My great-grandmother on my mother's side, Minnie Mullen—we called her Mother Dear—was a fishing fanatic. She was in her late 60s, but she had a boyfriend, a man we knew only as Ollie. To the best of my knowledge, the entirety of their relationship consisted of fishing. Toting their aluminum beach chairs and a tackle box, she and Ollie would leave early in the morning in his dented pickup truck to head out to Lake Puddingstone in San Dimas, 30 miles east of LA. Lake Puddingstone was stocked with bluegill, a small, flat sunfish with delicious, delicate-tasting white meat. I remember Ollie and Mother Dear returning with coolers filled with the day's catch, which they dumped in our driveway, ice and all. One or two fish would still be clinging to life, gasping, eyes glazed. It was the first time I'd seen something that would become food die. As soon as the fish arrived, Mom hit the phones, inviting folks to come over for a fish fry.