It has been a very long time since I applied for a job, but seeing the power of the Internet and social media, I’m thinking that going public with an employment request shows real marketing savvy and chutzpah.
Just this morning, the Benton, Kentucky-based Professional Anglers Association posted not one, but two openings for Sponsorship Sales Associates on their website. Glancing through the job description, duties and responsibilities, I can state unequivocally that I am perfectly suited for one of these positions. The best part is not having to relocate which means I can continue on with what I’ve been doing for the past 30 years – working from home in t-shirts, flip-flops and pajama bottoms.
In addition to having the required “network of contacts”, I also have “proficiency in industry languages” such as fluent Texan and California surfer. (At present, I can place 17 different inflections to the word “dude”.) I must admit I was somewhat flummoxed by the use of the word “liaise” used in the job description. Really? They talk like that in Kentucky? Use that word in Fort Worth and you might as well be wearing Yankee pinstripes.
Anyway, I’m sure we can work around any language barriers, especially since the PAA proudly states they do not discriminate in hiring practices including “retaliation”. I hope that doesn’t mean they are indiscriminate when it comes to retaliation, although it would be in keeping with the rest of the industry. However, what is left off a long list from race to sexual orientation is the Alabama Rig. Whether this little bit of discrimination becomes part of the PAA creed remains to be seen.
Lisa Bell, PAA Office Manager sent a very prompt response to my email requesting information regarding umbrella rig status. She remarked that Tour and Legend level members are still voting and, that in all likelihood, the results should be released early next week, i.e. Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday.
As their new Sponsorship Sales Associate, this has me very concerned. I wouldn’t have to worry about existing sponsors like Bass Pro Shop who sell umbrella rigs, but I do see some thorny issues in dropping a dime to the folks at ABT, Angler Innovations, B & D, Berkley, Boss, Castaic, Eco Pro, Frenzy, Gambler, Hornet, Jewel, Kahara, Lucky Craft, Mann’s, Megabass, Nichols, Paycheck, Picasso, Power, Provider, Terminator, Viking, Waterdog, Yellow Hammer, Yum and Zorro. I’m sure I missed a few, but that pretty much covers the alphabet and blows the living hell out of my Rolodex. Oh, and what of the rod and reel manufacturers who have umbrella rig-friendly equipment? Or the line makers? The hook, tackle box and accessory guys?
While the PAA is asking for applicants who can “identify new market opportunities”; they didn’t exactly say anything about acting on them. And while they want me to “identify key trends in the industry”, it’s good to know I wouldn’t have to pursue any. This is sounding easier all the time. Maybe I haven’t thought this umbrella rig issue all the way through, at least as much as those rocket science professionals who are opposed to it. And, if the PAA membership votes to disallow this rig from competition, it is very much in line with the non-profit status of their organization. Even though the fishing industry is facing dire straits, where else could you find a rock star job offering “money for nothin’ and chicks for free”? Granted the “chick” part is a stretch, but even bass pros must have groupies somewhere.
As much as I’ve always viewed bass professionals as a herd of cats constantly chasing shiny balls of tin foil to nowhere, maybe they’re onto something this time. A vote against the umbrella rig is certainly counter-intuitive, some might even say idiotic, but it just might work. After all, one could – with enough mind-altering substances - consider George Armstrong Custer a visionary, albeit with a slight astigmatism in seeing thousands of pissed off Native Americans at the Little Bighorn. It makes you wonder just how many PAA professionals would join the 7th Cavalry.