Category Archives: Fishing Humor

Stupid Names Fishermen Use for Bass and Fishing

For some reason folks seem to want to make up weird words and names for things they do, especially in sports.  Nowhere do I see more of these stupid words than in bass fishing.  Some of them amaze me, others are just so disgusting I ignore them to the point I will not even “like” a post on Facebook containing one of them.

    I could understand using a more succinct name to save words, but when the new dumb name is as long or longer than simply saying “big bass” what is the sense?  I guess folks are just trying to be cute or trying to be different just like everybody else.

    Most of us do not catch big bass very often, so some think they need to show off by naming them something odd.  Growing up I might hear a big bass called a “hog,” which morphed into “Hawg” over the years, but there were few others.

One name used for years was catching “Ole Nellie” for a landing a big bass, but more often it was “I lost Ole Nellie” today, meaning anything from hooking a stump to feeling a tap on your bait, setting the hook and missing the bite, never seeing the fish.  But “Ole Nellie” was so common a Georgia tackle company used it for their name.

    Nicknames like “bucketmouth” have been around for a while, but somehow largemouth are often named “largeheads” now. Why? Seems stupid to me.  A largemouth head is no bigger than a spot or smallmouth, but it is used to delineate between the species.  Will those folks now call smallmouth “smallheads?”  What will they use for spotted bass? “Spothead” or “Medium Head” maybe since it seems to relate head to mouth size?

    The first time someone said they caught a “Slobber Knocker”” I thought they had taken a picture of a couple of ten-year-old boys fighting.  That image of a kid being hit in the nose and snot flying still comes to my mind rather than an image of a big bass.

    A similar silly name is “Swamp Donkey,” a term that seems to be favored by college fishermen.  My mind brings up someone putting out traps for a Sasquatch.  Folks using that term are almost always fishing on a lake, and donkey and bass just do not jive in my mind.

“Chunk” or “Toad” or “Tank” makes some sense to me since those words describe a big fat bass pretty good, as do “Sow” or “Lunker.”  I start getting lost when it goes to “Porker” or “Butterball” though.

I understand the term “green trout” for bass since bass were often called “trout” by some of my uncles.  But how did the made-up word “Slaunch” get associated with fishing.  I have heard “Slaunch Donkey,” 
(there’s that four-legged mammal again) or just a “Slaunce.”  If someone on the street said “Slaunce” in a conservation, would it make you want to call the mental hospital?

“Gorilla” makes a little sense but it makes me think of a zoo, not fishing.  But if you say “Hydrilla Gorilla” like one weigh-in guy on TV tournament shows, it rhymes a little, and makes some sense but is still silly. But how do you get “beefers” or “bulls” for a big bass?

Where in the world did “ditch pickle” come from?  I often hear it from Lake Lanier fishermen this time of year, and fishing ditches in the winter there is a good pattern, but a “pickle?”  I guess bass are green.

I try to have some respect for the game I kill and the fish I catch, and these names are just the opposite of respect.  It’s weird – some fanatical bass fishermen that go crazy if a bass they caught dies will say they want to “Rip Some Lips.”  That sounds like an effort to kill the bass. There is even on guide service called “Lipripper” and that name makes me ignore everything they say.

Fishing is supposed to be fun, even on those tough days when fish just do not bite. But I constantly hear fishermen say “It was a grind,’ or worse “I grinded it out to catch some.” Sounds like a miserable day at work to me. If it is that hard, why do it?  Go grind where you get a salary, not trying to win a bet on catching fish.

    The first time I saw a post that said “I got the dub on my home pond with this slaunch,” I ask the site to convert it to English, but it didn’t change.  I knew if had something to do with bass fishing since the picture was a four-pound bass.  I checked and it was posted by a college fisherman.

    I guess he was trying to be cute, or different like every other fisherman his age, by using “hip” words.  What he meant to say was “I got the win on Lake Logan
Martin with this nice bass.” 

I’ve already given my take on using “slaunch” for a bass. I don’t know if he was ashamed he was on Lake Logan Martin, trying to hid it or just being cute by calling it his “home pond.”  Without research no one knows where his “home” is and calling a 17,000-acre lake a “pond” is just odd.

It took me a minute to figure somehow new-speak turned “Win” into “W” then “Dub.’  Really strange, I wonder what he is going to do with the millisecond he saved by using “Dub” rather than “Win.”  Oh, wait, they are both three letters.

    I have lots of pet peeves. Growing up I thought beatnik slang was stupid, in college hippy talk was cool but now every new thing that comes along just seems dumb.  I guess my age is showing!

