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June 21st, 1999
How To Tell Fish From Fishermen
by Ed Zern
From To Hell With Fishing published by
Hardly a day goes by at my office that some damn fool wakes
me out of a sound sleep to complain he has difficulty telling
fish from fishermen. Actually, it is a simple matter, once
you get the hang of it.
There are several methods of telling the difference. One way is
to observe the subject while it is reading a newspaper. If the
lips do not move, it is a fish.
The most dependable way is to carry a copy of American Food
and Game Fishes by Jordan and Everman. Anything not listed
in the index is a fisherman.
A much tougher problem is how to tell small-mouth bass from
large-mouth bass. Here are a few simple rules to remember:
Small-mouth bass like the cold, clear water of spring-fed ponds and
swift streams. Large-mouth bass figure water is water.
Large-mouth bass think wobbling plugs look like crippled minnows. This
just goes to show you.
Small-mouth bass adore spinner-and-fly combinations. Gollup Kuhn,
The Champeen Liar of Lackawaxen, caught a small-mouth bass by trolling
a privy-door hinge in the Delaware River. It is this sort of thing that
makes the Anglers Club of New York blow its top.
Large-mouth bass hang around stumps and lily pads, passing the time of
day. Small-mouth bass prefer rocky ledges. Ask them way and they hem
and haw. Paradoxically, small-mouth bass fishermen tell bigger lies than
large-mouth bass fishermen.
Incidentally, the flavor of a large-mouth bass is vastly improved by
popping it into the garbage can and going out for dinner.
During severe droughts, the catfish buries itself in the mud. On him,
it looks good.
Recently a man in East Liverpool, Ohio, hit hs mother-in-law
with a catfish. It got him nowhere.
~ Ed Zern
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