a fish story

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a fish story

A big lie. The phrase alludes to the tendency of fishermen to exaggerate the size of the fish they've caught or lost out on. I'm sure Grandpa is just telling you a fish story—there's no way all of that's true!
See also: fish, story

fish story

 and fish tale
Fig. a great big lie. (Like a fisherman who exaggerates the size of the fish that got away.) That's just a fish story. Don't try to fool me. He's a master at the fish tale. Maybe he should be a politician.
See also: fish, story

fish story

An improbable, boastful tale, as in He came up with some fish story about his winnings at the track. This expression alludes to the tendency of fishermen to exaggerate the size of their catch. [Early 1800s]
See also: fish, story

fish story

and fish tale
n. a great big lie. (Like the fisherman who exaggerates the size of the fish that got away.) All we got was a fish story about his luck with the girls. What a liar! He’s a master at the fish tale. Maybe he should be a politician.
See also: fish, story

fish story, a

A tall tale. This term alludes to the tendency of sports fishermen (and women) to exaggerate the size of their catch, and originated in America in the early nineteenth century. It may have been invented by the journalist who described an event he termed “a fish story,” the appearance of shoals of whitefish in such large numbers that they choked a channel and prevented a steamboat from passing (St. Louis Enquirer, Dec. 8, 1819).
See also: fish
References in periodicals archive ?
When she says that the fishing on the big lake is very good, her opinion is not based on fish stories. It's based on years of angler creel surveys, fish carcass collection and analysis, electro-fishing, and trawl-net sampling.
New York, NY, July 17, 2018 --(PR.com)-- The internationally syndicated television show South Bend's Lunkerville is ready with a brand new season of "real people with real fish stories" and a new broadcast partner in 2018.
Add to these the net-breaking, ship-sinking catch of fish stories reported by Luke and John.
A previous Conservationist contributor, Rich Redman of Moriah likes fishing, and telling big fish stories.
Fans and new readers of this beloved, award winning series will welcome "The Adventures of Rainbow Fish," a collection of five favorite Rainbow Fish stories. Including Rainbow Fish to eh Rescue!, Rainbow Fish and the Big Blue Whale, Rainbow Fish and the Sea Monsters' Cave, Rainbow Fish Finds His Way, and Rainbow Fish Discovers the Deep Sea, the collection presents the stunning jewel toned illustrations of fishes with silvery and rainbow scales in deep ocean environments.
In "Gyotaku Rubbings: Telling Fish Stories" (page 26), Matt Mazur's middle-school students learn a bit about Gyotaku--how these prints are made, who makes them and why.
The show's website includes dozens of "fish stories," recipes and charter boat and fishing tournament information.
HARDWICK - Fourth-graders at the Hardwick Elementary School had some great fish stories to take home from school yesterday.
Rather, the Berlin-based, Japanese-born artist gives us fictions in the guise of autobiography or uses biographical material as bait for his convoluted fish stories. If Fujiwara were a pathological liar, this could be art as public catharsis.
Both combos include Berkley PowerBait, handselected tackle, pre-tied bottom rigs, float rig, live bait rigs, and rigging guide--everything you need for turning those dreamed-up fish stories into reality.
I was re-reading some of his writing to celebrate the event, and came across this quote: "Don't tell fish stories where the people know you; but particularly, don't tell them where they know the fish." It struck me that in some ways, this column is often addressed to an audience that knows the "fish" of selling, marketing and enrolling benefits more thoroughly than I ever will.
It will probably be told around the fire Saturday at Eagle Rock Lodge on the McKenzie River; like leaves in eddies, fish stories have a habit of circling round and round.
Then we had an evening of telling fish stories, meeting new friends, and seeing old ones.
How many fish stories about the big one that got away will leave here today?
After several days of fishing all of the old haunts and holes with limited success, and after listening to many fish stories from bygone trips, a less-than-impressed son-in-law lamented, "You're fishing memories!"