Defining Any Type of Fishing

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Outdoors4life
Outdoors4life's picture
Defining Any Type of Fishing

Over the years of being on the site I have seen many arguments about definitions on fishing. Today I was reading an interview with a Tenkara Master. This excerpt says it best just insert any style of fishing. 

"Hence once Tenkara has left Japan, or it enters another country and culture, people who pick up a Tenkara rod there have the right and obligation to decide what Tenkara is for them. It is certainly not for me to decide."
Masami Sakakibara.

 

Here is the full answer

Masami Tenkarano-oni Sakakibara: I think Tenkara is about fishing in the beautiful mountain stream of Japan, for our beautiful native trout which inhabit them. Yet today, Tenkara seems to have spread to the US, Europe and more. I’m sure that they too have beautiful rivers and streams, with beautiful trout or other fish which inhabit them. Hence once Tenkara has left Japan, or it enters another country and culture, people who pick up a Tenkara rod there have the right and obligation to decide what Tenkara is for them. It is certainly not for me to decide.

That is not to say that we should bastardize the traditional fishing styles and still call them such. I am very good at bastardizing styles but after discussions with others, I try to not call it the traditional name. 

I just wanted to bring this beautiful answer up front. 
Most importantly is having fun while outdoors.

 

Goldenfishberg
Goldenfishberg's picture
wow

Dang, That little excerpt gave me goose pimples. Thats some deep stuff right 'dere. Love it thanks, for sharing man. 

Ya just Can't catch um from the couch.

Susquehannock
Susquehannock's picture
Defining your fishing

It took me a little while to figure out exactly what this even meant. It's just a really beautiful little piece of language.

Susquehannock

Outdoors4life
Outdoors4life's picture
Two years pass and not much changes

On FB there was a guy on the tenkara page blasting Matt for his writing about micro fishing and a guy got bent out fo shape about calling tenkara a fad.

I think all fishing styles are a fad in the long range looking at fishing. Even sport fishing is a fad that someday will likely be a thing of the past by the majority of humanity. I think we all go through fads to find what we truly love to do. 

 

It is all perspective!

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Tyler W
Philosophy and Fishing

Philosophy and fishing are inversely related. The worse the fisherman the better the philosopher. By my logic, fishermen worrying about the definition of tenkara are probably not catching many fish. 

kernel j
Philosophy and fishing are

Philosophy and fishing are inversely related. The worse the fisherman the better the philosopher. By my logic, fishermen worrying about the definition of tenkara are probably not catching many fish. 

You just philosophized by pontificating about other fisherman worrying about definitions of tenkara and what can logically be assumed from it.  Does this mean you suck at fishing or are just an inept philosopher?

cheeky

I’ll assume neither for now but will say it’s near impossible to spend a life fishing and NOT come to some thoughts and philosophies along the way.  Even on banner days when we’re living gods of effectiveness on the water, one still has to take a piss occasionally and drive home later.  Unless braindead, there’s gonna be some thoughts and reflections on fishing related matters and how they define.  Probably thoughts and clarifications on many other things in life as well, just being out there tends to put everything else in perspective very nicely.

 

Masami Sakakibara certainly recognizes the value of adapting approaches and fishing strategies for both recreational pleasure and fishing success.  I like the way the Japanese masters handle their “authority” on these matters when asked…they just throw the big picture right back at you and leave it open-ended save for a few soft suggestions. 

Corey
Corey's picture
Philosophy versus practical information

Don't get me wrong, I certainly value all types of fishing. But you need to communicate what you are doing effectively. I just want people to be accurate. If you are trolling a fly with with downriggers, you are not flyfishing. If you are bottom-fishing a nightcrawler with a Tenkara rod, you are not Tenkara fishing. Personally, I think people get too caught up in "I use this tackle so I'm better than everybody else!". Of course, you could also just be lying about what you're doing to confuse people and protect your advantage, in which case, I tip my hat to you. Hand me another marshmallow nightcrawler.

