Friday, January 20, 2012

20 Questions: Sean Anderson (aka, "Sanders")

Sean "Sanders" Anderson
I first met Sean Anderson after he and his brand-new fishing buddy, Mike Sepelak, had driven across much of Colorado, all of Wyoming and a touch of Montana, all just to chase trout. It reminded me a line in "The Sure Thing," an old John Cusack movie: "Three thousand miles just to get laid. I really respect that."

Sean, Mike, a couple of other bloggers and a handful of Trout Unlimited staffers were in Montana to see first-hand some of the work TU does to protect habitat and, subsequently, opportunity, today and for generations to come.  I liked Sean right away... he had a firm handshake, made good eye contact and he genuinely seemed interested in what we were discussing. But I didn't get to know him until we'd spent a couple of chilly southwest Montana evenings gathered around the best excuse we could come up with for a campfire--a sweet Coleman lantern that blogger Owl Jones brought with him from Georgia. 

Each evening, watching caddis flies, crane flies and hosts of mayflies swarm to the lantern, we shared jokes and stories, and we laughed until it hurt. Sean, with his upper-Midwestern accent, has an easy laugh, an even easier smile and a sense of humor that fit right in with the deviants who shared jokes our mothers would be mortified to hear cross our lips. 

I first met Sean through his blog, Up the Poudre--if you visit, you'll find his writing conversational, yet thoughtful. It was his writing, after all, that landed him in Montana in the first place. As we shared stories in the dim glow of the lantern, I was instantly glad that Sean made the trip to Montana with the rest of the gang. His view of the world is not unlike my own, and I loved how easy it was to like the guy.

Then I found out he sells copiers for a living. No wonder he was so happy to be in Montana. But, judging by his disposition, he either loves selling copiers, or he relishes the time he's not. Either way, that's admirable all on its own. 

I'm glad I got to know Sean. I hope this gives you some incentive to get to know him, too. On with the questions:
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
A cold beer after a day on the water with some good friends and willing fish…or just a cold beer with friends, either way, I get a beer.

Which historical figure do you most identify with? 
 Does Huck Finn count? I don’t know why, but as I’m writing this, I have my jeans rolled half way up my calves, map open to my right, trying to plan my next escape.

Which living person do you most admire? 
 My dad… by far the most influential person in my life. If I can be half the man he is, I’ll feel pretty damn good about how things turned out.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? 
Procrastination. Can I answer this one later?

What is the trait you most deplore in others? 
One uppers…for example, Sean says, “I drive a porpoise colored Honda." One Upper proclaims, “I drive a better colored {Insert more desirable car than Honda here}” Fuck off…my car still burns gas.

On what occasion do you lie? 

My mom was a kindergarten teacher that owned a lot of sweaters. I learned early on that a little white lie to spare someone’s feelings is not only necessary for survival, but can often times make you feel good about yourself…just kidding mom, I’d go with the teddy bear sweater…it is after all a Tuesday!

Which living person do you most despise? 
Drew Soucher…sports anchor, Channel Nine News Denver. If you’ve ever seen “Drew’s Clue’s” you know why…or Fox News, since corporations are people…

Which words or phrases do you most overuse? 
Imagine a North Dakotan accent… “Oh, I don’t know…” It’s pathetic.
For Sean's sake, I hope this is Bridget.

What is your greatest regret? 
Taking the golf scholarship to Minnesota instead of Colorado State. Who knew I’d like fly fishing so much?

What or who is the greatest love of your life? 
Bridget my wife. I can’t imagine this journey without her. And if she doesn’t want to claim me, my dogs are a pretty close second.

If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what do you think it would be? 
 Rex. I would hands down come back as my oldest bulldog Rex. He has life figured out. He watches cartoons all day, is fed without worry, naps at the drop of a hat, and is loved by all. Not a bad way to go through life.

Where would you like to live?
Right here on the Front Range. A perfect place to spend time in the outdoors, and close enough to a major airport that can send me off to destinations unknown.

Who are your favorite writers? 
Twain, Hemingway, Charles McCabe, Thomas MacGuane, Aldo Leopold, Erin Block, Hunter S Thompson, Jack London, Stevenson, Dumas, and guilty pleasure nominee, Vince Flynn…just to name a few

Who are your heroes? 
Anyone who gives a part of themselves for the greater good, you see a lot of people looking out for themselves, but it’s the people that give for others that are truly inspiring. 

What’s the title of your autobiography? 
“Are You There PBR? It’s me, Sean…”

If you were a pet dog, what would your name be? 
Huck or Finn. Too easy…

If there’s a Heaven, and you’re lucky enough to make the cut, what would you like to hear God say to you upon arrival? 

“You’re dogs are waiting for you, the cooler is freshly appointed, and the trout are rising to big bushy dry flies. Oh, and that reminds me…your wife won’t be here for a while…”

What was the most significant moment in your life? 
 Being adopted by the two greatest people in the world, and gaining a best friend in my sister as a bonus.

What’s your favorite film? 
 “Caddyshack”, arguably the most quotable movie of all time… “wanna make fourteen dollars the hard way!”

Where would you want your loved ones to spread your ashes? 
Some on the Poudre, some at the cabin in Minnesota, some on the beach in St John’s, some on the southern coast of Ireland near the town of Kinsale, and some where the Pebble Mine was never built. (From your keyboard to God's ears, my friend. -ed) That should just about do it…

What’s your favorite car of all the cars you’ve owned? 
A 1984 Honda Accord. There’s something about a shitty first car that you can look back upon fondly.


