I don’t like fish, anybody who knows me well will know this. It’s not for ethical reasons, I’m no vegetarian. I’d eat Lamb everyday if it wasn’t so expensive! It’s the taste, seafood is just repulsive to me.
I have found that people who really like fish, REALLY like fish. When I explain this to them they sometimes appear to be disappointed, confused and even hurt. I’ve often likened this to the five stages of grief.
I Don’t Like Fish – The 5 Stages of Grief
“You do like fish” my Dad says, “You used to eat it all the time when you was younger!”
At this point I remind him exactly why I used to eat it all the time. My family always ate at the table and as a child if you did not eat enough to satisfy my father, you stayed at the table. So yes, it is true, I used to eat seafood. However, it is because while all my friends were outside playing football, I was stuck inside staring down a disgusting “boil in the bag” fish in some foul white parsley sauce, holding my nose as I took a bite and asking my Dad after each “Is that enough?”.
Some people get very defensive of seafood, even to the point of anger. “Fresh fish doesn’t smell!” I hear them say. “Still tastes like seafood” is my reply. Some even go the pretentious route by saying, “Oh you, obviously haven’t had a good fish, cooked properly.”
This is my favorite response and the most common. “What about fish and chips?” they say “You are English!” they remind me. Nope, not even patriotism to a national dish will change my mind.
This is when people realize where I travel. “You have come to Newfoundland/the Algarve/New Orleans/Thailand, and you don’t like fish? That’s such a shame, they have some of the best seafood in the world there”. Some people seem genuinely disappointed that I travel to all these places and I will never experience this aspect of the local cuisine. While I agree a huge part of travel is about the food, Its not going to convert from my fishophobic ways.
Finally people do accept that I just don’t like seafood. It took me a while to accept it, I even tried different types. I was told fresh Tuna “doesn’t even taste like fish.” It does. I have embraced the fact I really don’t like fish and nowadays people really do accommodate me. Kelly asks when we eat out, “Do you mind if I get the fish?” I always let her, but tell her not to expect a kiss anytime soon.