I love all things creative, detached from the mainstream and slightly subversive.
Just like the 80’s film The Big Blue that popped into my mind when opening the goodies I had ordered from SubSurface. The big blue mug and deep blue tee were a delight, top quality and will no doubt help me catch that beautiful and serene sub surface quarry – joking!
Likewise the film, directed by Luc Besson, is often described as beautiful and serene but also drawn out, overly reflective and introspective – sounds just like my carp fishing!
I first came across SubSurface a number of years ago, around the time that Sub One came out. I had stumbled across it online while at work and was instantly captivated by the cover and sample shots from the internal pages. I was doing a lot of cycling at the time and reading Rouleur (printed by a friend of mine) and remember tweeting the Sub team and congratulating them on the Journal and saying it was the Rouleur of carp fishing which they very much liked.
Gradually the fishing, and in particular carp fishing took over and the cycling became just a means to keep fit.
As this happened I dived deeper into carp culture; starting with the usual mags like Carpology and Carpworld to more niche titles like Sub, Monkey Climber and 12ft. And in doing so it became clear to me that for these anglers it was an all consuming passion, more than a hobby, a vocation.
I could not describe by angling at a vocation. Mine is escapism, leaving my working world behind to delight in another, rather like the main characters in The Big Blue leaving the surface for a moment of serenity under the water, my time by the waters edge allows for reflection and a opportunity to de-stress and recharge the mental batteries.
Having said that, trying to plan trips, tactics, and ultimately catching a carp comes with its own mental exercises but these have a more measured and mindful approach to everyday life.
The end of the film is ambiguous, as carp fishing can be, depending on who you talk to, everything is open to many interpretations, opinions and actions. And like the film many questions remain unanswered hence Carppuzzle.
I am looking forward to the next morning session and a mug of coffee contemplating a carp reversing the narrative and appearing from their sub surface realm for just a moment.