Trophy Florida Bass Tests Angler Weight Estimates

The “Eyeball Challenge” for Trophy Florida Bass Tests Angler Weight Estimates
From The Fishing Wire

Nearly 900 anglers completed the final round, and the results were quite revealing: on average, anglers were off by plus or minus 2.22 pounds per bass in estimating weight from photos. Even the top 5% of all guessers — the A-pluses at the head of the class — were only able to shave their error down to plus or minus 1.35 pounds of the actual weight.

How big do you think this bass is? Ten pounds? Seven? Twelve? A unique study by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) along with partner, Bass Pro Shops, recently revealed that guessing right is harder than you think — whether you are an experienced bass angler, fishing guide or even a bona fide fisheries biologist. The Eyeball Challenge arose from FWC’s TrophyCatch program, which collects data from anglers on bass eight pounds or larger for use in fisheries management and conservation. The core requirement for submission is a photo or video of the entire bass on a scale with the weight reading clearly visible. And, every trophy bass must be released.

“Given the very specific submission requirements, I’m still a bit mystified whenever I get the ‘That bass isn’t 10 pounds!’ comment on one of our posts,” said biologist and TrophyCatch Facebook Manager, John Cimbaro. “If there’s one thing I’ve learned from looking at thousands of bass photos, it’s that the same fish can look very different depending on how the picture is taken and how the fish is held. A hero shot of an angler holding a trophy bass up is usually the best-looking photo for a Facebook post. But the fish-on-scale photo is the one that matters for the research program and that’s the photo l point a doubting commenter to.”

The Eyeball Challenge asked anglers to estimate the weights of bass in three separate challenges, each with a series of photos. Each bass was weighed by a biologist with field scales to ensure accuracy. The Eyeball Challenge culminated in August with Round 3, which featured 24 individual Florida bass. Nearly 900 anglers completed the final round, and the results were quite revealing: on average, anglers were off by plus or minus 2.22 pounds per bass. Even the top 5% of all guessers — the A-pluses at the head of the class — were only able to shave their error down to plus or minus 1.35 pounds of the actual weight.

Does fishing experience endow anglers with weight-guessing skills? Eyeball Challenge participants told us if they identified as novice, intermediate or avid anglers, and they provided the number of years of bass fishing experience they had accrued. Interestingly, statistical analysis indicated that there was no performance difference among the three levels of anglers. Technically, increased years of bass fishing experience translated into improvements in guessing bass weights, but in practical terms, it takes anglers a lifetime of fishing experience (60 years) to gain only about .5 pound of accuracy over inexperienced anglers. The bottom line is that no matter how good you are at catching fish or how long you’ve been fishing; a variety of factors makes it hard to accurately guess the weight of a fish from a photo.

One key result from the Eyeball Challenge was that how an angler holds his or her bass in a photo makes quite a difference in how we perceive it. Half of the bass featured in the Round 3 challenge were held out toward the camera, at arm’s length. The other half were held much closer to the angler’s torso. As anglers might guess, there was a highly significant difference in anglers’ ability to accurately guess the weights of bass in the two groups. Anglers were much more accurate at guessing weights of bass held at arm’s length but had a slight bias toward overestimating those bass. For bass held close to the body, anglers underestimated those bass by over 1.25 pounds on average. For more details on the study, visit

“It’s now scientifically proven—If you want the best photos of your catch, hold that fish out toward the camera,” said biologist Drew Dutterer, who helped design the study. “If not, it may be impossible to convince your fishing buddies just how big that bass really was!”

The TrophyCatch program has been popular for not only allowing citizen-scientists to contribute their data, which anglers report is their primary reason for submitting catches, but because industry partners such as Bass Pro Shops provide rewards for participation. To register for TrophyCatch and learn more, visit For more information about the TrophyCatch program, email Laura Rambo at

Camping and Fishing

Camping is supposed to be a relaxing return to nature, getting outdoors and living a simple life for a few days. Not so much now-a-days.

Big motor homes pull into paved pads set a few feet from the next one. The “camper” hops out, plugs in and pushes a button to level his home away from home and crawls back inside.

A couple days later they come out of their air-conditioned cocoon with big screen TV, unplug and retract levelers and head back to civilization, a house with all the comforts of camping.

I admit my camping is just a way to sleep comfortably near the water so I can spent more time fishing I have a slide in pickup camper that is air conditioned, but it is for sleeping only. All cooking, eating and sitting around watching other campers is done outside in a screened in room. Watching fellow “campers” is fun from that bug free zone.

