Flying Rods

A Japanese man claims to be the world’s best catcher of fish that fly through the air at speeds so high you can’t see them. The 64-year old “skyfisher” doesn’t have any to show, because the invisible flying fish are endangered and can only be caught way up in the mountains. Pollution, don’t you know.

If you’re interested, you can buy the DVD in which he shows off his master technique for catching the fishies, which are called Rods. Here’s a web site telling you all you need to know about them, except for the fact that they’re obviously made up fairy tales.

I actually really like this myth. It has a nice feel to it, because it’s so incredibly absurd that you can’t imagine anyone would really believe it, but you can still get a sense of how nice it would be if it were true. Like tiny elves living in your underwear drawer, folding them into neat piles when you’re not looking; or maybe a unicorn that lives at the top of the Washington Memorial and blends in with the interior walls so well that visitors don’t even notice.

Click here to find out if rods are flying around your town. I encourage everyone to post a sighting for Boston Massachusetts and make my town the rod capital of the world. Then I can study these sightings and become the leading expert on rods, and maybe get on Good Morning America. I tried to post the following, but got an error, so I hope someone else has luck:

I’ve seen no less than three silvery flying things today on my way to work. They were very high up but I could just make them out. Hard to tell because they were so far away, but they appeared to be moving very quickly. Tried to catch them…arms not long enough.

I trust ABC will be on the line at any moment.

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca is a writer, speaker, YouTube personality, and unrepentant science nerd. In addition to founding and continuing to run Skepchick, she hosts Quiz-o-Tron, a monthly science-themed quiz show and podcast that pits comedians against nerds. There is an asteroid named in her honor. Twitter @rebeccawatson Mastodon Instagram @actuallyrebeccawatson TikTok @actuallyrebeccawatson YouTube @rebeccawatson BlueSky

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  1. God, I remember some paranormal show did a bit on these things many, many years back. (Way back when I was still watching paranormal shows like Sightings regularly.)

    I kinda have to wonder how many of these "rod sightings" are actually just visual "floaters" (which, to judge by the posters all over my optometrist's office, is actually a technical term) crossing their visual fields. If you're not aware that they're actually inside your eyes, they look an awful lot like zippy flying things that always seem to skitter away when you try to look straight at them.

  2. Rods are nothing. I can catch and train invisble, 50 ft dragons that feed on rods. I can’t show you proof of the dragons, because their invisible and undetectable, except by the absence of rods in the area where they live, because they’ve eaten them all. So whereever you don’t see a magic flying fish, that’s a dragon.

  3. So he’s “skyfishing”, “by hand”, and it “feels so good”.

    Umm… I think I know what he’s doing deep into the mountains by himself, I just always called it something else…

  4. "…which are called Rods."

    Uh oh.

    "…make my town the rod capital of the world."


    "…Then I can study these sightings and become the leading expert on rods"

    I'm…trying…can't…contain….SIGHTING IN MY PANTS sorry, sorry everyone. I just don't have the maturity needed to handle this.

    And by handle I meaDAMMIT!

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