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Sometimes, the very best story
needs no embelishment.
Those storiesare the ones that
will be remembered!

Grandma's Fish Tale

457 words


An absolutely true fish story. I swear!
by Dianne Roth


Sometimes, grandparents have to make a hard choice. It is the choice you make so your grandchildren will remember exactly who you are. Choose carefully, and they will pass that memory along to their children and grandchildren for generations to come.

We were staying in a cabin for the summer in Mineral, California. About 90 people live in Mineral, the rest of the cabins are weekend get-aways for urban dwellers from Redding to San Fransisco.

One Friday night, a huge, jacked-up truck parked across the street. Three men began unloading fishing gear. They were up before dawn, home in time for lunch.

Some time in the next hour, they began cleaning fish on their back deck.

These are the facts: My grandchildren found our dog and a neighbor dog fighting over a dead fish in our front yard. Their mother put the fish into a plastic bag and sent the kids across the street to return the fish to the fishermen. The fishermen said the fish wasn’t theirs, “We don’t use that kind of plastic bag.” The children brought the fish back to our cabin and I put it into the freezer for trash day. I woke up in the middle of the night, thinking about the fish.

The next bit is pure speculation.

The fish most likely came from across the street. It was probably stolen by our dog when the fishermen were not looking and carried into our front yard, prompting the neighbor dog to try to take ownership. The fish was alternately in a dog’s mouth or lying in the dirt.

Ownership was resolved by my grandchildren.

The next morning, I texted my daughter in law asking if it was okay if I cooked the fish for the kids. She was .... well, horrified.

I responded that the fish was fresh. I would make sure it was well cooked.


The fish was thawed by the time the kids were ready for breakfast.

I smelled it for freshness (no fishy smell), washed away the dirt and dog spit (it was only on the skin), and cut off the head. “Euwww! ”

I fried that fish in butter, salt, and pepper. “Yuck!”

It smelled delicious. “I’m not eating it!”

I boned it and placed perfect filets on my plate and took a bite. “Uh-uh, no way!”

I offered a buck-a-bite up to three bites each. The two oldest choked down a bite apiece. They would take no more. The extra two dollars I offered each one was not even tempting. The youngest flatly refused.

I sat down and had a lovely fried fish breakfast.

The best part? My grossed out grandchildren will tell this fish story for the rest of their lives.


Dianne Roth is a teacher, mother, grandmother, and freelance writer. She lives in Oregon.




Last updated on February 10, 2014