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noodle

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noodle v1,   hence ppl adj noodled, vbl n noodling, n noodler [Etym unknown; cf Scots, nEngl dial guddle, and similar frequentative forms canoodle, doodle, grabble] esp Ozarks Cf noodling hook To catch (fish, or occas turtles) with the bare hands or with a gaff; to fish in this way.1923 DN 5.215 swMO, Noodle. . . To catch fish with the bare hand or with a long-handled barbed hook.  1933 Williamson Woods Colt 9 Ozarks, I’m aimin’ to help noodle that catfish.  Ibid 13, You git things ready, an’ the rest of us can go noodle that cat [=catfish].  1937 Esquire Apr 130 swMO, If the larder is replenished by a noodled or jumped fish . . so much the better.  1937 AmSp 12.162 AR, In the state of Arkansas . . noodling is the process of catching fish by reaching into the water and grasping them by the gills with the thumb and forefinger.  1951 Conant Reptiles OH 160, Professional turtle collectors take them [=softshell turtles] by “noodeling,” [sic] in traps, nets or on set lines.  1957 McMeekin Old KY Country 205, Noodling is the sport of catching snapping turtles barehanded.  1960 Criswell Resp. to PADS 20 Ozarks, Noodle. . . To catch catfish nesting in holes in a bank with bare hands.  1968–69 DARE (Qu. P13, . . Ways of fishing . . besides the ordinary hook and line) Inf KS10, Noodling—dive in under a bank and catch fish with your hands, usually done in August; MO39, A-noodlin’. 1987 Childress Out of the Ozarks 28, There were two kinds of noodling practiced during my Midwest childhood—one using an encircling seine and bare hands and another with a breakable stick attached to a hook and line.  1988 DARE File csOK, Some friends who grew up in Garvin County, Oklahoma . . told me that people wade out into creeks and rivers and reach in mud holes in the banks to pull out catfish. This is called noodlin’.1989 Yank ee June 66 ME, A few turtle hunters. . . flop down in the mud and feel around blindly under riverbanks till they find a snapper to pull out, preferable tail-first—a method known as “noodling,” the practitioners of which can be numbered even on the fingers of their hands.  1991 Kirksville Express & News (MO) 1 Sept 12, [Headline:] “Noodling” Hurts Duo’s Pocketbook.  Ibid 12/1, Good behavior might get a pair of Monroe County men $100 of their fines back, but their illegal behavior cost the two “noodlers” $600 each. The duo pled guilty in . . Court on charges of taking fish by illegal methods. Specifically, they were handfishing in the Salt River.

 

 

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