FDS: September 2004 Archives

September 30, 2004


Jack Daniels: weaker than ever!

The whiskey now registers 80 proof, instead of 86 (or 40 percent alcohol vs. 43 percent), and some drinkers feel betrayed.

"You can't screw with a legend like that and get away with it," said Frank Kelly Rich, editor of Modern Drunkard magazine. "I'm sure Jack is spinning in his grave."

Frank Sinatra's not, though


Fishing off the coast at Camp Lejeune is as easy as A,B,C. Just stay out of the bombing range. If a reporter tags along, yank her chain.

"I use real light-line spinning tackle that is 8- to 10-pound-test [line] so if I have to break it off I can do it without ruining a whole bunch," Brafford said. "And I have a heavy egg sinker on the bottom, which I paint black."


"Otherwise they get eaten off," Brafford said with a snicker.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Solunar Tables

I checked the solunar tables again after I figured out that I transposed a digit in Ocracoke Inlet's longitude. I had it as 76 10 West, when it is really 76 01 West. It made a big difference in the calculations. The major and minor periods actually start an hour earlier than what the program had originally calculated. I've updated the tables I put up for download.

On the positive side, major and minor times for Hatteras Inlet and the rest of the island are about the same as the ones for Ocracoke Inlet.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:05 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 29, 2004


Soon the day will come when everyone is shod in shad.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Water temps off Hatteras and Ocracoke look promising.

Posted by Bigwig at 04:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


More big Drum; from Ocracoke and Hatteras.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:58 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack


It could have been us.

Gosier and Curlew islands were gone, all traces of those landmarks carried away by Ivan's fury. The famed lighthouse on the northern tip of the main island in the Chandeleur chain, surrounded by hundreds of yards of land before Ivan, sat 300 yards from the nearest remains. Breton Island, a favorite anchorage of anglers for decades, was reduced to three small slivers of grass.

In all, nearly 50 miles of white sand beaches and dunes -- important storm shields for interior marshes -- had been erased. The only thing left was a patchwork of battered grasses, struggling for survival just inches above the water.

But wait! There's a positive side to the disaster! The widespread destruction gives scientists a chance to practice their island reconstruction skills, skills that N.C. might need one of these days.

More exciting, Penland said, is the role the storm's fury can play in helping man rebuild the islands quicker than ever before. That's because when the storm tides wash over the islands, they carry the sand and dunes from the Gulf side of the islands and spread them across a wide area on the bay side of the chain, creating large "fans," or sand flats.

"Basically, the storm has readied the ground for spring planting," Penland said. "If we move in there this spring and begin planting, the evidence says we can help rebuild these islands in record time, maybe in a year or two.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:19 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Not Fishin'

Gosh, there's nothing like a Florida sportsman when it comes to giving the fish a fighting chance.

It would nearly strip the huge reel, and they would run it down, thinking they would get to see it. But then it would sound again, disappearing into the darkness.

After nearly four hours, one of them decided he would have his shotgun ready if the shark got close enough. It did. He got off three or four shots, and the monster fish gave up.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:53 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 28, 2004


1. Snookie


2. I wanna be able to do this.

3. And one that's not safe for work.

That's no way to keep a beer cold, lady.

4. But at least once she's done with it, it won't take up a lot of space in the garbage can.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:46 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


This will never happen to one of my descendants, as I am no longer allowed to collect my precious beer bottles and cans.

A few months ago, Loewer took the Burger Beer can, circa 1935 - mustard yellow with a cartoonish camel asking "Are you thirsty?" - to a Dayton sports bar. Friends there told him he might have a collector's item. Next, he discovered an identical can sold for nearly $16,000 on eBay last year

Not that I'm bitter or anything.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Fishin' And Not Cookin'

Take a lime and a red onion with you to the inlet, and you can eat what you catch Peruvian style.

Cebiche, pronounced "sa-BEE-cheh" (also spelled ceviche and seviche), is raw fish and seafood marinated in acidic fruit juice, usually lime. Considered a delicacy, it's popular throughout Latin America. Cebiche fans adore its pure seafood flavors accented by seasonings.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Drinkin' and Cookin'

They probably taste better than bunker balls.

Bourbon Balls

1 cup vanilla wafer crumbs, 1 cup sifted confectioners' sugar, 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 3 tablespoons light corn syrup, 1/4 cup bourbon , 1 cup chopped pecans, unsweetened cocoa powder (for coating).

Combine the crumbs, confectioners' sugar, 1/4 cup cocoa powder, corn syrup and bourbon in a food processr or electric mixer. Blend until thoroughly mixed. Do this before getting drunk. Roll tablespoonfuls of the mixture to form small balls. (Mixture should be soft. If it is too dry to roll easily, add more corn syrup.) Spread cocoa powder on a plate and roll the balls in it to coat them. Store the bourbon balls in an airtight tin and refrigerate them. Makes about three dozen. The more liqour you add...the better it gets.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:30 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Dipshits On Parade

Vodka; the home dentist's best friend.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


A Christmas present for Mrs. Mangum.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:16 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Why doesn't N.C. ever see this kind of fishing grant?

More than $440,000 will be used to assist in marking and recapturing red drum, a popular species sought by saltwater fishermen.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


The Outer Banks aren't the only place where the October fishing is good.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 27, 2004


Sounds like the South Point may be getting overwashed at high tide.

If you fish the south end watch when the tide is coming in or you will end up driving in running board deep water, stay over next to the boundary markers and you should be okay, the water was not as deep over there. If the tide catches you, you'll have a long drive through water.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:21 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack


The new Iron City aluminum bottles are cool no matter out you cut them--literally.

They conducted a blind tasting of Iron City poured from glass bottles, cans and the new aluminum bottles, and several judged the lager from the new bottles to be the coldest.

When Lockerman unveiled the new bottles, they peered inside and squeezed them. They even cut one in half to check out the thicker aluminum -- three times as much as in a typical can. One woman said the feel of it -- much stiffer than a can -- reminded her of those colored aluminum tumblers that were all the rage in the 1950s.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:12 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Here's a small step in the right direction.

