A Picture and a Joke on Bo

Some of the Classic I contestants. Photo courtesy of Harold Sharp.

This may qualify as an interesting photo. Ray Scott invited all the first Classic contestants and three outdoor writers who were there to the 1995 Classic for a reunion. It was a great time to see all those faces again.

Looking at this picture, though, reminded me of a good story. As you know, each of the anglers at the early Classics were restricted by the weight of tackle they could bring. We made a huge deal of it by having a weigh-in for their tackle and if an angler was over in weight, Ray and I got to pick out anything we wanted until their tackle box made the weight limit.

At one Classic, I believe it was the 1980 Classic in New York that Bo Dowden won, we were weighing the boxes and Bo’s box was over. So Ray and I started collecting lures out of his box. I got a Zara Spook and hung it on my cap.

Later we continued with the press conference and while Ray was conducting the briefing, I got with Homer Circle and Bodie McDowell and we cooked up a joke to play on Bo.

I gave Homer two $50 bills and when I got back up to go over the Classic rules, I still had the Zara Spook hanging on my cap. Homer and Bodie were sitting together and Bodie said, “Let me see that Spook hanging on your cap Harold.”

I took the Spook off my cap, handed it to him and then continued on with my brief. As I was talking, Homer and Bodie were examining the lure and suddenly Bodie said, “I’ll give you $20 for this Spook.” I replied, “I’m sure you would Bodie, I know what it’s worth same as you do.” Bodie then handed it to Homer.

As I continued with the rules talk, Homer said, “I’ll give you $100 for this Spook.” I said, “Homer, you just bought yourself a Spook.” Homer handed me my two $50 bills back.

Later that night Bo came up to me and said, “That Spook ain’t worth $100, I have a barrel full of them.” I replied, “Don’t tell Homer that.”

To this day Bo still doesn’t know what we did.

Unfortunately a lot of folks in the picture above aren’t with us anymore. Glin Wells, Tom Mann, Homer Circle, Bobby Meador, Stan Sloan, Al St. Romain and Shorty Evans have all passed. But their memories still remain.

  • Bill M

    Awesome story. Can’t imagine Bass Fishing Today without the gentlemen in that picture.

    • Yeah Bill, I have to agree with you. I’m actually having the pleasure of meeting with Stan Fagerstrom tomorrow. Stan was one of the early writers of bass fishing. He started around the same time as Homer Circle and has written for everything bass fishing since 1949. He’s been one of my heroes since I started reading about bass fishing in the early 70s and we’re going to be doing a series on him the next few weeks.

      Of course there’s also the anglers in the picture who paved the way for all of us. Without any of these gentlemen, I don’t think we would have what we have today. Thanks for the comment.