Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Almost Game Time!

First off... This is a new computer (old computer "crashed")and I'm still getting used to it so if there is typos, you're just gonna have to deal with it because I'm far to lazy to care.  On to the topic at hand... I'm leaving for Tennessee tomorrow night, timing it up to get to Douglas Thursday morning so I can get a full day of practice in on Thursday. I'm about as ready as I can be, gear is ready, boat is ready, truck is ready, all I have left to do is pack my clothes and I'm Audi 5k.  My game face is locked in and I'm more focused on winning then I have ever been. It remains to be seen whether or not it will actually translate on game day but non the less, I'm ready to throw down...  Which brings me to the point of this blog entry. A few weeks back I posted some videos of a few country songs that I happen to like, so this time around, I'm posting songs that get me jacked up. These are songs that are on my playlist when I wake up for practice and tournaments. We all have them, music moves everyone in some way and these are my songs.  DISCLAIMER! some of them are pretty hardcore, others not so much, I hope the slayer cancels out the Britney spears. And yes, I have my Ipod playing (extreme low volume) all day long during tournaments, these are just a few of the 1000s of songs on the Classic.

Honorable Mentions
Pantera - Strength Beyond Strength
Jay-Z - The Blueprint 2
Machinehead - Bulldozer
Eminem - Business
Metallica - Carpe Diem Baby
Cake - Going The Distance
Big and Rich - Save a Horse
Metallica - Creeping Death
Mudvayne - Dig
Brittney Spears - Early Morning
40 Below Summer - F.E.
Godsmack - Awake
Tim McGraw - How Bad Do You Want It
Hed P.E. - Killin Time
Nine Inch Nails - We're in this Together Now
L7 - Shitlist
Beastie Boys - So Watcha Want
Metallica - Blackened
Imagine Dragons - Radioactive

Monday, March 4, 2013


Never been one to jump on trends or fads but this Twitter thing has gotten me... So, the only thing missing is followers...  Thats where yall come in...  steven priest @lordofthepunks....  I promise to try to be funny,  not unlike me trying to be funny on this deal...  So join me in some wacky twitter hijinx...  It will be a blast. Well, as much of a blast as you can have in 140 characters or less...

Monday, February 25, 2013


It came and went... Now just a memory, the 2013 Bassmaster Classic... This is going to be a long one!

I awake at 4am on thursday morning start packing and hit the road at 5. I arrive at crazy Troys house around 6ish, he loads his stuff into the truck and we are gone. Everything is going smoothly until we hit the storm and it wasnt just a normal storm,  this was an epic version that eventually dumped 8'' on St. Louis and now here we were driving in it... I get a text...

Luke - "where are you guys?"
Me - "you can find me in st. louie"
Luke - "oh gad, you guys wont be here for 8 hours"
Me - "gps says 6"
Luke - "yeah, right, took us an extra 2 hours"
Me - (pic of speedometer at 75mph)
Luke - "you guys are gonna die"
Me - "negative nancy"

I told Troy to get ready to throw, we werent slowing down for snow covered roads, ice pellets, sleet, frozen wipers and all the other crap that goes along with driving in the winter... You guys have to know that for some unexplainable reason, I feel absurdly comfortable driving in snow... Most of the confidence comes from the truck I drive... You will have a hard time convincing me that a 2500 Sierra 4x4 isnt the greatest snow driving truck on planet earth... I am not exagerating when I say that you can drive it as if you are on dry pavement and as long as there isnt idiots driving 25 mph, you will be perfectly fine. So thats what we did, the speed limit was 75mph at times, so there were times I was hitting 80, with mostly 70-75 in between random slow downs for traffic. We only nearly died one time and considering we prob passed 1500 cars, I would say thats a good ratio... Unfortunately, that one time was a pretty close call, and Troy nearly shat himself but no harm, no foul...  Just for the record, that one close call involved a trio of vehicles driving 30mph down the interstate. I dont care if it was snowing, thats DANGEROUS... Ok, ok,  maybe I was the one being dangerous but it was Lukes fault, he said the time to beat was 8 hours, no way I was going out like that... We got there 6.5 hours later so that damn storm cost us 30 minutes... The entire trip took 13 hours, on a side note, Crazy Troy drove home, with sunny, dry weather and we made it in 11.5 hours... He did 80+ the whole trip, at least I wasnt excessively speeding in 65mph zones...

