Nothing beats a good fish story.
Truth be told, anglers get a bad rap. Society seems conditioned to assume any good fish story is greatly exaggerated, if not made up entirely.
With any good story, there’s usually a little room for artistic license. And with any good word-of-mouth tale, there is potential for details to stretch a bit with each retelling. But experience has taught me that most firsthand fishing tales are authentic.
I recently had the pleasure of meeting a man with a unique passion for telling fish stories — and not just his. His name is Buddy Seiner, and after seeing one of my columns, he contacted me with a simple request: Would I be willing to meet up and talk fishing?
If only all decisions in life were so easy.
Buddy is an avid angler from South Dakota. His podcast project, “Fish Stories,” features fishing tales from all over the country. As stated on his website, Buddy believes that “all fish stories deserve to be told, and all people who fish have a legacy to leave behind.”
“Fish Stories” is relatively young, but the website already has great variety. Anyone with good stories to tell is welcome on the podcast, and completed episodes include chats with authors, professional anglers, weekend warriors and even Buddy’s dad. Each story is told with the passion and excitement that can only be felt by the angler who experienced it, and the published podcasts include fun extras and smooth production values.
When I met Buddy, he was in the midst of collecting new podcast material on a Western road trip. I invited him over for a chat on my patio.
Predictably, we hit it off immediately — sharing a love for fishing, storytelling and the movie “Grumpy Old Men” is a great recipe for friendship. We talked for more than an hour as I shared some of my most memorable angling adventures.
There was the surprise of my unexpected catch at Arizona’s Lake Mead, the triumph of my personal-best largemouth bass and the exciting variety of my Caribbean adventures in Belize. I even threw in one of my earliest childhood memories, catching and (eventually) releasing a pumpkinseed sunfish in peaceful Mio, Mich.
Our backyard chat flew by, giving Buddy way more material than he needed. But the final product — a crisp, 20-minute podcast titled “Lucky” — turned out great. I’m not the only Idahoan featured on “Fish Stories,” either. Another episode stars Jim and Martha Schwartz, the charismatic owners of Poor Fish Ranch near Parma (the same place I caught my first sturgeon through the ice last winter).
We can’t go fishing every day, but reliving the excitement of our prized catches and memorable trips is the next-best thing. I would like to thank Buddy Seiner for his visit to the Gem State — and for the passion he puts into keeping our fish alive, one angler at a time.