Fish fear me.
I'm not quite sure what it is. I can keep two kids in one piece. I can keep a dog around for over 10 years. A fish, however, is in absolute danger when under my care.
Tanks with filters. Tanks without. Doesn't matter. I'm not quite sure what it is I do, but somehow, in short order, my fish pets end up dead.
At my college, technically speaking, you couldn't have a pet in your dorm room. Fish were the exception. (And of course, all those rodent variety pets people smuggled in and kept out of sight when someone that cared about the rules was nearby.) One year my roommates and I decided to get a fish tank. We picked these wonderfully elegant black fish - two of them. They died in about a month. We, being quite lazy, kept the filter running in the empty tank just because none of us ever got around to cleaning it out.
I suppose it's a good thing we were lazy. Several weeks after "Mollie's" passing we noticed the tank had sprouted several black little dots floating to and fro. One of those dead fish had produced offspring. We had little baby fish. Lest you think this has a happy ending, we managed to kill those off too. It was a very sad end. K lived nearest to campus. She was supposed to take the fish babes home with her over the winter break. She forgot.
Not only did she forget, but when the oil company was refilling the tanks in the basement of our building they overflowed a tank. The heat stopped working well. A horrible ice storm hit over break as well, closing roads in at least two states for at least two days. By the time we returned the smell of oil was strong in our room. We had to camp out in other residence halls while they got everything squared away. By the time we got back, the fish tank, which had ended up sitting hear a window that had been left open to air out the oil smell, was a big ice block.
In case you're wondering, little toddler fish do not survive the thaw process.
At that point, I swore off fish. In fact, the 10 gallon fish tank one of the brothers-in-law gave Bruce as a Christmas gift 10 years ago is still sitting unopened in it's box. Neither of us felt like we could be adqueate fish guardians.
The boy, however, wanted a fish. Around his second birthday we caved. We were at a street fair in town and Bruce won a small gold fish complete with bowl and food. We set it up and put it in Logan's room. The bright orange unsuspecting scaled pet was named Dennis after the goldfish in the cartoon Stanley on Playhouse Disney. Two days into fish ownership I had to tell Logan that Dennis decided to go back to live with Stanley.
I swore off fish again. In fact, I even tossed the bowl and various acccessories we had picked up for Dennis.
Today we went to the pet store to visit the hamsters and buy the dog some treats. The kids were admiring the fish. I was drawn to the Betas. I'm not quite sure what happened. One minute I was looking at this beautiful blue one and the next I was asking Logan which one he wanted. I bought a tank, some food, some plants, and the damn fish.
It's all set up nicely on his dresser. We opted to see the lovely fins displayed often by placing the poor guy in front of a mirror. Well sort of. He is in front of a mirror, but primarly because that was the only spot we could find in Logan's room that afforded some degree of safety from Megan's reach while allowing Logan the chance to really see the fish. The taunting reflection is simply a bonus.
I left the house at 6 pm for a business dinner. I got home just a bit ago and I'm almost wondering if I ought to go in and make sure "Swirly Whirly" (yes, the boy named him) is still alive before Logan finds his new favorite creature belly up in the morning.
I mean really. Someone tell me what the hell I was thinking?
Me. Fish. Nothing good can come of this.