February 26, 2008

Fishing Just Ain’t My Thing.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:35 pm

fish-hook.jpgA couple days ago, I listed several things that I just don’t give a shit about. At the time I wrote it, I was going to include fishing, but I didn’t, knowing that it might be assumed that I am hostile to fishing, or, worse yet, disdainful of those who like to fish – nay, love to fish. Of course, I am neither. Several blog buddies are avid fishermen (GuyK, RedNeck, Dash, Yabu, Marcus and Catfish come immediately to mind).

So, to them I say, “Go forth and fish! Enjoy!”

For my part, fishing leaves me cold. Here are a few reasons why:

Fishing is icky, and it makes your hands stink.
Fishermen are always sticking their hands into nasty shit. Consider bait. Freshwater fishermen happily plunge their hands into a bucket of big ol’, doity woims. Salt water fisherman slice up stinky squid or mossbunker, or even use slimy live bait on their hooks (“Jimbo, ya gotta hook the little buggers in the eye”).

Of course, then there is also the handling of the fish that one catches. Slimy, fishy and sometimes messy, particularly when one has to rip a swallowed hook from the guts of the sorry ass fish. Then they have to be cleaned – more ick.

Invariably, after all this hand ick, it is time to unwrap your sandwich and eat lunch. Guess what a ham and cheese tastes like. It sure as shit doesn’t taste anything like ham and cheese. It tastes like fishing ick. (I don’t give a shit how much time you spend “washing” your hands, your hands and, therefore, your lunch still smell like fish ick.

Fishing screws up a wonderful boat ride or a really nice walk.
I positively love a boat ride. Salt water (bay or ocean) or fresh water (river or lake), there is nothing quite as nice as cruising along in a boat and mellowing out, sometimes with a cocktail or two. However, dragging a bunch of fishing stuff onto the boat icks up the boat to a fare-thee-well with fish ick, blood and gore. The boat ride becomes simply a means to move all over the place to find the farookin’ fish to shit the boat up even more.

The same holds true for fishing from places other than a boat. One day, quite a few years ago, I was coaxed into hanging with a colleague while he did some fly fishing accompanied by a super-avid fly fisherman. We worked our way down to a beautiful running stream, and they waded into the water to do their thing. I sat down on the bank and enjoyed the scenery and sounds, happy as hell that I wasn’t wearing waders and doing all the stuff they were doing (casting, flicking, flicking, casting, fly tying). It looked like a real pain in the ass to me, even though they seemed to enjoy it.

On the ride back, the super avid fly fisherman showed me the picture album he kept in his car. There must have been two hundred pictures of trout, each one with the fish posed next to the fisherman’s fishing rod, presumably to convey the fish’s size. Hundreds of pictures! WTF? Not knowing what to say, I simply smiled and said, “That’s really nice.”

Surf fishing: Same thing. A walk along the ocean is one of finer things in life, as is sitting on the beach and watching the surf or reading a good book, soothed by the sounds of the ocean. To me, it beats sticking stinky bait on a hook and casting a line into the surf, reeling in, baiting the hook again, casting, reeling in etc. etc., not to mention more fish ick on your hands from baiting the hook or from the fish itself if you happen to catch something.

Fishing is … well … boring.
I know that my fishing friends would disagree. They would point out that fishing is a contest between the fisherman and the fish and when they are not in competition, the fisherman can let his mind wander while waiting for a bite. Fine, but to me, it’s sitting there watching a piece of string (nylon or otherwise) sticking out of the water or a bobber floating on the water. It interferes with genuine daydreaming.

I see no reason for me to disaccommodate the fish of the world.
I don’t like to eat fish, which is an excellent reason for me not to bother the fish by jacking them out of water by a fishhook stuck in their mouths. And, obviously, the point of this post is that I just don’t think doing what one has to do produce the end result of jacking a fish out of the water is worth my bothering the fish.

Besides, seeing as how fish don’t bother me, I don’t see any need to bother them.

Finally, by my not fishing, there are more fish left for the fishing peeps of the world.

You’re welcome, fishing peeps.


  1. I have absolutely no desire to hunt something that I can not see.

    Comment by Rex — February 26, 2008 @ 10:14 pm

  2. But Jimbo, you didn’t grow up around wholesome Florida girls in cutoff jeans and t-shirts, barefooted and blonde, fishing off the dock. Or in their bikinis on your boat, leaning over to haul in some nice grouper.

    Or catching little sharks and bringing them on the boat only to grab the pliers and yank the hook out from his frightful jaws, laughing and cussing the shark. And if the tide was low, the girls would jump over the side and chase down scallops for dinner.

    You’d certainly have a fonder affection for fishing if you had just grown up in the right part of the country.

    And beer helps, too. Beer and sunshine and saltwater and mermaids.

    Comment by Joan of Argghh! — February 26, 2008 @ 10:32 pm

  3. Jimbo:

    You are a man after my own heart. You verbalized exactly everything I feel about fishing. I did take my three kids two years ago to the annual fishing day sponsored by the wildlife department. They had a good time, but I really had to engage my head and heart into the process to teach them because I hadn’t picked up a pole in thirty years. THEN, I had to take the fish off the hook. Some of the fish swallowed the hook. What the hell was I supposed to do with that! My kids are looking for another opportunity…and I will do it with them so that they will learn, but I don’t like it. Also, all those men with their pictures…what they really are doing, subconsciously, is showing off their penises!