Marine biologists are finally going to stop listening only to commercial interests and take a look at the role menhaden play in the overall marine ecology.

Recreational fishermen have been convinced for decades that the commercial harvest of menhaden has affected the inshore game fish fishery, but scientists, often with ties to the menhaden industry, have resisted the idea. Now that resistance is lessening.

An Atlantic menhaden workshop to address the ecological role of the species will be held Oct. 12-14 at the Holiday Inn, 525 First St., Alexandria, Va. Federal, state and academic fishery scientists will attend, and the public is invited.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Another good sign for October--flounder and puppy drum fishing on the Pamlico Sound has been excellent.

The flounder are concentrated in certain areas, and lately they seem to prefer choppy water. The wind blows small minnows and menhaden close to the grass line, and schools of flounder, speckeld trout, and puppy drum are usually in hot persuit.

Fishing on the Pamlico has been very consistent on our last few outings. Flounder have been abundant, ranging in size from eight inches long to some weighing almost six pounds.

The puppy drum are agressive when they hit the lures. They are cruising through the schools of minnows and feeding heavily. When we see activity on the surface, we quickly cast grubs to that area and get ready fror a strike.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:56 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


This sounds like fun.

"To get an idea of how strong and how fast those huge fish are, get a saltwater rod and go out to the nearest interstate highway," Sutton said. "Cast at every 18-wheeler that comes by. When you hook one, you'll know what I'm talking about."

Posted by Bigwig at 10:49 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 26, 2004


Drank a number of beers last night at the festival. I'd have to say the surprising hit of the night for the group I was with--The Oxymoronic Scotsman, a new neighbor who just moved here from Seattle and a coworker from Unc--he's from India, so I shall call him Gilgamesh from now on--was Unibroue's Éphémère, which was amazingly light and crisp. It's supposedly available at Sam's in Durham and the Peace Street market in Raleigh. If it is I'm definitely taking some on the October trip. That'll fit in well with the Natural Light and Miller crew. The Outer Banks Brewing Station's Lemon Grass wheat was again one of the Scotsmans favorites. The Tinkov lager was also damn good, though they don't have a distributor in NC yet.

The various casked ales were a disappointment. There was just no way to keep them at the 50 or so degrees they needed-- the tent they were stored in just wasn't enough insulation from the 80 degree weather earlier in the day, so the beers within came out overly warm. In particular I think the temps ruined what was otherwise an excellent attempt at a IPA/barleywine reminiscent of Dogfish Head's Raison D'etre.

I also didn't care for the Creme Brule Java Stout from Kuhnhenn--it was like drinking candy, though I must admit that they succeded in their aim of making a stout smells and tastes like creme brulee. I'm just not a sweet stout kind of guy.

Magic Hat's #9 was excellent, as usual. Their Jinx was also damn good. I'd link to the individual beers, but Magic Hat's site, as pretty as it is, is impossible to navigate.

Lemme see here--who else? The Williamsburg Brewing Company's Stock Ale was good, as was the Pinstripe Red Ale from Ska. Highland Brewing had a good Gaelic Ale, and I remember going back to Thomas Creek a number of times. After that the night descended into a welter of IPAs, doppelbock and various barely covered cleavages approaching to bum cigarettes or a light.

Good times.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:36 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack


One down. One to go.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:09 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


The Drum are definitely in at Ocracoke.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:08 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 25, 2004


If anyone else is going to the beer festival tonight, I'll see you there.

Posted by Bigwig at 04:55 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


It's still too early to tell, but permit me a "Dammit!".

Meanwhile, the 11 am Jeanne forecast has the system weakening to a tropical depression before it reaches NC.

Posted by Bigwig at 01:03 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Solunar Tables

I've made the November 2004 Ocracoke Inlet Solunar calculations available here. The October calculations are also available.

Posted by Bigwig at 12:51 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 24, 2004


Total damage to Hatteras from Isabel? Almost one hundred million dollars.

The storm caused $96.8 million in damage to Hatteras Island, according to a Dare County estimate. It destroyed businesses, homes and protective dunes along the beach. Parts of the island resembled a wasteland. Isabel cut three breaches across the island between the communities of Hatteras and Frisco, leaving Hatteras villagers with no exit by land.

Jeanne's latest track has her crawling up the coast all the way from Cape Canaveral to Corolla.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Ferry reservations

Called and confirmed my times. Just hope we can go storm free until then and not go thru last years mess. Both Curt and I will be taking the Swan Quarter ferry @ 9:30am on Saturday the 16th. Dawg, I assumed and hope you and Greg will also be on this one as well. Hope so as we'll have some time to tie rigs and talk fishing. My return trip is for leaving Ocracoke on Thursday, 10/21 via Swan Quarter @ 12:30pm. Last one out. Good luck to all and plan to see everyone in 21 days and 18 hours, but who's counting...

Posted by Mason at 04:42 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Dipshits On Parade

They breed 'em dumb in Roanoke.

Posted by Bigwig at 04:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 23, 2004


If you're going to market inhalable alcohol, it might be a good idea to actually allow people to get buzzed off your product.

"They shouldn't waste their breath trying to outlaw this machine," said Steve Baskinger, owner of Bask's Bar and Grill in West Paterson, N.J. "You can't get drunk. You don't get anything from it. It takes 20 minutes to inhale a quarter of a shot."

The alcohol without liquid, or AWOL, machine vaporizes booze so customers can inhale their drink rather than swallow it. Its maker touts the dispenser as a way to get a buzz without the calories, carbs or much of a hangover.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:55 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Dipshits On Parade

Father Charged for Drunk 2-Year-Old

State police say the girl was treated Sunday at a hospital for a blood alcohol level of point-one-four – nearly twice the legal limit for an adult.

Troopers say Eric Carney of Little Falls was at a friend's house when he gave his daughter a taste of beer. He says she probably drank more on her own while he wasn't looking.

Uh-huh. Because every kid I've ever met just loves the taste of beer.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Beer. Still good for you.

