A Really Awful Fisherman’s Tale


Kids at dam - rain farm

Young J’s been fishing only twice
And, first time, thought it rather nice
As only one to catch a fish,
Though not as large as she would wish;
Her second time, it came today:
Again, an only-catch display,
But this time, from the waters raised
Black bass that left us all amazed!
J and black bass
And should her fishing tale she tell,
She has the proof to back it well!

She is only four, so she was assisted with the cast.  However, she trailed the lure, hooked the fish, and managed to bring it in quite far before it got too much for her and two adults assisted.  The fish was released and swam off at speed. Catch and release is the policy at Rain Farm, where her success came in an area which soon after we left (as we could see from a vantage point above) was occupied by a group of giraffes.   A great place for a visit, of which more in a post or posts to come.


The friends who lent her the rod were astounded – they have yet to catch one of that size!

On the subject of fishing for sport – I used to like casting a spinner from the rocks in order to catch breakfast, but have never really taken to watching a line trailing into the water for hours on end, or to flinging false flies at fish for fun. Also, I have developed scruples about causing suffering to fish generally, so – no – I am not a fisherman. Having said that, I have to acknowledge that fish like the one pictured would not exist were it not for the fact that they attract anglers and anglers attract people who would like to make a profit out of attracting anglers. The fact that many of the fish have to go through the occasional ordeal at least contributes to their continued existence.

If, indeed, numbers are sustainably caught for the frying pan, then the rule of predator/prey comes in as part of the natural order of things.  Living things sustain themselves by exploiting other living things: insect, animal, or vegetable.  Is cutting a fish off in its prime any worse than doing the same to a healthy lettuce? That begs the question of where sentience begins and ends …

© February 2016 Colonialist (WordPress)

About colonialist

Active septic geranium who plays with words writing fantasy novels and professionally editing, with notes writing classical music, and with riding a mountain bike, horses and dinghies. Recently Indie Publishing has been added to this list.
This entry was posted in Africa, Grandchildren, Nature, Personal Journal, Really Awful Rhyme and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

35 Responses to A Really Awful Fisherman’s Tale

  1. beeblu says:

    J’s got the touch.


  2. Arkenaten says:

    I’m happy she released the fish. When she opens her arms wide and says:
    ”It was this big! ” that ain’t no lie!


  3. I enjoyed your discussion, Col, but I have to say, if I ever meet a sentient lettuce, I’m heading straight for the funny farm. 🙂

    Wow wow wow to the fish catcher. Impressive!


  4. Barb says:

    Bass are such wonderful fighters, I bet it was a great thrill. And giraffes also. What a trip!


    • colonialist says:

      It was a day out we plan to repeat fairly soon. Next time, hopefully, throwing in


    • colonialist says:

      … to continue what jammed up and then sent itself after I unjammed it …
      throwing in a game viewing excursion on horseback. This is a wonderful way to do it, because the animals usually allow horses far closer than they would people on foot, and one doesn’t have to depend on wildlife being alongside the road as with a tour by vehicle.


  5. Tom Merriman says:

    That is indeed one heck of a catch, Col! I’m also really envious about that herd of giraffes… what an amazing sight!


  6. Sjoe wonderlike vangs vir so klein dogtertjie


  7. gipsika says:

    😀 Just loved the philosophical ending! Congrats to J for such a catch!

    We have a place like that up here, Rietvlei Dam, where we all went to relax for a day and Meg & Little Cousin watched someone bring in a pretty impressive catch and throw it back. They were excited about the catch but even more excited that the angler let it go again. Unfortunately Meggi also caught something else there, a parasite that cost her 10 days of tummy trouble before the doc guessed correctly that we’d been at the dam.

    Re the predator-prey-sentience debacle, I have a young friend who refuses to eat mushrooms because he believes they are the keepers of all the secrets of the universe. Knowing about the way mushrooms grow & behave, I’m not too far from agreeing, though that doesn’t stop me eating them (in the hope of gaining some of those secrets 😉 ). In the Japanese definition of “vegetarian”, everything is a vegetable that doesn’t walk on 4 legs. My current definition is a bit tighter – everything that does not have locomotion. (I’m not 100% sure if oysters qualify as vegetables this way?)


    • colonialist says:

      Strangely enough, young R was off school today suffering from a tummy bug.
      Mushrooms are wonderful indeed. Their effects range from a feeling of satisfaction at a well-prepared dish, to weird and wonderful hallucinations, to answering all the questions regarding the afterlife – if there is one, they send you there!
      I know some people – chronic hypochondriacs – who would fail your veggie test.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Patrecia (with an E) says:

    a lovely fishy tale..well done Miss J In our village the men often go fishing but they take their catch home..sometimes it is the only food that they have….I just like my fish covered in a crispy batter and with big chunky chips

    On Sun, Feb 7, 2016 at 11:01 PM, Colonialists Blog wrote:

    > colonialist posted: ” Young J’s been fishing only twice And, first time, > thought it rather nice As only one to catch a fish, Though not as large as > she would wish; Her second time, it came today: Again, an only-catch > display, But this time, from the waters ” >


  9. Wow and Wow and WoW. I also liked your thoughts on the ethics of angling. I used to fish to feed the cat,during WWII, and have since occasionally eaten a trout I caught on a spinner. I bet the thrill of this catch will remain a high spot in J’s memory.for a very long time.


    • colonialist says:

      I still see controlled fishing for consumption as OK, and remember the pleasure of camping out along the Knysna coastline and catching a Shad (Elf in the Cape) for breakfast. The meal had to wait while the fish was baked in clay under a hot driftwood fire.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. a lovely outing it seems to me with great tales to tell from here on out. And oh, giraffes, it is my life’s dream to see one, or more, somewhere other than a zoo.


  11. Andrew says:

    Your poems have a way of worming themselves into one’s mind and then hooking your reader.
    Very eFISHient rhymes, by the way. What’s the best bait to use for giraffes?

    Regarding sentience of organic life:
    at one point I was so crazy that I thought carrots screamed in pain as they were sliced on the cutting board. Pantheistic vegetarianism has its drawbacks…


    • colonialist says:

      The pun line isn’t a-baited! 🙂
      The best bait for giraffes is obviously stopping being there.
      Pity one can’t exist on fruits that enjoy being consumed as part of their propagation process. That would really be win-win!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. de Wets Wild says:

    I should think that many fisherman would turn green with envy at seeing little J’s catch!


  13. Colline says:

    Congratulations to her. She is certainly a natural.


  14. GP Cox says:

    Learning young is the best way to do it, the girl’s a natural! 🙂


  15. disperser says:

    . . . a nice fish tail . . . er . . . tale.


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