By: Sterling Terrell
Fishing is not really what you think.
Fishing is an excuse to be idle.
You know this if you have ever spent any good amount of time at it.
The joy is not in the catching.
The joy is in the day.
The leisure of it.
The warm sun, cool shade, rhythm of the water, the movement of the clouds, a cold drink, stretch of your legs, and the fact that you are grabbing the day before it rushes by and it is gone forever.
“What The Compleat Angler proves is something I had long suspected: that fishing is a superb way of doing nothing. It legitimizes idleness. Although I am not much of an angler myself, and have only been fishing a handful of times, it has always seemed clear to me that fishing is the idler’s sport par excellence. True, there is a purpose in mind (catching a fish) and true, angling involves all manner of hooks, lines and baits, and there is a certain amount of activity required in getting to the place where one is to fish. But the real meat of fishing, what lies at its heart, is surely perfect stillness and inactivity. It is about being quiet, immobile; it is about waiting. It is about being and nothingness. It is for philosophers and poets. In fact, it is philosophy and poetry.”
–Tom Hodgkinson, How To Be Idle