Christmas is coming…an idea to slash the possibility of dodgy fishing presents!

It is December and we are now well on the way to Christmas! This leaves us as anglers a problem – well meaning relatives that attempt to buy us something to do with our hobby however actually buy us something pretty crap.

People that know me know I loathe a spendthrift – which is pretty much why I dislike the way Christmas has become a time when money spent is a substitute for love – you spend more money you love the person more. I just don’t think that is right!

Dont get me wrong – this is not about being against spending lots of cash on presents – this is more about money being spent on thoroughly useless items that end up in the bin.

Let me tell you a story that I bore just about everyone with – a  few years ago we had a Secret Santa scheme in my work – I am in a team all of whom are women, it has always been this way throughout my working life due to the nature of my proffesion. Anyway, a “secret santa” is when you pick a name out of a hat and you buy the person a present.  The first year my newly formed team did this someone had the bright idea of having a “bad taste” theme. This then meant for almost three years a pile of shite was bought that ended up in the bin – the year when the budget was raised to ten quid was the final straw – I received a comedy novelty tie that sang a Christmas tune – in other words utter junk!

So I put my foot down – I told my team it was a waste of money and I would rather give someone I did not know the ten pounds as opposed to buying junk – some people laughed at my moaning but nobody laughed at Christmas the next year when everyone was sitting at their desks with nice gifts – heck even a bottle of wine and a box of chocolates gives you about a 1000 times more enjoyment than a musical bloody novelty comedy tie.

By the way I am the sole bloke in a team of women!

Anyhoo – last year someone bought me some rather funky neoprene fishing gloves – the fingers even fold down so you can tie knots!Now that my friends is a good fishing gift.

I then took the same stance with family members – this was after receiving the same “how to fish” book three years in a row – FROM THE SAME PERSON!

The answer was easy – I created an amazon wish list – the premise is simple – you create a list of stuff you want – send a link out to all your family and they buy you the booty – they are given the option of either sending the stuff straight to your door or to them to wrap up to give to you!

So basically you add the odd book, cd and stuff you might actually want to the list – family then choose a book or cd and you are happy on Christmas day instead of sitting looking forlornly at some weird greatest  hits cd.

So that is pretty much how I cut down on folk wasting there cash unless someone buys me socks, underwear,smelly shower stuff or work shirts – that gear is standard man shit that every true man accepts – no man has enough socks or shower gel! The other good thing bout Amazon is that they sell other stuff as well – not just books and CDs.

And that my friends is how you approach it – create the list and then get the word out there that you have it – maybe get the wife to tell folk or something!

Here is mine if any of you are inclined to buy me anything for Christmas or jut want a nosey at the gear I fancy:

Alistairs Wishlist

I will tell you something – one of the things on my list is one of these funky Kelvin multi tools:

Every Urban Fly Fisher needs one of those bad boys!

Or um….for the folk that absolutely loathe the cold – my hand goes up as I have been known to moan for an entire day about how cold my feet are:

Oh man – they look the biz!

No more musical ties for this Urban Fly Fisher!


  1. Alistair, Great piece of writing. It made my morning. By the way, I bought these last year to go Steelhead fishing and they helped a great deal. If you don’t already own them you might want to add a pair to your wish list, “Neoprene Socks.”*Prod_feeds*Prod_feeds*12082&CAWELAID=447615389


    PS- Since you can relate, I’m taking the 4 year old to the dentist today (which she hates), and then to the doctor for her check-up. Great planning on my part, two doctors in one day. Yea right!

  2. Chuck – that sounds like a double whammy if I ever heard one – you have my sympathy!

    I know I need something considering my pals all give knowing looks as soon as they start talking about winter grayling fishing.

  3. Very valid point. Whats the point of giving a shite present?

    You don’t really wan one of those tools do you? Or are you just being ironic? Glad to see your link dosn’t work, that means you’ll just be getting a spinning flashing bowtie……

    Walked the Luggie at Lunch, ice on the bottom!! It was baltic.

  4. I was wondering why you had not bought me a 100 quid telescope Campbell – the link is now fixed.

    Obviously the took is not as manly as your chainsaw however it only needs to do the odd wee odd job 🙂 I mailed them and asked them to send me one for free but they never got back to me – probably something to do with the snow. #smile#

  5. You are probably better off without it, think yourself blessed they never sent you one. See if B&Q will give you some free tools instead. Let me know when you want to come saw some wood.

  6. For the Love of the wee man Campbell it is named after the infamous River Kelvin – surely as we are in these “almost” absolute zero times it might come in handy?

  7. “I then took the same stance with family members – this was after receiving the same “how to fish” book three years in a row – FROM THE SAME PERSON!”

    I think they’re trying to tell you something Alistair!

  8. Someone who uses one of those comdey tools Alistair wants….

    Just a friendly Glaswegian term for an idiot….

  9. I have three of the things on your wish list, The Wind Up Lamp ( repetitive strain injury from winding too often), The Fire Starter (great big sparks that burns holes in everything you don’t need holes in) and Richard Mabey, Food for Free book (spent a day throwing up after eating Yellow Stainer mushrooms thinking they were field mushrooms). Be careful what you wish for.

  10. This is such an amazing entry and I love to read more of it so that I will be able to look over and have it as an inspiration for further articles to write about when it comes to updates on fly fishing stuffs and it’s pros and cons too. I do hope you will get to visit our official website and let us know what you think about it. Here is the link

    Thanks ahead and happy new year to you and the rest
    of your family. 🙂

  11. Nice site Mark. I’ve book-marked it.

    Now that the holidays are over, exactly what did everyone get in the way of fishing gifts?

    As for myself, Santa got me an old Edwards quadrate bamboo flyrod. Well, I must admit, I bought it, wrapped it, and stuck it under the tree. My wife and daughter were just as surprised as I was when I opened it up. As I mentioned, it was addressed from Santa. My four year old said I must have been on Santa’s good list, my wife mumbled, “he’s on the naughty list now.”

    BTW- the rod is sooooo sweet! Thanks Santa!

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