Thursday, January 17, 2013


You may remember that I gave "Fish" to my grandson, Elliot, five years ago while his parents were in Mexico lying on the beach.

When Sam and Sarah returned, they were not thrilled to have a new member of the family.  They never named him.  They never put colored stones in the bottom of his bowl or a little pirate castle.  They never said comforting words to him when he jumped out of his bowl and landed on the granite counter top, his fin cemented to the surface.

He recovered.

Today I received this email from Sarah:

 If we lived in the same city I would call you and tell you to get the hell over here and watch this damn fish refuse to die. It has been swimming sideways, awkwardly all day. Its right side, you know the side that is white from being stuck to the countertop for who-knows-how-long a year ago, seems bloated and buoyant. Every so often it sits at the top of the water, tilted. The eyes are extra beady. It breathes slowly. Then it gets a burst of energy and swim-gallops toward the bottom again. I have lost my appetite.

I should go to Phoenix and give this fish palliative care.  I would crush an Ativan and sprinkle it into the water, so that Fish could feel calm before he moves through the tunnel and into the light.  I would give him a name: Herman Melville.  I would tell him I've never known a gold fish who lived five years.
What a brave fish he's been in the faee of emotional abuse and periodic neglect.

Sarah, could it be that the Saran Wrap across the top of the bowl to keep fish from jumping free, is actually suffocating poor fish?

We palliative care specialists have to ask these questions.


  1. There are gaps on both sides of the plastic wrap to allow for proper air flow. We have put plastic across the top ever since the jumping-out episode.

    I have never emotionally abused Fish to its face. Periodic neglect? Ok.

  2. I don't know why you are blogging so much lately, but I love it. My life is happier with a dose of Louise every now and again. :)