It's not that they're faster or stronger than other fish.
They're just touched by something extra.
Call it luck. Call it grace.One such fish was The Beast.
By the time I was born,he was already a legend.
He'd taken more hundred-dollar lures
than any fish in
Some said that fish was the ghost of Henry Walls,
a thief who'd drowned in that river 60 years before.
Others claimed he was a lesser dinosaur,
left over from the Cretaceous period.
I didn't put any stock into such speculation or superstition.
All I knew was I'd been trying to catch that fish
since I was a boy no bigger than you.
And on the day you were born,
that was the day I finally caught him.
Now, I'd tried everything on it:
worms, lures, peanut butter, peanut butter-and-cheese.
But on that day I had a revelation:
if that fish was the ghost of a thief,
the usual bait wasn't going to work.
I would have to use something he truly desired.
Gold. I tied my ring to the strongest line they made,
strong enough to hold up a bridge, they said,
if just for a few minutes, and I cast upriver.
The Beast jumped up and grabbed it
before the ring even hit the water.
And just as fast, he snapped clean through that line.
You can see my predicament.
My wedding ring, the symbol of fidelity to my wife,
soon to be the mother of my child,
was now lost in the gut of an uncatchable fish.
I followed that fish up-river and down-river
for three days and three nights,
until I finally had him boxed in.
With these two hands, I reached in
and snatched that fish out of the river.
I looked him straight in the eye.
And I made a remarkable discovery.
This fish, the Beast.
The whole time we were calling it a him,
when in fact it was a her.
It was fat with eggs,
and was going to lay them any day.
Now, I was in a situation.
I could gut that fish and get my ring back,
but doing so
I would be killing the smartest catfish in the
soon to be mother of a hundred others.
Did I want to deprive my soon-to-be-born son
the chance to catch a fish like this of his own?
This lady fish and I, well, we had the same destiny.
Now, you may well ask, since this lady fish
wasn't the ghost of a thief,
why did it strike so quick on gold
when nothing else would attract it?
That was the lesson I learned that day,
the day my son was born.
Sometimes, the only way to catch
an uncatchable woman
is to offer her a wedding ring.