December 29, 2019

Caught a fish

Chris McCormick @chr15m

It was a clear night over the Indian Ocean. Distant burning nuclear cores reduced to harmless twinkles in the sky by the epic distance. We four friends gathered on the beach for the first time in 15 years, casting our rods into the black ocean, laughing and drinking. I walked up the beach to get some distance so my line would not get entangled with anybody else, and cast out.

As I stood there listening to the ancient rhythmic wash of the sea, the cool wind whipping about my head, I suddenly had a realization: indie hacking is fishing.

For one thing, you know that others have caught fish before. Many come home empty handed, but for sure some people do indeed catch fish. We know because we've heard the stories and seen the videos. There are those who have caught true whoppers, and those who have caught mere minnows. Some even educate, writing blogs, running TV shows, and sharing techniques so that others might fish successfully too. You can pay attention to these successful fishers, listen to their advice and up your game.

You don't know where the fish are. The wavy black sea is opaque. You know there are fish in the ocean for sure, but are they in this particular part of the ocean? Are they looking for the type of bait you're offering? Have you used the right rod, hook, line, sinker, floats? Should you cast out and wait, or play the line to actively lure your fish? At first you think you're looking for salmon, but is it actually perch who seek your bait?

At the end of the day you must take a leap of faith. You've read some blogs, got some tips from friends, watched the pros, and assembled some gear. You must stack all the probabilities in your favor as best you can. You must pick a spot on the shore and thread the bait on the hook.

And when you've done all that, tried your best, then you must cast your line out into the water. It comes back empty again and again, and you must cast again.

As I was standing there thinking this, moonlit puffs of glowing cloud had closed over, as I gazed upward at the sky. What was that? I felt a tug. A strange rippling on the line. Something was out there on the end of the hook. Yes, I had caught a fish.

I reeled in the line to see.

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