Is This a Codpiece Which I See Before Me?

I was frying a piece of cod (the fish, not the Shakespearian male’s personal appendage) for dinner. It was a thick piece, from what must have been the fish equivalent of an NFL linebacker. I prefer thin pieces, because there’s nothing ickier than meat (other than steak) that’s not done in the middle; but that was all I had in the freezer and I was jonesing for fish and chips.

Anyway, I found out that night that there is something ickier than underdone fish.

When I started eating I noticed a dark layer in the middle. Since that happens near the skin or spine I didn’t think too much of it, except that it didn’t flake like the rest; it just lay there. I pulled it out. It was an intact, rubbery-looking gray tube.

My first thought was “zombie’s finger.” Then I threw the rest of my dinner in the trash and spent a few minutes hyperventilating before I Googled “fish guts.” I’d thought the tube was an intestine, but it turned out fish intestines aren’t that big around.

It mostly closely resembled a fish’s swim bladder or…his gonads.

Imagine if I had actually EATEN that thing. (Actually, I can’t imagine that.) I swear it looked like it was still alive. Would it have come bursting out of my stomach and slithered around the room looking for new victims as I bled to death?

No matter what it was, since then I haven’t been able to face any fish bigger than a brisling sardine.

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