  1. Thanks again, Chris. Another great Q&A.

    Sean, good to learn more about someone in our blogosphere. Thank you for sharing.

    Call me stupid, but I haven't figured out the fly fishing and PBR obsession. Don't get me wrong, but there are so many better beers that come in a bottle from all the great micro-breweries in your area, what's up with the PBR?

    1. Don't get me wrong, I just spent the last couple of hours between Odells Brewery, New Belgium, and Equinox...I love my micros...however, a cheap beer on the water that is light, disposable, relatively tasty, and did I mention just that, perfect.


  2. Come on man, it's part of the bug flinger baptism. Yummy delicious cheesie cheap beer! Had a chance to do a little bird hunting with Sanders recently. Cool cat!

    1. Look forward to some similar days...on the water or in the field.


  3. Having fished a couple of days with the man, I can say he's one of the nicest guys you could spend time on the river with. Great interview!

    1. Can't wait to do it again...hopefully mouse patterns lost somewhere in the mitten. the couple days on the Poudre was definitely one of the highlights to my year...til next time!

  4. Thanks Chris...this series is good stuff all around.

    And Sean, I hope we get to share some water this year....perhaps casting some ferret flies. By the way, how are those coming along? ;-)

    (p.s. it's strange to read my name up there above...but very sincerely, thanks!)

    1. Ferret flies await...can't wait to show some off..or pass them off, we'll see :-)

  5. Sean is one of the most genuine people I know, and I look forward to more fishing with him in the near future. Thanks for stopping by to read...

    1. You are way too kind...ha Can't wait to get on the water sometime soon! Spritzer season?

  6. And Dean... Chalk the PBR affinity up to the fly fishing counterculture. We love our microbrew, too... But a cheap swill that goes down easy and doesn't make you stop fishing long enough to admire the hoppines or full-bodied flavor helps us stay focused on the task at hand. ;)

    1. Ok, Chris. I see the affinity in fly fishing for PBR. If I was on the river and someone handed me a PBR I would most certainly partake (Miller Lites are our post-game beer of choice for our softball team).

      But, with all the other cheap swills available (Old Milwaukee, Schaefer, Schlitz, "You Name It" Light, etc...), I am just posing the question, why PBR? I would love to hear perspective/thoughts as to the origins of the PBR/Fly Fishing connection (Drake Board??).

  7. Sean, Do you know that Erin's Papa is the official Stumpwarden for the Bugeaters Groundhog Club of Nebraska? We have rented a movie theater in Lincoln to show the movie on the big screen for Groundhog's Day. Too bad you don't live here, you would probably win all the trivia question prizes. Oh and Bryan is a cheap beer brand man too. So you must be a pretty nice guy and any friend of Erin's is a friend of ours.

    sgb (Erin's Mama)

    1. BTW, Sue is combining my two favorite movies - Caddyshack and Groundhog Day. Both very quotable. "Did somebody step on a duck?"... Bryan

    2. Did I mention I love Bill Murray?

  8. Score another one for you Chris. Even though we don't live all that far apart, Sanders and I haven't met yet...but I'm sure looking forward to spending some time on the water and tipping a few PBRs this summer. Nice job guys.

    1. It will be a fun day when we finally make it will be good :-)

  9. Great profile of one of the greatest guys I've met during the past year. I look forward to many more days on the water with this guy. I've got the beers next time.

    1. You too my friend! Can't wait to spend some more time together, on the water or soon

  10. Love the post. Sanders is a great guy and I'm glad to have met and fished with him - hopefully we'll throw lines again this year - he shares his donuts! ;)

  11. Sean,
    I was still on my 1st cup of coffee and they both have Bill Murray and a groundhog in them so you can see the confusion ;-) Well when at a loss for words yell, "Save the Bluegills!"

  12. Confession time. I love the guy but he's not too bright. Wasted a day's full of fishing karma on a Lander's Bar PBR five-of-clubs call. That and he carted my old ass around three states and kept smiling. Like I said. I love the guy.

    Thanks for reminding me how much, Chris.

    1. I knew the second that brown snapped me off that the five of clubs was going to haunt us...sorry for that. but in my defense, it was the first leg of the trip and I was excited...

      three states I'll always remember. love ya too brother!

  13. I was going to respond to just a few, but couldn't help myself. I needed to hijack Chris's sight for a few minutes.

    Thanks to all for the kind words. I truly appreciate it!


  14. If I ever meet up with you on the Poudre, what else will we have to talk about? Sensing awkward silence, especially when you ask what I'm catchin'em on and I reply, "this small sparkly blueish thing". Nicely done.

  15. Well, I don't fish or drink PBR but I do count myself as very lucky to be your neighbor to the North - well, former neighbor to the North since you are no longer in residence there! I loved waking up this morning and reading your post, as well as the 20 questions, while I drank my coffee. You have brightened my day! Thank you!!

    1. I still call it home, so I guess that might qualify as still being neighbors? Maybe? And as for the fishing and PBR....well, they are good things...Ask Secor :-)

  16. Excellent interview though I'm a bit troubled that he sits around with his jeans rolled up to his calves. Besides, I have my jeans rolled up to my thighs.

  17. When I first stumbled upon Sean's blog, I instantly became a repeat customer and without having (yet) met him in person, I've the feeling that I already know him. And I can honestly say that even though I don't need a copier, I'd buy one from him. Thanks for another tremendous interview, Chris, and Sanders–thanks for just being you.