FISH


By our co-founder Per Cromwell



My father is a story teller. My brother and me was brought up hearing stories from his childhood, from his journeys, about copywriters on Madison Avenue or faded artists in Stockholm. One story made a deeper impression and maybe this is why I never pursued a planned career.  I rather did what I felt had to be done.
It was a late summer and we were in a northbound RV. I had been told where we were heading but I didn’t remember. I didn’t care. I was going to find wilderness for my imagination and my father was going to find motifs for his camera. That evening, when we was sitting next to a lake having a simple dinner I still didn’t hadn’t a clue where we were, I knew we were somewhere north since it was colder and that we was in a big forest and next to a lake. I could always tell when a story was about to be told. Something about his gaze and now he had it.
Once upon a time there was a fisherman sitting on a beach with a fishing rod, my father started. Not much different from where we’re sitting now. But instead of a lake he was looking out over an ocean. In the distance a man came walking, a selfmade business man in a green suit. Once he reached the fisherman he stopped and looked at him for a while. The green suited businessman saw an business opportunity, and since he was in a good mood today, he felt he could share it, for free.
–Are you sitting here often? he started.
– Oh yes, everyday. The fisherman replied. I’m fishing for my family.
The businessman smirked, Here is what you should do, he said. You have two hands, right?
–Yes, the fisherman said.
– Then you should get a second fishing rod, and you will catch more fish without having to work more. Sell the extra fish and soon you will have money to buy a small boat.
With the boat you can go further out in the sea, catch bigger fish which you can sell. Soon you will have enough money to buy both a bigger boat and nets and now my friend… soon you will have your own fish factory, a growing staff, a small armada of fishing boats, the money will be pouring in. The business man looked content. This was what he did best, finding business opportunities wherever he went.
– Yes? The fisherman said which not only puzzled but annoyed the business man who just had given away a fine recipe for success.
What part of the business plan didn’t the fisherman understand he wondered? To make it more clear he continued, then sell the company, you will earn a lot of money, just like me, and you can then spend the rest of your days doing what you want, like just sitting here fishing.
–I’m already doing that, the fisherman said and turned towards the sea.
The shadows had been growing longer during the story as the sun started to set over the lake.
Thirty years later I still carry this story around.
A good companion since the tiresome detours in life are plenty and time is short.
This story got me right here.