Carp are good if you clean them right 1953

Discussion in 'Sound Off' started by steve ypsi mi, Nov 9, 2007.

  1. first wrote this story in 2003 for the Mi sportsman site

    Carp are good if you clean them right 1953
    in 1953 I was 12 years . during this time a family had moved in with us and they were migrant workers that my step dad who was from Arkansas and these people were from there also, they stayed a month or so with us. I have no idea why they came to stay with us. there were the husband and wife and 2 Girls and one boy. the wife's name was Ruby.
    Ruby over heard me talking to a friend about fishing one day and I was telling him that carp were nasty fish. I knew this to be the gospel truth because I heard it from others that were smarter than me. I never ate fish . tried them a few times but no one knew of filleting back then and I just hated picking bones out of 5 to 6 inch sunfish and Blue Gills plus they smelled terrible . Ruby said if you clean them right and you just keep the smaller ones they are good to eat and if you will catch some I will cook them and you will see.
    Well one day I set out to catch some carp for her. where I fished was a lake called ford lake that was about 4 1/2 miles away. with my old casting reel and a rope stringer and some old bread that I would wet down and squeeze until it was the consistency of dough that I would ball up on the hook to catch the carp.
    It took over a hour of walking to get to Ford Lake and it was hot as could be, I would guess it was over 90 degrees. I set my forked stick up to hold the casting reel after I side armed the bait out. It wasn't long till the bait caster that was set on clicker was making that ZZZZZZ noise and I was catching carp, some were big but most were around 18 to 20 inch's long and smaller, I culled some around 14 to 16 inch's that were kinda silver colored, she said not to keep any that were orange colored because they would be bad.
    I fished about 4 or 5 hours and every once in awhile I would look at the rope stringer and about half the carp were dead I had and the others were near death, I thought I better head home as I had over a hour walk back. The sun was really hot by this time and the carp left alive on the stringer were probably dead in about five minutes after I started out. I carried the 6 or 7 carp in one hand and the rod in the other, I had to switch hands every 10 minutes or so because the 10 or 12 pounds of carp on that rope stringer would bite into my hand and I also had to catch my breath. we were pretty poor and no one I ever knew had what they called breakfast, if we ate once a day we were in fat city, well I was really getting hungry and I am thinking Ruby is going to clean these carp her special way, she said some thing about cutting out the mud vein and washing them good. I am thinking these are really going to taste good, by this time a old piece of shoe leather would taste good to me I was so hungry. I plodded along thinking I shouldn't have used all the bread for bait, it only had a little green stuff around the edges, I could have pulled that off and ate the rest.
    well in about about a hour and half I got home and Ruby saw the carp and said those are just right, she cleaned them up and was frying them up, I am starving by now but the strong fish smell was wafting thru the house. I never liked that strong fish odor, that was part of the reason I didn't like fish besides picking little bones out.
    Finally they were ready, I dove in and took a big chunk in my mouth, whoaaa this was nasty, till this day the best way to describe that taste was a super strong taste of the way strong fish odor and was like we played in mud holes on the side of the street pretending we were swimming in the 4 or 6 inch's of muddy water and you got a mouth full of the muddy water, I spit it out and was raking my mouth out with my fingers trying to get the little bits of foul tasting fish out, I ran to the hand pump holding my head under it taking in mouthful's of water sloshing it around and spitting it out like I was gargling.
    In Ruby's defense the carp might have not been to bad if they had not been dead for hours in the 90 degree weather, hell perch would have tasted the same being half rotten by the time they were cooked.
    Over the past 45 years or so I have been tempted to try cooking a small carp to see, but a fresh one not one that had been dead for hours but that memory had been burned into my mind, as I type this I can feel my mouth puckering from that foul taste. I guess the carp cooking will be like me and my old partner from work talking about trying marijuana over the years, we always wonder what people get out of smoking Marijuna and we was always going to try it but never did. carp eating will be this way to I will always wonder what they really taste like
  2. Excellent story Steve.....Keep them coming...:D