, and K.C. busts out of the sliding door and says, "we're going to spend the night in Sanibel, grab your rod."  Sanibel...huh...I wanted ice cream...what...???
Lilly don't mess around

Anyway, about an hour and a half of drying Lilly off and packing, we're in the car headed west to Sanibel Island.  It's like two hours through "Alligator Alley" listening to my mother-in-law identify every stick, twig, and branch in the water as a gator.  Okay...that might be a bit of an exaggeration...because as she'll tell you the gators are obviously only on found the north side, never the south side, duh.
Coast to Coast...just like pre-HIV Magic Johnson

So we got to Sanibel Island and first off it's gorgeous, but second, it's kinda remote.  Like not remote where you have to "hike in" or anything, but remote enough that there's no Target (to K.C.'s dismay), and a trip to the one grocery store is like a 20 minute drive on the only road that runs through the place.

Net of it was...we got there, but not on the planned timetable...see we went to the wrong motel first...drove around some more trying to get our bearings...had to use Google Maps on the smartphone to find the right motel (because nobody seems to knows how decipher the incredibly hard to work in-dash GPS of the 'rent's Subaru Outback)...made it to the motel & dropped the bags off at the room...drove another 20 minutes to get lunch (yum, BTW)...and then finally back to the motel to sleep for a bit before tossing some swimsuits on.  Sound like your last vacation?  Probably does.
Our room was right next to Thurston & Lovey Howell's
Lilly wasn't having any of that heat, but unicorn socks and but popcorn worked fine

We would have went to the beach sooner, but we settled in around 2:30/3:00 and I think it was 137 degrees on the beach.  Some of the locals might have said there was a cool sea breeze comfortably knocking off 3 or 4 degrees, but there wasn't.  Just eyeball-liquefying heat that no shelter beneath a poorly anchored beach umbrella could diminish.
Sanibel's version of a vulture seeking roadkill

I will say that waiting until about 6:00 PM to go to the beach was an awesome call.  First off, there was nobody there.  Like nobody.  Really.  Which was good...because there were no witnesses to watch me make a jackass of myself in the surf for about an hour and a half, hopelessly flailing a trout rod back in forth in search of snook, marlin, illegal immigrants, or whatever the heck swims in the Gulf of Mexico waters.  Yeah, I'm no saltwater fisherman.
Two minutes of casting, fifteen of tangles...rinse...repeat...

Had we of been there longer, I probably would have sought out the the bait shop, hardware store, or wherever the locals buy stuff for some fishing advice, but we were looking at 2 and a half hours until sunset.  So I had to make do for a bit with the aforementioned 4-weight rod, 5-weight line, and saltwater flies I won in a Twitter contest more appropriate for a 7-9 weight rod.  (Sorry Rob @ A Bad Backcast...they look really nice in the fly box, but I done you wrong!)  Trying to muscle that damn fly out a mere 20-30 feet while dodging the sharpened steel erratically whizzing by my head was downright exhausting.

Well...at least I look the part

After playing with Lilly for a bit, I switched to a similarly under-powered spin rod that my mother-in-law brought while she & K.C. went out to collect shells.  As with the fly rod, I had nothing to put on it...yeah, there were some rubber bass worms in her tackle box, but I needed to be more Blair Wiggins, less Bill Dance.  So I tied on a different one of the flies I mentioned earlier - it had dumbbell eyes for weight - and had at it for another 30 minutes.  And no, I didn't need to use a bobber...I had one right beside me the whole time.
Parent of the Year Nominee

In the end, what did I catch?  Not a single fish...likely a torn rotator cuff...and still no ice cream...but on the other hand memories with the fam I wouldn't trade for anything...including a showstopping view of the sun setting over the horizon.

June 17, 2011

Go Fly A Kite - Literally!

As you may have noticed by my lack of posting, commenting, etc... I'm on vacation.  Now I'm not in some remote corner of the world without internet access, but not having access to my computer and sketchy cell service in these bombproof South Florida hurricane shelters houses hasn't made my typical routine all that typical.  But then again, I'm on vacation, so normal blogging and whatnot can probably wait for a few days, right?

Yesterday was the first full day of the getaway (nobody really counts the wasted travel day, do they?) and we spent the morning at the beach.  It was beautiful, albeit a bit windy, but when given wind...one must make the most of it.

After that, we headed home and took some showers and naps.  Or at least I did.  Napping is probably my favorite thing to do on vacation.  Reminds me of when I was in college...mid afternoon naps and no cares in the world.

Come late afternoon, I broke out my travel rod and tossed some bugs in the canal behind the house to try and catch some nuisance fish.  Most were on the small side, but very eager.

There's also some largemouth bass in this canal, but I'm not equipped to do combat with the flies and fly rod I have handy.  I'll switch over to the spinning rod & senkos later this week and see what I can dig up.

To end the first day, K.C. & I left Lilly with the in-laws and went to the movies to see The Hangover Part II.  No, it wasn't the Godfather Part II, or even Empire Strikes Back (a BDW appearance would have been epic), but it was really funny...who cares if it was a raunchier carbon copy of the first one?!?  Want to try to get out to the movies one more time while we're down here.  Anyone see Super 8 yet?

That's it for now.  Not sure what today has in store...probably more napping.  See you round...either here, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

June 15, 2011

Wednesday Nibbles - I Think You Can Figure It Out Edition

Who needs a cat...

That's it for today.  Sorry.  The exterminator is coming this morning and either taking care of business or leaving the hoard be to uncontrollably reproduce for a week, because K.C., Lilly, & I are going on vacation.

I know what  you're thinking...no, it's not a rodent induced vacation, we've actually been planning this for a month or two.  Ben just happened to get in the way.

Vacation means either I'll have the spare time to get back on a regular blogging & blog reading cycle...or the posts will get even more sporadic than this week's to date.  Guess it depends on the wireless situation.  Either way, I plan on getting some fishing in, which should be good.

So in my absence, here's some blog love for another site you may or may not have read yet...Ichthyographia.  It's good...just don't ask me to pronounce it.
Nice fish Mr. Ichtyasdklmaslvkmsaasikdj

So go visit, follow, and all that good stuff.  Deal?  Cool.

June 13, 2011

Holy Crap...An Infestation

I came home from my business trip tonight...and was greeted with a houseful of chaos.

As you might be able to tell from my wonderful wife's post, I spent the last 4+ hours wrangling mice.
3 so far.  Tiny little field mice.  The kind brown trout eat in that movie.  Who knows how many else lurk.

They don't care much, but K.C. is freaking out.  She spent over an hour outside in our front yard while the chasing, cornering, and subsequent skull crushing took place. Sorry PETA.

I think they are living under our refrigerator.  Not on the floor but up in the sheet metal.

Calling in the professionals tomorrow...or buying a cat.

What Happens When Mike Goes Away On A Business Trip.....

Hi- It's K.C. again, hijacking Troutrageous!

Mike had to fly out of town for an overnight business trip yesterday. Usually Lilly and I have a relaxed time when he's gone....you know - a trip to the McDonalds Playland, playing Mario Cart on wii and stuff like that. Well, things didn't go according to plan this time.

Around 10:15pm I was watching The Real Housewives of New Jersey and I saw something small and black-ish scurry across the floor of our kitchen. I stood up and saw - A MOUSE! Panic set in and I immediately ran to the closet to grab a broom. Then I ran outside to see if my next door neighbors light was on. No luck. So I called my friend Danielle and asked her husband if he could PLEASE drive over and assist me. So Dave came over and together we cornered (literally) the vermin and created a "barricade" in attempts to get it out the back slider. We used our kitchen newspaper recycle bin, Lilly's art desk and a board game box. All in all it was kinda easy. I thanked Dave and he left.

Recreation of the escape route:

Right after that, I went to the basement and shut down everything, made a quick Facebook post:

Little did I realize that the little mouse who had scampered outside so easily had a friend who was waiting for me in front of our refrigerator. I came up the basement steps and went to turn the kitchen lights out- and it looked me right in the eyes and ran under the fridge. It had not been more than 15 minutes since Dave had left, and I felt bad calling him again, but I did anyway. And Dave drove back over. 

We scoured the kitchen, behind the fridge and under the stove trying to locate the critter but it was no luck. We did find a (sealed) jar of peanut butter, a fossilized package of Thomas' English Muffins, a pretend kitchen knife and a cookie tray that I think we inherited with the house when we moved in.  Dave brought over a small snap trap so it was set up with a peanut butter lure and I had instructions to buy sticky traps in the morning. 

I finally got ahold of Mike around 11:30pm and updated him as to the visitor(s) camped out in our kitchen.  I went to bed around 1am, with the lights on and a broom next to me.  This morning I had to walk and feed the dog so I got all geared up ready to confront this critter again. I snuck down the stairs in my boots, broom in hand with a ferocious 30 pound pug (who is also deaf and fairly toothless) but there was no morning greeting from our vermin intruder. 

Lilly and I hit up The Home Depot this morning and procured 8 sticky traps and placed 4 around the kitchen perimeter. Lilly thought it was quite interesting. I think that SHE thinks the mouse is like Gus from Cinderella. If that were the case I'd keep it for mouse labor and help me sew. I also kept thinking that my life is turning into a real life version of that Mouse Trap game from when I was a kid. You know- the one that NEVER worked but we still played it all the time. 

So for now, Lilly and I are making ourselves scarce around the house. She doesn't seem to care at all about the mouse. She even checks the traps to see if we caught anything yet. I on the other had do a visual scan of the entire room every step I take. I jump at every tickle, sound or shadow. I'm getting a little freaked out for when the sun goes down and the house is darker. I really don't want to have to deal with this issue alone again, so let's hope for no flight delays tonight!