Big Fish and Small Fish – Fish story or the one that did not get away?

June 27, 2009 – 11:23 am
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Its been a very busy year and we are not quite half way through 2009 yet. For those who follow or read this blog as well as other venues where I have material appear, or give interviews, quotes and perspectives, or have appeared in person, you probably have caught on that its been a busy year for me along with my book “The Green and Virtual Data Center”. However, all work and no play makes for a dull day and recently as things have finally settled down just a bit for a few weeks during the early summer time of the year, I have been able to get out and enjoy the out doors including fishing to which I must prefer over golf (I don’t have the patience for the game ;) ).

However, as is often the case when relaxing, some things can be come clear, new ideas come to mind and one such recent one is the notion of the big fish and the small fish. What caught my thoughts was that there is often the infatuation with the big fish, the big game vs. the fun of catching something small just for the fun of it.

Freshwater drum, Photo Courtesy Karen Schulz (C) 2009

Freshwater drum I caught near our home on the St. Croix River

Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoy deep-sea saltwater or even great lakes fishing, I enjoy the pursuit of the elusive walleye or other game fish, however a friend recently helped me to acquaint myself with the simplicity of catching small pan fish such as sunfish aka bluegills or pumpkin seeds.

What has become fun about this over the past week or two is one, the big game or sport fish have been elusive and instead of listening to stories of what got away or what’s not biting or how bad the fishing has been, me and fishing friend decided to change the game a bit and find what was biting or just for fun, do something different. Low and behold, about a week ago we set out to see how many species of fish we could catch in a day and we ended up with about three dozen sunnies (we threw almost all of them back, e.g. released), over a dozen bass including some large ones most of which were also released, a nice channel cat which was set free to find its friend cat-fish hunter, not to mention various others including a swamp shark aka northern pike, the cousin to the muskie and distant relative, or at least a perceived similarities to the barracuda.

Being a member of "The St. Croix Hookers, Catch and Release Division", most of the fish get released, however now and then we will keep some for dinner.

The other evening, I decided to try something different again which was to use very light tackle, an ice fishing rod to be precise and fish out of a kayak for sunnies, sure enough, it was not easy, the catch was not big, however the reward was fantastic in terms of getting into some backwaters we could not normally go with the regular boats, and yes, even caught a fish and yes, there were others that got away.

Greg fishing from Kyak - Photo courtesy of Karen Schulz (c) 2009 all rights reserved
It’s not a monster, however on light line, an ice fishing rod and from a kyak, it’s a blast! (Photo courtesy of Karen Schulz (C) 2009)

Catfish caught on St. Croix River - Photo by Greg Schulz (c) 2009
Catfish Caught on St. Croix River! (Photo courtesy of Greg Schulz (C) 2009)

I find it interesting that so many vendors, especially startups are in pure pursuit of the big game, the big fish which of course should the catch it, they have a story to talk about.

However I have also seen where so many ignore revenue, footprint, mind share and success at the cost of big game fishing for what ever reasons. This is where I realized a similarity with fishing recently. The same elusive fish that everyone else from other startups to existing players are all in pursuit of, yet so often get neglected the other smaller fish that while it takes more of, help to add to the footprint and success stories to build on, not to mention gather experience.

Granted, its tough to make a meal on just small fish, however there is balance and even the biggest of vendors are showing an awareness of the need for balanced portfolio from SOHO to SMB to SME to enterprise offerings from servers, storage, I/O networking, hardware, software and services.

Food for thought when the technology fishing slows during the dog days of summer, change-up the game or the approach a bit, explore alternate opportunities, try old tricks with new techniques to keep things interesting and productive. Certainly don’t ignore where everyone else is fishing or pursuing, however, break away and try something different, or, perhaps an area or opportunity that others might be ignoring or forgetting about in their pursuit of the big one that may end up getting away!

Ok, nuff said.

Cheers gs

Greg Schulz – Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press) and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier)
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Greg Schulz – StorageIO, Author “The Green and Virtual Data Center”. (CRC)
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