Monday, December 31, 2012

Dumb Shit Asked At The Fly Shop (2012)

He who said "There is no such thing as a dumb question" has very obviously never worked in a fly shop. I love talking to those who love to is my job and I look forward to it every day. The things I enjoy the most are the questions. I never know what I am about to get. I take it as a challenge to have the answer. Like playing "Stump the Band". Often I am clueless, and I will admit defeat (instead of lying or making something up) but more often than not I am able to help, or redirect the fisherman and that gives me great satisfaction. But sometimes I am left speechless...  This past year was an exceptionally good one. I collected (verbatim) all of my favorites! Enjoy!

"I heard animals act weird when there is a lot of smoke in the air. Do you think the trout in the Big Thompson are being bothered by the smoke from the High Park fire?"

"Do you guys sell salmon fly midges?"

"I want to stick a couple flies in my hat. Are there special flies for that?"

"I'm constantly loosing flies. Do you have flies that don't keep coming off?"

"This leader is new! I've only been fishing with it for a month or two!"

"When you say this bead-head fly will sink...what does that mean?"

"Is this Colorado fishing license good for other states?"

"Hey, will you guys honor a $100 Cabelas gift card?"

"I need a new leader. My last one was had one end that was really thick and the other end was really skinny."

"If my dry fly is dragging on the surface, does that mean I have on too much floatant?"

"So...the dry fly hooks you sold me. I tested them at home and they all sink."

Woman pointing to photo of a tigerfish hanging on fly shop wall: "Is that a snapping turtle?"

Favorites from past years:

"Why do you guys sell a snowshoe rabbits foot...for good luck?"

"I'm fixing my septic system. Do you guys rent waders?"

"What fly should I put the floatant on? The dry fly or the leech?"

"Why is it so important that waders be waterproof?"

Best of all time!

Dude: "Excuse me, this may be a dumb question..."

Me: "Aw hell, dude...I guarantee it won't even make top three of the week! Shoot!"

Dude: "Is this the Frying Pan River and am I in Basalt?"

Me: " That is Boulder Creek and you are in Boulder."

Dude: "Oh shit. I was supposed to be at my buddies wedding in Basalt ten minutes ago."

Me: "I take back my previous statement."

Dude: "But...I was in Aurora, typed it into my phone and Google sent me here."


  1. I love these. Especially this one.

    "I'm constantly losing flies. Do you have flies that don't keep coming off?"

    I want some of those flies too please.

  2. And it's really scary when you think that some these folks are our neighbors!

  3. I'll work on the winner for 2013... do you give a Dumb Shit prize? I'm not expecting a $100 Cabelas gift card, or anything like that.

  4. Great stuff!!! People were looking at me funny as I read because I kept laughing.

  5. wow.

    My buddy that worked up in Estes Park in the summer said he got asked what time of year the deer turned into elk about once a week.

    I am sure most of those people DROVE CARS to your shop. Some of them have guns I am sure.


  6. i live down in durango and we get tourist who ask "at what elevation do the deer turn into elk?" or "why did they build mesa verde so far from the highway?"

  7. Here's one. Do you Guys recycle the flies that are dead or do you grow your own? Heard at the Bait Shack in Anchorage, AK. We don't even use fly Patterson of that sort!

  8. Thank you for sharing these. I read them aloud, Kelly and I were almost in tears. I think our favorite was the junk leader one. I couldn't keep a straight face. I'm not sure how (or if) you do.

  9. Hello Jay,

    I have one for you...

    45 minutes into a float trip on the Roaring Fork, "So I guess I don't understand how we get back to the car, does the river just go around in a circle?"

    I enjoy reading your posts, Happy New Year!

    Capt Matt

  10. Do these waders make my butt look big?
    What's a Dry fly, they all get wet don't they?

    Hope to make it into the shop this year!

  11. They probably breed and vote too!!!

  12. I read this post very carefully, Jay. I just wanted to make sure it wasn't me who asked some of this stupid shit! I feel better now, some of my stupid shit didn't make the top rankings!

  13. Dumbest question I probably ever asked in a fly shop:
    "Are you guys hiring?"

  14. I once had a woman ask me why I was wearing waders and why I was getting into the water. Before I could reply she answered her own question: "Oh I get it! You are wearing waders so that the fish will think that you are another fish". I just stared blankly at her not really sure of how to respond...

    Jay - do you guys do custom wader painting? I'd be grateful for a slick sculpin paint job on my Redingtons :)

  15. Oh my goodness. These are even more hilarious at 2 AM! I can't stop laughing even when I read them over and over! HAHA!

  16. these are all great~ I am going to have to start writing them down in my fishing journal as they pour off on the river...
    Tight Lines,

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  18. I work in a fly shop and have heard variations of some of these. The dumb questions just make the day. We keep a quotes list at our shop but not all the quotes are exactly family friendly. Great blog post.

  19. from an old ski instructor. " Where do you store the moguls during the summer?" A common tourist question I got. Fishing: " It's it hard fishing for flies?"

  20. Great post.
    Having spent time working in a fly shop and guiding... those bring back a lot of memories.


  21. This is a great reminder to start writing this stuff down. I've been asked a couple questions lately that left me blinking.

  22. There are flyfishing neophite emergers and flyfishing highbrow swell heads. The former are the askers, and the later are the laughers. I'd rather be the former. I don't really find stupidity funny so I'd guess I am not the latter!

  23. Daaaang! I will NEVER use that old saying again. 'Cause you done proved it. There **ARE**, Dumb-n-Dumber questions! Ohh My! Some of them hurt, they were so lame.

    But, of course, you ARE taking these questions in... BOULDER, CO. Where most of the of the folks have not touched the earth since 1968. Soooo, this sample, could possible be a bit tainted (read: fried!). Hmmm.

    However, in defenese of this possible sample slip-up, several of those perpetrators of serious ganglion deprevation, did seem to be 'from aways': indigents of the intelligent quotient of mankind, NOT from Boulder.

    So, there may well be validity in the midst of this vacuous sampling.

    Regardless of a jiggered sample or not... this revelation still hurts! OUCH. B)

  24. You are wearing waders so that the fish will think that you are another fish..There are fly fishing neophyte emergers and fly fishing highbrow swell heads.

  25. These are great. I need to start my own list. Here's a recent one that comes to mind---I can never resist a smart ass answer, since I grew up reading "Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions" by Mad Magazine's Al Jaffee:

    Customer: "So what do the fish do when it rains?"

    Pause. Scratch head. Me: "Well gee, I don't know. I guess they get wet..."

  26. Best post I have read in a while...

    I had one when I was working in the shop...

    Customer: I'm looking for a secret fly... The Cheech's Grumpy Frumpy.
    Me: I know that bug. In fact, I sleep in the same bed with the guy who created it.
    Customer: Speechless.
    Me: Hi, I'm Cheech