Midwestern ice fishing and McMansions

An analysis of words in Midwestern Airbnb listings includes a connection between McMansions and fishing:

Photo by Tima Miroshnichenko on Pexels.com

Anyone can catch a walleye with a few bucks’ worth of basic gear, some practice and a little luck, Roach said, though that doesn’t stop some Midwesterners from dropping the equivalent of several years’ salary on boats, McMansion-grade ice-fishing trailers and sophisticated electronics designed to better target the finicky fish.

Follow the link for the trailers and you can see large ice-fishing trailers. I assume that is the primary use of McMansion here: these trailers are large. They offer a lot of interior space. Maybe they are mass-produced or architecturally dubious but the size of these trailers is bigger than just a little ice fishing hut.

At the same time, the use of the term suggests that the ice-fishing trailers are over the top or unnecessary or undesirable thing. McMansion is an evocative term that is usually linked to negative judgments.

The lingering question here: is the large McMansion trailer a worse choice than a more modest ice-fishing dwelling?

(This is not the first time McMansions have been linked to transportation. See earlier posts here and here about McMansions and SUVs. Those ice fishing trailer need a sizable vehicle to tow them into place.)

Going sewer fishing in Katy, Texas

You may not be able to find alligators in the New York City sewers but one teenager has caught numerous fish in the storm sewer in Katy, Texas:

A teenager in Katy, Texas, has one of the most unique—and oddest—fishing holes you’ll ever see and it’s located just off the sidewalk near his house. Kyle Naegeli, 16, goes sewer fishing through the holes of the storm drain manhole cover. Certainly it’s the craziest-type fishing we’ve ever encountered.

Naegeli baits a hook, puts it through a hole in the manhole cover, and drops it down into the water of the storm sewer below. A cork attacked to the line above prevents losing the line. Then he waits…

“In the past four years I’ve caught hundreds of fish in the sewer with the biggest being a 3-pound bullhead. Only three bass have been caught because I’m using hotdogs and not live bait (which I will do sometime).”

So, where do fish come from? The storm drain empties into a nearby pond and the fish swim up the sewer system, providing one very unusual fishing hole.

A reasonable explanation for this oddity. Some of the American suburban sprawl of recent decades likely includes large storm sewers, especially in areas that get heavy rains. Yet, I would guess this could be done in other places as well though it requires someone to try to go fishing in the sewer before we would find out. Not too surprising a teenager figured this out…

Who knows what lurks in sewer and storm sewers? I’ve always been intrigued by such settings, particularly in large cities. TV shows and films regularly make use of large sewer tunnels as scenes for chases and shootouts. But, there are older roots than that. Victor Hugo devotes a long section toward the end of Les Miserables discussing the Paris sewers and then describing the action of the main characters under the streets. Alas, Snopes did find stories of alligators in the New York City region over the decades but only one involving an alligator in the sewer.