Researchers at the University of Western Ontario found that drinking one beer provides the same increase in antioxidant activity in the body as a glass of red wine, which has long been touted for its medicinal properties.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:50 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack


College binge drinking. It's more widespread than you think.

Kiptoo, of Kenya Polytechnic, says he drinks to get drunk. "Alcohol has made me spend nights in a pub, got me into the wrong bus for home as well as vomiting blood." But Kiptoo is not about to slow down.
"Drinking at campus is rampant," says Kiki, a student leader at a private university. "You will get students drinking to celebrate the end of their exams and on every Thursday, a day that serves as the Campus night. A little drinking is also done on weekends and in between classes because there is a bar or two outside the campus."

Posted by Bigwig at 10:46 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Sea Bass

Don't know about down this way, but the Sea Bass season in Delaware looks to be excellent.

There was a lot of colder-than- normal water on the bottom during much of the summer," Hawkins said. "Just two weeks ago, I had eight codfish caught. ... Normally, we don't see cod this far south during the summer months. During the past few weeks the water seems to have mixed, the temperatures are more uniform, and since mid-August the sea bass have been considerably more cooperative."

Posted by Bigwig at 10:40 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Jeanne is now predicted to come ashore in Florida, then curve up through Georgia, South Carolina, & NC. Ocracoke looks safer with each update.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:30 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


48 inch drum being landed at the point on Hatteras.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:23 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 22, 2004


Weirdest. Hurricane. Ever.

Yep, you read that name right. Ivan. It's looped around, recrossed Florida and is back in the Gulf of Mexico, strengthening.

Meanwhile, Jeanne is also following an odd track, one that puts landfall at Wilmington sometime on Monday.

Lisa looks like it will remain at sea.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:40 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Next time someone tries to bum a cigarette from you in a bar, let him.

A crowd outside a Denison Avenue bar beat a Cleveland man to death early Sunday after the man apparently refused someone's request for a cigarette.

Posted by Bigwig at 01:45 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

The FDS Prayer

Please, Lord, let there not be a hurricane.
Please, Lord, is there is a hurricane, let it not be a major hurricane.
Please, Lord, if it is a major hurricane, let it not make landfall.
Please, Lord, if the hurricane makes landfall have it hit somewhere other than North Carolina.
Please, Lord, if the hurricane hits North Carolina, have it it hit Wilmington.
Please, Lord, if the hurricane hits the Outer Banks, let the eye come ashore at Nag's Head, sparing Ocracoke the strong winds of the Northeastern quadrant.
Please, Lord, if the hurricane hits Ocracoke, let it do so early enough so that the island has recovered before the time for our fishing trip arrives.

Please, Lord, if after all this you're still ignoring us and let a major hurricane hit Ocracoke in late September and ruin the fishing trip we've planned on all year.....

Please convince our wives to let us go fishing in November.


P.S. Umm...yea. All those other people that have suffered because of hurricanes this year?

Bless them and stuff too.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:29 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack


Jeanne is no longer expected to weaken before it approaches the coast. However, the storm discussion indicates that the expected forcast track puts the storm a little farther to the west than the graphic indicates--so it looks like they are expecting it to make landfall somewhere between Charleston and Little River.

Lisa looks like it is going to stay out to sea at this point.

Posted by Bigwig at 08:57 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 21, 2004


Beer. Is there anything it can't do?

Similar studies suggested that soaking meat in beer for several hours before grilling also reduces the chance of these carcinogenic compounds forming. It can be any beer, so long that it is not non-alcoholic beer. Other studies have detailed that many of the herbs and spices used in cooking will bind to the carcinogens, allowing them to pass through the system untouched.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:53 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


The bad news: Jeanne is aiming for the NC coast again.

The good news: She's expected to weaken.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Islay, the the whisky drinker's mecca.

That Laphroaig 10-year-old was a potent dram that smelled like a smokehouse and slid down with elegant fire, and it's from one of the seven whisky distilleries that dot this small and remote western Scottish island.

Been considering bringing a Laphroaig with me on the trip, but have put it off so far. I figure its common enough that, if I need be, I can get it there.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Keep an eye peeled for interesting beach debris this year. It could be worthwhile.

Stover was walking the beaches on the north end of Ocracoke Island after Hurricane Isabel when he located a huge section of wreck. "It had wooden tree pegs, no metal nails, and looked to be 18th century," he said. A little later he said a wave brought in another piece right in front of him. That one had the nicest solid brass square fittings he had ever seen, and copper plate sheeting, indicative of a warship. "It was two huge finds in one day," he noted, saying they were sections from two different ships.

The park service did a sonogram of the first ship and noticed a small bottle wedged inside. Stover couldn't believe it when the diamond rolled out of it. But duty-bound, he didn't pocket the little beauty. Federal law requires all finds on national park grounds to be turned in, Stover added.

Posted by Bigwig at 08:49 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

You might be a redneck if...

You own a video called: The Art of Castnetting. Just started taking some more lessons last night. It's really easier than it looks once you get the basics down. That said it also requires some practice as well. Pretty much the same as learning to fish w/conventionals, just put your time in on the practice side. I do remember feeling helpless last year as the finger mullet would just slowly swim right by in front of us. I vowed in a drunken stupor NEVER AGAIN! Plus I don't like the idea of having to ask other folks if we can have some finger mullet. Really, if you surf fish having the skill to use a cast net is a no brainer. Therefore for my fishing brothers, I'll give casting net lessons in exchange for alcohol or magic bait. However, better catch me early in the day as I can get a little shakey in the evenings!

Posted by Mason at 03:29 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 20, 2004

Gamakatsu hooks

Can anybody find any "bleeding" Gamakatsu circle hooks in 8/0 size or greater? I have Googled for them but can't find any bigger than 7/0. Going to Charlotte next week so I'll check in at the Bass Pro superstore. However, they didn't have them on-line so not sure if they'll have them or not. Not even sure they make them bigger than 7/0. Dawg, where did you get yours?

Posted by Mason at 04:13 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


Another big ass flounder, courtesy of the Red Drum.

Posted by Bigwig at 03:07 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack


But Honey, it's medicine! You wouldn't want me to catch bladder cancer, would you?

Posted by Bigwig at 02:56 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Cold weather effects

Looks like the colder temps seemed to have started earlier this year. Many reports indicate that the mullet "blows" have commenced as well. My thoughts are this should be a good thing for us. Water temps have already started to drop and this should prompt the fall migrations for many of the fish we target from the sounds to the inlets & ocean. On most of our trips, waders we never needed, shorts and sunscreen were preferred. I don't think that is going to be the case this year. If things continue, we could have some great fishing. Drum should be there, maybe some chopper blues and an early season striper. Reports also indicate that some False Albies have already shown up as well. They are a blast to catch!! Colder water off our shores should also lend to less strenghtening of any storms/hurricanes if they are approaching. Keep the faith!!

Posted by Mason at 12:18 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

September 19, 2004


Playing against the conventional wisdom: Ardbeg is selling younger whiskies for less than the 10-year old standards.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:42 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


A profile of the Belgian-style Ommegang brewery in Cooperstown.

Ommegang produces a mere 6,000 barrels of beer per year (one barrel equals about 14 cases of beer), but its reputation as a purveyor of the best in Belgian beer culture outstrips its tiny size.
``We're small, even among micros, but we're spread far and wide,'' said Ommegang brewmaster Rick Thiel.
He estimates Ommegang beers are available in 40 states - remarkable for such a tiny operation

Posted by Bigwig at 09:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Thank God for hurricanes, else we would all be speaking Spanish--or worse, French.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


The recent Pew report on the impact of recreational fishing barely rises to the level of junk science, write Frank Sargeant.

Posted by Bigwig at 08:59 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


If it doesn't use Scotch barley, is it really Scotch whisky?

Posted by Bigwig at 08:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 18, 2004


Hatteras Village: one year after.

See also: Hyde County--one year after.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Ever drink 8 beers in a day? Congratulations, you're officially a "binge" drinker.

I know--just like everyone else we've every met.

Shockingly, in all of Scotland, only 20% of men qualify for this title.

Pansies. Wee little pansies.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:55 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


A Joisy artist has built his latest show around his visits to Ocracoke.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Bought a Jupiter S-5500 today, from Daiwa's new line of cheap heavy duty spinning reels, as Dick's was selling them for $15 off what seems to be the regular price. They'll hold 230 yards of 25 pound test--ought to make a nice reel for going after the big drum. Also picked up an Okuma Stratus st50 with two heads for lighter tackle fishing--need to find one of those little whippy rods to go with it though.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Here's what we need!

guys, this could make our trip much more enjoyable. perhaps with the house monies, we could buy one for the group. but whose truck will we use?

Posted by Kevin at 12:34 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 17, 2004


Man, talk about your hand of God.

Either we've been living good, or Florida has been very, very bad lately.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:37 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 16, 2004

Doing The Dew

This is hilarious. Extreme fishing--with a seine net.

As soon as the seine was in motion, carp started jumping it. The first one — about a 10-pounder — launched itself from the water like a tarpon on steroids and hit me square in the facemask, knocking me down.

When I surfaced, spewing water like Old Faithful, the foreman noted succinctly, "That's why you need baseball gear."

Posted by Bigwig at 09:59 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


The N&O has an article on fishing Portsmouth.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:47 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Here's another method we might want to try when going after live bait on Ocracoke--shrimp baiting.

The baitballs are usually prepared prior to the trip, so everything is ready when you get there. The balls typically consist of ground up fishmeal, such as 100% menhaden, mixed with a clayish mud and formed into a baseball-sized mud ball. Some like to put a bit of a flatter pancake finish on them so they won’t roll with the tide when tossed into the water. As the fishmeal leaches out of the mud, the shrimp are attracted to the scent and will congregate in a small, localized area. Next, the bait balls are placed about six to eight feet out from the poles. This enables the person throwing the cast net to know the precise location of the bait balls when he casts the net achieving more shrimp per cast.

Of course, we'll have to find someone who can actually throw a cast net.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:45 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack


Jeanne's track is looking better and better--though that depends on who you are, of course.

Posted by Bigwig at 08:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Fish fear me!

I'm back at work as Cathy and Grant are doing fine. I'll now be back "in touch" with everyone out in FDS land. So look for more posts and comments as we get closer to the trip. Time to start organizing the tackle and other gear. Don't forget to say your prayers asking God to spare our beloved Ocracoke and annual FDS trip from hurricanes and storms. After adding Grant to the family mix, I'll need a very low stress month leading up to the trip.

Posted by Mason at 12:53 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

September 15, 2004


Nutria are migrating upriver on the Neuse.

Posted by Bigwig at 04:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


A nasuea-inducing taste of the marketing campaign behind the new pink whisky.

Posted by Bigwig at 03:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Ah, comic strips about beer. Will they never grow old?

Posted by Bigwig at 01:31 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tales From The Drunk Tank

Note to Self: Ambulances are not the same thing as public transportation.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:51 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Learn to taste your beer, grasshopper.

One of the joys of discovering microbrews and imports is the broad range of flavors they offer, even within the same style. Beer drinkers used to mild-tasting mass-produced brands are missing more complex brews. It is like drinking only jug wines instead of trying more challenging bottles. Mass-produced beers, such as Miller and Budweiser, are made to appeal to the broadest market, which means the flavors are masked as much as possible.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:49 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Beer for Blood.

Hudgins said the vouchers handed out in Cleveland can be used for any beverage in the city's Warehouse District, a collection of trendy bars, night clubs and restaurants near downtown.

But beer or any other kind of alcohol is an option, as long as the donor is over the legal age of 21 and waits at least 24 hours after giving blood to drink alcohol. Giving blood leaves people dehydrated, so the alcohol could have an extra strong effect too soon after donating

Now that's just going about it the wrong way. As I well know from my plasma-selling days as an undergrad, the best value for one's money is in getting the beer into the bloodstream as quickly as possible once the blood has been sucked out of you. There's nothing more economically satisfying than a six-pack buzz on half that many beers.

