Greek Fishermen

…snotty masses of oily, fishy mackerel roe, wrapped in a translucent membrane and poached just until it’s lukewarm. Then you bite a hole in the side of the eggsac and squeeze it down your throat like frosting from a piping bag. Except it’s not frosting. It’s fish eggs.

Greek fishermen have this as breakfast before they go out for the day, chasing it with a shot of warm Ouzo. The oldest of them all, now unable to go to sea, squints through the cataract in his one remaining eye and grunts a surly farewell as they push off from shore. He absently scratches the circular scar on his chest, the sucker-mark from so long ago. He drinks more Ouzo and cleans tiny squid all morning, a small revenge.

If you slit open a Greek fisherman all you get is clam muck and a few gold coins, maybe a clay jar — and these are only rarely filled with oil, let alone wine. Mostly they’re just full of more muck. But every once in a while you come across a rusted telescope, an astrolabe stuck at thirty six degrees, a small bronze cannon covered in mussels.

–Steve Kilian

Post-Season

The Tipsy Parson: November 3 2009

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