True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young. Page: 207
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HOUSTON AND HOUSTONIANS 207
the fish will get over their drunk in a little while and will be
as live and active as ever. Very few of them that we came in
contact with, ever had a chance to reform or get sober either,
for we had an idea that the fish had to be cleaned at once, otherwise
they would poison any one who ate them.
One sport I used to enjoy more than anything was catching big
catfish. White Oak Bayou used to be famous for its big catfish,
and I have caught many fine ones over there.
Saturdays were always busy days for the boy fishermen. We
made up parties, and, starting early in the morning, we covered
every famous place for miles around Houston. There was not a
deep hole, a sunken log or other place where fish congregate that
was not known to us. We took lunch with us and made a day
of it, returning long after sundown.
We had lots of fun in every way, for something funny was
bound to happen before the day ended. Once Joe Harris, Charley
Harris, Dick Fuller, Will Palmer and Andrew Hutchison were
fishing in a big hole up on White Oak Bayou. The current had
dug out both banks of the stream, making it very wide as well
as very deep. Joe went up the bayou and crossed over to the
opposite side, so as to try his luck there. The bank was very
steep, right down to the water's edge, but he managed to secure
a foothold and commenced fishing. We were all very quiet, for
it was against the rules to talk while we were fishing, so we
could hear even the faintest sound in the woods for some distance.
After a while we heard a frog squeaking off in the distance
behind Joe Harris.
"Squeak," "squeak," it came oftener and apparently coming
nearer. Joe made some remark about the frog, when a goodsized
fish got on his line and he began to play him, all of us
forgetting our rules and shouting out directions to him what to
do. Right in the midst of our excitement that frog put in a
personal appearance. He reached the top of the high bank immediately
behind and over Joe, and seeing the bayou so near, he
made a desperate leap and landed safely in the water.
The next moment the haste of the frog was explained, for a
great big snake that looked like a show snake in a circus, he
was so big and ugly, came tearing over the bank. The snake
was going so fast in its efforts to catch the frog that it was over
the side of the bank and coming right down on Joe before it
saw him. The snake made a desperate effort to stop or turn
aside, bue it was all in vain, for he came down, writhing and
twisting, and would have certainly collided with Joe, had the
latter given him a chance to do so. As it was, Joe was too
quick for the snake, for before it reached him, he threw aside
his fishing pole, went head foremost into the bayou and the next
instant was on our side. We could never decide whether Joe
or the snake was the worst scared. Joe really got some advantage
out of the snake's interruption, for it enabled him to lie for
the balance of the day about the size of that fish he had on his
line when the snake broke in.
Here’s what’s next.
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Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young., book, 1913; Galveston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/m1/207/: accessed March 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .