It may come as a surprise, but big-money Bass Anglers Sportsman Society tournaments still are segregated -- not by race, but by sex.

The BASS pro tournament circuit is for male bass fishermen only.

Early last spring, after much pressure from such renowned professional female bass fishermen as Linda England, BASS agreed to go coed. Two months later, officials reversed their position. The company cited pressure from men and their wives as the reason for changing its mind.

It looks like pro bass fishing could use a good Equal Employment Opportunity officer. Women are making great strides in the work place; we even have a female charter boat captain or two on the Chesapeake.

I believe it's time for BASS to fall in line with the rest of society.

The bass can't tell the difference; why discriminate?

OYSTERS GO HAUTE CUISINE The Maryland Department of Agriculture Office of Seafood Marketing announced recently that Chef Robert Fedorko won the 11th annual National Oyster Cook-Off in Leonardtown.

The winning recipe for oysters broiled in champagne with sturgeon caviar beurre blanc goes something like this.

Use six oysters, three ounces of champagne, six turns of the black pepper mill. Shuck oysters, reserving the juice, and loosen from the shell.

Pour the reserved juice over the oysters and splash each with one-half ounce of champagne. Give each oyster one turn of the pepper mill. Place under the broiler for 60 seconds.

The following ingredients go into the caviar beurre blanc: one-quarter teaspoon chopped shallots, two ounces of white wine, two ounces heavy cream, two ounces butter, pepper to taste, one-half teaspoon lemon juice and one tablespoon caviar.

Place shallots and wine in a small saute pan and heat over medium flame; reduce wine almost to a dry glaze. Add heavy cream and reduce by one half.

Remove from flame and slowly stir in butter. Season with pepper and lemon.

Add caviar. Spoon over warm oysters and serve immediately.

Bob Spore is a Coast Guard-licensed charter boat captain from Pasadena. His Outdoors column appears every Friday and Sunday in The Anne Arundel County Sun.

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