Fish tales


To the Editor: 

At first there were schoolies and squid to catch them with, but of course I wasn’t interested in them. The tide turned and water began to get deeper as I strolled around, casting the shad lure, and to see what was going on. It was late at night and I was going to leave, which as it turns out, would’ve been the best idea. But I jumped down close to the water again for another try. Catching a squid, I put a circle hook on its tail and back into a perilous bath it went. 

Bang! A nice slot-size bass took it! And there in the darkness I could see the enormous form of what we call a “cow” sweeping through the school.

I stepped closer to where we landed one on a prior evening, and down I went. My right foot slid out from under me. I did a split in an awkward position, falling back, pulling and tearing my left hamstring. Laid out there on the shore, unable to move, in pain and spasms, my leg giving out when I stood. I tried to think straight as things swirled around me and in my mind. The bass and I lay there flipping and turning just out of reach of one another. Eventually, it flipped itself back into the water, still hooked up and pulling the rod behind — me unable to stand up. 

I rolled over toward the bass, which was nice-looking, large, and still had a lot of fight. I pulled it back out of the water, unhooking and releasing it to where the cow was — laughing.

Then, not knowing if I should call 911 for an ambulance, with the thought, “Fisherman gets taken to school by a huge bass” — and decided against it. 

So after laying there in pain for 10 minutes, I slowly, carefully, limped to my car, pulling up with a wounded ego and a wounded hamstring, torn and spasming now and then.

My wife stayed on the phone with me as I drove home writhing, and contorted in the driver’s seat. I slept well enough laid out, and with a trip to the hospital in store. And I’ll be back on the prowl when the bruising subsides in the coming weeks. But on that night, this old leg was no match for that monstrous bass and her finny students.

Kevin Shea
West Tisbury, Newburyport, Naples, Fla.