Outdoors4life
Outdoors4life's picture
Corey

Corey, 
You beat that one into my head a number of years ago about gear and style and it stuck with me well. 
I saw things the way you explained it to me and I agreed with with you and understood. 

It is all perspective!

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Corey
Corey's picture
Tactics

Aaron, I hope I didn't insult you, I hope you know I thought what you did was super-cool. Catching a River Redhorse on a fixed-line rod is an amazing accomplishment and waaaaaay better than anything I've ever done. I would love to be able to accomplish that someday; it would be super cool. I would love to do that. I just wouldn't describe it as "Tenkara" because there's bait involved; you could call it Keiryu or just fixed-line fishing. But if the word evolves and changes to mean something different then I'm OK with that, too. We'll all just make up a new word to mean "fixed-line flyfishing" and another word to mean "fixed-line bait fishing" and use those words instead.

Outdoors4life
Outdoors4life's picture
A good point

Corey of course not. At first I was frustrated but I understood and agreed with you. I am good with fixed line and part of it was I did not know how to describe it properly. Tenkara rod + bait= Fixed line fishing. I love it so much I have several fixed line rods now. 
Micro fishing is proof that a cool word makes people want to do it. I was told by someone online that I didn't understand the definition of microfishing when they posted tons of photos of small sunfish. Considering it was based off roughfish's definition of a standard size fish being a species that does not reach a pound I think it is pretty clear. 
In the end I fish for myself and no one else, but I have gained many great friends having discussions here on RF that challenge my ideas.

It is all perspective!

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Tyler W
Does this mean you suck at

Does this mean you suck at fishing or are just an inept philosopher?

 

They are not mutually exclusive. I can be both an inept angler and an inept philosopher. I am not actually a philistine, I have even read just enough philosophy to know I am an inept philosopher.

 

I was trying to humorously remind everyone that we are reading, writing and learning about catching fish. As fanatical anglers we are trying to catch fish - not write dictionaries. People who argue about the definitions of the techniques might just loose sight of the end goal. Using OD4L's example above, the people who take time to criticize his definition of microfishing are (probably) missing the point of his post. Maybe if they would chill out on the definitions they could appreciate what he shared on it's own merits. 

 

Still, I do have to hedge slightly. Corey makes an excellent point that clarity of language is important. So, there must be some room for semantics even in fishing. 

 

Lastly I want to share this insight I heard about the difference between a "geek" and a "hipster". 

A geek loves something (i.e. geeks out) and tries to share it with everyone so they can love it as much as the geek does.

A hipster loves something and tries to share it with everyone so they can demonstrate how superior they are for loving that thing first/ better/ correctly.

 

In the wild you can easily tell these two types apart by talking to them. If you find yourself interested in the topic at hand, you are talking to a geek. If you find yourself inexplicably on the defensive you are talking to a hipster. As we dabble in the dark arts of philosophy we should tread carefully, or risk using our knowledge like a cudgel to prove our superiority. Feeling superior is addictive, but lonely in the long run. 

Graceclaw
Graceclaw's picture
Guilty

I'm definitely guilty of overwhelming people sometimes with hipster-vibes, when they voice admiration for bow"fishing" or casual disdain for rough fish. The times I have managed to quell my frustration/anger with societal ignorance long enough to treat them like a fellow human being instead of a rough fish-hating monster, I have generally found success and receptiveness.

Tyler W
The greatest challenge

I'm definitely guilty of overwhelming people sometimes with hipster-vibes, when they voice admiration for bow"fishing"... 

That is probably the greatest challenge. I have definitely "dressed down" a few shooters in a less than friendly manner. In a case where someone is actively destroying a resource I may not care if they learn to appreciate roughfish. My first goal has been to get them to stop the wanton waste. Still, Graceclaw's experience is informative. I'll strive to be better even when talking to the arrow crowd.*

 

 

*Good manners are not guaranteed if shooters are violating local statute, approach my fishing spot or come within 50 yards of my family.