Enhancing the Experience: Once one has donated one's blood in Chapel Hill, it's now legal to drink out on the sidewalk.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:44 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


It's a bad hurricane season. It may get worse.

The Atlantic was free of tropical storms only two days in August. The month also set a modern record for tornadoes nationwide, largely in the U.S. Southeast. Many of them were spun off by those tropical storms. And forecasters warn that the trend may persist into October.

"Although we expected above-average activity in August, we greatly underestimated the amount of activity that actually occurred," said noted hurricane forecaster William Gray of Colorado State University.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:39 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Gay Liquor

Colorado wants to be the first place you think of when you think of...vodka.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:28 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 14, 2004


Menhaden are dying again in the Neuse. Some estimates of the number of dead fish range to above 9 million.

What worries Dove the most about the repeated fish kills is that the dying fish will add to the nutrient load on the river, rather than reduce it. According to Dove, menhaden larvae enter the river in February, where they feed on algae throughout the warm months, before returning to the ocean in late autumn.

"It may be too early to tell for certain, but it appears to be a real possibility that we will lose all of the menhaden in the Neuse before they are able to migrate to the ocean during October and November," he said. "If this happens, the nutrients collected and stored in the flesh of these fish will be recycled to the Neuse. This is contrary to nature's plan. These menhaden are a critical part of removing nutrients from the estuary."

If no menhaden make it out to the sounds from the Neuse, bunker is going to be hard to come by come striper season--not onbly for the fishermen, but for the fish as well.

Posted by Bigwig at 04:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tales From The Drunk Tank

Ah to be young and not fully in control of one's sphincter.

Tinkle-tinkle went Aaron's emptying bladder. Mine refused to follow. At times I am pee shy, and nothing short of waterfalls prods me to action. Still I squeezed, hoping to nudge out a few drops. I was drunk. I squeezed hard. The wrong end opened up. A line of slick, brown bad news shot into my underwear, running down my jeans-covered legs.


Posted by Bigwig at 03:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Finally, a pickup that fits our fishing needs.

Posted by Bigwig at 12:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Time to forget about Ivan and start worrying about Jeanne.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:31 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 13, 2004

Business Concerns

The house is paid for. Barring hurricanes and other disasters, the October 16th - 23rd trip is on. At this point we are overbooked for bedspace only on Wednesday night. I'll call about an extra cot that night when the time is closer. At this point I'm not planning on renting another house.

Who all owns an aero-bed?

There is a slim possibility that the house will be available to us Friday the 15th. I'll know by October 9th.

Ferry Schedules are available here.

Here's the non-pdf version--Remember that you'll need to book a return time as well on the Cedar Islan and Swan Quarter Ferries.

Cedar Island to Ocracoke Times: 7 and 9 am, Noon, 3, 6 and 8:30 pm. Call 1-800-856-0343 for reservations.
Ocracoke to Cedar Island Times: 7 and 9 am, Noon, 3, 6 and 8:30 pm. Call 1-800-345-1665 for reservations.

Swan Quarter to Ocracoke Times: 9:30 am and 4:00 pm. Call 1-800-345-1665 for reservations.
Ocracoke to Swan Quarter Times: 6:30 am and 12:30 pm. Call 1-800-773-1094 for reservations.

Hatteras to Ocracoke & Vice-Versa Times: Basically every hour on the hour from 5 in the morning to Midnight. No reservations required.

I'm planning to catch the 7:00 am Cedar Island ferry on the 11th, and the 3 o'clock back on the 15th.

Now that the house is paid for, refunds for those unable to go will be sent out the week before we leave. This includes Clif and Charlie at present. If more people than I have money for back out-- a possibility, though an extrememly unlikely one--refunds will be reduced so that everyone gets the same amount.

T-shirts are the same as last year (and the years before that), long sleeved white jerseys with the logo "Grab the Leader!" to commemorate the loss of Kevin's citation drum. Cost is $15 each. I wanted to put group money towards this, but given the new refund policy and the need for group beer, bait, and groceries I don't see how I can. Let me know the # and size each of that ya'll want, either in the comments below or by emailing me. The deadline for informing me of your desires is Monday the 20th.

For those of you who remember Carol Williams: Her father also organizes a trip to Ocracoke each year. He'll be on the island at the same time as us this year. He's bringing 50 others with him, Carol says.

No, she isn't one of them. Too bad. As I recall, Carol could drink, and the scenery was nice as well.

Debra Brown and brother and their families won't be on the island either. School schedules have moved their annual trip to September.

Last I heard Wayne Hegameyer hadn't planned a trip year.

Anyone who wants an FDS login and doesn't have one needs to let me know.
As always, the most uptodate Information I have is reflected on the spreadsheet.

Posted by Bigwig at 01:34 PM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

September 12, 2004


Getting decent sized bait shrimp might be more difficult than normal this fall, as the inordinate amoung of rainfall we've gotten has pushed the big shrimp out into the ocean.

Larry DeLancey, a Department of Natural Resources marine biologist, said there are a lot of shrimp out there, but they tend to be small. He suggested shrimpers stay in sounds and bays and away from creeks and rivers, at least early in the season.

This season is expected to be below to near average, said David Whitaker, the fisheries management director for the Department of Natural Resources.

Last year, shrimp baiters caught an estimated 1.9 million pounds of shrimp -- up from 1.1 million the previous year but below the 3.6 million caught in 1997.

"If we have even more rain and that flushes these little guys seaward, that would be bad" for the harvest, Whitaker said.

Of course, there's always mullet, and I am bringing the seine net this year,so we shouldn't hurt for bait, but shrimp is always good to have.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:36 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Lassie's Drink

Because a Scotsman loves nothing more than embracing his feminine side: Pink Whisky.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


The flathead catfish fist appeared in the Cape Fear 38 years ago. Since then, it's decimated the native fish populations. Now it's worked its way up to New Jersey.

The first impact of the newcomers was to native catfish, said Kwak. The small and big bullheads, common to the river, "became very rare," he said. "Then we began to notice our sunfish population becoming less dense, the same thing they saw when flatheads were introduced in Georgia."

Kwak said many in the state were upset to see the sunfish being lost, since the redbreasts have "a lot of cultural value" to North Carolina. "They are a very traditional sort of family-fishing type of fish where people go to a bridge and fish for them with worms," he said.

Sunfish are popular around here, too. So are shad. There are festivals in towns along the Delaware devoted the shad's annual springtime arrival. But if you found it difficult to catch a shad this spring, here's some bad news: The existence of flathead catfish isn't going to make shad fishing any easier.

"In two different studies in North Carolina ... when they did stomach sampling from flatheads in the river when shad were running, they found that the flatheads consumed quite a few of them," said Kwak. "They concluded the flathead catfish will feed on American shad opportunistically."

Posted by Bigwig at 10:30 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Pelagic species like the blue marlin appear to have higher concentrations of mercury in them than do other fish.

Environmental poisons are always most concentrated at the top of the food chain, and pelagic species like cobia and marlin are definitely at the top of the chain. Not sure why we need another study to confirm that fact.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


The missing drugs at the Ocracoke clinic look to have been due to a case of self-medication on the part of teh PA staffing it.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:20 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 10, 2004

Fish Kill

Thousands of dead croakers are washing up on the shore in Virginia, and no one knows why.

Posted by Bigwig at 05:30 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 09, 2004


Possible world record shad--an American, I assume, rather than a Hickory--caught in Oregon,of all places.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:41 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Bad news for the menhaden.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

State Regs

If you catch a doormat flounder in New Jersey waters and then drift over the line into New York the powers that be will ticket you for it.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

National Park Service

Rangers on Ocracoke & Hatteras are being overwhelmed.

They patrol 31,261 acres, 90 miles of roadway, 18 miles of trails and 155 miles of park boundaries.

The result is a staff stretched so thin that one ranger shares responsibility for two parks while also being charged with fire management and the incident command system. The remaining rangers work the 70 miles of beach from Bodie Island to Ocracoke Island.

Although numerous incidents happen during the night, rangers don’t do 24-hour patrols.

Since they're not patrolling at night I'm assuming there are a lot more fishermen parking on the beach and sleeping.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:27 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Gone Fishin'

I was at the beach this weekend and fished around the Intracoastal Waterway, and around the Morehead City/Beaufort bridge. The wind was really kicking and we anchored on the Fort Macon side of the bridge. I fished with some shrimp and finger mullet.

The catch was okay for that day. Got a nice speckled trout, a hogfish (odd looking), some pinfish, croaker, and a HUGE eel. Dude, that thing was wicked big and spooky looking. Thankfully he shook and broke the line before I was able to stick my hand into his mouth. I have never caught an eel like that one before, and really don't care to again. The trout was definitely the highlight of the day, and of course, any day fishing is better than a day at work.

Posted by Woundwort at 11:40 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 08, 2004


More lionfish have been spotted the Gulf Stream--this time off the coast of Bermuda.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Politics and Science

Guess whose fingerprints are all over the study implying that recreational fishermen are at fault for declining fish stocks?

Posted by Bigwig at 09:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 07, 2004


Rick Dove, the original Neuse River riverkeeper, comes out swinging against Bush's environmental policies.

Rick undercuts his case by admitting that, in the only concrete instance of federal wrongdoing that actually cites, the weakend federal regs he's complaining about don't impact affect NC waters at all.

In 2001 Bush instructed the EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance to stop filing new cases against the hog industry unless approved by him. Later, in 2003, the Bush administration passed a rule that allowed industrial hog producers to write that part of their permits that limit spraying of toxic hog waste on fields without state or federal approval, and without notifying the public. While our North Carolina hog regulations are tougher than the weakened federal rules, the important questions is, for how long?

The answer to which is, "practically forever." Hog farmers have been persona-non-grata in NC for years. Rick acts like George is gonna sneak down to Raleigh in the middle of the night and hypnotize the governor and legislature in one fell swoop.

"You will relax hog waste regulations."

We will relax hog waste regulations.

"You will call Elizabeth Dole a foxy lady."

We will call Elizabeth Dole a foxy lady.

"Act like a chicken."

Cluck. Cluck. Pah-cock!

Posted by Bigwig at 10:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Something fishy going on in Ocracoke. Don-Lee alumnus Seaborn Blair is tangentially connected.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:13 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Homebrewing has made at least one guy rich.

"The common saying is if you can boil water, you can make beer," said Olin Schultz, founder of Beer, Beer and More Beer.

In less than a decade, the 32-year-old Concord resident and entrepreneur has turned his college hobby into the nation's largest home-brew supply company.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Wheat Beer

A review of New Belgium's Sunshine Wheat.

New Belgium's very carbonated witbier pours a frothy white head, imparts a refreshing citrusy taste and leaves a crisp, refreshing finish. Instead of the cloudy, warm, translucent yellow color one expects from a witbier, this one is golden and crystal-clear.

I'd call Sunshine Wheat a witbier hybrid; New Belgium says it is "reinventing" European styles in an American environment.

Whatever the case, this is a drinkable beer. It might not pass muster with purists, but we're talking enjoyment and flavor here.

New Belgium is offering four brews for tasting at the festival. Sunshine Wheat does not appear to be one of the,

Posted by Bigwig at 10:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Flounder Pic

Good God, a 10.75 pound flounder.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:52 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Fishing in Iraq

Necessity is the mother of invention.

"Next, we made reels out of some rollers and bearings. We used wire to hold the reels on the rods. We found some line and hooks in a pilot's survival vest. It took us three or four days to put everything together. When we finished working, we had outfits that would cast up to around 35 feet."

Next, Sgt. Curiel and his friend turned to making lures. They found some wooden dowels that were used to hold mosquito netting over cots. They sawed a couple of inches off these dowels and used the pieces to whittle topwater lures. They fitted them with bills so their "minnows" would wiggle. They also tapered the backs for a more natural appearance, and they cemented hooks in slots carved into the lures' bodies. Finally, they painted their minnow lures with yellow primer.

