What is the best show in the history of television?
It’s an incredibly easy question to answer, if you just think about it for a moment. It’s not even a subjective question, really. The answer is that obvious!
The best show in the history of television is “Finding Bigfoot” … if they ever actually find bigfoot, that is. If they don’t find bigfoot, the show is not even watchable. In fact, it’s one of the worst shows I’ve ever seen … if they don’t find bigfoot.
As a longtime veteran of the fishing media, I can tell you that a lot of people and a lot of businesses in our industry are looking for bigfoot and positively banking on finding him.
Maybe they’re not looking to capture a hairy, 7-foot creature that walks upright in the Pacific Northwest … or that lives in caves in the Himalayas like the yeti … or that stinks to high heavens in Florida like the skunk ape, but they are trying to grasp something just as elusive … or rare … or nonexistent.
They’re living their own version of “Finding Bigfoot,” and they don’t even realize it.
Some of these people are struggling to make a career as tournament anglers, but they just don’t have the skills — on or off the water. Some of them are making lures or rods or reels that they tell me are the very best in the business, but I can’t tell the difference between what they’re selling and what a dozen other companies were making 10 years ago. Some are running stores in the shadow of bigger, stronger competition and thinking they can prevail by sheer force of personality alone. Some work for non-governmental organizations and think they have the answers to all our problems, but the differences between them and other NGOs are so subtle I think no one could tell them apart.
Ultimately, if we try hard enough, we can each conjure up our own bigfoot. We can even give it a name. We can call it the “big break” or the “tipping point.” We can give it some product name that seemed cool at the time, but is actually just tough to spell and remember. (You know who you are!) We can start a committee and create a program to save the industry, but the only thing different about our program and all the others is the logo.
Bigfoot takes many forms. Maybe that’s why he’s so elusive.
I am not suggesting that anyone reading this give up on his or her goals or dreams. And I am not saying that our industry is the only one in which people get carried away or become unrealistic.
I am suggesting that we take all take a good, hard look at our dreams and make sure they’re still attainable goals that we’re working toward with intelligence and drive. If they’re not that anymore, maybe it’s time to let them disappear into the forest or slip away behind a snow bank.
With ICAST just around the corner, it’s a time of high hopes and big aspirations. That’s a wonderful thing. Perspective is good, too.
Here’s a television program description we will never see: “This week on ‘Finding Bigfoot,’ the team finds bigfoot.”
And that’s the only thing stopping it from being the best show ever.