Day 1
Troy knows nothing about the industy and he is fine with it... As soon as we get there, we head to the hotel where everyone is eating and hanging out. The Doubletree in downtown Tulsa. The first guy we see is KVD who immidiately stops to talk to Luke. Troy could care less, Me? I couldnt speak and I rarely have that problem.  We head in, and nearly all of the big timers in the tournament are there hanging out... I tried to put it in perspective for Troy, who is a nascar fan, by comparing guys to drivers he knows... KVD is/was Dale Sr.   JVD is Dale Jr.  Iaconelli is Tony Stewart, Gerald Swindle is whoever is in nascar that is a badass... and on and on and on... Troy - "AWESOME" 
I had a conversation with someone in the Vandam crew that I think was either his mom or his grandmother,  Im not sure but she was old and she was funny. We talked to John for a minute, wished him good luck. Talked to Johns dad and his mom for like an hour. They were both really nice people. In case you didnt know, Randy Vandam (Johns dad, Kevins brother)is the Ohio state record holder for biggest smallmouth bass. Pretty impressive, has held the record for years...

Day 2
Spent most of the day walking around the Expo, shaking hands, meeting people, checking out new gear and so on. Kyle won a nice Fenwick rod by beating me in a flipping/pitching contest. Good for him, he needed a nice rod. Me? I blame the equipment, if all else fails, blame the gear, they werent G Loomis rods we were using so that made me in-accurate.  Finally got to meet JoAnn O'bryant, the promotional director for Skeeter. She handles all the endorsements and the entire Skeeter team... She hooked us up with sponsor passes so we ended up sitting with the Skeeter family at the weigh in. Managed to find time to meet up with Fletcher (Shryock)and his brother Hunter, they were hanging out by the Spiderwire booth all day (Fletchers new title sponsor) it was good to see him, its been awhile but he was ultra busy so we left him to work. Got a chance to catch up with ole Cliff Crochet as well.  Always a trip to talk to him, he is hilarious and gave me one great bit of wisdom
Cliff Crochet - "Just remember, when you get to the Elites, nobody gives a shit about Steven Priest"
words to live by!

The weigh in was spectacular. Honestly, it was the highlight of the trip for me and one moment in particular. We got to our seats and nearly instantly, the lights went dim and the lasars started bouncing all over. Over the PA system, loudly you here a bell. BONG, BONG, I knew it immidiately and I got chills, it was Metallica (my favorite band EVER) For Whom the Bell Tolls. It was followed by a highlight reel of past classics. It was fantastic...

As for the tournament itself, yall can check out the results and the footage on bassmaster.com and the airing will be on ESPN 2 this coming weekend.  I found myself cheering for anyone to beat him but in the end, Cliff Pace is now a classic champion regardless of how much it looks like he doesnt care. If you watch it, Im sure you will notice what Im talking about.
You will also notice a guy named Hank Cherry... This guy was in my shoes just a year ago and now he is going to be remembered forever because he nearly pulled out a huge comeback but unfortunately, you will see, why it didnt happen and its excruciating. I hope he recovers because he seems like a great guy and a great fisherman. Also congrats to Brandon Palanuik, pretty cool that the Classic runner up put a picture of me on his facebook page just a few weeks ago...

All in all, it was a good time. I wish I could share more but my pinky finger is cramping up and Ive been typing for an hour solid, Im done....

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Classic Time!

Its here! The 2013 Bassmaster Classic!  Unfortunately, I failed to qualify this year but a distant 2nd option is being deployed in the morning. My buddy Troy and I are driving to Tulsa Oklahoma tomorrow morning to take in the festivities. Luke and Kyle invited us months back to join them (they are family freinds with the Vandams) so Im not really sure how this is going to play out but I couldnt turn down the invite. Troy knows absolutely nothing about bass fishing or the bass fishing industry so he hasnt really grasped the totality of the event. I tried to explain to him that its the equivelant of being asked to join the Earnhardts at the Daytona 500, you just cant say no... Unfortunately, Ive acquired a nasty chest cold but I said screw it, Im going anyway, and if those guys get sick, its there own fault because they said they didnt care...