    Comment by Lee — February 27, 2008 @ 12:53 am

  4. I’m down with Joan…Boat Babes and Boat Drinks.

    Comment by Yabu — February 27, 2008 @ 8:06 am

  5. Jimbo,
    I do loves me some fresh fish, to eat. But other than that, I whole-heartedly agree with you. I’ve done the fishing thing. I’ve gone out on a lake at 5am with a fishing guide. I’ve been deep sea fishing. Now that I’ve given up drinking and have my sense of smell back, I don’t see the need to ever do it again.

    Comment by Jerry — February 27, 2008 @ 8:33 am

  6. Once I was in the water snorkeling and my dad casually called out, from the deck of the boat, with a mouthful of Ritz crackers, “Hey, there’s a school of barracuda.”

    Fish are friends.

    Comment by dogette — February 27, 2008 @ 10:10 am

  7. “Fishing is icky, and it makes your hands stink.”
    Hmmmm, there be some other things that do that and I will make a bet that you enjoy them!

    I have to admit that fishing ain’t for everyone..but there are some people that just can’t admit that the fish are too smart for them to catch thus they say they don’t like fishing..and then there are others such as you Jimbo that honestly don’t eat fish and thus see no reason to get a hook in your finger..now that is all right with me. Too much pressure on the slimy depths as it is and fewer people fishing means more fish for me to catch.

    I wuz gonna say sumthin about sharks and professional courtesy..but then you are a pretty good guy for a Joisey guy…

    Comment by GUYK — February 27, 2008 @ 10:35 am

  8. Damn, Joan – I think I’m in love. Barefoot bikini clad babes, boats and beer – sounds good to me. Jimbo – that’s okay. Like Guy says, that just leaves more for us to catch and eat. But, I bet if there was a peanut butter fish, you’d be out there every weekend trying to catch some.

    Comment by Dash — February 27, 2008 @ 12:06 pm

  9. Buy a man a fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he spends the entire day in a boat drinking beer!

    Comment by Joseph — February 27, 2008 @ 12:45 pm

  10. Works for me.

    Comment by Dick — February 27, 2008 @ 12:45 pm

  11. I used to go fishing all the time until I got good at it and actually started catching fish, which cut into perfectly good drinking time. I’ve since resorted to fishing for compliments, no chance of scoring there…

    Comment by gregor — February 27, 2008 @ 3:15 pm

  12. Jimbo, Me thinks you are confusing fishing and catching. Fishing is a social time or meditative time. Catching is work and involves multiple exposure to icky stuff. I just it is just me but the faint odor of tuna reminds me of pleasant thoughts……

    Comment by Brian "Proud to be a Veteran" — February 27, 2008 @ 6:59 pm

  13. To each his own. Do what makes you happy and enjoy.

    Comment by Kevin — February 27, 2008 @ 8:03 pm

  14. I’m with you on this one Jimbo.

    Comment by Denny — February 27, 2008 @ 8:04 pm

  15. Jimbo~ You’ve got it spot on! My mom and I, not knowing anything about fishing, decided we would try to fish down at the lake of our campground. We fashioned a rod from a tree branch, and put some line and a hook on there. Amazingly, we actually caught a catfish!

    But we had no freakin’ idea what to do next! Never thought we’d catch anything. We were all like: “OMG! OMG! OMG! WHAT DO WE DO?????!!!!!”

    Looking back on it now, it was entirely too funny. But back then, we were totally freaking out. We cut the line and let the fish go. I have refused to fish ever since that unsettling even!

    Comment by DogsDontPurr — February 27, 2008 @ 11:04 pm

  16. I am with you — I hate fishing

    Comment by hoosierboy — February 28, 2008 @ 9:47 am

  17. My definition of ‘fishing’ is drinking beer while drowning worms. Actually catching any fish detracts from the beer drinking.

    Comment by DMerriman — February 28, 2008 @ 1:52 pm

  18. I can’t stand fishing. I get my fish from the fish market down the street… already caught, dead, and cleaned. That’s what they get paid the big bucks for.

    Comment by Bou — February 29, 2008 @ 7:24 am

  19. Fish the mighty Cuyahoga! Plenty up here, both Goodyear and Firestone varieties.

    Comment by Cappy — February 29, 2008 @ 8:00 pm

  20. Jimbo..where to begin….it’s all about the photo ops!

    Comment by marcus — March 1, 2008 @ 5:26 pm

  21. I can’t eat fish so why would I want to catch them. I do enjoy watching it though. I can sit and drink beer and I don’t need a license for that.

    Comment by Titan Mk6B — March 7, 2008 @ 1:58 pm

  22. Jimbo, they got these things nowadays. They’re called rags. Work really damned well at keepin’ fish slime and worm guts out from underneath your fingernails. Beer is good, but that’s got nothin’ much to do with the fishin’ aspect of it. If you’re not catchin’ anything, either they ain’t bitin’, or you’re not drinkin’ enough.

    Now, with regards to your smelly sandwiches… Just don’t store the caught fish in the same cooler with your beer. That, sir, will truly screw the pooch.

    Trush me on that one.

    Comment by RedNeck — April 21, 2008 @ 9:18 pm

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