"We also made lizards and spinnerbaits," Sgt. Curiel continues. "We braided some nylon cord together to resemble lizards, and we cut out some thin aluminum spinner blades and made skirts by pulling threads out of some red cloth."

Posted by Bigwig at 09:15 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Fishing innovations that actually work. Bleeding bait hooks are among them.

The idea for Bleeding Bait Hooks came from a bait shop operator who observed that minnows would rise and bump the red side of a plastic float dropped into the bait tank. When the bait dealer dropped in floats of other colors, the minnows ignored them.

This led to another test with several game and panfish species in a large aquarium at Tom Mann's Fish World in Eufaula, Ala. This experiment involved three leadhead jigs that were identical in design and size, but they were of three different colors: red, chartreuse and white. Hooks were clipped off of the jigs. Then the jigs were tied onto pieces of monofilament line and lowered side-by-side into the aquarium, where they were allowed to hang motionless. The fish repeatedly tried to eat the red jig, but they never bit the chartreuse or white jigs.

"We've got all this on video," Campbell continues. "Bass, bream, crappie, a bowfin and a turtle all tried to eat the red jig, but they never touched the other two jigs. This was a revelation to me. I knew red was a big hook color for steelhead and salmon in the Pacific Northwest, but I didn't know it had any attraction to fish in the Southeast."

Posted by Bigwig at 08:53 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 06, 2004


Supply and demand mean nothing to the beer industry.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


It's true. Champagne gets her you drunk more quickly.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Islay is profiting from the recent surge in appreciation for single malt whiskies.

Coincidentally enough, Internet wines and spirits is running a 20% off sale on Scotch, so the normally $60 ten-year-old Bruichladdich (brook-laddie) is now less than $48 bucks.

Of course, it probably costs $12 to ship it. I'll have to see what Frugal MacDoogal's price on the Bruichladdich is this weekend. If the internet price is at all comparable I'll buy it on general principles.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:31 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Some nice sized flounder in the Pamlico.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 05, 2004

More Solunar Tables

Ok. Because I am at heart a geek, I found a Solunar Table calculator that I could download and configure for Ocracoke Inlet. Here are the major and minor times for the days we'll be down there. Note that major times are supposed to last for about two hours. Minor times are not supposed to last as long. There's also an overall day rating.

Saturday, October 16th - Day Rating - Best
Majors - 2:37 am and 3:03 pm
Minors - 8:50 am and 9:15 pm

Sunday, October 17th - Day Rating - Best
Majors - 3:37 am and 4:03 pm
Minors - 9:50 am and 10:15 pm

Monday, October 18th - Day Rating - Good
Majors - 4:41 am and 5:07 pm
Minors - 10:54 am and 11:19 pm

Tuesday, October 19th - Day Rating - Fair
Majors - 5:47 am and 6:13 pm
Minors - Noon.

Wednesday, October 20th - Day Rating - Poor
Majors - 6:49 am and 7:15 pm
Minors - 1:36 am and 1:02 pm

Thursday, October 21st - Day Rating - Poor
Majors - 7:12 am and 7:38 pm
Minors - 12:59 am and 1:25 pm

Friday, October 22nd - Day Rating - Poor
Majors - 8:06 am and 8:32 pm
Minors - 1:52 am and 2:19 pm

If these calculations are correct, then the 2005 trip should be from the 1st thru the 8th, and the 2006 trip from the 21st through the 28th

Also, I'd like to test this before we get there. If anyone is going fishing anywhere between now and then, let me know where, and I'll set up the calculations for that area in the program. Just send me the longitude and latitude--the more exact the better. If you don't know them, don't sweat it. I can probably find it online.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:50 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Beer Festival

I've gotten tickets for the Oxymoronic Scotsman and myself for the Sept 25th World Beer Festival in Durham. If anyone else is planning on going, let me know.

Avery will be there for the first time this year.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:00 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Recreational Fishermen

If you suspected that the latest study on the impact of recreation fisherman on endangered fish stocks was inaccurate and politically motivated--well, you were right.

"Pew and the researchers they fund have reached a new low in their efforts to force arbitrary no-fishing zones on the recreational fishing public," said Jim Donofrio, executive director of the RFA. "This latest report brings absolutely nothing to the table to help advance marine conservation."

Pew has been behind a movement to close vast areas of the Atlantic to recreational fishing and has succeeded in doing so in parts of the Pacific.

The report, compiled by Pew-funded researchers from Florida State, Duke and Ohio universities, purports that recreational fishing is largely unregulated and has a much greater impact on fisheries than was previously believed.

"The study is based on an erroneous premise — that there is a perception that recreational fishing does not have an impact on fish stocks," said Dr. Michael Sissenwine, director of scientific programs at NOAA Fisheries, in an article published by Environmental News Service.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:57 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Professional Fishing

King Mackerel and Red Drum are joining bass on the professional fishing circuit.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Solunar Tables

Story on fishing luck with a huge school of permit here that I found interesting.

"There were literally thousands of permit, and they were everywhere. The water was crystal clear so you could see them deep into the water," Derrough said.
Derrough and Brown threw assorted baits into the school, including live shrimp, finger mullet and artificials. The fish refused everything they tossed their way. Anglers in several other boats nearby were doing the same.

"For an hour and a half that went on. They refused everything," Derrough said. "Here were all these big permit around us and they weren't feeding."

Derrough kept glancing at his watch, and almost jokingly he yelled to nearby anglers that the permit would start eating in about 15 minutes. Derrough is a firm believer in the Solunar Theory that fish feed more prolifically during certain times of the day and night. The John Alden Knight Solunar Tables uses the position of the moon and sun to gauge major and minor feeding periods.

"There was a strong major at 11:05 and I was banking on that," Derrough said.

Derrough and Brown had put out a couple lines baited with finger mullet for tarpon. Suddenly one of the baits got hit. It was a permit. Anglers in the other boats must have thought Derrough was some kind of prophet, because suddenly the feed was on.

