Thursday, January 26, 2012

Danny LaRusso's Gonna Fight

Remember that scene near the end of The Karate Kid? I'm sure you know the one I mean. Danny LaRusso - the quintessential, downtrodden outcast - is squaring off against Johnny - handsome, rich kid bully and leader of the Cobra Kai. Standing in the background and off to either side of our antagonists is the always stoic, Mr. Miyagi and the frequently incensed, Sensei John Kreese.

Danny is hurt, but he has held his own. In match after match, he's proven he is every bit the equal of the Cobras, and that he'll never again be pushed around. But this final fight is important. Without this last fight, Danny will never have balance with Allie. He'll never have balance with himself. Without this last fight, there will always be that tiny but constant drip of doubt.

And then come the words that leave an indelible impression upon an entire generation of movie goers.

"Sweep the leg."

In that moment, the tone of the film darkens. The audience recognizes that the battle is no longer between two teenagers, one a cruel tormentor and the other his hapless victim. In that moment, we see that the real fight is between conflicting ideologies.

The first stresses power, and the imposition of that power on the weak and less fortunate.

"Mercy is for the weak."

The other stresses equilibrium, the outward and inward balance of one's life with one's spirit.

"Ah Danielson, you all wet."

"Drive a punch Danielson ... make good fight."
So, what has any of this to do with fly fishing?

Absolutely nothing. This short diatribe (complete with video), just demonstrates how bad the shack-nasties can get in January. January may be the cruelest month for a bug chucker. The rivers slow, and the lakes are frozen. Tying is mere distraction.

The stream of consciousness flows. Sometimes it runs to steelhead. Sometimes to trout, bass, or carp. Sometimes we drift to Danny LaRusso and the silhouette of a bonzai tree on a blaze orange background.   

Sigh ...

I need to go fishing.


Robin Hill said...

Don't we all

Darren said...

Ditto, I need to fish and perhaps watch the Karate Kid again (the original)