Fishing In The Dark: Meaning, Sentence Examples, Synonyms

The phrase “fishing in the dark” has 3 main meanings. It can be used to refer to post sundown fishing, a late night romantic encounter, or a situation when someone has to act without sufficient information.

This phrase is most commonly used to describe a situation when someone is pursuing a romantic relationship without knowing their partners thoughts or intentions. More specifically, this phrase is used at the start of relationships before both partners have gotten to know each other.

There are several synonyms that can be used for “fishing in the dark” including but not limited to “Taking a leap of faith”, “Navigating the unknown”, and “Embracing uncertainty”.

In this post we’ll detail the meaning of “fishing in the dark”, how to use it in a sentence, common synonyms, and how popular it is in the English language.

fishing in the dark meaning

What Does The Phrase “Fishing In The Dark”?

The phrase “fishing in the dark” most commonly refers to act of fishing during nighttime hours. After the sun has gone down anglers often use lanterns to attract fish and navigate their environment.

“My dad always awoke early on weekends because he loved finishing in the dark at the lake.”

However, the phrase “fishing in the dark” has multiple meanings. This double entendre can also be used during a romantic encounter. It can also be used metaphorically to describe a situation where someone does not see clear signals or have clear guidance.

There is also a popular musical group called the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band that produced a hit song called “Fishin’ In The Dark”.

What Does “Fishing In The Dark” Mean In A Romantic Context?

“Fishing in the dark” is used to refer to a romantic encounter under the stars at night. It also has a metaphorical meaning that signifies pursuing romantic endeavors without complete clarity. If someone is pursuing a relationship without having a clear understanding of the other person’s intentions they are “fishing in the dark”.

This phrase is often used in the beginning stages of a relationship. During the start of a relationship both individuals are getting to know each other. If someone is “fishing in the dark” they are taking emotional risks, embracing vulnerability, and venturing into the unknown realm of romantic emotions.

How Do You Use The Phrase “Fishing In The Dark”?

Here are 5 example sentences that demonstrate how to use the phrase “fishing in the dark” correctly.

  1. As we wandered through the moonlit beach it felt like we were fishing in the dark casting our hopes into the vast sea of possibilities.
  2. Sarah confessed her feelings to Jake and felt like she was fishing in the dark for a sign of his emotions.
  3. Their relationship was like fishing in the dark as they navigated the uncharted waters of their romance.
  4. Mark’s hesitant text messages and ambiguous replies made Emily feel like she was fishing in the dark trying to decipher his true feelings for her.
  5. Tim loves fishing in the dark on a hot summer night.

Just like we learned in our post about the meaning of Kimochi, writers need to understand context before picking the correct word choice.

What Are Synonyms For “Fishing In The Dark”?

Here are 7 synonym phrases that can be used instead of “fishing in the dark”.

  1. Taking a leap of faith
  2. Navigating the unknown
  3. Embracing uncertainty
  4. Stepping into uncharted waters
  5. Exploring uncharted territory
  6. Walking on thin ice
  7. Treading in unfamiliar waters

Just like we learned in our analysis of the saying “that said“, writers need to be careful when to use idiomatic expressions.

Can “Fishing In The Dark” Be Used In A Formal Context?

“Fishing in the Dark” can not be used in a formal context. This metaphoric phrase is informal and should only be used in casual contexts to describe situations of uncertainty. This phrase carries a figurative connotation that is not appropriate to use in business, academic or professional settings. Just like we saw in our post about the meaning of Lets blow this popsicle stand, writers need to use the appropriate phrase in the appropriate context.

Popularity Analysis

Google’s own N-Gram Data shows that there is a long history of the phrase “fishing in the dark” being used in published writing. This phrase has gained significant popularity since the mid 1980s. In modern times this phrase is most commonly used to indicate a lack of information in different situations (dating, work, sports, etc.). However, just like we saw in our analysis of the phrase “resonated with me“, informal terms can fluctuate in popularity depending on popular culture.

fishing in the dark

What Is The Opposite Of “Fishing In The Dark”?

The below 5 phrases can be used as antonym phrases to “fishing in the dark”. These phrases are not related the the late night fishing expedition. They are related to the metaphoric meaning.

  1. Knowing all the answers
  2. Clear and calculated approach
  3. Walking a well-lit path
  4. Making an informed decision
  5. Having a complete understanding

Frequently Asked Questions

Can the phrase “fishing in the dark” be used to describe a situation involving uncertainty or lack of information?

Yes, the phrase “fishing in the dark” can indeed be used to describe a situation involving uncertainty or a lack of information, often implying attempting to accomplish a task without proper guidance or knowledge.

What is a double entendre?

A double entendre is a figure of speech or expression that has two meanings, one usually straightforward and the other often suggestive or risqué, creating a play on words.

The Bottom Line

By now you should be an expert on the phrase “fishing in the dark”. This phrase has multiple meanings and can be used to refer to a late night fishing expedition, nighttime romantic encounter, or a situation where someone needs to act without all the needed information. Be sure to understand the context of your writing or conversation before choosing to to use this phrase in your writing. If you need help with other grammar rules like this be sure to use our own Sentence Review Tool to make things easy for you.