Wednesday, April 24, 2013

We Are Serial Murderers

We don't pick our victims haphazardly.  Much research and observation goes into choosing the next casualty.  How does the subject move around?  Are they skittish, scared, and excitable, or confident, relaxed, and comfortable in a group?  What do they like to eat?  And what is their price?

It doesn't matter what precautions we take - we always end up killing the poor, helpless inhabitants of our saltwater aquarium.  I can't tell you how much money we have literally flushed down the toilet.  So many fish have come and gone in the past five years that I can hardly remember them all.  Some were a good fit with our tank-mates, and some (we found out quickly after insertion) were not.  Not sure if you have high blood pressure?  Just try chasing down an aggressive fish with a small mesh net, while it darts in and out of rocks, and your body will let you know.  

We have a great local aquarium supply store and we look up information online before any purchases.  Somehow, our tank has become the stuff of fishy nightmares.  I feel like the girl in Finding Nemo - Darla, the "Fish Killer!!!"  Today I came home to find two fish laying down - that's never a good thing if you know fish.  Thankfully my boys are old enough that they aren't so traumatized every time this happens.  We are currently down to about a half-dozen inch-long fish...  in our 90 gallon tank.  Talk about overkill.  (Oops, I shouldn't say "kill").  Why is this so hard?  We test our water, clean the tank properly, and attend to any maintenance needs that are required.  I guess some people are just not meant to own certain living things.

I'd like to think it's not just me.  I must admit that my cat did die last year, but he was 19 years old!  I'd had him since my college days.  So long, in fact, that he had outgrown his 90's pop-culture name.  "Toonces" drives no more.  Our old dog is deaf (and totally clueless), but still kicking at 13 years old.  So, it can't be all bad, right?  I'm not the Merchant of Death or anything.  Right?

So long "purple-yellow" and "bluey" (can you tell my kids came up with these creative names?).  I'm sorry you've gone down the swirly rivers of the afterlife (aka voyage to the water treatment plant).  I've got to go plan my next murderous rampage trip to the fish store.

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