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Tpayneful

Anyone read Sowbelly?

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Last week I read Sowbelly, the history of the chase for the world record largemouth bass.  It was really interesting to read about the guys in California chasing the record, Texas trying to breed a world record and a guy that was trying to grow a world record!  I liked the book but it had a poor ending.  

Bob Crupi was interesting but bitter, Mike Long seemed like a jerk and Jed Dickerson seemed like a nice guy.  The thing that jumped out at me was that a lot of these guys sacrifice everything to chase the record.  The obsession seems to be destructive.

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Guest btlva

Yeah I read it. It's a pretty interesting book. I'd probably describe the "characters" the same way you did.

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I read the book last year. It was a good read, but I know SEVERAL people mentioned in the

book. Mike Long is not a jerk, Doug Hannon was misquoted, David Campbell of the SAL program

and my husband go back twenty five years. I don't know Bob Crupi, but Doug Hannon said that he has been fishing with him and he is really a nice guy. Sometimes writers put their own slant on things

to make the book more interesting to the readers. Don't take for gospel everything you read or hear.

I did enjoy the book, more for entertainment value.

It could also be said that professional tournament fishing is an obsession as well. In the world of

sports it's called, "No Pain, No Gain".  I would describe many of these individuals as PASSIONATE

and DEDICATED. No doubt that David Campbell's life work has been centered around big bass

genetics, Doug Hannon's on catching and observing double digit bass, my husband's on keeping

them alive in captive conditions. Just my 02 cents!

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Guest ncbass24

I read the book and found it very intresting. All of these attempts at a world record, yet the same record has stood for over 75 years.

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Mike Long is one of the nicest guys you could ever meet. When Mike took Monte burke(the author) out fishing with him, Monte kept asking him about the other anglers. He kept trying to dig up dirt to make the chapter "San Diego Zoo" more interesting. Mike asked monte to stop asking questions about the other guys but Monte wouldnt sooo. Mike brought him back to the dock and ended the interview. That is why Monte painted Mike out to be a jerk but you wont find that in the book. Also Jed, Mac and Mike Winn are all friends with Mike Long and John Kerr. Mike Long was trying to keep the world record club from going under when he reported those big fish dead but it didnt help. They got too close and scared the insurance company. I know most of those guys in that book and Monte did a good job of portraying them IF HE LIKED THEM. Mike kicking him off his boat and Crupie being anoyed with him led Monte to make them look like Jerks. Overall its a very entertaining read and fairly accurate but the fueds were highly exaggerated

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Guest btlva

Doesn't kicking someone off your boat just for "asking questions about other guys" make you a jerk?

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Doesn't kicking someone off your boat just for "asking questions about other guys" make you a jerk?

Not if the person asking the questions is trying to dig up dirt on other people. I would say just the opposite in that situation.  He (mike long) didnt run his mouth about other guys, I think that makes him the good guy in that instance.

If the reporter was told the first, second, third time...."No, I am not answering those questions" and he kept asking them, I think it was rather nice to take him back to the dock instead of throwing him in the water and chucking Huds at his head   ;)

Wayne

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After I read the book I went and looked up who caught that 25lb LMB last year and it turned out to be Jed, Mac and Budda.  Now I at least have the foggiest idea what is going on and suspect that the record will be caught one of these years.  Thank you guys for your views of the guys in the book.  I was wondering if the book was completely accurate in the competition betweeen fisherman.

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Guest btlva

Yeah I guess talking trash about the other guys would have been a worse thing to do. I probably just would have remained silent. Nothing bothers an interviewer more than completely ignoring their questions.

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It seemed to me like Jed, Mac and Budda came off looking bad. The book (and a fishing show about them that I watched) makes it seem like they observe other anglers fishing good spots and then run back early the next day, rent a rowboat, and steal the spots other people found by hard work.

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Daniel that was kind of an inside joke amongst friends. The part about those new guys never being heard from again because the guys caught and brought in bigger fish is pretty far fetched. All the trophy hunters are competetive with each other. If you go to sombody elses water and show them up then you just bsiyoby. Its like bunch of friends ribbing each other. Again the author sesationalized this. One of the major themes about the book was all the feuds between fisherman and bait makers and record believers vs doubters. All the guys out here know each other and have a healthy respect of one another.

Jed Budda and Mac are depicted favorably but they are the worst guys to fish around. I have been on dixon before durring the spawn when it was just me and them crusing the shorelin looking for big fish. They each had a boat and comunicated by cell phone. They would work like a team to make sure I had very little water to look at unless they had already been there. They didnt break any laws but they dont make any friends out there either.

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Do Jeb Budda and Mac really run out early to grab the rental boats and get to other peoples spots ?  Thats how it was reported that they got the record bass. Spied on another fisherman who was on the fish and then ran out early next day to beat him to the rental boats and his fishing spot. They sounded like really poor sports when I read how they go about fishing in sowbelly and the articles written about them.

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The guy before them (I think his name was Kevin) was there all day sunday and couldnt get her to "go". Mac Jed and Budda were there watching him fish for her. they offered him money to let them fish for her but he declined. Keven had to call his woman and tell her he wasnt coming home until dark and used one of thier phones so even though they tried to buy their chance they were cool to the guy and game him his space. Now Kevin couldn't be there the next day so it was fair game to who ever got there first. I dont think it was unsportsman like or anything else that could be concidered wrong when they were the firt ones to the rental boats the next morning. They bought a camping permit which gives them first shot at a rental boat. there were some kids there the day before and there were first in line outside the gate but Jed and co were already inside with their permits. If anything I would consider this smart. But there is no doubt in my mind if Kevin would have came back the next day they would have beaten him to the fish. They are very agresive at that lake. They put in the time and have paid their dues. Your observations are not wrong, you dont make a lot of friends fishing in a small lake that holds the world record and is fished by all the other big names. Its very competetive. One thing to consider is Keven had the better part of a day and couldnt get her to go. They had her biting within a couple hours. yeah I know they snagger her but she was still biting. I beleive very few guys have the skills to get that fish to go and even less would get her in.

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