Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Stupidest Fish In The World

We've had Pencil for like 3 years now, but honestly, he's the stupidest fish ever. And all fish are pretty stupid so this is saying a lot.

The first time Pencil managed to get caught in the filter, I thought it was a fluke. Poor guy. I gently extricated him and just felt really, really sorry for him. I'm not sure if fish feel pain, but if they do, it sucks for Pencil. I don't know how long he was caught in there. His tail has never been the same since. It was gone for awhile on one side, and then grew back in flowing tatters.

Sucks, if you're a fish.
The second time he got caught in the filter, I felt sorry for him again. I'd done all I could to prevent a repeat episode, by putting the filter right up against the wall and as close to the bottom as I could. Still, he managed to get stuck in there, by one of his lateral fins this time. He wasn't on there for more than a few hours, but his lateral fin was reduced to a bloody stump. It's pretty sad watching a fish try to swim with only one lateral fin. The whole balance thing is off.

Lucky for Pencil, Whitey Ford isn't the kind of fish who attacks sick roommates or tries to eat their bloody stumps. Whitey Ford has never gotten stuck in the filter even once, which proves that either Whitey Ford is extraordinarily clever for a fish, or that Pencil is extremely stupid.

Also lucky for Pencil, his lateral fin grew back, and it looks almost normal. At least he doesn't swim all cockeyed anymore.

Don't read this. No, wait. You should totally read this
So a few months went by, and then Pencil got stuck in the filter again. He could have been there all day, for all I know. This time, he got stuck by his butt. Stuff appeared to maybe be coming out of him. Have you ever read Haunted by Chuck Palahnuik? And there's the story of Saint Gut-Free, the guy who suffered some unpleasantness from masturbating on a pool filter? Well, don't read it. It's disgusting. Pencil's issue wasn't quite as bad as that, but it made me think of it.

The butt-sticking was just last week, and Pencil has been unwell since. I mean, his butt has shrunk back into place and it's not all bloody and gross anymore, but he sometimes does that upside-down thing and he's been drifting around a new corner an awful lot. At least he eats his food.

Nevertheless, yesterday I discovered him stuck to the filter again, by the tail again. I hardly felt sorry for him at all, just shut off the filter and got him off of there as gently as I could. His tail is in tatters again.

Poor, stupid fish.


Jack Scott said...

Poor Pencil's obviouly got the memory of a er, goldfish. The advantage is he won't need therapy to get over the trauma.

Stranger said...

Poor stupid fish. Evolution is definitely not working in has favor.

I'm not sure much can be done for him now. He got stuck again yesterday and he's been upside-down but alive ever since. I turned off the filter. I think Whitey Ford is feeling less magnanimous and getting nippy.

So now I'm having that Goldfish Deathwatch conundrum-- is it best to put him out of his misery (and how long do they live in toilet pipes anyway?), or shall I let nature take its course?

Does Pencil even remember his misery from one moment to the next, or does it surprise him every 30 seconds?

Jerry said...

Please don't think I've not posted because I've not been following.
I'm just lost for words.
I'm being honest here: Do you laugh while you're writing?

I'm f*ckin' hysterical reading your stuff.

I've read Spike Milligan for years and he was a live one.

I think you're along the same lines.

Stranger said...

Thanks, Jerry. I admit I always snicker at words like "butt," because I'm so freaking mature.

And actually, the picture of the fish makes me giggle every time because he looks especially stupid.