I spent six nights last week at Blanton Creek Campground on Bartletts Ferry Lake. That Georgia Power campground is well maintained with a good bathroom and shower, something very important to me after a hot day fishing.

I was surprised the campground was not full since I had to make reservations over a month ago to get a site. The caretaker told me every site was reserved and paid for, but the stormy weather Thursday and Friday probably scared off some campers.

Crazy Days of Coronavirus

Lazy, Crazy Days of Coronavirus
By Frank Sargeant, Editor
from The Fishing Wire

So how much has the coronavirus pandemic impacted the country?

Remember how you used to get arrested if you went in a store wearing a face mask? Now, you get arrested if you go in a store NOT wearing a face mask.

Remember how your wife used to make you leave your clothes in the garage after a fishing trip? Now, you can wear your fishing clothes into the house, but you have to leave them in the garage if you go to the grocery store.

Remember how your wife used to complain that you didn’t spend enough time at home? Heard that lately? “I Miss Missing You” has taken on a whole new meaning . . . .

Remember how you used to hate to get up to go to work? Now, many of us are starting to just hate getting up.

The carbon footprint of developed countries has plunged to levels not seen in 150 years—and environmentalists are unhappy because their donations are down.

They’re giving gasoline away, and nobody wants to drive.

GM is building ventilators instead of cars and trucks, and fishing tackle companies are molding medical face shields instead of lures.

It’s gotten so weird that the Republicans are trying to give away public money, and the Democrats are trying to stop them!

You used to shake hands with your friends and nod to your enemies. Now, you nod to your friends and give your enemies a big hug.

Some are so concerned about prisoners getting coronavirus they’re releasing them, so the rest of us can be concerned about getting mugged.

Crack dealers, low on customers, are selling black-market Lysol on street corners.
We old farts who everyone wishes would get out of the way at Wal-Mart now have our own dedicated shopping hour—first one to the toilet paper aisle wins!

And our Big Orange President has finally turned gray. Not only his orange hair but also his orange face wore more natural hues at Wednesday’s press conference. (My wife, perhaps his biggest fan, thinks it’s a change for the better.)

Sniffin’ Joe has so far not commented.

All we can do is muddle through, try to grin occasionally, and bear it.

And maybe sneak off for a bit of fishing at our secret spot now and then.

This too, like the most obnoxious of kidney stones, shall pass.

Blooming Idiots Go Fishing

It never fails. Every year as soon as we have a couple of warm days in late winter, the idiots of spring bloom. People who have not thought about fishing since las spring suddenly decide to go catch fish, and do things that are either inconsiderate or stupid, or both.

Trying to put a boat in at a popular ramp is a joke. In our club tournaments we can launch ten boats in a few minutes and get out of the way. We know better than to back down to the ramp, block others from it and spend 20 minutes unloading stuff from the truck taking straps and hooks off the boat and trying to get everything ready. That is done in the parking lot well away from the ramp.

And most of us can back a trailer into the water efficiently, not having to pull up and back up a dozen times to finally get it in. A double ramp is just that, room for two boats to launch at the same time. The line down the middle is there to divide the ramp, not to aim at and straddle!

At the Sportsman Club tournament two weeks ago, I pulled up at Dennis Station ramp on Lake Sinclair at 7:00 AM just as it got light. Two club members were already there, trying to maneuver their trailers around a truck that was sitting right in the middle of the area used to back up to the ramp, with lights on, motor running and boat on trailer not many feet from the water.

They got their boats launched and parked their trucks and came over to pay their entry fees. One said there was a guy sitting in the running truck. We did not know whether he was asleep, passed out or dead.

I was nervous about knocking on his window to see but one brave club member did so. The guy woke, pulled up into the parking lot out of the way, sat there a few more minutes then drove off without getting out of his truck. I still have no idea what he was doing, but he was sitting there for at least 30 minutes while I was there. Maybe he fished all night while enjoying adult beverages and could not make it any further!

If you head to the lake this year be considerate. Get your boat loaded and stuff ready to go out while in the parking lot. Try to back into the water, launch your boat and get out of the way. Don’t be a blooming idiot this year!

Roughing It At A KOA Campground

I just got back from “camping” for four nights at the KOA campground near Lake Hartwell. Camping isn’t what it used to be!

When growing up camping meant a pup tent or canvas stretched between two trees, a sleeping bag on the hard ground or if fancy, a lounge chair with a bar that hurt your back all night. We cooked on an open fire and food was either somewhat raw or burned. The only sounds were those of nature and our voices.

Now, folks pull in to a campground and park their motor home or trailer, usually about as big as a small house, on a concrete pad. They get out and hook up the power cord, water hose and cable TV cord, go back inside and turn on the air conditioner or heat. After two nights and three days of “camping” they reappear, unhook everything and drive off into the sunset.

Some, especially with kids, do rough it. Rather than disappear inside they get set up then pull out an awning, set up their big screen TV under it, and sit and watch it until time to go to bed at night. They even get the “nature” experience by putting a microwave on the picnic table and cook and eat outside.

One family pulled up beside me, did the above but also set up a small portable fence about three feet high around the table and door so their little yapping dog would not run off. The KOA had a small fenced in pet exercise area where they could walk their dog on a lease 100 feet to it so it could run free.

I started to go to the office and tell them they forgot to issue me my little yapping dog when I checked in. I thought one must be required since it seemed everyone had one but me!

A few folks ventured so far into nature they built a campfire. That consisted of trying to find enough twigs to put in a metal fire pit and dosing it with lighter food to start their bundle of bought fire wood. The KOA office sold firewood, ice and other necessities like shampoo, KOA tee shirts and toys for kids.

There was a nice shower room and I was almost always using it alone since most of the big campers were self-contained. As the folks left after their experience with nature they stopped at the dump station and emptied their sewage.

Sitting outside there were few natural sounds. Only air conditioners running, little dogs yapping and highway traffic. But I was there to fish so it was convenient to sleep in my van and drive the few miles to the ramp. I did not have to worry about my boat and tackle like I would at a motel and could cook my own food and go to bed as soon as the sun set!

Funny Fishing Terms

I have spent all my life training to be grumpy old man, and I think I have achieved my goal! More and more I get irritated at things I consider silly or stupid. One of my pet peeves are the crazy names some fishermen call big bass and other terms they use.

Recently I made another fisherman mad because of my response to him. He said they “slayed” them while bass fishing. I responded that most bass fisherman let bass go, especially the bigger ones. He got all upset saying they let everything they caught that day go. When I pointed out “slaying” means killing, he quit talking to me.

Other terms seem totally silly when taking about big bass. When someone says they caught a “donkey” I wonder if they were using carrots for bait. When they say they landed a “slob” or “slobber knocker” I think they are going to need a box of Kleenex. And I could only shake my head in amazement when a fisherman recently claimed he caught a “panda.”

Some terms have been around so long I guess I have gotten used to them. Calling a big bass a “gorilla,” usually pronounced “go-rilla,” has been common for years. And terms like “pig” or “hawg” make me think of bacon rather than bass, but I hear them all the time.

When I talk about big bass I usually use the term “the one that got away.” There have been several times when I fought a bass for long time and called it a catfish when I landed it. I have also called big bass “sticks,” “logs,” and “rocks” soon after setting the hook.

All sports have terms specific to them. But I’m not sure most have as many as fishing.

Best Beer Battered Fish Recipe Ever

Beer battered fish recipe

Fish filets – I like bass
Corn meal – gotta be White Lily!
Beer – your favorite! Just have at least a case for this complicated recipe

Make sure beer is cold by drinking one. Then put fish filets in a big bowl and drink another beer to insure it is still cold.

Put some oil in a pan and turn it on not too hot

Pour cornmeal over fish filets – don’t really matter how much. Drink another beer to insure quality is not deteriorating!

Pour half or less of a beer into bowl, drink the rset. Sturr the cornmeal and vbeer and fishes around and around.

Open a frash rebar and varry carefullily drop on drop of it into oil. If it explodes it is too hot so turn it down while drinking the reset of the reber.

While the erl cools, drink another bar and sturr the fish again to make suer the crnmoal is all over it.

Look at the arl – is it smaking? If it is it probably amks you swat a smoke, so get one shile drnking another reeeber.

Go to fridgedator, get a beer, rutn off the fir on the awl and go watch tv. You weren’t hungry anyway

Summertime Fishing As A Kid

Summertime fishing during my pre-teen years was always fantastic – whether I caught anything or not. From fishing for tiny cats and bream in the branch below my house to riding my bicycle to local farm ponds to try to catch bass, I fished almost every day.

Dearing branch provided some of my early learning experiences about fish behavior. When we were not damming it up or swimming in it, we fished. In a small branch you get up close and personal with the fish. I could watch how they used stumps, limbs in the water, current and other structure to hide and get food. Fish in big lakes act much the same way, just on a large scale. And hopefully, the fish are larger also!

