A Midwestern Jaws

Saturday night was a bit of a bore for me, until I found Jaws playing on HBO. I remember watching Jaws as a kid, and even then I thought the giant mechanical fish was a poor replica of the real thing. When I settled in to watch Jaws for the first time in my adult life, I wasn’t expecting much. Typically when you watch the movies of your youth when you’re an adult, you’re taken by how bad the movies really are (Earnest Goes to Camp). But when the shark ate that captain from the waist down, it was pretty intense. I actually thought Jaws might have deserved all those Oscars. I never feared sharks much, and up until a few years ago I was known to wade into chest deep gulf waters and cast live mullet, thoroughly ignoring the fact that I was fishing in Anna Maria Island not more than a mile from some of the most shark infested waters in the world. Still, these days I know better, and watching Jaws again reminded me of how much I hate fish that want to eat people.

The reassuring truth that Geneva doesn’t foster any fish that want to eat people is something that many people may take for granted. After all, we’re in the Midwest, and only Lake Michigan has to worry about shark attacks. Surely any lake in the Midwest is safe for your children and pets, right? Certainly the lack of man eating fish in Geneva isn’t a trait that is unique to my impressive home waters. If you agree with those last two sentences and have considered buying a vacation home on lakes “up north” where the prices are cheaper, I’m going to let you in on a little secret that may have something to do with the affordability of those northern lakes. Consider this AP story from Duluth, Minnesota just last year…

An 11-year-old boy was out hunting frogs on Island Lake when he became the prey. A large fish, probably a northern pike, attacked the boy about 5 p.m. Thursday as he and his young sister were wading in a foot of water. The resulting wounds on Mason DeRosier’s feet and hands required 11 stitches to close. …”it was like, maybe, 5 feet in front of us,” Mason said. “Then it splashed right at my foot and bit me. It hurt.” It didn’t let go. “I smacked it in the head and tried to pry it off my foot,” Mason said. “He let go, but he bit my hand.” The sister wasn’t hurt. Mason was taken in back to the family’s cabin to wash the wounds, then he was off to the hospital. He received eight stitches in his left hand and three in the bottom of his right foot. He has numerous other bite marks across the top of his foot, his dad said. “I’ll bet he has 20 cuts on his foot and 10 cuts on his hand,” Richard DeRosier said.

Nasty, I know. Some poor family thought they were doing the right thing by their kids. They thought that buying a vacation home on a lake other than Geneva would be a good idea. They thought they’d save some money. Instead, they led their own son right into the jaws of an angry northwoods pike. Rare occurrence? Fluke? Rubbish. How about this snippet from monsterquestreview.blogspot…

An example of pike aggressiveness was experienced by Blaine Johnson. In 2004, Johnson was wading near the shore in Pine River, Minnesota. Suddenly, he was attacked from behind. He rushed out of the water to find blood streaming down his ankle and foot. The teeth marks are still visible today. Experts believe that Johnson was attacked by a pike…. In 1998, Jack Woehler and his family found the remains of a giant fish in Chippewa Flowage, Wisconsin. There were enough of the remains to identify it as a type of pike known as a musky… Frank Pratt from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources believes that the jaws may have belonged to a giant pike that was bigger than the world record holder.

Terrified yet? Like so many Illinoisans seeking the serenity of a lakeside retreat, this poor guy was just hoping to find a little R&R and instead found himself attacked by a menacing creature that appears to be at home not only in the north woods of Minnesota, but also in the north woods of Wisconsin. Regional phenomenon? Hardly. Brian Clarke from TimesOnline.co.uk reports…

On a hot summer’s day in the mid-1980s, the two of them went for a row on a boating pool at Alexandra Palace, in North London. Bill was on the oars and Louise was lying back, trailing her hand in the water in best romantic fashion. Suddenly there was a swirl at the surface and in the same instant Louise felt a searing pain. She instinctively jerked up her arm and a sizeable pike was half-lifted from the water. It thrashed briefly, then fell off. Her finger had been cut to the bone. There was, Bill said, “blood everywhere”.

Innocent mistakes, or punishment for these folks who chose not to vacation at Lake Geneva? Whatever the case, rest assured that no toothy menace will ever bite you or your children in the friendly waters of Geneva Lake. The fish here are more civilized than that. More respectful. I for one, appreciate their pleasant, disposition.

No fish that want to eat you. Reason number 5,689,441 that Lake Geneva is the place for you.

About the Author

I'm David Curry. I write this blog to educate and entertain those who subscribe to the theory that Lake Geneva, Wisconsin is indeed the center of the real estate universe. When I started selling real estate 27 years ago I did so of a desire to one day dominate the activity in the Lake Geneva vacation home market. With over $700,000,000 in sales since January of 2010, that goal is within reach. If I can help you with your Lake Geneva real estate needs, please consider me at your service. Thanks for reading.

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