Bumper Stickers for Trout Bums

By Jim Mize

The problem with tattoos is that I can think of few things I will never change my mind on. Get dumped by the first girlfriend you tattoo on your arm and the best you can hope for is a girl with the same name.

This is somewhat the same problem I have with bumper stickers. Besides their longevity, I have problems finding a preprinted sticker that says exactly what I want. Some set the wrong tone. Others just become trite with time.

For instance, “Bite Me” sounds like a good fishing slogan until you break down in front of a motorcycle bar. You might end up getting something resembling roadside assistance from fourteen guys with tire irons.

“Fish Tremble at the Sound of My Name” comes across as overly arrogant for me. At the sound of my name, fish are more likely to chuckle or smirk.

Some I just don’t understand, such as “Fishin’ Impossible.” Is that a good thing, a bad thing, or a sign you fish with explosives?

I like the ring of “A fish ate my homework.” Forty years ago, that would have been perfect. Today, it would be more truthful to suggest “I fish between naps.”

You can start to see my dilemma. I want to be careful and exact about the statement I make because with it on my back bumper, I never know when I’m saying it or to whom I’m saying it.

So I’ve been saving plenty of space on my bumper for just the right message. Rather than waiting until I see it, I’ve decided to offer up a few of my own. Should a bumper-sticker-company executive happen to read this, I’ll definitely buy one of these if you print up a bunch.

So here are my bumper stickers for discriminating trout bums like me.

1) Fly fishermen strip on every cast
2) Honk if you have fins
3) I’m not as old as I look . . . these are water wrinkles
4) Give a man a fish and he’ll throw it back
5) I’d rather be lying
6) A bad day fishing reminds me of a story . . .
7) Vote your drift
8) A good fly is like a martini . . . dry
9) Tie one on
10) Hey fish, want me to take you to my leader?
11) Get your hackles up
12) I’ll give up my gun when my pawnbroker gets in a nice 4-weight Sage
13) They are ALL afraid of my big, bad Wulff
14) If you can read this, will you tie on my midge?
15) My cat hacked up a flymph
16) If you like my casting, call 1-800-GOT-FISH
17) I brake for backing
18) My Honor Student has a trout stamp
19) I came, I saw, I got hung
20) If you’re a nymph fisherman, your fly is always down

Note to the bumper-sticker-company executive: Being a nymph fisherman myself, I’m partial to that last one. And if at all possible, please use colors that look good on a medium-gray truck.

Now that I’ve taken care of that, all I need to do now is either have this tattoo removed or meet another girl named Penelope.

You can probably guess why I started with the bumper stickers.


A Creek Trickles Through It

A Collection of Fly-Fishing Humor

A Creek Trickles Through It was awarded First Place in the Southeastern Outdoor Press Association Excellence in Craft Competition. This humorous collection delves into such topics as carnivorous trees, persnickety trout, and the dangers of fly-tying. Whether you are an armchair fisherman or one with well-earned leaky waders, A Creek Trickles Through It will be a welcome addition to your fishing library.

Jim has received over eighty Excellence-In-Craft awards including one for his first book, The Winter of Our Discount Tent, and most recently, Hunting With Beanpole. You can order his books from Amazon or purchase autographed copies through his website at www.acreektricklesthroughit.com

Jim Mize, 204 Percheron Path, Simpsonville, SC 29681, e-mail: jimmize1@cs.com. One-Time Publication Rights Copyright 2022 Jim Mize.