Confession of a non-tier

I don’t tie flies.

This may come as a surprise to people who don’t know me or fish with me. A lot of people assume that if one is a fly angling person, one is automatically a fly tying person. In my case, that is not the case.

I’ve never tied a fly.

I have never sat down at a vice and even tried tying before. In fact I’ve never watched someone else tie a fly, in person, although I will admit to having watched super fast-motion videos of people tying flies.

I have no interest in tying flies.

Despite being a creative person, I really don’t feel the tug of fly tying. I can understand the satisfaction of tying, of catching a fish on a pattern of one’s own creation. I can see how some folks derive great pleasure from creating their own patterns and giving them unique names. I like creating words, and drawing pictures, but I am not drawn to tying.

I don’t have the time to tie flies.

I seem to have no  trouble filling my free time with other creative endeavors. I suppose, hypothetically, I would make time to tie if I were to take up the craft. Perhaps that’s a concern: that I may be consumed by tying and would never get anything else done.

I’m fiscally too practical to tie flies.

The cost of tying materials and equipment far exceeds what I spend on perfectly fine-quality, store-bought flies.

If I were to tie flies…

I already have a pattern in mind. It would be an ant pattern with a parachute that resembles a checkered doo rag, and I would call it the “Ant Jemima”. And I would trademark the pattern and license the tying rights to the highest bidder, and retire on the royalties. And then I would have the time and the fiscal freedom to tie flies.

Ant Jemima®

The Ant Jemima® (AKA “Antie J”)




  1. Howard Levett

    Nice fly in a racially motivated way, but you’ll never get rich!

    • Kirk Werner

      It came to me on a river last summer while fishing a black ant (and not being able to see it in low light) after having pancakes with maple syrup for breakfast. Nothing racially motivated bout that!

  2. Big Tuna

    I think you should name it the Hamas Mammas.

    • Kirk Werner

      Might have to rework the parachute in order to accommodate that name 😉

  3. Fred Telleen

    I’ve got a pattern I call Ant Misbehaving. Maybe our ants can mingle.

    • Kirk Werner

      Ant Misbehaving. I like that rather a lot. If there’s not already, there should be a website for ants to meet up.

      • Mark

        My aproach to the subject of tying flies is absolutely the same! Once was ONE who said the truth. God bless your pen. However I have successfuly tied some flies on relatively big hook. When is going on trout flyfishing I can with peace and calm recommand You Sir, ‘Two Big Hearted River’ by Ernest Hmingway. :- )
        God bless You and keep your line tide
        He,(the bear torn man) craweled to the Oscar

        • Kirk Werner

          Thanks for the kind comments, as always. And yes indeed, the bear-torn man did win, despite my review 😉

  4. Ben

    I’d fish one of those ant jemina flies!

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