The fly-tiers of my acquaintance are too numerous, muscular and, by their gifts, important to my fishing for me to express an opinion about them, but I will try to portray them by presenting just the facts. All do-it-yourselfers are, er, "different," but fly-tiers are very different—away out in left field. Let me give you a fair example.
A few years ago I dropped in to see a friend who is a commercial photographer. He had a girl on the stand, and you will believe that she was a toothsome dish when I say that she was the highest-priced fashion model at that time and got, as I recall, $100 an hour. She was wearing a gorgeous fur coat, which was being brushed meticulously by the furrier who owned it so as to get the right play of light on it. (Such props are borrowed, of course; the owner takes the publicity for his pay.)
Then entered a mutual friend who is a fly-tier. At the sight of this fur-clad lovely he stopped short and pointed like a bird dog, then bounded forward with a glad cry.
"Gee whiz!" he cried, approximately. "What a gorgeous body...." The model jerked her head around to slay another fresh guy with a dagger look, but the newcomer ignored her to fondle a corner of the coat while he finished his exclamation. "What a gorgeous body that would spin into!"
You may be as puzzled as the model was unless I explain that a fly-tier often "spins" (twists) clipped fur around a sticky silk thread and then winds the furry thread in close turns on the shank of a fishhook to make a body for his imitation of an insect.
"What is it?" he asked as he gazed at the glorious creamy, cinnamon-tinged fur.
"Fisher," said the photographer. Then he indicated the coat with his thumb and added, "Only $12,000, if you own a credit card."
"Yeah?" said the unimpressed fly-tier. "Gosh, I wish I could get just a little piece of it."
"I can give you a few trimmings," said the amused furrier.
"You can? Oh boy! Thanks!" chortled the fly-tier, almost beside himself, and hastily hauled out his business card.