That's When It Hits You Like a Swordfish Bill to the Gut

By Joe Cermele

Shark bites? Whatever. They're a dime a dozen. Getting knocked around by a marlin that jumps into the boat? It happens. Having your hand shredded by a pike or muskie? I've seen it. Getting skewered like kabob meat right through the paunch by a swordfish? Now that's a new one for me, and though I am no swordfish-catching machine, I've dealt with them enough to tell you that if I had to choose to be scarred by one of the circumstances outlined above, the swordfish deal would be my last pick.

According to this story on the website of Asia One News, Abu Bakar Bachik (above) says it's common to see swordfish free-jumping in the waters outside of Port Dickson in Malaysia, but never in his long career as a commercial angler has he ever heard of anyone getting run through by one, and he certainly never thought it would happen to him. From the article:

Abu Bakar said he felt like being punched hard in his stomach when he was impaled. "I saw blood gushing out from my T-shirt and realised what had happened..."

"I will never forget the sight of the fish flying towards me before impaling me in the stomach right next to my navel," he said.

Abu Bakar said the 1m-long fish eventually jumped back into the water.

Luckily, Abu Bakar was fishing with a friend who rushed him to the closest hospital, where it took six hours worth of surgery to get his intestines back in working order. See, shark teeth are razor sharp and make clean, precision cuts. I've heard that the pain from a shark bite doesn't set in right away. But a swordfish bill, I can tell you from holding one, is pretty blunt, very rough and very splintery. So I'd take a clean slice over a jab with an old wooden spoon any day.