Thomas, I agree that nice tools are a pleasure to work with.
As to the fishing rod you pine for Clive, as an art piece a $1500 fly rod might make sense.
There are other good reasons too. One of my co-workers has a son who is in the fly fishing guide business who picked up one of these rods this summer. It provides two things that his old rod didn't, 1-he can catch more high dollar client trips because of the magic bullet BS brag line he can spin around it and 2-he gets bigger tips from clients & favors from the shops he refers his clients to.
I enjoy the savvy of your colleague.
"Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank
"Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman
"...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh