Thursday, November 17

Chapter 37:

In Which We Read the Truth About Lying

There are three main categories of lying I can think of: lies that hurt others, lies that hurt nobody, and lies that make you money. I suppose you could add a fourth category as well, and that would be the category of "lies everybody knows are lies, so they are expected, and so not really lies at all." It is this last category i will be speaking of today. You see, there is a group of liars that we tend to take for granted because we all both expect and know their lies, and so we disregard the lies entirely: fishermen.

Every fisherman worth his salt knows that the fish they caught use to be bigger before they pulled it from the water. It has to do with laws of refraction and displacement, or something. The fisherman can see it there beneath the water fighting like a welterweight and snapping the 15lb test line they use as though it were mint-flavored dental-floss. The fisherman knows it is a beast of yesteryear left over from the Triassic period who is just too stubborn to die. When the fisherman finally musters enough strength to drag this Leviathan out of the depths, it turns out to be merely a 6 lb. perch or trout.

This is where the "fish tale" begins. In the mind of the sportsman there is no comparing the fish he just landed, and the mighty Behemoth he just fought. He therefore tells the tale as it actually happened, and omits the fact that the end result was a fish so small he had to add half a can of Spam just to make a meal of it. The fish he ate or held in his hand, he surmises, had transformed as it left the water, and so his tale of catching it, though it would seem false, is actually true. The phrase, "it must have been as long as my truck," is, therefore, not a lie, even when you show him the actual fish. Most sportsmen will merely laugh with you, but this is only because they can’t explain the scientific properties of fish that cause this transformation.

As you look at a fish out of water, you see merely a fish, but when the fish is beneath the surface, you may, in fact, see a monster. This is because a fish has the refractive property of 3.662154 marks: the exact refractive property of a sphere of Lime Jell-O. IF you don’t believe me, do this experiment. Take a globe of Jell-O (you may use any flavor for this experiment) and drop this sphere into a swimming pool (your neighbor’s pool, preferably, although a small kid’s wading pool will work in a pinch). As you see the Jell-O beneath the water, it will appear larger (unless you have used Cherry Jell-O or Jell-O pudding). When you try to drag it out of the water, it will by much harder to remove the Jell-O than when you dropped it in (this part of the experiment is optional unless your neighbor catches you doing the experiment in his pool).

You see, fish are actually much like sponges: they absorb water (most people do not know this because they do not read it in a text-book) . When a fish is in fresh water, they are much larger for all the water that is stored beneath their scales. When a fish comes out of the water, most of the water in its muscles stays in the river/lake/creek/supermarket freezer department. While still fighting the fish, you must fight against the water around the fish as well as its muscles which are stronger because they have not shrunken by coming out of the water.

So, as you can see, removing the fish from water actually causes it to shrink, which is why it is so much harder to fight against the fish until you finally pick it out of the water. That reminds me of this time I caught this sea bass that was as long as...


At 8:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah! That explains a lot. V


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