Written by the ordinary blokes Poet Neil Reid

Alright Sean, my litttle fish story for you!

Once upon a year when I lived and worked in the great American Pacific Northwest, Portland, Oregon to be specific, I had a work partner who came from the other side of our continent, the ocean-centric fishing haven of Boston and old Cape Cod. Dan, he loved to fish, relished nothing more than a walk on the beach, digging and eating clams, or really, anything from the sea. So when he was assigned with me to the Pacific Northwest, his delight at the thought of fishing in new abundant waters. Yes indeed – more fish!

Many in our spare times, fishing we went. Not honestly my big desire, but went because he was my friend. Lake on lake, I rowed, he fished, and I rowed some more. However he wasn’t the first with his thought. Not one fish, not once, did he catch! Everywhere was over-fished.

Came months more and a new partner came. He a boy grown and raised in New York city, not once had he even seen a cow – much less fish! Weary of rowing I’d become, so that time I gave it a pass, and Dan took the NYC boy with him for fishing along side a hopeful secret creek.

Knowing nothing at all, Dan did instruct him carefully. Most of all important Dan explained beside the creek, be most quiet, make no noise lest you alert the fish to our presence here! Sssh! Then announced he’d walk a little farther down the creek to try a place for himself. Just remember, quiet please, said he as he walked away.

So a little time did pass. Then did the boy from NYC get a big whopper of a fish at the end of his line! Big and splashing and wanting to get away! But Dan had never said what next to do! All he remembered was his singular instruction – sssh!, be quiet! Not realizing that the jig was up! The fish already knew what was up!

So he turns towards Dan, now a couple hundred feet up the creek, and in little more than a whisper, calls, “Dan! Dan! Come help!” Of course Dan don’t hear the whispered shout. So our boy does all he knows about biology – fish breath water, not air, so lift its head above the water, try to cease the struggle going on! As his pole becomes more and more an narrow arch, the line growing tight. Bravely trying to suffocate the fish!

Now Dan in a moment did by chance to turn, observe, came running with a net, did scoop and land the fish! Now I really really do wish I was there that time – not for the fish but to laugh my head off at the irony! First fish that my partner didn’t catch!

And yet I do testify because that very night we did all together eat that steelhead salmon, and it was absolutely fine!

How’s that my friend? Good enough?

And all good fishing to you!

Written by the ordinary blokes Poet Neil Reid


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