I made my own “flies” for fishing the branch. It was quite a thrill the first time I got a six inch branch minnow to hit one of my creations of chicken feathers and sewing thread. I am sure the action of making it vibrate on the top of the water like a fallen insect was more important than the way it looked, but it worked. I thought I was really an artist, but found I needed bought lures to catch bass, my favorite.

To this day my bass boat is loaded with way more tackle than a dozen people could use in a week. One of my first tackle boxes – and I still have it – was a huge Old Pal box about two feet long. My folks got me a basket for my bicycle one Christmas and had to look all over Augusta to find one big enough to hold my tackle box.

With my tackle box in the basket and my rod and reel across the handlebars, I was ready to go to any pond within three or four miles. If I caught any fish they dangled on a stringer from one handlebar on the way home. I hardly ever went alone, my two friends and I traveled in a pack when we went fishing. That added to the fun.

I always had a few hooks, some line and a couple of sinkers and corks in a little box in my pocket. With my trusty – or maybe rusty – pocket knife I could cut a limb and be fishing in minutes. If there was a cane patch nearby I was in heaven with a real cane pole!

One summer my folks rented a cabin at Vogel State Park for a week. I could not wait to get to the clear mountain stream full of trout and try out my flies. I was eight years old and I knew those rainbows I had read about would just eat up my creation. How wrong I was!

After a couple of fruitless days of fishing the stream in front of the cabin and catching nothing, even with the live worms I had given in and tried, I decided the lake a mile or so downstream was where the fish were hiding. I also thought I needed to be there at the crack of dawn to catch them. I swear I told my folks I was going fishing early the next morning. I think they just didn’t remember with all the vacation excitement, but they were quite relieved when they found me mid-morning, sitting on a rental boat tied to the bank at the marina, catching tiny bream and bass on my earthworms and cut pole.

I had gotten up before anyone else and walked to the lake to fish. My parents found me when they asked a couple of teenage girls out walking around if they had seen a lost child. They told them of the “Huckleberry Finn” they had seen – barefoot but wearing a straw hat, sitting on the boat with a tree branch pole catching fish.
They didn’t get too mad. As a matter of fact, my mom told me years later that she didn’t worry about me as long as I was fishing. She thought a guardian angel watched over kids out trying to catch fish. They let me grow up pretty wild, and I thank them for it.

Camping Out

When you first realize you aren’t tucked in your own bed, your next waking sensation is the smell of canvas. Anyone who has ever camped in their back yard as a kid will never forget that smell. It meant adventure, freedom, fear and many other emotions all rolled into one. From the old army surplus pup tents to fancy Sears tents with floors, I spent many happy nights in them.

Camping out was one of the rites of summer while I was growing up. We organized our overnight stays as well as any expedition to climb Mt. Everest. Each of us had specific things to bring for the group, and each one of us also had their own private treasures. We brought so much stuff we could not have carried it further than our back yards.

Mess kits and matches were all we needed to cook our breakfast of bacon, eggs and toast over an open fire. The bacon was always half burned and half rubbery undercooked, but all delicious. Toast, as soon as it turned a perfect golden brown, was either dropped into the fire or left a little longer to blacken. Eggs stuck to the pan and had to be scraped off as they were eaten.

For supper, we discovered “hobo meals” at church camp. A hamburger patty was placed on a square of tin foil, sliced potatoes, carrots and onion stacked on top of it and all was topped with a hunk of butter. Sealed up and cooked on the campfire coals, it was moist and tender, I was told, if you didn’t stick a hole in the tinfoil while cooking it. I never had one cooked that way. Mine always managed to get stuck.

For desert we always had somemores. They were graham crackers with a Hershey bar and a toasted marshmallow on top. We go more on our hands and face than in our mouth, but they were still great, and you could lick for a long time and make the flavor last.

Sleeping was also an adventure. Each of us boys had our sleeping bags, which we placed directly on the ground for years. We got used to scrounging around until we got comfortable on the rocks and limbs we didn’t remove before spreading the bag out. Then one of us got an air mattress. What a joke. I do not remember even one that was still inflated shortly after blowing it up. We tried every time though.

Once we got the bright idea of sleeping on a lawn lounge chair. That worked if you didn’t mind the bar across your back all night long. And it was tough to roll over in your bag in the chair. We used them often, though. They were still better than the ground.

Something else I will never forget is the way your voice sounded when waking up early in a tent. Maybe it was the lack of sleep, maybe it was the tent itself, but we always sounded funny to each other and ourselves. We never camped more than one night during the weekend because we needed the other night to recover!
Sometimes I think I would like to do that kind of camping again. Then I remember how much I ache getting out of a nice soft bed in the morning and realize backyard camping is best left to the young!