"They moved up to the surface and started sticking their noses out of the water. It was definitely a change in their mood."

For an hour Derrough and Brown repeatedly hooked the permit, landing more than a dozen and losing more. Most were 10 to 15 pounds, but some scaled to 20 pounds.

Here's the deal on the John Alden Knight Solunar Table the article talks about.

Solunar periods, major and minor, designate the three or four periods of each day during which wildlife activity is the greatest. The major periods sometimes last longer than three hours; the minor periods, about an hour.

Outdoors enthusiast have found the tables invaluable in helping them plan well enough ahead so that they can be on the scene and ready when nature's biological clock tells the fish and game that it's feeding time.

Hunters and anglers are not the only ones who have depended on "Solunar Tables" for more than 50 years. Bird-watchers, divers, plant lovers and even pet owners consult the "Solunar Tables" to find out when nature will come alive.

Haven't found a Solunar Table for Ocracoke, though the Charlotte Observer has one for the state each week. if any one runs across one, let me know.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


It's been a good year for bluefish up and down the East Coast.

"Usually the fall months are the best, but the thing is this year, throughout the summer, it's been pretty good," said Rod MacLeod, a DEP marine fisheries biologist.

It's likely that the environment has been conducive for bluefish to spawn, MacLeod said. They do this each spring south of Cape Hatteras, N.C., and to the north in the early summer.

If the summer has been great, and the fall is usually better...maybe we'll luck into a blitz come October.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


It might be best to swim somewhere other than Alabama come September each year.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:30 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Aluminum Bottles

How much would you pay for a bottle of beer that stays cold nearly an hour longer?

Nothing. My beers don't last an hour.


Posted by Bigwig at 10:22 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 04, 2004

Lights At Night

From a Texas fishing report--Scattered speckled trout were caught at night under lights.

I know we're not supposed to fish for drum with the headlights or anything, but I keep seeing mention in various reports about fish that are attracted to lights on the beach, not spooked. Is it possible we'd get more action, even if not of the red drum variety, if we had a continuous light source on the water at night?

Posted by Bigwig at 10:28 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Drinking less Guiness? Blame your iPod.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:24 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 03, 2004


Material Girl Ale - "nutty and fruity."

To reproduce the Madonna experience, have a hundred other guys take a sip before it gets to you.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Light Beer

You can't get Corona Light in Mexico, and the Mexicans are fine with that.

It's quite a challenge. Demand for light beer is so minuscule that Corona Light - the 14th best-selling beer in the United States and among America's fastest-growing imported brews, according to Williams - is produced for export only. Mexico's best-selling light beers are Modelo Light and FEMSA's Tecate Light.

"We look at light with a certain amount of distrust," Brocado said. "Those who drink beer, drink beer - not something seen as less than a normal beer."

Posted by Bigwig at 11:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Summer Ales

End of the summer ales.

Now's the time when most breweries are putting the finishing touches on their entries in next month's Great American Beer Festival in Denver. These are almost always the breweries' most exotic, flavorful beers of the year - and brewers often put them on tap now for a last-minute taste and some customer feedback.

Posted by Bigwig at 11:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Nice Drum.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:59 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Pompano are in demand.

It is the delicate, slightly nutty flavor that makes pompano a top-shelf entree in the fancier restaurants of Palm Beach and New York City. Demand for this species is so high, and the commercial catch so small, that you rarely will see it on a menu or a bed of fish-house ice anywhere in North Carolina.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:58 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


New on the Hurricane worry list--Ivan, which at the moment is following a slightly more southerly course than did Hugo.

Posted by Bigwig at 10:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

It's A Boy!!!!

Grant Eldridge Mason was born last night @ 9:00pm. Both Grant and Mom are doing fine. Grant weighed in at 7 lbs and 6 oz. If he could stand, he'd be 21 inches tall. So looks like we have another possible member for FDS. Considering how well things went, it still looks like I'll be attending this year's FDS @ Ocracoke. Look forward to seeing you all there and we'll smoke some cigars and drink a few cold ones in his honor. No stopping here. We'll be going for number 3 in another year or so. Trying again for a girl!

Posted by Mason at 01:45 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

September 02, 2004

Mystery Disease

Juvenile menhaden in the Neuse are exhibiting open sores and lesions reminiscent of Pfiesteria

Posted by Bigwig at 10:55 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


The Glenlivet is taking aim at the #1 whisky brand in the world, Glenfiddich, in hopes of toppling that company from its lofty perch. Part of the plan includes the launch of a new 15-year-old line and a number of customer giveaways.

I love it when alcohol companies want to give me stuff, but then I'm kind of a whore.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

September 01, 2004


Hurricanes: Good for the fish.

And scientists in North Carolina reported that parts of the waters of the state's Outer Banks have rebounded, to some extent, to even better ecological conditions than they experienced before a devastating hurricane in 1996 and a triple whammy in 1999.

After the storms, there were predictions that the Albemarle-Pamlico sounds would be devastated by the cumulative impacts of Hurricanes Fran, Dennis, Floyd and Irene.

"The overall story we see is on estuarine resilience to impacts from these kinds of major storms," said JoAnn Burkholder, director of the Center for Applied Aquatic Ecology at North Carolina State University and lead author of the study published online by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. "The negative predictions about long-term devastation of water quality and fisheries were not borne out."

Posted by Bigwig at 10:05 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Fish Stocks

Another problem with the Science study claiming that recreational fishermen are taking to big a bite out of depleted fish stocks--it may be ignoring bycatch.

Red snapper populations have bottomed out in the last quarter century, and many believe the blame is with commercial food shrimpers who drag up and kill huge numbers of juvenile snapper in their quest for the valuable crustaceans. Some argued for shutting down the shrimpers, but saner heads maintained the commercial industry is working on the problem, and even though we might be able to win such a battle, justice might be better served by backing off and let the thinking heads of that industry work out a solution.

Posted by Bigwig at 09:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack