These guys are using time to disguise a lack of basic ability. Think about it like this. I've never held a golf club in my life yet, if money were no object, could turn up at Royal St. George's Golf Course and tee off at hole number one, chase a golf ball for the entire course, ending up picking it from the eighteenth hole. It wouldn't make me a decent golfer because of this folly. Darren Clarke will have done exactly the same thing when winning The Open in 2011! I would probably require 300 shots, he'd have walked the same route, four times, carding about seventy, per round, to win the ultimate accolade. The thing is we would have started and finished in exactly the same spots. So if the golf course is the fishery and each hole a step towards catching the ultimate prize, which we'll call the eighteenth hole, then given unlimited time will allow anyone to achieve their goal. The time bandit versus the skilled angler. The "off the shelf - Johnie cum latelies" might well catch a decent carp, but will they ever be able to replicate their luck? Do they have the nous to learn anything from success?
It's not my intention to question how others derive their enjoyment from time spent out fishing, yet feel that there is a general dumbing down of the accepted standards due, entirely, to the influences surrounding tunnel visioned carp angling. The few guys I've had conversations with, down at my syndicate venue, seem to be decent folk. Friendly and happy to offer advice, if asked, they all use three rods, sat on rod pods with three matching bobbins, and pile in boilies because that's what the others do! I might be missing something, but it does seem to me that original thinking isn't part of the carp angler's remit. When I, eventually, dust down the Mk IV's and start my carping campaign at the two syndicate waters, then one thing's for certain; I won't be copying what anyone else is doing!
"If what you do is the same as everyone else, why should your results be any different to everyone else?" This is an approximated quote from a Carl & Alex (Smith), two very successful Youtubers, offering and was attributed to their, non-angler, Dad. Reservoir Diaries? I'm not too sure, but it certainly hit home with me. It's not a new concept. Going back to the late 80's, Eddie Turner had offered very similar advice when I chatted with him about my decision to stop using livebaits, in preference for dead bait, for my pike fishing. "Make sure you do it different" was the crux of his valued opinion. I've stuck with it ever since!
Thinking outside the box is bi-product of my Unilever days. Once Sarah Frost ( I often wonder where she is now? ) had given me the chance to learn how business operated beyond the shop floor? I've, since, used these structured processes in my approach to many other aspects of life. Problem solving and understanding the benefit of change are now fundamental in the way I do things. No! Getting my hair cut or swapping split cane for carbon ain't gonna happen, but I still recognise the advances that have been made within a whole range of spheres which now influence my life. At Fujifilm SIS we use "Continuous Improvement" strategies to help move the business forward. In reality these are just re-branded ideas from those which Sarah had been championing way back in the late 1990's/ early 2000's!
One of the previous Fuji CEO's had made quite a big deal of his "don't look back, look forward" rhetoric. Although his reasoning is well founded, the message was not. History can teach us many lessons, if we are receptive to the concept? We only learn from past mistakes, simply ignoring them is a one way passage to failure, for a business, or another blank session as an angler.
So here I am, in search of that edge which will give the advantage over the "clones" who are unwilling/unable to think for themselves. Bread, worms, umpteen varieties of particle baits which can be purchased from Tesco, thus not endorsed by the major brand labels with the resultant carp tax, are the way forward. Let's not overlook potatoes, carp love them and I wouldn't mind betting that my syndicate fisheries have never seen one offered as a bait? The scope is only limited by my own imagination. Whilst I'm still searching for that "something" which will define my approach, what is not up for discussion is the use of the modern technology which is available to all anglers. Hooks and associated terminal tackle items are of a quality that were unimaginable in the the 1990's. To ignore this progress would be akin to the rejection of Darwin? All I need to do is find that little niche into which my bait is offered in a way that the fish aren't suspicious of. It's not a MENSA exercise, yet the vast majority of folk, who go fishing, still fail the exam.