MasterClass Outline: Atlantic Salmon Teach Swimming Upstream


Ladies, this one’s for you. In a time when each victory is met with confoundingly horrific news, the act of basic survival can feel like swimming upstream. Now, don’t miss this opportunity to learn exclusive upstream swimming techniques from those who know: several judicious salmon returning to their natal homes to spawn.

01: Introduction: Meet the Salmon

Ah, the shrewd Atlantic salmon. These mighty fish typically spend several years wandering aimlessly in the Atlantic’s murky depths, suffering harassment from predators of all shapes and sizes while earning 75 cents on the sand dollar for doing the same work as other fish. At the end of their lives, the salmon return to their natal rivers to spawn on cozy gravel beds. Now you, too, can learn to swim upstream until you greet the sweet kiss of death!

02: Preparing to Swim Upstream

Let’s face it: Swimming upstream can be exhausting. One moment, you’re cruising along; the next, a foul talk show host is offered a second chance that could potentially undermine an entire progressive social movement. In this lesson, you’ll learn to heighten your instincts, your sense of smell and your swimming and leaping abilities to make the arduous journey upstream. Take it from the salmon: You’ll be presented with an unending series of obstacles until your dying day, so start training now.

03: Grizzly Bears and You: Predator Prep

During a salmon’s vulnerable trip upstream, a variety of predators emerge—bears, sea lions, otters, bald eagles, fishermen and washed-up television personalities, just to name a few. Predators have been known to congregate, snatching the salmon out of the stream JUST when they begin to feel confident in their swimming abilities. Sound familiar, ladies?

04: A Brief Note on Leaping Waterfalls

Salmon are known for their powerful vertical leaps, often shooting up to 12 feet out of the water to scale waterfalls and other aquatic obstacles. In this lesson, you’ll learn to leverage your personal hydraulics, sending you soaring over any roadblocks in your path. Unfortunately, one leap forward is just one leap closer to a swarm of predators and your ultimate demise.

05: Spawning: Worth It?

According to our salmon friends, it’s challenging to bring more young salmon into this world knowing that they will continue to face harassment and injustice despite the work of their foresalmon. In this lesson, you’ll be presented with several arguments for and against spawning. Because, unlike the Atlantic salmon, you’re guaranteed full autonomy over your own reproductive choices—right?

06: Greeting the Sweet Kiss of Death

Once their spawning cycle is complete, the Atlantic salmon are met with death’s sweet embrace. In this MasterClass finale, our scaly instructors explain the glories of leaning into one’s own mortality. In the end, the average salmon can only hope to have left a small legacy of change and inspiration in its upstream wake. But how would they know? They’re dead! Anyway, good luck!


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