Death By Powerpoint – an Update

Hi everyone, blog subscribers and visitors! Nice of you to drop by!

Things have been quiet here lately, but there is a reason for that. Many of you saw my last post, “We Never Know,” and I finally replied this morning in the comment thread to thank each of you who posted your concern, condolence, and support.

Right after making that post, I traveled to Maine for an extended working-combination-pleasure road trip, leaving Pennsylvania on Friday March 14th. Saturday and Sunday the 15th and 16th, I taught two days of fly tying classes at Eldredge Brothers Fly Shop in Cape Neddick, Maine. Then the following Tuesday I presented to the local Sebago Chapter of Trout Unlimited, where for some reason, there was a record-crowd of about sixty-five persons in attendance. It was very affirming to have such a good turnout. Chapter members said they can’t remember the last time they had to get out extra chairs. It was a nice evening and everything turned out well.

I must confess, my program was on Pond Fishing, and I intended to bring along my slide projector, which I did, to show a handful of images to augment my presentation. But when I opened the box the day before my program to select the “Maine pond fishing slides” from my Moosehead Lake program, I could not, because the tray in the projector box was labeled, “The Miracle Mile,” which was there from my last presentation in November. Oops. So I made notes and delivered my presentation informally, without anything extra other than me, myself, and I; talking, asking questions to get audience participation and make them think, and answering questions…which as it turned out, all went really well. I was a little concerned that I would run short on time, not having the extra “picture show” as it might have been, but it went nearly an hour, and not one person walked out. My brother even stayed awake; he has a habit of nodding off during conversations or a movie in the evening. The best compliment I received was from Maine Warden Tim Spahr, who was present because of his close friendship with my niece, Emily, who was also there. Tim is one of the leading “stars” in the reality TV show “Northwoods Law.” Anyway, Tim said it was refreshing to see a presentation and not have to endure another “Death by Powerpoint” program; which I thought, as Emily related to me afterward, was quite funny.

Tim remarked that so many programs these days are all done by Powerpoint, which can be a good thing, and maybe one day I’ll progress to that level of modern technology, but for now, I’m still using slides…or not…and a Motorola Razr cell phone. The other night I sent some text messages to a friend as we were making arrangements to get together for beer and a classic rock band; it was the first time I’ve texted anyone in over two years, and it felt like I was chiseling on a stone tablet, especially compared to many of my friends who have the latest model cell phones with voice-activated texting capability. Finally I called her directly on my cell phone and we handled the arrangements the old-fashioned way. 😉

My trip back to Pennsylvania included a visit at my daughter’s in Connecticut, where I enjoyed some quality time with her and my three grand children. It was a special joy to see Grace, who was at the time just over five months old, and she’s at the stage where it doesn’t take much to make her smile. And what a smile she has! Blue eyes, possible reddish-blonde hair, with the female genetics of my beautiful mother, my lovely late wife Lou Anne, and my charming daughter Kim as well. The girl is going to be a little beauty, I have a feeling. Pappy is very proud!

I also had tickets to a March 20th show for the Samantha Fish Band at Bridge Street Live in Collinsville, Connecticut, just seventeen miles from my daughter’s in Granby. I could go on about the show, but I’ll just say the youtube videos do not do justice to seeing her perform live! It was fantastic! The drummer, Go-Go Ray, was the best, hands down, I have ever seen anywhere in a live performance. And her guitar playing is right up there. Samantha was awarded Best New Artist by the BMA in 2012 for her CD, “Runaway.” Anyone like rockin’ blues with screaming guitar? Check her out.

On tying flies, the site has been very good me, ever since I joined it in May of 2011. My individual order total is now over seventy-five, with an estimated sales amount of more than eight-thousand dollars. Not a full-time income, but certainly a nice addition to the other things I do. I confess to being a bit backed up on my orders, with my schedule of the Fly Fishing Shows, traveling a bit, and my recent musical involvement as my regular readers know. The musical side seems to keep expanding, as I have been offered the chance to fill-in for a friend’s band, Main Street, which plays a mix of country, country-rock, classic rock, and good ol’ rock ‘n’ roll, this coming Friday April 4th, which is also my birthday. For that upcoming gig, I’m learning another three dozen songs, which I play while working on my fly tying orders. It’s a local gig, and things are very possibly going to work out that the guys in my band, Pepper Street, will also be present, so we may be filling in three or four numbers during both Main Street breaks. A “Two-fer!”

I wanted to update my readers on what’s been going on, but I do need to get back to the vise. Gotta fill those orders!