"Fly fishing is my passion, hunting is my weakness, and mules are a perplexing addiction."

Sunday, June 19, 2011


They have been dubbed The Me Generation, a moniker I'm not at all sure I'd agree with. In fact; I have long been a fan of this current generation, and every since 9/11 I have been adamant about my admiration for these youngsters.

Next to that of my parents, "The Greatest Generation", who literally saved the world, the Me Generation has my thumbs-up vote as heroes, and they lead me to believe that maybe, just maybe, there is hope for our country after all. Not only are these fine, young men and women incredibly smart when it comes to technology and the likes, but in an era of an all-volunteer military, they are taking the fight to the bad guys and keeping the Bin Nasties out of our yard, as it were. There is no draft, and no one is twisting their arms and forcing them to put themselves in harm's way. I, for one, am forever grateful to these youngsters for their sacrifice and determination, and while I feel a great debt of gratitude to this current crop of young twenty and thirty-something's, there is one troubling item that has come to light recently. An oddity that disturbs me greatly, has me doubting, and I believe is cause for great alarm.

No, it's not these young folk's mind-numbing music. I've long maintained, "You can't spell crap without the rap," and while the Me Generation's music certainly isn't up to the quality of classics such as Bob Dylan, softly crooning Positively 4th Street in the key of R, each generation is, I suppose, entitled to their own music, even if it is, in my humble opinion, nothing more than some yokel grabbing his crotch and yelling at you. (Hey, you, get off of my cloud! Stones 1965.)

No, what bothers me most about the Me Generation is far more disturbing and even loathsome. Then again, maybe it's my generation's fault for not passing along our vast knowledge of what's important in life to these lost souls who have absolutely no clue as to the important things in life.

"No clue as to what," you ask?

Well brace yourself, folks, because it troubles me greatly to inform you that this current generation of techno-genius youngsters has no flaming clue as to how to make a SMORE!

"I knowwwww," he said, clasping his palms to his cheeks, and tilting his head in disbelief.

Just when I thought this group of kids was alright, I was recently forced to sit around a campfire one evening and observe a pair of America's finest attempt to construct a simple SMORE. I felt as if I was at a taping of the Jerry Springer Show. Not only was it heart-wrenching to watch marshmallows being systematically destroyed beyond any recognition, the two young chefs looked more like a pair of monkeys trying to make love to a football instead of a couple of intelligent young men creating a time-honored, culinary delight. In fact, I've seen fewer spontaneous bursts of combustion at a reservation fireworks show.

Now I have sat around enough campfires in my life to know that the perfect Smore requires but three ingredients; a Graham cracker, a marshmallow, and a small chunk from a Hersey's chocolate bar. In fact, the chocolate is so important that eight of us, on an outing in the Kings/Sequoia National Park, once rode fourteen miles round trip to liberate a chocolate bar from a backcountry ranger station at Roaring River to complement our planned evening Smores-fest.

At any rate, for the uninitiated, here it is; the simple process of creating the perfect Smore.

First, a slit or hole is poked into the marshmallow at which point a square, or piece of chocolate, is slipped into the hole. The marshmallow is then carefully positioned onto the roasting fork or stick. This must be accomplished with the greatest of care, lest ye spend the next half-hour watching one of nature's marvels burn like a torch at a Klan rally.

The marshmallow is then meticulously roasted to a golden brown over the coals of a fire, (not the flames). I cannot stress the importance of patience during this step. You are seeking a golden brown, people, not a marshmallow that resembles a Kingsford briquette.

And last, but not least, the perfectly roasted marshmallow is placed between two pieces of Graham cracker, then eaten slowly with gusto, to be savored and appreciated. Not worn on one's cheeks, chin, forehead, mustache, shirt, shorts and toes while the participants scream like the Taliban on a suicide run over their third-degree mallow burns.

There you have it, Grasshopper; I have done my duty to impart just a tiny bit of my vast knowledge of such wonders to the new kids on the block. Use this skill wisely.

So far, I am still a fan of the Me Generation, although come to think of it, maybe my generation was the smartest; after all, we did invent tie-die shirts, the pet rock, and the eight-track!

Next time we will discuss proper positioning and expression for The Captain's pose.