Grand Lake is the scene and its going to be a grind,  its bitter cold there, water temps are in the low 40s and they are getting pounded by a snow storm as we speak... Not my kind of deal but I like to think I could have figured out something.  Check out this pic of last years Classic champ, Chris Lane, this was taken today after his day of practice.... He wrote "never fished in snow"

Its not something I highly enjoy, but I guarentee you can crack some bass in the snow.. Its not much different then rain in the summer,  low pressure usually equals active feeding fish...  No matter how bad the weather gets, someone will figure out the fish and someone will put some hefty sacks on the scales....

My favorites, obviously KVD, there isnt a cold weather fisherman alive better then KVD so this tournament could work out for him...

Local favorite, Jason Christie... This guy has been big timer on the FLW tour for some time, last year he entered the central opens just because the classic was going to be on his home lake... That bastard went and won 2 of the 3 tournaments, double qualifying!... I would be shocked if he doesnt make the 3rd day cut

Off the beaten path? Mike Mcleland- dude is a master at the suspending jerkbait and that deal may be the ticket...

Cant wait till morning!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Jesus Pose!

Im not sure it ever had a name,  the act of holding two fish out for the camera with your arms spread as wide as can be but when I saw my lil chubby buddy Luke do it at an event a few years ago, I couldnt wait for the opportunity to spread my arms, with two slaunch donkeys and a look of bad assness that cant be described in any other way then "THE JESUS POSE"...

The Jesus Pose has been going on for awhile but I truly believe that over the past week, I was the first person to give it a name and now I give you examples of the Jesus Pose...

This is my buddy Adam, also known as the wolfpack leader. He nearly won the Smith Lake tourney last year and only ended up losing by a few ounces, finishing 3rd. He is utilizing a conservative version of the Jesus Pose with the lack of spread but its still bad ass although that big smile is not very intimidating.   Ladies and gentleman, sir ADAM HOCK....

And here is my inspiration, my lil chubby life partner Luke. This was the photo that made me want to catch the hawgs that would warrant such an epic pose. Not quite the spread that I deployed but to be fair, this was well before the Jesus Pose concept surfaced... He is LUKE GRITTER...
A nice variation of the Jesus Pose, Kyle is sporting the gangster lean method of Jesus Posing which is totally acceptable but only if you are cool enough to pull it off. Clearly Kyle is cool enough...
Break some off for KYLE KEMPKERS.....
Here we have the very first verifiable, documentably named Jesus Pose. Others came before but the moniker had not been established.  I need no introduction...
 And the exclusively first documented Jesus Pose re-creation by Lukes girl Heather..
Nice job HEATHER (soon to be) GRITTER!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Coming down...

It was an awesome week,  now the highs are wearing off and the reality of every day life has set back in. I went nearly two weeks without drinking enough water, eating enough food, not sleeping enough and working 14 hours a day on everything that involves a tournament week. After the adrenaline wears off, my body shuts down and I spend a few days just feeling like utter crap mentally and physically. So now the planning starts for Douglas Lake, stop two in the Bassmasters southern open circuit. If you recall, thats a lake that I had success at last time we went there but the tournament will be completely different...

Heres something to think about...  I am not a country music guy but lately Ive been drawn in, reasons unknown. During the week our cabin was next to Marty Robinson and Casey Ashley, both are big timers on the Elite series and both are pretty close freinds with Luke and Kyle. They also both happen to play country music on the guitar and Marty ripped off a version of a song I love, so using that as inspiration, here are my favorite three country songs of all time!

Songs about Rain (notice the Gambler bass boat)
What I need to do
Alot of meaning behind these songs, again, not the biggest country fan but good music is good music, enjoy!

Sunday, February 3, 2013


Scroggins was essentially making the same run as I was, locking down to Kissimmee from Toho. Its somewhere around a 40 mile boat ride. This video is a sped up version of the trip. Its pretty cool if you ask me, made me want to get one of those cameras to mount on my rig...