Last February, when former Vice-President Al Gore took the stage at the Academy Awards show to accept an Oscar for his documentary about global warming, "An Inconvenient Truth," everyone gave him a standing ovation.

Well, everyone except for Jack Nicholson.

Just about every political forum believed this to be Nicholson's rejection of the whole global-warming crisis. Later it was learned that ol' Jack had consumed an excessive amount of alternative fuel — and wasn't able to stand up.

Nicholson's response was that if he had stood up, his big carbon footprint would've been left on the carpet, and he didn't want to have to clean up the mess.

I went to see "An Inconvienent Truth" when it first came out, more out of curiosity than anything else. I didn't need Al Gore to convince me that global warming was a possibility. Simple chemistry tells me that if we take trillions of tons of something locked underground (hydrocarbons) and burn it off into the atmosphere, it's going to have some impact.

On the other hand, I do agree with Rush Limbaugh that our planet is pretty resilient. Maybe we can have just enough global warming to get all the benefits without any of the catastrophes.

For example, how nice would it be to have snook in Louisiana?

During the last few summers, there have been reports of permit and baby snook caught in the Pensacola and Destin areas. In fact, according to a post on one of the Florida Panhandle's popular fishing forums, one charter captain landed a bonefish off Johnson Beach.

Many of my fly fishing friends are hoping the snook continue their westward trend right to Louisiana. For them, global warming can't come fast enough!

Well, here's a truth many of you will find convienent: The mild winters we've had the last few years have led to an earlier proliferation of aquatic insects. At one time, the Accardo poppers like the Miss Prissy remained in my box unused until early April. Now, the bream are hitting them as early as late February.

One afternoon in early March last year, I was on my way to New Orleans, and decided to stop and fish a pond off the Bonnet Carre spillway. Evidence of tire markings, soda cans and fast-food bags indicated it had been hit hard by the bait chunkers.

Working the area using a beadhead woolybugger produced just one small bluegill, further convincing me this place had been fished out.

As I made a cast toward a stump, the breeze caught my line and the fly snagged on the stump. Perhaps the best thing that happened to me that day, because when I opened my box for another fly, I noticed a chartreuse Miss Prissy size 10. It seemed to beg for playing time.

The first cast offered hope. A chunky goggleye hammered the bug smack in the middle of a cluster of weeds. The next 40 casts were equally as exciting. These weren't big bream, but they were of good size and great fight on a 3-weight rod.

Nothing is more fun than fishing topwater. Stock up on some popping bugs now, and hope global warming comes early this year!

Fly fishing films tour

Speaking of movies, AEG Media has announced its 2008 Fly Fishing Films Tour. The tour consists of a series of short films by independent producers, all related to fly fishing and conservation. The tour began in 2006, and last year was shown in more than 125 venues across the United States.

For 2008, a Louisiana venue has been added. On Thursday, March 13, the FFFT will come to Grand Cinema in Baton Rouge. Showtime is 7 p.m., and tickets can be purchased in advance online at www.aegmedia.com. A portion of the movie's proceeds will go to conservation.

AEG Media says that "films are shot in extreme, exotic and distant locations, with epic scenery, cutting-edge music and conservation pieces that are as entertaining to watch, as they are important; and of course gigantic fish on the end of a fly.".

I'll be there. Just look for the guy with the largest bag of popcorn.

Conclaves

Everything you always wanted to know about fly fishing can be found at a conclave. These small expos offer programs, fly-tying demos, casting clinics, manufacturer exhibits and much more.

On March 8, the Red Stick Fly Fishers will hold their 17th annual conclave at the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries' Waddill Outdoors Education Center in Baton Rouge. Time is 9 a.m.-4 p.m. The event is free, and open to the public.

Special guests will be authors and outdoor writers Nick Curcione, Pete Cooper and Terry and Roxanne Wilson. Curcione and Cooper have new books out this spring: Curcione has written the new "Orvis Saltwater Fly Fishing" book and Cooper has a book coming out entitled "Redfish."

For more info, check out the RSFF website at www.rsff.org.

On Saturday, April 5, the Acadiana Fly Rodders will hold their annual conclave at Grace Presbyterian Church in Lafayette. Time is 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. This event will also feature several of the top regional fly anglers and fly tiers. The AFR event typically features the largest group of fly tiers at any event in the state.

For more info, check out the AFR website at acadianafly.blogspot.com.