By Skip Clement
Angie, my retired lawyer friend and oft-time angling buddy, and her sister got into #MeToo, women in fly fishing (they love our site), and always, good wine. I’m not sure what got ten women to learn how to make a few basic flies and repeat the class at Angie’s “estate” for the next ten weekends, but I don’t think the wine had a negative impact – $34 bottle (California). It was also a listening lesson for me in what women think of our president and his politics – never mind.
Except for a few, all the women had unexpectedly high functioning dexterity. They’d all learned sewing and some still crocheted. That said, it was the tying-off the fly that hung “us” all up. They could understand my teaching them the half-hitch and how to use the Matarelli (see note) whip-finishing tool, but not the one ‘hand’ whip finish the fly.
As one matures so does temperament – I didn’t have far to go to show improvement
Coming to grips with the fact that these women were probably smarter than me and couldn’t learn meant I was a sh*t teacher. So, last week, I started ‘searching’ our site for past stories on fly tying. Too many, I gave up, and the internet was worse.
I called my tying Guru friend in California, Col. Eddie Brennan who once co-owned a fly shop in Spain – he would know, and he did, and it was right under my nose – Ruben Martin, fly tyer extraordinaire from Argentina and my favorite tyer.
Eddie gave me the link to Martin’s video. After watching it a couple of times I was perplexed as to why no one could teach it as well as Ruben?
Back to Angie’s and a plan
Angie has the most significant single TV screen ever built or that I’ve ever seen. It’s hidden away in the wall, and the room quickly sets up theater-like. So all 15 or us (yes, we grew). No one shares a tying vice in this group – all are new and hi-end. Some in this august group have chauffeurs.
I got the YouTube channel up and let Martin’s video play. Every last person got it
I verbalized the translation – occasionally stopping for questions, catching my breath, or letting the women make the maneuvers or pour. Everyone in the room learned how to one-hand whip finish a fly; perfectly.
NOTE: Frank Matarelli improved on D. H. Thompson whip-finishing tool by making the shaft of his revolve within a brass tube – the source of the patent he held.
Como hacer el nudo de cierre de una mosca por Ruben Martin, roughly translates, “How to make a closing knot.”